Schiphol and the corona virus: Frequently asked questions

This FAQ contains the most commonly asked questions about travelling via Schiphol and the corona measures that are currently in place to protect travellers. Those include the 1.5-metre distance rule, health declarations, tests, tips about face masks and quarantine rules. Please check this page if your question is not answered on this page.

Testing and quarantine

Am I required to show a negative COVID-19 test result?

Yes, when you are aged over 13 you are required to present a negative test declaration on almost all the flights to Schiphol. There are two ways of doing this. Please see the website of Netherlands Worldwide for the most up-to-date measures per country.

You can choose to take a PCR test together with a rapid antigen test. The PCR test must be no more than 72 hours old upon arrival at Schiphol. The rapid test must be no more than 24 hours old at the time of boarding. You can also choose to take a LAMP rapid test, which should also be no more than, 24 hours old when you board the plane. If you take a LAMP test, you are not required to have a PCR test result. You can find more information on the Dutch government's website.

You must have the declaration with you throughout your journey. Your negative test declaration can be checked upon arrival at Schiphol. This rule applies to all travellers flying to Schiphol, including transfer passengers. The declaration is also mandatory for Dutch citizens.

Which COVID test do I need and where can I get it?

Which COVID-19 test you need and how long prior to departure it needs to be taken depends on your travel destination. You can find out by looking up your destination in the travel advisories on netherlandsworldwide.nl. Is Schiphol your destination? Then you can choose from the following test options:

  • A PCR test together with a rapid antigen test. The PCR test must be no more than 72 hours old upon arrival at Schiphol. The rapid test must be no more than 24 hours old upon boarding the plane.
  • A LAMP rapid test. This must be no more than 24 hours old when you board the aircraft. You do not need a PCR test result if you take this type of test.

For more information about rapid tests go to government.nl.

Is a rapid test mandatory before departure to Bonaire?

If you are travelling to Bonaire, a rapid test is mandatory up to 4 hours before departure. This is a supplementary test on the PCR test that must be taken up to 72 hours in advance. You will need to have a negative COVID-19 test result from both tests. It is also possible to take a rapid test at Schiphol. You need to make an appointment; to do this, go to Test2fly.amsterdam.

Do I need to get tested for COVID-19 when I land at Schiphol?

Due to the limited testing capacity in the Netherlands, the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport has determined that the COVID-19 testing centre at Schiphol will be temporarily closed. This frees up testing capacity for testing centers elsewhere.

Nothing changes about your journey itself. We have taken various measures at Schiphol so that you can continue to travel safely and responsibly. Are you returning from an orange or red risk area? Then you must quarantine for 10 days upon arrival. We hope to bring back the testing center on the airport as soon as possible.

Do I need to be quarantined once I arrive at Schiphol?

The Dutch government strongly advises people returning from countries that have been given a red or orange colour code (do not travel or only essential travel) to go into quarantine for ten days. This is considered a necessary step in preventing the spread of COVID-19. Going in quarantine means that you stay at home or at your accommodation for 10 days and refraining from going outside. You can find out about the travel advice for every country on the website Netherlands Worldwide.

Health

Do you need a health declaration to travel?

It is important to carry a health declaration with you when you fly. You can fill in the form on your mobile phone or download it here and then print two copies. You should complete the form for your outbound flight before you leave home. You can fill in the second form for your return flight on the day of departure. You must be able to show the health declaration – on your mobile or on paper – upon request whether you’re at Schiphol, on the plane or at the destination airport. Keep your health screening form saved on your mobile phone or, if it is on paper, in a convenient place with your passport or boarding pass. Are you flying with KLM, Corendon, TUI, Transavia or Easyjet? You can fill in the health declaration while checking in online.
Read more about the health declaration here.

Will my temperature be taken before boarding?

Some destinations require travellers to undergo a temperature check before they board the plane to make sure they do not have a fever. There is therefore a possibility that your airline will take your temperature at Schiphol using an infrared thermometer on your forehead. If you want to find out if this applies to your flight, get in touch with your airline.

Who should I tell if I see someone with health complaints?

Please stay at home if you have health problems yourself, such as a fever, or mild complaints such as the common cold, runny nose, sneezing, sore throat or a mild cough. We consider the health of you and your fellow travellers to be most important. If you feel fine, but suspect that a fellow traveller has complaints, please keep your distance and warn a Schiphol or airline employee and they will assist you further.

Transfers

Can I transfer at Schiphol?

Whether or not you can transfer at Schiphol depends on your destination and on the country you are travelling from. First of all, you should check the travel advisories on Netherlandsworldwide.nl. Travelling within the European Union (EU) and the Schengen Area is currently permitted, but this situation may change if the number of COVID-19 cases starts to rise again. Are you travelling from outside of Europe and transferring at Schiphol? Then take a good look at the travel advisories that apply to the country you are coming from, the Netherlands and the destination country.

If you are transferring on a connecting flight to a non-Schengen or non-EU destination, and you stay in the transfer area at Schiphol and depart within 48 hours, make sure you have a valid flight ticket and valid travel documents. You must be able to prove that you are in transit. If you change to a connecting flight to a Schengen country or destination within the EU, you will be subject to Dutch entry policy.

Do I need to be quarantined before a transfer?

If you are travelling through Schiphol's transit zone and you don't leave the airport, you do not have to go into quarantine. Are you passing passport control and entering the Netherlands during your transfer? Then you do have to go into quarantine. Find out more on Government.nl.

Can I leave the transit zone during my transfer?

If you leave the transit zone and enter the Netherlands through passport control, you are required to adhere to the Dutch coronavirus regulations. This means going into quarantine. You can read more about self-quarantine on Government.nl.

Face masks

Do I have to wear a face mask at Schiphol?

Yes, this is mandatory from 1 December 2020. We kindly request that you wear a face mask from the moment you arrive at Schiphol to when you get to the plane. Or, if you have just landed, to keep your face mask on until you are outside of the airport. You always wear a face mask at check-in, security, border control, boarding and reclaim. It is important that you always wear your face mask at the places where you or your baggage gets checked, such as at Customs. This will be clearly indicated at all locations. Of course, you may take the face mask off for a moment to eat or drink, but it would be great if you could put it straight back on again afterwards.

There is an exception for people who cannot wear a mouth mask due to their disability or illness. You can find more information on who is exempted from wearing a face mask on the Dutch Government website.

Should children also wear face masks?

Children under 13 do not have to wear a mask. For anyone over 13 it is mandatory to do so. Please bring extra face masks for yourself and your children because there may be different rules in the country that you are flying to.

Where can I buy a face mask at Schiphol?

You can buy face masks at various shops in Schiphol Plaza and in the lounges. Face masks are also available at vending machines across the airport where you can buy one fast and easily.

1.5-metre distance

How do I maintain 1.5-metre distance at Schiphol?

The most important thing at Schiphol is to maintain your distance from others. Some of the measures in place include markings, floor stickers and posters to indicate 1.5-metres of space. We also have workers throughout the airport that will be able to help you with this. Please do your best to maintain your distance and wash your hands regularly when you are at Schiphol.

What happens if I need to be searched at security?

You may be searched if something is found during the compulsory security scans, which are performed when you enter the security area. If something is found, a security officer will come close to you – wearing a face mask and gloves – because they are unable to maintain a 1.5-metre distance for the purposes of their job. Please ensure you also use your own face mask at this point. Hand sanitisers are available so that you can disinfect your hands after the checks.

How busy will it be at Schiphol?

We expect to welcome many more travellers despite the fact that there are few flights at the moment. More people will decide to fly now that countries are reopening their borders and holiday season is upon us. It is quiet at Schiphol in terms of numbers, but people are spread out further, just like everywhere in the Netherlands, due to the 1.5-metre distance rule. That can make it feel 'busier' in Departures or Arrivals.

Where can I get food and drinks at Schiphol?

In the area after security, limited food and beverage outlets with seating will remain open. You can check to see which of our food service establishments are open here. All eating and drinking facilities before security, such as Schiphol Plaza, will be closed. Take away services are still available.

Hand washing

Can I carry hand sanitiser with me in my hand baggage?

Yes, as long as the sanitiser is stored in a 100 ml container. The sanitiser is subject to the liquid rules. There are more tips on what you can bring with liquids in your hand baggage here.

Where can I wash my hands at the airport?

You can use any of the amenities at the airport to wash your hands. You can also disinfect your personal items – such as your phone, passport and keys – using UV-C light at our special Sanitising Service. In addition, we have placed additional hand sanitisers in Departures and Arrivals which are available for free. Please regularly disinfect your hands at these points and try to touch as few things as possible.

Getting to and from the airport

When should I arrive at Schiphol?

We still recommend that you arrive at Schiphol 2 hours prior to flights within Europe and 3 hours prior to intercontinental flights. Even though there are fewer flights than usual due to the 1.5-metre distancing measures, please ensure you are on time.

Can I still pick up people from or bring them to Schiphol?

Yes – you can pick up or drop someone off, as long as you remain outside, you can't enter the terminal. Please wait for travellers in the car park or say goodbye when you drop them off. Even though it’s not that nice, this way will enable us to ensure that everyone who is present at Schiphol must actually be there. We do understand that there really is no other option if you are joining a travel group or assisting someone in need of help. Please ensure that you maintain 1.5-metres of distance from other travellers and wear your face mask.