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Mess in AMS today - April 2022 onwards

Mess in AMS today - April 2022 onwards

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Old Oct 22, 22, 2:58 am   -   Wikipost
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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.
If you arrive from a secure area (EU, Schengen countries, UK, US, Canada, Singapore): 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.


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Old Sep 29, 22, 3:44 pm
  #2671  
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Originally Posted by Fabo.sk View Post
while runways in the complex around the terminal have visibility of more than 2000 meters, the Polderbaan is still at 900.
And guess what? 18C/36R was of course closed for maintenance.

Very pleasant weather at Schiphol this afternoon, almost an Indian summer's day. Excellent visibility, the air much clearer than usual in Holland.

Johan
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Old Sep 29, 22, 4:04 pm
  #2672  
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Departures 1 security

Originally Posted by Xandrios View Post
When you use this entrance you initially go up the stairs together with regular pax if I'm not mistaken. Is there actually a manned split off point to then move to the priority queue upstairs? And do you join the same priority queue together with the Skypriority pax that took the other entrance? or are there two priority checkpoints at Departures 1?
With time to kill while waiting for my ride this afternoon, I ambled over to check it out. The entrance is directly behind T1 check-in row 5. Had a chat with two friendly ladies tasked with policing access. They said it was their lucky day, as they had been assigned the sinecure station. Only two categories of pax were allowed to use this access point : Privium members, and those with departures shown as boarding. Everybody else had to use the regular or back door (i.e. Priority) access points.

Johan
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Old Sep 30, 22, 2:36 am
  #2673  
 
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Originally Posted by johan rebel View Post
With time to kill while waiting for my ride this afternoon, I ambled over to check it out. The entrance is directly behind T1 check-in row 5. Had a chat with two friendly ladies tasked with policing access. They said it was their lucky day, as they had been assigned the sinecure station. Only two categories of pax were allowed to use this access point : Privium members, and those with departures shown as boarding. Everybody else had to use the regular or back door (i.e. Priority) access points.

Johan
Ah, thanks for getting the confirmation. Explains the discussion I've seen on Monday - a man and a woman travelling together, both had prio, but only one had Privium. In the end, they let them pass together.
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Old Sep 30, 22, 2:37 am
  #2674  
 
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Upstairs the queue normally still takes what, 45min? If your flight is already boarding, for non-prio pax I dont think it will make much of a difference at that point to take this shortcut.
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Old Sep 30, 22, 2:53 am
  #2675  
 
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Originally Posted by KLflyerRalph View Post
Upstairs the queue normally still takes what, 45min? If your flight is already boarding, for non-prio pax I dont think it will make much of a difference at that point to take this shortcut.
I would assume these pax get to skip the normal queue, if not the prio queue as well.
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Old Sep 30, 22, 4:07 am
  #2676  
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Originally Posted by Fabo.sk View Post
I would assume these pax get to skip the normal queue, if not the prio queue as well.
I think I'll give it a try next time, check how things are organized upstairs, and report back here.

Johan
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Old Sep 30, 22, 10:38 am
  #2677  
 
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Data point Friday 30 September 4PM: friends without status were queueing for 3hrs15minutes to clear security.
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Old Sep 30, 22, 11:04 am
  #2678  
 
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Friday 30th Sep, regular Y ticket, no (relevant) status, arrival 0645 by train, KL baggage drop and security took 2.5hrs. Not tht bad considering last months, but still ridiculous.
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Old Sep 30, 22, 1:14 pm
  #2679  
 
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New dat point for Friday 30th September:
When I arrived at the NS station (6:20 PM) and went upstairs at Departures 1-2 there was a very long line for regular (non prio) pax coming from outside. There was no line at the Priority entrance behind the KLM SkyPriority check-in. I visited the Privium ClubLounge before heading to the security checkpoint behind check-in row 3, around 7:30 PM. As mentioned before, this only works when you have Privium or when your flight is already boarding. There was one kind lady checking eligibility, just show your Privium card. Security was a breeze, as there are no more than 5-ish pax in front of you. Still, very long zig-zagging lines for regular non-priority pax upstairs. (Downstairs it seemed manageable).

Right now Im in the KLM Canteen 25it is filled to the brim.
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Old Sep 30, 22, 1:57 pm
  #2680  
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Originally Posted by Didymis View Post
Right now Im in the KLM Canteen 25.
You meant to say prison canteen, right?

Johan
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Old Sep 30, 22, 2:15 pm
  #2681  
 
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So for Privium pax, the entrance in Departures 1 is a better choice than up the stairs at Skyprio?
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Old Sep 30, 22, 2:31 pm
  #2682  
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Data Point

A colleague's elderly and inexperienced mom arrived 18 minutes late in AMS on KL from MEX yesterday, Thursday. Her connection to BLL had been canceled, and she had been auto-rebooked AMS-ARN-BLL (last leg on SK) the next day (i.e. today, Friday). She called her daughter, who checked the options and found availability on flights the same afternoon/evening to both AAL and CPH. She then called KLM and after patiently waiting for ages finally got somebody on the line. The agent adamantly refused to rebook her mom on any of the available flights, claiming that this could not be done because the luggage had already been labelled AMS-ARN-BLL. Daughter informed mom, who decided to try her luck at a transfer desk. After standing in line for hours, the transfer desk suddenly closed, and all those in the queue were given envelopes with a sheet of paper recommending they try their luck online. Apparently no information about duty of care, EU261, etc. Mom called daughter, who managed to find her a hotel for the night. Today she flew back home via ARN, arriving over 26 hours late but . . . wait for it . . . without her checked luggage! So far, nobody seems to have any idea where it is. Update: the luggage was sent AMS-ARN on the flight she was rebooked on, but ARN then for some reason sent the bags back to AMS! I'm guessing they just assumed KL had loaded the bags on the wrong flight, and returned them without checking further. Once back at AMS the bags were sent to BLL, where they arrived today, Saturday. With any luck they will be delivered today too.

This clown show has gotten way beyond ridiculous. The reputational damage to AMS and KL must be huge, and is fully deserved. Any sensible customer who has other options should avoid both the airport and the airline like the plague.

13 colleagues and I flew to or from AMS yesterday. Four flying longhaul on QR via DOH or TK via IST has no issues whatsoever, apart from the joke that passes for security. Another had his incoming KL flight canceled and will try his luck again tomorrow. The rest just had to put up with the AMS mess and the usual KL delays.

According to Luchtvaartnieuws.nl KLM, the other airlines serving AMS, travel agents and tour operators are livid, furious, and up in arms after Schiphol announced further restriction through March. Can't blame 'm.

Johan

Last edited by johan rebel; Oct 1, 22 at 9:13 am Reason: corrections, additions, luggage update added.
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Old Oct 1, 22, 3:50 am
  #2683  
 
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Flying in to AMS on Tuesday, from HUY, which I think gets bussed into the D pier from memory. Then got 7 hours (as they cancelled the mid morning HUY-AMS and put us on the 06.10. Am I right to assume (I hope) that its straight from D pier to the NS lounge, then off to the gate having eaten all the food I can find ? No passport check point or security post NS to NS ?
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Old Oct 1, 22, 3:58 am
  #2684  
 
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Originally Posted by tezzer View Post
Flying in to AMS on Tuesday, from HUY, which I think gets bussed into the D pier from memory. Then got 7 hours (as they cancelled the mid morning HUY-AMS and put us on the 06.10. Am I right to assume (I hope) that its straight from D pier to the NS lounge, then off to the gate having eaten all the food I can find ? No passport check point or security post NS to NS ?
Correct. For arrivals from the UK connecting to a non-Schengen destination there will be no security check nor passport control.
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Old Oct 1, 22, 4:14 am
  #2685  
 
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Datapoint 10/01/22 T3

Arrived around 7.00 AM this morning at AMS. Way too early for my 11.15 flight, but I needed to drive and still had a lot of work to do. The SQ check in opened at 7.15 and I got my boarding passes around 7.30. Security and passport control took 20 minutes with Privium. This could be more fast, the staff pro actively offered a few times to bring me in front of another line. Because I was early I did not see any reason for that.

Regular lines obviously longer, but my impression is that today was quite "allright" in T3. So far, most things look fairly organized to me.
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