Schiphol to lift passenger number restriction ahead of spring break
Schiphol is lifting the restriction on passenger numbers from March 26, ahead of the spring break in May, the airport has announced.
Lack of security staff caused long waits and cancelled flights for passengers during last year’s spring break and throughout the summer, forcing the airport to cut the number of travellers to 50,000 a day.
In November the airport calculated it would need 850 security guards to cope with this year’s holiday travel. Better pay and working hours have since halved that number, a Schiphol spokesman told broadcaster NOS.
‘Because of the influx of new staff and a number of technological improvements in security we are now in a position to lift the restrictions,’ he said.
Tour operator association ANVR has welcomed the decision. ‘People are booking holidays and this is good news. Schiphol is working hard to recruit enough people and it seems to well on the way,’ a spokesman said.
The current staff level will allow for 70,000 people to travel but the airport may still get into trouble during peak flight movements, particularly in the morning.
The airport has asked airlines to spread their flights so delays in the morning won’t impact on the rest of the schedule.
Union FNV is also in favour of fewer morning flights as this will relieve pressure on staff but, spokesman Jaap de Bie said, the airport will still have to tackle staff shortages in baggage handling.
Corendon has already agreed to talk to Schiphol about spreading flights this summer. Neither the airline nor Schiphol are expecting baggage processing problems, they said.
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