Amsterdam Schiphol Airport

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Luchthaven Schiphol
Schiphol Airport logo.svg
Arrivals area: Entrance to the station concourse

52 ° 18 '31 "  N , 4 ° 45' 50"  E Coordinates: 52 ° 18 '31 "  N , 4 ° 45' 50"  E

Height above MSL 3 m (10  ft ) below MSL
Transport links
Distance from the city center 10 km southwest of Amsterdam
Street A4 E19 A9
train NS Nederlandse Spoorwegen , Thalys
Local transport Connexxion , Schiphol Sternet , Amsterdamer Verkehrsbetriebe (GVB)
Basic data
opening 1916
operator Schiphol Group
surface 2787 ha
Terminals 1 with 3 halls and 8 piers
Passengers 71,707,144 (2019)
Air freight 1,592,348 t (2019)
496,826 (2019)
Employees 57,600
04/22 Oostbaan / Fokkerbaan 2014 m × 45 m asphalt
06/24 Kaagbaan 3500 m × 45 m asphalt
09/27 Buitenveldertbaan 3453 m × 45 m asphalt
18C / 36C Zwanenburgbaan 3300 m × 45 m asphalt
18R / 36L polderbaan 3800 m × 60 m asphalt
18L / 36R Aalsmeerbaan 3400 m × 45 m asphalt

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The Luchthaven Schiphol ( German  Airport Schiphol ) [ ˈsxɪpɦɔl ] ( IATA-Code : AMS , ICAO-Code : EHAM ) is the international airport of the largest Dutch city Amsterdam . With around 71 million passengers in 2019, it is the third largest airport in Europe (after London Heathrow and Paris-Charles-de-Gaulle ), and in 2018 it was ranked 11th worldwide .


The tower in February 1960
Forty years of Schiphol, Dutch cinema news from 1960
Pier E as seen from the tower
Check-in area in Hall 3

Schiphol opened as a military base on September 16, 1916. Here, smaller hangars served as airport buildings and a grass area as a runway . Since civil aviation use began on December 17, 1920, the airport has been called Schiphol . The place name Schiphol has been proven since 1447 ( Sciphol ) at the latest . There are a number of different theories about the meaning of the name Schiphol , although the origin is not certain. According to one of these hypotheses, Schiphol means something like "ship's hole" and can be traced back to the fact that ships regularly sank in the inland lake, the Haarlemmermeer , which used to be the site of today's airport .

As early as 1935, the airport had four asphalt runways. In 1940 it was occupied by the German Wehrmacht . From June 1940 to October 1944 was here a airbase commander of the German Air Force . Due to its location and the generous structure, during this time it mainly served as a base for twin-engine bombers, which took part in the Battle of Britain or the Capricorn Company from here .

In 2003 the longest run 18R / 36L (Polderbaan) to date was added. Between the Zwanenburgbaan and the Polderbaan run the connecting motorway A5 and the Hoofdvaart canal , over which planes fly; there is also the Gan Asjalom Hoofddorp cemetery of the Liberal Jewish Community of Amsterdam.

After the airport has existed for more than a hundred years and is nationally important or leading for the Netherlands, the airport was officially awarded the title royal ( Dutch koninklijk ) by King Willem-Alexander in 2016 .

Architects and planners for Schiphol Airport have been Benthem Crouwel Architects since 1988 .

Location and transport links

Schiphol is located southwest of Amsterdam in the area of ​​the municipality of Haarlemmermeer . With an average height of around three meters below sea level, it is the lowest airport in Europe.

The airport is the train station Schiphol Airport directly connected to the European high-speed rail network. There are no transfer connections with the NS to Amsterdam , Utrecht , Leiden , Rotterdam , Eindhoven and The Hague . The Thalys runs several times a day to Antwerp , Brussels and Paris .

In the public transport Schiphol is connected to the tram and bus network of the Dutch capital by the buses of the Amsterdamer Verkehrsbetriebe (GVB) . In 1964, a boat shuttle to the city center was opened for the summer flight schedule. The two-hour drive to the downtown hotels was geared towards tourists.

The A4 motorway (Amsterdam – The Hague) has an exit to the airport.

Terminal building


Schiphol has a terminal with Halls 1, 2 and 3, which are connected to each other via the central plaza , in which the airport train station is also located. Each of the areas has several piers (a total of 8), at which a total of around 160 gates are available.

Hall 1 - Pier B and C

Both piers in Hall 1 are used exclusively for traffic within the Schengen area . In these areas, for example, European Star Alliance flights , including those of Lufthansa , are handled.

Hall 2 - Pier D and E

Pier D in Hall 2 is used for handling Schengen and non-Schengen flights on two separate levels, while Pier E is used exclusively for non-Schengen flights. The main user of this hall is KLM , which is based here .

Hall 3 - Pier F, G, H and M

Piers F and G also serve exclusively non-Schengen flights. Piers H and M are mainly intended for low-cost airlines , including easyJet , and their non-Schengen and Schengen connections, respectively.


Airport diagram
Boeing 747 on the taxiway bridge over the A4 E19 motorway

Unlike what is usual at many other airports, all six railways have been given names. Four of the slopes (06/24, 09/27, 18C / 36C and 18L / 36R) take their names from the locations that are flown over when using the lifts. Runway 04/22 has its current name Oostbaan from the geographical location in the east, the historical (and colloquially still in use) name Fokkerbaan is derived from the former Fokker aircraft works . The runway 18R / 36L, which was opened in 2003, was officially assigned the neutral name “Polderbaan”.

Airlines and Destinations

Schiphol is the home airport of the Dutch airlines KLM , Corendon , Martinair , ArkeFly and Transavia . In addition, Schiphol serves as the European hub for Delta Air Lines as well as the base for Vueling and, since 2014, for EasyJet .

Schiphol is of international importance for air traffic and has numerous European and intercontinental connections for passenger and freight traffic.

In 2014, the European routes to London-Heathrow , Barcelona , Paris-CDG , Rome-Fiumicino and Copenhagen were the most heavily used connections in passenger traffic ; in intercontinental traffic, Dubai , New York-JFK , Atlanta , Detroit and Minneapolis-St. Paul .

Amsterdam is served by all major airports from German-speaking countries. The connections with the highest demand are to Frankfurt am Main (with KLM and Lufthansa ), Munich (also with KLM and Lufthansa), Zurich (with KLM and Swiss ) and Vienna (with KLM and Austrian ).

Traffic figures

Traffic figures for Amsterdam Airport Schiphol 1940–2019
year Passengers Freight in t Flight movements
1940 16,000 636 1,649
1950 356,000 10,637 40,876
1960 1,375,000 46,423 89,560
1970 5,172,000 172.323 135,520
1980 9,715,000 318.080 185.836
1990 16,471,000 604.485 246.504
2000 39.270.610 1,222,594 432.483
2001 39,531,123 1,183,208 432.101
2002 40.736.009 1,239,800 417.120
2003 39,960,400 1,306,155 403,800
2004 42,541,180 1,421,023 418,613
2005 44.163.098 1,449,855 420.736
2006 46.066.050 1,526,501 440.153
2007 47,794,994 1,610,282 454.361
2008 47.430.019 1,567,712 446,629
2009 43,570,370 1,286,372 406.975
2010 45.211.749 1,512,256 402.375
2011 49.755.252 1,523,806 437.083
2012 51,035,590 1,483,448 437.904
2013 52,569,200 1,531,089 440.057
2014 54.978.023 1,633,195 452,687
2015 58.284.848 1,620,970 465,521
2016 63.625.664 1,662,282 496.256
2017 68,515,425 1,786,786 496.743
2018 71.053.157 1,738,468 499,446
2019 71.707.144 1,592,348 496,826

Schiphol Group

The shareholders of the airport operator Schiphol Group are the Dutch state with 69.77 percent, the cities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam with 20.03 and 2.2 percent, respectively, and Aéroports de Paris with 8 percent.

The Schiphol Group, which employs around 2,200 people, also operates Rotterdam and Lelystad airports and has a 51 percent stake in Eindhoven Airport . In addition, the subsidiary Schiphol USA Inc. has a stake in JFK IAT (Terminal 4, New York JFK ), and the subsidiary Schiphol Australia holds a stake in Brisbane Airport Corporation .

As part of a strategic partnership, there has been a cross-shareholding since December 2008 with the operator of Paris-Charles de Gaulle airport , which, alongside Schiphol, forms one of the aviation hubs of the Air France-KLM group.

Schiphol Telematics specializes in telecommunications services. The company itself was founded in 1991 as a joint venture between KLM, KPN and Schiphol Group and has been 100% owned by the Schiphol Group since 2006. Internet, voice, LAN, WiFi and carrier services are offered.


Aviation accidents

  • On April 4, 1994, a Saab 340B ( PH-KSH ) belonging to KLM Cityhopper , which was operating a flight under a KLM flight number, crashed while taking off at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. The machine was on its way from Amsterdam to Cardiff when a control light for the engine oil pressure came on. Even before the first officer consulted the checklist, the master brought the right engine to idle. After going through the checklist, it was decided to continue the flight, but the captain forgot to restart the shutdown engine. At an altitude of 17,000 feet, the machine's performance limit was reached and it stopped climbing. Since they suspected a defect, the pilots returned to Amsterdam. As the captain to a go- decided the machine rolled directly in front of the runway to the right and crashed. Three people were killed; 9 inmates were injured. The reason was the misconduct of the pilots who did not bring the propeller of the supposedly damaged engine into the sail position (see also KLM flight 433 ) .
  • On February 25, 2009, a Turkish Airlines Boeing 737-800 crashed while approaching runway 18R. In the final investigation report, the Dutch aviation safety authority sees the trigger in a defect in the radar altimeter to which the crew reacted incorrectly. A total of 9 people were killed, 86 were injured, some seriously (see Turkish Airlines flight 1951 ) .

Other incidents

  • In the night of October 27, 2005, eleven people were killed by carbon monoxide poisoning in a fire in the deportation center at Schiphol Airport . 15 others were injured. The cell complex held 350 prisoners, the majority of whom are deportation prisoners, suspected drug smugglers or people who have been denied entry to the Netherlands. There were 43 inmates and their guards in the affected part of the prison. The fire brigade had the fire under control after three hours. Part of the prison has been temporarily evacuated. According to the investigation, the cause of the fire was an inmate's discarded cigarette. He was found guilty of arson in an appeal in 2009. For the extent of the fire and the deaths, however, failures in fire safety in the makeshift cell complex and the delayed arrival of the rescue workers were blamed.


The airport is home to a branch of the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam , which presents changing exhibitions with free admission. The exhibition area is behind passport control and is therefore only accessible to passengers.

Since January 2012, specially marked Chinese-speaking employees have been available to travelers from China.

See also

Web links

Commons : Schiphol Airport  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b c d Transport and Traffic statistics., accessed on June 25, 2020 (English).
  2. The largest airports in Europe: Amsterdam overtakes Frankfurt. In: January 26, 2017. Retrieved January 26, 2017 .
  3. Henry L. deZeng IV: Air Force Airfields 1935-45 the Netherlands, pp 3-5
  4. Amsterdam Airport is now royal , accessed on September 26, 2016.
  5. Cockpit, August 1964, p. 28.
  6. Schiphol Amsterdam Airport, Traffic Review 2014. Accessed July 3, 2015 .
  7. Air-Britain Archive: Casualty compendium part 44 (English), March 1992, pp. 92/26.
  8. ^ Accident report DC-3 PH-TBW , Aviation Safety Network (English), accessed on December 7, 2017.
  9. Flight accident data and report PH-KSH in the Aviation Safety Network (English), accessed on June 20, 2017.
  10. Final report of the Dutch Safety Board (PDF file, English; 2.0 MB) May 6, 2010
  11. Airplane crash Amsterdam: Black box evaluated after crash landing , Focus Online, February 26, 2009.
  12. BBC: Dutch ministers quit over blaze
  13. a b Tobias Müller: After a fire in the deportation prison Schiphol: "Victims as scapegoats". In: taz . September 5, 2009, accessed October 22, 2019 .
  14. Information about the museum on the airport website , accessed on April 7, 2013.
  15. message on from 24 January 2012 ( Memento of 31 March 2016 Internet Archive ), accessed on May 16 of 2019.