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MarcusUK
Participant

If some of my comments “appear to be taken straight from the KLM website”, then clearly they practice and produce what they say they will.

Many i know have had bad experiences with Air France in the last 2 years.
They are “Counted” as part of the same group, but as said on different threads, KLM are profitable, and weighed down by AF with low capacity, poor service, old planes, and apathetic crews. Two recent long haul flights were compensated by KLm who within 24 hrs of a complaint on AF, refunded 1/4 the fare and 20,000 miles, stating how embarassed they were! I do not fly them Long haul any more, as count up flights in two years on them and VS, downward experiences become the expectations.

I do have to fly Cityjet / AF from LCY, though the main strategy and group will be shedding them soon, what will happen at LCY i do not know. They are not included in the AF / KLM 2015 strategy, loss making, and they are looking for a buyer. I hope KLM take their slots back and put on their own Embraer services, and standards.

I have experienced Qantas lounges in Sydney late last year, where it appeared more like a supermarket cafe, no seats left, and older people running when food was brought out to grab the few items that were there. Then Qantas is had such decline, but i am sure Emirates will improve the Lounge access, as they fail completely to meet their standard and EK would not permit this.

The Lounges for Intercontinental at CDG last year, had crisps and one small plate of hot food for an area with 50 people standing with no seats. the floor was filthy with food left there, tables uncleaned, poor selection of decent items and drinks. It was dirty, unclean, and for a Hub Airline, extremely poor.

They compare nothing like KLM, and those of us who have flown with them, (We use the lounges weekly at AMS), know this.

The ipads instead of all paper newspapers for on line versions, are now in the reading area at the KLM lounges in Schiphol. Sensible idea that came from a passenger i hear implemented, to save costs, increase quality for the passenger, and provide up to the minute news. They have 18 International publications, and you can access the net with them, and some basic links to KLM quite apart from the business area.

They also continue to have private televisions in a different area, to watch whatever International programs you wish, with earphones.

They have the largest and best outside panorama outlook of any lounge in Europe, and it is kept clean, well maintained, highly staffed with dedicated service sections.

Flying into Schiphol, your gates and baggage belts (on KLM flights) allocated and announced prior to arrival. Often baggage arrives at the belts after you maximum 15 minute walk from Intercontinental through Immigration, or you get the exact minute it will come “17.37 on belt 12, and it is on time.
Immigration in NL’s has in and out checks, unlike the UK where we simply have no record of who or when anyone has left the country. I know only the UK that fails to have this check of any Airport in the world, excluding the schengen where you are checked at point of embarkation country.

The VS exerience ends with the LHR lounge as supported by hundreds on here in the failures of flying with them in recent years. BA, wel, their FF speak for themselves on here the most thread of ahy Airline and the most gripes.

This is why i observe KLM (not AF!) to be the most refreshing , innovative, and responsive Airline in Europe. Schiphol is voted best Airport every year, by travellers, so that speaks for the majority. LHR is appalling, rude staff, poor connections, highest lost luggage rates in Europe for connections. It now has one of the most expensive overall charge and add on rates for any Airport worldwide, and adds £300+ to each business fare, whist producing the worst service, and delays. It is badly run in my view.
Our “Government” has frozen in any form of strategy for a gateway for the UK being improved., or better managed.

Perhaps is why no Government taxed, 5 runway Schiphol, , will and is growing, and is now a popular option for the UK Population. EK, EY, SQ, MH, CX, several China carriers, all fly from there and your fare is up to 30% less.
Simple.

I am British not Dutch, but like other Airlines such as MH, SQ, EK, i can respect and admire where they exceed, and i will comment where i see a difference. Observations by me, colleagues and those I travel with weekly.
I have flown 55 Airlines over 20 years, 40 EU flights a year, and 20 Long haul average. I will speak as i find worldwide of any Airline and relay observations and events as they are.

We comment on declines in service and experience here. Where there is that I shall also, just as i will observations of quite the opposite. The Aviation indistry has become complacent in parts, depressed in the moral especially from within the UK, and a Cash cow for airports paying out shareholders outside of the UK. Taxes, fuel levies, Charges for Miles redemption flights ex LHR (with no fare), now exceed £950 for two Business flighys to Asia. They cost Max 300 Euros from Schiphol, and as low as £50 from say HKG on the same Airlines returning INTO LHR!

Ethically, like some on here, I don’t support these business models, and it is easy to see neither do others.

Without change, perhaps there is no future for legacy Airlines, and traveller apathy, as demonstrated on BT will continue, sadly.

Thank you to all for so many responses to one Airline review, certainly value the generated discussion…