Schiphol airport group posts loss of €77 million as passenger woes continue

Luggage piled up at Schiphol. Photo:
Luggage piled up at Schiphol. Photo:

The Schiphol airport group posted a loss of €77 million last year, despite the strong recovery in the aviation sector in the wake of the end of pandemic travel restrictions.

Schiphol itself processed 52.5 million passengers last year, more than double the 2021 total, and dealt with almost 400,000 flights.

But staff shortages, mass cancellations and long waits for passengers illustrated the financial problems facing the airport group, and chief executive Ruud Sondag said Schiphol had never before had to ‘disappoint so many passengers and airlines’ as in 2022.

The hard work by everyone at the airport ‘had not led to the necessary improvements and we have been unable to offer the service we wanted,’ Sondag said in a statement.

Schiphol said earlier this week it would cut passenger numbers until the end of April because of ongoing staff shortages, reversing an earlier decision to end restrictions.

The number of people passing through the airport during the morning peak period will be reduced by 5% between now and the beginning of the school holidays.

Last month Schiphol said it was likely to have to limit numbers during the May holiday period, but it had hoped to give travellers a temporary reprieve from March 26.

Last summer a shortage of baggage handlers and security staff forced the airport to cap the number of passengers at 50,000 a day. Airlines had to cancel or reschedule flights and the airport had to pay €350 for every passenger who missed their trip.

The Schiphol airport group is 100% owned by the state and local authorities and also operates Eindhoven and The Hague airports.

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