In a move which will delight its supporters, KLM has announced it will be returning to London City.
KLM last served the route nearly eight years ago with F50 turbo-prop aircraft which, by today’s standards, lack passenger appeal.
The Dutch carrier will be operating jet Embraer 190 aircraft from its Cityhopper subsidiary.
There will be a maximum of four daily flights phased in over a period which starts on February 6 and extends until March 26.
At weekends the service will be reduced to one flight on a Saturday and two on a Sunday.
The new schedule for KLM’s London City Airport service to Amsterdam Schiphol
Says Boet Kreiken, MD of KLM Cityhopper, “Once again, KLM is strengthening its European network by flying independently to London City. From now on passengers on this route can enjoy all the advantages of KLM services and digital products. And the flight schedules are extremely attractive for business travellers.”
Currently KLM code-shares on this route with Irish carrier Cityjet which (in the winter schedule) operates up to eight flights on weekdays but far fewer at weekends.
Cityjet operates Bae146 jets which are in the process of being replaced by Sukhoi Superjets. However the Russian aircraft, although more up-to-date, have yet to receive permission to use London City.
It is unclear, at the time of writing whether Cityjet will remain on the route or whether it will reduce the number of its flights.
KLM’s main rival out of London City would be British Airways (BA) which operates similar aircraft, namely Embraer 170/190s. BA operates up to seven flights a day but far fewer at weekends.
As a sixth-freedom carrier (which depends on transfer passengers) KLM would prefer to handle its passengers on every stage of the journey so it’s understandable it’s returning to London City.