Category Archives: KLM Royal Dutch Airlines

KLM launches airlift to pick up stranded travelers from Australia

KLM has made this announcement:

From April 2, KLM will start with an airlift from Amsterdam Schiphol to Australia, which will bring home almost 2,000 Dutch travelers in the coming days.

KLM operates these flights in collaboration with the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In recent weeks, KLM has already brought tens of thousands of travelers from all over the world home.

“We are proud to be meaningful in this way during this global crisis,” says Rene de Groot, KLM COO. “These flights are extra special in KLM’s history. We have had a strong relationship with Australia since 1950, as the country has been a valuable destination in our network for over 50 years. It is now the first time in 20 years that another KLM aircraft lands at Sydney Airport. ”

The plane – KL827 – that departed Schiphol at 08.50 pm is the first in a series of six repatriation flights that flies between Amsterdam Schiphol and Australia. It will land at Sydney Airport on April 4 and fly to Schiphol on April 5 where it will arrive on April 6. This flight will be repeated from April 6-10 April *). KLM will then fly back and forth four times to Kuala Lumpur *) and from there partner Malaysia Airlines will pick up the Dutch from Australia and take them to Kuala Lumpur where they will transfer to a KLM flight to Schiphol. There will also be flown to other Australian cities and to New Zealand.

50 years of Australia

It was KLM’s wish before the Second World War to fly directly to the Australian continent, but it took a while before it came true. With the London-Melbourne race in 1934, the airline already demonstrated that it was able to cover such a long distance safely. But landing rights never came.

Fly three and a half days

On December 7, 1950, the time had come and KLM performed a passenger flight to Sydney for the first time. “Fortunately, we can do that faster now than we did then. It now takes us just over 23 hours. Back then it took three and a half days to get there,”explains De Groot. The airline continued to go back and forth to Sydney for 50 years, until the partnership with Malaysian Air System, today’s Malaysia Airlines, was expanded. KLM expanded the number of flights to Kuala Lumpur and there were connections to various destinations in Australia and New Zealand.

Dutch travelers abroad who are unable to arrange their return themselves due to the Corona crisis are supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Verbond van Verzekeraars, the travel industry organization ANVR and various other partners in the world of travel, such as KLM. To this end, the organizations have decided to take the enhanced special foreign assistance approach. The core of this is an arrangement for Dutch travelers stranded abroad who cannot rely on a travel organization or airline. The website on which travelers can register is: Emergency centers will then coordinate and organize the necessary air transport for the return.

*) with reservation, these flights are still in preparation

A KLM poster dating from 1951

KLM operates the last Boeing 747 revenue flight after 49 years of service

Tpe Retired: March 29, 2020 (flight KL686 MEX-AMS with PH-BFT)

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines today (March 29) operated the last Boeing 747 revenue flight.

The last revenue flight, flight KL686 from Mexico City to Amsterdam, was operated with 747-400 PH-BFT. The flight is due to arrive at AMS at 1537 (3:37 pm) CET local time today according to

Airline Color Scheme - Introduced 1971 - Best Seller


Above Copyright Photo: KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Boeing 747-206B PH-BUC (msn 19924) MEX (Christian Volpati). Image: 906730.

KLM introduced the first Boeing 747-200B in 1971. The first 747-200B (PH-BUA), named “The Mississippi”, was delivered on January 16, 1971. On February 14, 1971, the 353-seat PH-BUA operated its first commercial flight to New York. KLM was the first airline to put the higher-gross-weight Boeing 747-200B, powered by Pratt & Whitney JT9D engines, into service in February 1971.

"Sir Frank Whittle", delivered on September 30, 1983

Above Copyright Photo: KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Boeing 747-306 N4548M (PH-BUU) (msn 23056) ATH (Richard Vandervord). Image: 949049.

On October 16, 1975 the first Boeing 747-300B Combi joined the KLM fleet, marking an important milestone for KLM’s cargo operations. In the preceding years, overcapacity was a problem in the air cargo market and this new arrival ensured greater flexibility, improving KLM’s competitive edge.

The coronavirus crisis and slowdown in travel has allowed KLM to early retire the Boeing 747-400 fleet.

Martinair will continue to operate Boeing 747-400F freighters for KLM.

Above Photo: The Boeing 747 was the queen of the KLM long-haul fleet. This 1991 photo shows the 747s gathering at the AM hub (KLM).

Top Copyright Photo: KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Boeing 747-406 PH-BFT (msn 28459) (100 Years) AMS (Ton Jochems). Image: 949485.

KLM aircraft slide show:

KLM to operate the last Boeing 747 revenue flight on Sunday

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Boeing 747-406 PH-BFW (msn 30454) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 945006.

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines is preparing to end an era on Sunday, March 29, 2020. The carrier is ready to operate the last Boeing 747 revenue flight.

Flight KL 686 from Mexico City is due to touch down at the Amsterdam base at 1510 (3:10 pm) local time on March 29. This will be the last Boeing 747 revenue flight.

The aircraft assigned at this time is PH-BFT.

Copyright Photo: KLM Royal Dutch Airlines Boeing 747-406 PH-BFW (msn 30454) LAX (Michael B. Ing). Image: 945006.

KLM aircraft slide show:

Chinese airline partners support KLM

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines works with three Chinese airline partners: China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines and Xiamen Airlines. These partners have now stepped in to generously support KLM and the Netherlands by donating many tens of thousands of face masks and gloves to KLM in our struggle against the coronavirus outbreak. In light of scarce resources at Dutch hospitals, KLM will in turn be helping the Erasmus MC in Rotterdam and other Dutch healthcare institutes.

On March 25, in the early hours of the morning, the first shipment arrived at Schiphol carried by one of Xiamen Airlines’ aircraft. On behalf of the employees of the three Chinese airlines, KLM President & CEO Pieter Elbers accepted this first shipment of in total around 90,000 face masks and 50,000 pairs of gloves. KLM’s CEO was accompanied by Ernst Kuipers, Chairman of the Boards of Erasmus MC and the Dutch Network for Acute Medical Care (Landelijk Netwerk Acute Zorg — LNAZ), and Brinio Veldhuijzen van Zanten of KLM Health Services.

Over the past 20 years, KLM has established a broad-based route network, coupled with especially close relations in China. Before the outbreak of the corona crisis, KLM and its partners operated 59 flights a week from Schiphol to mainland China. Shipments of this nature serve to underscore the enormous significance of connections by air in general, and those with China in particular. Medical supplies like this can only be transported swiftly and efficiently to the other side of the world by aircraft. This is especially important in times of scarcity and interdependence.

KLM aircraft photo gallery:

KLM starts the summer schedule with 57 destinations

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines has made this announcement:

Due to the coronavirus crisis, KLM will start the summer schedule with a significantly reduced network. From March 29, 2020 until and including May 3, 2020, KLM plans to fly to 25 intercontinental and 32 European destinations. During this period, KLM will fly according to an adjusted schedule, which amounts to about 10 percent of the normal number of flights.

Intercontinental: 777s and 787s

The intercontinental network will be operated with Boeing 777s and 787s. The Boeing 747s will be taken out of the fleet early. The remaining aircraft will be parked at Schiphol. A plan for this is currently being drawn up together with the airport.

The following destinations will be offered from March 29 to May 3 (subject to changes):

Airport Frequency per week
Atlanta 3
Abu Dhabi/Muscat 2
Bangkok 2
Curacao 2
Delhi* 2
Dubai* 3
Sao Paulo 2
Hong Kong 3
Incheon (Seoul) 3
New York JFK 7
Johannesburg 3
Kansai (Osaka) 2
Los Angeles 3
Lima* 3
Mexico City 3
Nairobi* 2
Narita (Tokyo) 2
Chicago O’Hare 2
Beijing* 3
Panama City 2
Shanghai 3
Singapore 3
Taipei* 3
Calgary 3
Toronto 3
Total 69 return flights

* These routes are subject to very strict travel restrictions and KLM will initially fly with cargo only.

Europe: as many connections as possible

The European network has been set up in such a way that as many European flights as possible connect to the intercontinental network. The following destinations will be flown daily from Schiphol from March 28 to May 3 (subject to change):

Geneva, Vienna, Zurich, Brussels, Paris, Lyon, Dusseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Munich, Stuttgart, Berlin, Rome (from April 4)**, Stockholm, Billund, Copenhagen, Gothenburg, Oslo, Barcelona**, Lisbon, Madrid**, Aberdeen, Birmingham, Bristol, Dublin, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds Bradford, London City, London Heathrow, Manchester, Newcastle.

** These routes are currently subject to very strict travel restrictions and it will be considered at a later stage whether/when these flights can be operated.

KLM aircraft photo gallery:

KLM to reduce the working hours of 70% of its staff

KLM has made this announcement:

KLM has applied for a reduction in working hours (werktijdverkorting) of approximately 70% for all staff and is still discussing with trade unions how this can be achieved in the best possible way. This is necessary, because KLM will have to reduce the flight schedule to 10 to 20% in the coming period.

On March 16, CEO Pieter Elbers communicated this in a video message to KLM colleagues. More and more airlines are deciding to ground their fleets completely and send employees home unpaid. KLM has opted for a more balanced approach in which care for both customers and employees comes first.

With measures, such as a reduction in working hours (werktijdverkorting), KLM is looking for ways to significantly reduce costs. At the same time, the airline makes every effort to repatriate as many customers as possible and to allow employees to retain their jobs. KLM will continue to adapt to new developments.

KLM aircraft photo gallery:

Air France-KLM takes exceptional measures due to coronavirus, grounds A380s and 747-400s

Air France-KLM have released this message:

The COVID-19 crisis has continued to spread in recent days, leading many countries to take increasingly stringent measures in an attempt to slow the rate of spread of the epidemic. Some countries have imposed constraints on the movement of travellers from France, the Netherlands or more broadly from Europe. In France, the transition to a level 3 public health emergency requires the closure of all non-essential services since last weekend.

Faced with these growing restrictions on the possibility of travelling and a strong downward trend in demand which has resulted in a drop in traffic and sales over the last few weeks, the Air France-KLM Group is obliged to gradually reduce its flight activity very significantly over the next few days, with the number of available seat kilometers (ASK) potentially decreasing between -70% and -90%.

This reduction in capacity is currently scheduled to last two months, and the Group will continue to monitor the evolution of the situation on a daily basis andadjust it if necessary.

Photo: Airbus and Air France.

As a result of this reduction in capacity, Air France will ground its entire Airbus A380 fleet and KLM its entire Boeing 747-400 fleet.

To deal with this situation, the Group has already taken a number of strong measures to secure its cash flow:

  •   Additional savings measures have been identified, which will generate €200 million in 2020
  •   An initial review of the investment plan has reduced the capital expenditure plan by €350 million, to

    which will be added the impact of the decline in activity on the amount of maintenance investments

  •   Air France and KLM will be consulting with their elected employee representativeson measures to take into account the impact of the expected decline in activity, including a project to implement partial activity
  •   Last week, the Air France-KLM Group drew a revolving credit facility for a total amount of €1.1 billion and KLM drew a revolving credit facility for a total amount of €665 million. As of March 12, the Group and its subsidiaries had more than €6 billion in cash and cash equivalents

    In spite of the measures taken, the deterioration of the environment linked to the epidemic and the sharp reduction in its activity that has resulted today lead the group to forecast a sharply deteriorated financial trajectory compared to the outlook presented at the publication of its annual results. Indeed, the Group estimates that the drop in revenues from the Passenger business resulting from the reduction in capacity will only be offset by around 50% by the drop in variable costs before cost savings measures.

    In this extremely difficult context, the Air France-KLM Group has welcomed the statements made by the French and Dutch governments, which have each indicated that they were studying all possible means to support the Group.

Air France aircraft photo gallery: