Schiphol Airport Announces Limited Capacity Reduction

Amsterdam Schiphol Airport says it will implement a "limited reduction" in capacity in 2024 to alleviate pressure during peak times.



January 4, 2024

DALLAS — Amsterdam Schiphol Airport (AMS) has announced that it will implement a "limited reduction" in capacity in 2024 to alleviate pressure during peak times. This decision came after the airport walked back on its controversial plans to reduce the number of flights this year significantly.

Schiphol Aiport has stated that it has the capacity for 483,000 flights in 2024, with plans to accommodate 293,000 flights during the summer (from March 31 to October 26). However, this is contingent upon relieving pressure during the high season for safe and stable operations.

The Dutch government's previous plans to reduce annual flights at the airport were suspended in November 2023 due to pressure from the US and EU. These plans aimed to reduce noise pollution and would have decreased annual flights from 500,000 to 460,000 starting in April 2024, with further reductions planned for 2025.

The current capacity announcement allows 13,000 more flights during the 2024 summer season than the previously announced capacity reduction scheme. The airport is discussing with airlines to determine how the number of flights can be reduced, particularly during morning peak hours. Consultations for the winter season will take place later in 2024.

The Dutch flag carrier KLM (KL) welcomed the decision to implement a limited reduction in capacity. However, KL still has contentions regarding AMS' decision to increase its take-off and landing fees by 14.8% in 2024. Also in November, KL, easyJet (U2), and the trade organization IATA requested the Trade Appeals Board (CBb) to review the fee hike.

At the time, the CEO of KLM, Marjan Rintel, warned that flight ticket prices were likely to increase due to these higher fees. The rise in ticket prices is attributed to factors such as environmental and aviation taxes and the downsizing of AMS.

For now, the Dutch hub has managed to get almost half of the yearly reductions it wanted on the scrapped capacity cut plans for 2024.

Featured image: Amsterdam Schiphol Airport with KLM aircraft seen from above. Photo: KLM