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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
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.
 
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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 Jun 10, 22, 5:36 am
  #871  
 
Join Date: Sep 2021
Posts: 61
Update today:

Non-schengen, arrived at noon, no queues in SP. Short queues (for SP) at security (<5mins) and quickly through passport control (also <5mins).
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Old Jun 10, 22, 5:53 am
  #872  
 
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Duplicate post
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Old Jun 10, 22, 1:07 pm
  #873  
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Privium has confirmed that that access point in the corner of the KL Sky Priority check-in area should have been supervised, but was not due to alleged staff shortages. They have promised to do better, and ensure that only eligible pax are admitted.

Johan
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Old Jun 10, 22, 7:48 pm
  #874  
 
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Originally Posted by johan rebel View Post
Privium has confirmed that that access point in the corner of the KL Sky Priority check-in area should have been supervised, but was not due to alleged staff shortages. They have promised to do better, and ensure that only eligible pax are admitted.

Johan
Not great for any non-SP elites flying through the airport
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Old Jun 10, 22, 8:49 pm
  #875  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
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Received the dreaded email that my AMS-CDG 16:30 flight on Jun 27th is cancelled. Been rebooked on 17:50.

Looks like cabin is packed. Cant find seats for this flight doing a dummy booking either. Nothing at all between 14h00 and 19h00

Means 4 hrs in lounge 26 (is it even open?)

On a normal year I'd have taken a train to town for a stroll!
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Old Jun 11, 22, 3:04 am
  #876  
 
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Are there certain times that are busier or not? Had a flight in the afternoon two weeks ago and airport was almost empty. Check in lady said that the morning was very busy. Have a flight next week in the evening (20.50H0 and Flying Blue Gold with luggage. Three hours in advance enough to have some time in the lounge?
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Old Jun 11, 22, 5:05 am
  #877  
 
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Another random data point: arrival on 2022-06-11 11:17 train station. At around 11:37 in the KL Schengen lounge via departures 1. The stairs behind the check in desks are now only open for Privium; a new set of stairs is close to the road side, which costed me a few minutes delay to find. No real queue before the automated gates. 1 priority lane totally at the left with about 10 people in front of me. Bad luck that one bag went to secondary (coins.......:-( ) causing another few minutes of delay. All and all as quick as it could get, similar to pre-COVID. The non priority row for security would have added 20-25 minutes (if the indicated waiting time on some screen was right). Lounge a bit more busy as normal but not excessive.

My experiences with 3 flights in the last month were all like this. It is the impredictability and that situation that apparently a morning or 2 a week things get totally out of control, that makes all of us nervous. With the meltdown a week ago when KLM decided not to fly European pax to Amsterdam anymore as probably the lowest point in Schiphol's existence.
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Old Jun 11, 22, 5:10 am
  #878  
 
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AMS today: check in for SP had very little wait, stairs at the back did not have anyone guarding to ensure only SP/Privium use them, and once upstairs Priority and Privium were merged and quite full, about 40-50 ahead of me.

Last two weeks Privium was separated upstairs so much faster. But still better than end of April when the entire access to priority security was blocked. I add to the previous forum member who mentioned the unpredictability at Schiphol these days for priority passengers
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Old Jun 11, 22, 7:47 am
  #879  
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Luchtvaartnieuws reports that the Schiphol has erected a large number of additional queueing tents at T1 and T3. I guess that tells us what they are expecting this summer.



Johan
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Old Jun 11, 22, 8:25 am
  #880  
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johan rebel : you made me almost choke in my burger when you posted that photo......
Nice to see Schiphol will force me to use the inside passage from excellence parking to T3 checkin instead of the tent...
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Old Jun 11, 22, 9:12 am
  #881  
 
Join Date: Feb 2019
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Any ideas on what is up KL 1130

Im flying back to US through AMS on Monday on KL 1130 with a two-year old. Its been cancelled four days straight now from CPH. It appears the earlier flights are getting through mostly. Any thoughts suggestions? Thinking about prospectively cancelling and finding something through CDG.
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Old Jun 11, 22, 10:10 am
  #882  
 
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Question Impact on Transit Process/Times

I've been following this thread because I've got some travel this summer via AMS. I was wondering how worried I should be in terms of transit times and the mess that's been unfolding at AMS. On one trip, I'm flying from MAD-BER via AMS, and then on another trip, YEG-AMS-DXB.

How will the mess at AMS impact pax who are in transit?

Thanks for your help!
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Old Jun 11, 22, 10:26 am
  #883  
 
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Originally Posted by UVAhoo06 View Post
I've been following this thread because I've got some travel this summer via AMS. I was wondering how worried I should be in terms of transit times and the mess that's been unfolding at AMS. On one trip, I'm flying from MAD-BER via AMS, and then on another trip, YEG-AMS-DXB.

How will the mess at AMS impact pax who are in transit?

Thanks for your help!
Both your trips are either fully Schengen (MAD-BER) or non-Schengen (YEG-DXB). So you basically arrive at the part of the airport where you also will have your connection -> afaik no further security or passport checks if you stay airside. The mess concerns extreme queues for moving landside to airside via security and/or passport control, and to a lesser extent passport control if you enter NL from non-Schengen. This is not happening daily but often enough, and the non-predictability is the killer. But you will hence simply avoid this. The main risk may be that yet another meltdown will occur like over Pentecost, forcing KLM and others to cancel flights or stop bringing pax to Schiphol.
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Old Jun 11, 22, 10:33 am
  #884  
 
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Originally Posted by atflyer View Post
Both your trips are either fully Schengen (MAD-BER) or non-Schengen (YEG-DXB). So you basically arrive at the part of the airport where you also will have your connection -> afaik no further security or passport checks if you stay airside. The mess concerns extreme queues for moving landside to airside via security and/or passport control, and to a lesser extent passport control if you enter NL from non-Schengen. This is not happening daily but often enough, and the non-predictability is the killer. But you will hence simply avoid this. The main risk may be that yet another meltdown will occur like over Pentecost, forcing KLM and others to cancel flights or stop bringing pax to Schiphol.
Thanks for the prompt reply! I was especially worried because my transit time from MAD-BER is 40 mins!
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Old Jun 11, 22, 1:11 pm
  #885  
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Originally Posted by sgunter View Post
Im flying back to US through AMS on Monday on KL 1130 with a two-year old. Its been cancelled four days straight now from CPH.
Three days running, but you are right, KL1130 is canceled more often than not. It's been that way for a while. And on the days that it does fly, it is almost always delayed, so you run the risk of a missed connection.



KL1128 is a far better bet. It has also been delayed almost every single day recently, but if you get yourself rebooked you will anyway have almost three extra hours for your connection compared to KL1130. However, I see that the last three canceled flights were all canceled two days out, which has not been done for coming Monday's flight. They have also scheduled an Embraer 195-E2 that day, which is the largest aircraft type in KLC's fleet. That may perhaps indicate that they have plenty of bookings for that flight, and intend to fly as scheduled.

Call KLM and ask.

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