The Netherlands prepares for a chaotic summer: Busy airports and even busier roads
As the first schools close for the summer holidays, the Netherlands prepares for what is set to be a chaotic summer for holidaymakers, as queues at Dutch airports and traffic on roads across Europe threaten travel plans.
Schiphol readies for chaos as Dutch school holidays start
Schiphol Airport has taken a number of measures in order to reduce crowds over the busy summer period, cancelling hundreds of flights to destinations across Europe. As of July 7, new rules regarding maximum passenger capacity have been in effect - and airport management is optimistic about the weeks to come, firm in the belief that the various measures will be effective in limiting disruptions for travellers.
However, Schiphol ground staff feel differently. A recent poll conducted by the Netherlands Trade Union Confederation (FNV) found that 85 percent of workers felt the airport lacked the staff required to carry out tasks in a safe and responsible manner. 45 percent admitted they were concerned about the safety of passengers and flights.
Airport management may hope that the worst is behind them, but they aren’t out of the woods just yet, as the chaos regarding misplaced luggage continues. NOS reports that there are currently 16.000 suitcases stranded at Schiphol, with baggage handlers concerned that the situation will only worsen over the coming weeks.
ANWB warns that European roads will be especially busy this summer
Meanwhile, anyone hoping to avoid the chaos at Schiphol by travelling by car this summer has been warned that roads across Europe will be even busier than normal. This week, the Royal Dutch Touring Club (ANWB) has issued a warning for Dutch holidaymakers, explaining that travellers should prepare for long and frequent traffic jams - especially on the so-called Black Saturdays.
The first Black Saturday of the summer is July 9, with French and Swiss roads expected to be especially crowded as schools close for the holidays. The ANWB also expects that roads in the Netherlands will be busier from July 8, as schools in the central region break for the summer. Schools in the north close on July 15, while the southern regions follow the week after that.
"Vacationers are actually better off not travelling on Saturdays,” the ANWB says, admitting that it is difficult to predict what times of day will be the busiest. "If you leave in the morning, you have a chance that you will end up right in the middle of the traffic jam. If you leave later in the evening, you will probably follow the traffic jams," a spokesperson explained to NU.
Thumb: Aerovista Luchtfotografie via Shutterstock.
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