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 to Amsterdam from London Heathrow, Manchester, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Birmingham during the peak of the crisis to assist UK customers with essential travel and repatriation.
As travel restrictions began to relax in Europe, KLM gradually resumed daily operations from the above cities throughout June. A twice daily service returned to London Heathrow from 5th June, while flights also resumed from Glasgow and Newcastle. As travel restrictions continue to ease globally, frequencies are expected to increase in line with demand.
From 4th July, KLM will resume operations from Bristol and Leeds Bradford, with flights from Inverness rejoining the network from 5th July. Daily flights between London City and Amsterdam will recommence on 13th July.
KLM expects to return to its pre-Covid network during summer 2020 with flights to Amsterdam operating from 16 departure points across the UK. Operations from Belfast, Teesside, Norwich, Humberside and Cardiff are schedule to resume from 3rd August.
Benedicte Duval, General Manager for UK & Ireland said: “After this challenging period, we’re delighted to be in a position to return to our pre-Covid network by August. Our regional footprint has always been key to our strategy in the UK and we are proud to once again offer worldwide connectivity from 16 airports across the country.
“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. We look forward to welcoming our UK customers back on board.”
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.