Mess in AMS today - April 2022 onwards

    Hide Wikipost
Old Jul 3, 22, 7:36 am   -   Wikipost
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.
 
Last edit by: Fabo.sk
Wiki Link
The latest suggestions and state of the Mess in Amsterdam of Summer '22 - short staffing and security issues.

Starting late April/early May 2022, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is showing signs of chronic, and at times extreme, overcrowding. This thread is dedicated largely to the discussion of the same.

We have created this wiki to have a single point of reference, updated periodically with tips, tricks and reports of current state.

Bottlenecks

As of June 2nd, there are 2 bottlenecks at the airport.
1. Entrance to the terminal building from outside (arrival by car)
2. Security checks.

As of June 20th, unsatisfactory situation has been reported also on all arrival passport checks.

Tips to deal with Entrance to the terminal building lines

As of July 3rd, you could enter the terminal from train station without hindrance. On travel heavy days, consider getting dropped off at Hoofdorp, Zuid or Lelylaan and taking a train one station instead.
Privium holders are reportedly able to bypass lines by showing the Privium card.
Note: Schiphol is sometimes limiting access to passengers 4 hours before the flight, both from outside and through Schiphol plaza.
The checks do happen, but you are very likely to be able to bypass them from Schiphol Plaza (arrival by train or bus) by using the lift or stairs instead of inclined travelators.


Tips to deal with Security lines

There are currently three departure checkpoints into the main terminal area (plus one for the lowcost wing). Departures 1 and 2 are used for Schengen flights, Departures 2 and 3 for non-Schengen. (You can, however, turn left after leaving checkpoint for Departures 1 and reach exit control).
You don't have to use the checkpoint in your airlines departure area, so check if one of the other ones has a shorter line. However keep in mind that transfer passport control might bring additional delay.
If you have priority, ignore the main entrances to the checkpoints, particularly 1 and 2. Especially ignore the line for the stairs to checkpoint 2. Enter via SkyPriority zone, either via front if you have STE+/SP, or via back from Oversized Baggage point. There is a Privium card reader if you are a holder, alternatively sneak by opening one-way gate by hand.
The stairs at the back of SP zone are now official and only access point for priority for Schengen. The position is manned and access rules are strictly enforced.
Once upstairs, you can enter the lines for Departures 2 directly, or take a left, then another left, and you'll find yourself in Departures 1 checkpoint area.
Once upstairs, staff direct you either to enter rightmost lane in checkpoint 2, or to turn left to proceed to leftmost lane of checkpoint 1.
Privium holders can alternatively use Privium gates at otherwise closed Departures 1 checkpoint entry (behind check-in row 3), join the rightmost lane of checkpoint 1. There is going to be some mixing with non-prio pax at the filter, but on the upside, there is guaranteed no non-Privium priority pax coming up the stairs so you are virtually guaranteed to have no more than ~5 people in the queue immediately in front of the filter.

Tips to deal with Immigration / Passport Control lines

There are four options for arriving (from secure location) passengers. One is to use transfer passport control, one is to use passport control by F gates and another is to use passport control by E gates. There are also stairs by end of D pier next to the transfer control. All these feed into different lines.
There is no trick, just see if one of the other ones is shorter, depending on where the majority of recently arrived flights are docked.

Passengers arriving from unsecure locations cannot reach these without going through transit security. The only option is to follow the signs for entry control.

If you really want to make sure you're safe and are willing to pay extra

Schiphol VIP services are available at 390 for the first, 175 for each additional passenger (excl. VAT; with VAT rates are 471.90+211.75)
VIP service is at capacity and is not accepting new reservations.

General timeline suggestions

For Privium passengers, 1 hour should be comfortable in almost all cases.
For SkyPriority passengers, 1.5 hours should be comfortable in almost all cases.
For other priority passengers, it really depends on whether the priority lines are open but I would personally aim for 1.5 - 2 hours. Worst case you can sneak into the SkyPriority area from the back and use the gates there (your BP will be accepted). The priority line behind SP area is now open to all prio pax.
For non-priority passengers, realistically, 4 hours should be enough except at the worst times. Anyone informed enough to post here will probably also understand that the entire airport (except the easyJet gates I guess) is connected airside and you can shop around the different security areas depending on how bad the lines look.

Common Questions

I'm transferring from a non-schengen to a non-schengen flight in XX, will I make it?
Yes, you will. Non-schengen to non-schengen transfers happen by first arriving at AMS.
If you arrive from a secure area (EU, UK, US, Canada, direct non-stop SIN): You then navigate yourself within the departures area to your non-schengen flight out of AMS and this takes less than 20 minutes, even if you have to walk from D gates to G gates.
If you arrive from non-secure area (other than mentioned; SIN flights via DPS): You will have to follow transit signs for transit security. There are no reports of transit security taking unusually long.

If you want to print your BP for the next segment, there are many transfer check-in machines across the non-schengen gates for you to print your BP, do check-in/document check, change seat, and etc for your next flight. No security or immigration is involved and odds are, you will wait at the gate for boarding, If you are FB Gold and up, STE+, or flying in business class, you will have access to the Crown Lounge and can grab a bite, get some work done, take a shower, or rent one of the sleeping pods depending on how long your transit is.

Print Wikipost

Old Apr 30, 22, 8:39 pm
  #166  
 
Join Date: Nov 2018
Location: Viña del Mar, Chile
Programs: FB Plat, ALL Silver, HH Silver
Posts: 146
Originally Posted by atflyer View Post
We Dutch have this hate-love relationship with Germany (due to soccer and some other historical reasons) but there are moments when I wished my country had a bit more of their gründlich planning capacities. Asking airlines to cancel flights since you did not see coming how many pax would make use of your airport....
Seems to be a common theme across Europe as airports get back intonfull swing, minus appropriate staffing numbers. The UK has been experiencing crap like this since the Easter holiday season. Heathrow, Manchester, you name it, it's been a nightmare.
Lawrious is offline  
Old Apr 30, 22, 11:40 pm
  #167  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: AMS/RTM
Posts: 2,720
Originally Posted by mfkne View Post
Makes you wonder what an operational director of Schiphol does for a living. Certainly nothing related to operating an airport or commercial aviation in the broader sense.
Oh, "commercial" refers to the "commerce" of the shopping mall that Schiphol runs, which also happens to have a large parking lot for aircraft.

Annoyingly, shoppers seem to be lured away from spending money by continuously boarding said aircrafts, but that's where the genius moves of the last few days come in...
malmostoso is online now  
Old May 1, 22, 1:24 am
  #168  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: London
Programs: BAEC-GGL, *A Gold, Hilton Diamond , IHG Diamond/Ambassador
Posts: 187
Total chaos. People held out of the arrivals Hall for about 30mins in pens. After access to passport area, huge queues. Most egates out of operation. Sloth like speed from officials...
Hmmm...

Access to arrivals blocked.

Crowds in shopping area waiting 4 escape.

Border processing .
flyerkit is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 2:06 am
  #169  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: OSL-MAD
Programs: FB Plat
Posts: 95
Originally Posted by flyerkit View Post
Total chaos. People held out of the arrivals Hall for about 30mins in pens. After access to passport area, huge queues. Most egates out of operation. Sloth like speed from officials...
Hmmm...
Access to arrivals blocked.
Crowds in shopping area waiting 4 escape.
Border processing .
I keep going back to the same question: Did you see if the Privium line was still active?

So far the worst was for those landside prior to security but the transfer situation looks terrible as well...
AnaTFN is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 3:10 am
  #170  
FlyerTalk Evangelist
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Posts: 14,053
Originally Posted by AnaTFN View Post
Did you see if the Privium line was still active?
Privium has assured me in writing that all Privium gates are working. I suspect the real challenge lies in getting to one. When there are "normal" queues it is always possible to squeeze past, which I don't hesitate to do even though I find it slightly embarrassing. But when you have to run a Tensa barrier labyrinth gauntlet . . . .

Just like you I eagerly await reports from those unfortunates who have not choice but giving it a go. I have a bunch of tickets that all say AMS, and no realistic alternatives. Fortunately not just yet, but the countdown has started.

Johan
johan rebel is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 3:40 am
  #171  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: OSL-MAD
Programs: FB Plat
Posts: 95
Same, I am traveling in and out AMS four weeks of the next five (not connecting through, I visit a company in the NL) and not looking forward to it...
AnaTFN is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 3:47 am
  #172  
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 534
Originally Posted by tourguide View Post
The queue to enter baggage pickup is caused by shortage of staff at the passport control.
Sounds reasonable, though the people who I asked "Why are you in this line?" replied it was for baggage pickup.
So maybe that was just what they were told but the truth was it was for passport control.

Originally Posted by tourguide View Post
But these days, it may take 2 hours from plane landing via standing in line for passports to finally exit and meet the airport rep
That line I saw was easily a 2 hour line.

Schiphol inside and out could have been a filming location for Fear The Walking Dead Season 7...
MareLuce is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 3:48 am
  #173  
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 534
(Duplicate)

Last edited by MareLuce; May 1, 22 at 9:24 am Reason: Duplicate
MareLuce is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 3:53 am
  #174  
 
Join Date: Sep 2021
Posts: 56
Originally Posted by AnaTFN View Post
I keep going back to the same question: Did you see if the Privium line was still active?
Really keen to know what the bigger picture is right now with Privium (I don't know that it'll be worth it if this chaos continues)...

Mr FlyingBlonde was at Schiphol on Friday 22 April (so not the worst day) and said that there were a lot of Privium members stressed because they couldn't bypass the queues. He reported that he queued for 2 hours in the regular lines and Privium members were able to reach the Privium gates but were still faced with a 30minute backlog. (Mr FB reported lots of yelling 'I have Privium' and staff shrugging in response.) So whether they sorted out Privium access or not I don't know but on that day it was a matter of 30mins queue v 2hour queue.
FlyingBlonde89 is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 5:42 am
  #175  
 
Join Date: May 2015
Location: AMS-LHR
Programs: Currently only BA Gold / OneWorld Emerald ;-(
Posts: 380
Originally Posted by flyerkit View Post
Most egates out of operation.
Why is it that those e-gates are inoperative so frequently in AMS?
Great_circle is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 7:18 am
  #176  
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: AMS / ATH
Programs: AFKL Plat, A3 Gold
Posts: 6,261
Because they require specialised staff. While the gates (the mechanical part) is automated, there still is a human controlling which gates open and which ones require manual processing.

I'm scheduled to fly next Saturday at noon, which (according to the predictions) is going to be a Peak Day similar to yesterday. Since also pick-up at my destination will be tricky (especially if the flight is delayed, which seems likely) I'm actually looking at postponing and changing plans to fly at another day/time. Not sure if I'll be able though as this is personal travel and last-minutes fares are crazy high.

Edit: Changed from A3 on saturday noon to KL sunday early morning. According to the prediction that should be a better time. And should be able to legally use Skypriority check in/security that way.

Last edited by Xandrios; May 1, 22 at 10:46 am
Xandrios is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 10:02 am
  #177  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Programs: Flying Blue Platinum, Accor All Gold, Marriott Bonvoy Gold, Hilton Honors Gold, Melia Rewards Gold
Posts: 113
I've been looking at this post with interest and shock since I have a couple of connections coming up at AMS. My outbound via AMS will be a Schengen to Non-Schengen connection, so only passport control to pass. But coming back is a Non-Schengen to Schengen (considered non-clean) so I will have to pass security as well. I do have Privium but reading some of the posts makes me think this may not help much. I'll be flying 11 May and 24 May. Does anyone know if the Dutch holidays are over by this point and we should expect a bit of normalcy? Or should I start planning on moving my flights off to Air France?

Last edited by sehgalanuj; May 1, 22 at 11:09 am Reason: Fixed dates to May. Sleep brain doesn't do well with dates apparently. Apologies.
sehgalanuj is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 10:53 am
  #178  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: AMS/RTM
Posts: 2,720
Originally Posted by sehgalanuj View Post
l be flying 11 April and 24 April. Does anyone know if the Dutch holidays are over by this point and we should expect a bit of normalcy? Or should I start planning on moving my flights off to Air France?
Assuming you mean May, the holidays will end on May 8th, so hopefully it'll be better.
malmostoso is online now  
Old May 1, 22, 11:08 am
  #179  
 
Join Date: Jan 2018
Programs: Flying Blue Platinum, Accor All Gold, Marriott Bonvoy Gold, Hilton Honors Gold, Melia Rewards Gold
Posts: 113
Originally Posted by malmostoso View Post
Assuming you mean May, the holidays will end on May 8th, so hopefully it'll be better.
You're right. I did mean May.

Also, thank you. This is good to know. My outbound was actually May 14th (I completely forgot), and since there is the climate action, just to be safe I switched this leg over to AF. If there is still chaos on the return, I guess I'll either end up switching to AF or using the Schiphol VIP service, whichever works out as a better value.
sehgalanuj is offline  
Old May 1, 22, 12:15 pm
  #180  
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: London
Programs: BAEC-GGL, *A Gold, Hilton Diamond , IHG Diamond/Ambassador
Posts: 187
Originally Posted by AnaTFN View Post
I keep going back to the same question: Did you see if the Privium line was still active?

So far the worst was for those landside prior to security but the transfer situation looks terrible as well...
Privium was active but entry is on the first floor. It will take about 45mins to get to the top of the stairs.
flyerkit is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread