Operating Schiphol: Our most important activity

Operating Schiphol is one of Royal Schiphol Group’s main activities. The Dutch national airport is a genuine AirportCity, where passengers, airlines and companies come together to form a dynamic 24-hour economy. Schiphol’s extensive network of destinations also makes it an important European hub. Our ambition is to develop Schiphol as the most sustainable, high quality airport.

A bird’s eye view of Schiphol

In 2019, Schiphol had the third-highest number of passengers, the fourth-highest volume of cargo and ranked third in number of air transport movements in Europe. As many as 71.7 million passengers travelled to and from Schiphol from five take-off and landing runways. Some 1.57 million metric tonnes of cargo were transported via our airport and 496,826 air transport movements were carried out to 332 destinations.

Unique AirportCity

Schiphol is a city that never sleeps. For passengers, visitors, employees and employers, there is always something to do: 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year. This is because we are developing Schiphol and our other airports based on the AirportCity formula, in which business, property, commercial services and leisure facilities also play an important role alongside aviation.

Engaging with passengers, airlines, tenants and other customers, we are constantly exploring new ways to deliver inspiring passenger journeys and experiences, and build a collaborative community.

European Mainport

Thanks to an extensive network of 332 destinations in almost 100 countries and a high frequency of air transport movements, Schiphol is considered to be one of Europe’s ‘hubs’ or ‘mainports’. At Schiphol, we serve 102 airlines. We are the home base of KLM and one of the two hubs of the SkyTeam Alliance of Air France-KLM.

Schiphol provides infrastructure and facilities for departing, arriving and transferring passengers and cargo. The processes required for this are carried out by a large number of parties. At Schiphol, business and sector partners work together in a chain of processes and responsibilities.

An airport with a history

Schiphol is one of the oldest international airports in the world. On 19 September 1916, the first aircraft, a military plane, landed in the polder of the drained Haarlemmermeer (Lake Haarlem) and our home carrier KLM operated its first civilian flights in 1920. In recent years, Schiphol has regularly been named best European airport for passengers and/or cargo. At 4.5 m below sea level, Schiphol is one of the world’s lowest-lying airports.