The route first launched on 16 May 1988 (operating under the Netherlines name between 1988-1991) with a Saab 340 aircraft, which had the capacity to carry up to 34 passengers. During the first year of operation in 1988, 12,500 passengers flew on the new KLM service to Amsterdam. In 2017, passenger numbers rose to 134,000, marking an increase of 972% since operations commenced.
Increased demand on the route saw the introduction of the Fokker, with Cardiff seeing the final Fokker flight in October 2017, after nearly 30 years of flying.
Today the route is serviced by the new and more efficient Embraer 175 and 190 aircraft, carrying up to 88 and 100 passengers respectively, while using 22% less fuel in comparison to its predecessor.
Bénédicte Duval, General Manager of Air France KLM UK & Ireland commented on the milestone, “We’re happy to be celebrating this anniversary with Cardiff Airport, where over the past three decades over three million passengers have flown between the two cities, with some travelling onwards to our network of 165 destinations worldwide.”
“We’ve seen strong bookings on this route over the last 30 years, and with the recent change to Embraer aircraft, now operating three times daily, we’ve been able to increase capacity between the two cities. We are confident that our continued investment in the region will result in stronger business links between Cardiff and the Netherlands and we are proud to be able to further support tourism and local businesses in the region” she added.
Spencer Birns, Cardiff Airport’s Commercial Director added: “KLM has been instrumental in linking Wales to the World via their Amsterdam hub. Their services are a major contributor to Welsh tourism, with thousands of customers visiting Wales for business, leisure, sport, and education annually. We are very proud KLM has provided its service to Cardiff for 30 years already and we look forward to developing our relationship further to continue this important air link for Cardiff Airport and Wales.”
Today, there are currently 20 departures a week from Cardiff Airport to Amsterdam. Passengers connecting long-haul are most likely to travel to Dubai, Beijing, Tokyo & New York and the top European destinations are Munich, Frankfurt, Copenhagen & Prague.
KLM offers online check-in, allocated seating and complimentary in-flight drinks and snacks on all flights.
Flights between Cardiff and Amsterdam start from £99 economy return including taxes and charges. To book your next holiday to Amsterdam or the world, visit www.klm.co.uk or call our reservations line on 0207 66 00 293.