From 3rd August, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines will start operating a daily service between Cork Airport and Amsterdam Schiphol Airport. The inaugural flight, initially planned for 30th March was delayed due to the travel restrictions imposed as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
Linking the South of Ireland to the capital city of the Netherlands, the route will be operated by KLM Cityhopper using an Embraer 175 aircraft, carrying 88 passengers. Throughout the summer period, passengers will have the opportunity to connect to up to 100 European and intercontinental destinations via KLM’s hub at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport.
Benedicte Duval, General Manager for UK & Ireland said, “We’re delighted to be able to continue with our ambition to extend our network in Ireland. The introduction of the KLM Cork to Amsterdam service means that we now have both Air France and KLM operating from Dublin and Cork. This results in further choice and connectivity for our customers as they can combine the two carriers when travelling long-haul.
As borders reopen and travel restrictions begin to ease, safety is a prerequisite for KLM as we gradually resume travel. As we all adapt to this new environment, I can assure you that all KLM staff, both on the ground and on board, are committed to guaranteeing our passengers the highest levels of health & safety. After this challenging period, we look forward to welcoming our Irish customers back on board.”
Welcoming the new route, Niall MacCarthy, Managing Director at Cork Airport said, “KLM is a fabulous airline and we’re really thrilled to finally welcome them to Cork Airport. KLM is part of the Air France KLM group, both parts of which will be operating from Cork this year.
I firmly believe that more choice is always good for the travelling public. The new service will connect directly into the KLM network in Amsterdam offering great prices and great long haul options direct from Cork Airport. We expect tourism and the business community throughout the South of Ireland will see the benefits of this new service operated by crisp blue Embraer KLM aircraft from August.”
Since the outbreak of the Covid-19 crisis, KLM has been adapting its network and flight schedule in line with travel restrictions and demand. The Netherlands flag carrier continued to operate a skeleton service between Dublin and Amsterdam during the peak of the crisis to assist Irish customers with essential travel and repatriation.
KLM resumed a daily operation between the two capital cities from 1st May. As travel restrictions begin to ease, frequencies will increase in line with demand, with a three daily service scheduled between Dublin and Amsterdam from 3rd August.
After coming to a virtual standstill at the peak of the crisis in April, KLM is gradually rebuilding its global network, opting to restart as many destinations as possible and then increasing frequencies and capacity. For July, KLM expects to operate 80% of the normal number of European destinations and 75% of intercontinental destinations. This will increase to 95% and 80% respectively for August. However, it should be noted that at present, 50% of intercontinental flights are cargo only. When international travel restrictions are relaxed, KLM will start carrying passengers to these destinations again.
Since the Covid-19 outbreak began, KLM has introduced a range of health & safety measures including:
The compulsory wearing of masks for all passengers, crew members and airport handling agents in contact with customers
The modification of customer channels on the ground with the implementation of physical distancing along the customer journey at the airport and the installation of transparent protection screens at airports when possible
The implementation of physical distancing in the airport and on board where this is possible. Current low load factors make it possible to separate customers in most circumstances. In cases where this is not possible, compulsory face masks ensure adequate health protection.
The reinforcement of daily aircraft cleaning procedures, with the disinfection of all surfaces in contact with customers such as armrests, tables and screens
Adapting in-flight service to limit interaction between customers and crew members. On domestic flights and short flights in Europe, meal and beverage services have been suspended. On long-haul flights, cabin service is limited and preference is given to individually wrapped products.
Passengers screenings are conducted on flights to certain destinations in line with government guidance. For flights departing from Amsterdam to Canada, Singapore and South Korea, passengers are physically observed. Passengers flying to the last two destinations receive an additional temperature check.
For a full overview of KLM’s safety measures, please view video here
In addition, the air in the cabin is renewed every 3 minutes. The air recycling system on board KLM aircraft is equipped with “High Efficiency Particulate Air” or HEPA filters, identical to those used in hospital operating theatres. These filters extract more than 99.99% of the smallest viruses, including those no larger than 0.01 micrometres, thus ensuring that cabin air complies with quality standards. Coronavirus type viruses, ranging in size from 0.08 to 0.16 micrometres, are filtered through the HEPA filters.
In response to the current crisis and subsequent travel restrictions, since 22nd April, KLM offers its customers the opportunity to book with confidence. Date and destination changes up until 30th June 2021 are permitted free of charge. Full KLM rebooking & refund policies are available here
KLM reminds passengers that the health and safety of their customers and staff is an absolute priority. Teams are fully mobilized to ensure the highest levels of health and safety for their customers and to ensure they travel in complete confidence.