Transatlantic partners Delta Air Lines and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines are launching Covid-tested flights from Atlanta to Amsterdam.
The airline partners have worked with the Dutch government, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport to deliver a comprehensive Covid-19 testing program that will allow eligible customers to be exempt from quarantine upon arrival after receiving a negative PCR test result on landing in the Netherlands.
“This is a very important and great step forward.
“Until an approved working vaccine is available worldwide, this testing program represents the first step towards the international travel recovery.
“I am grateful for the constructive collaboration with our partners Delta Air Lines and the Schiphol Group and to have the support of the Dutch government to make this unique Covid-free travel corridor trial possible.
“All stakeholders need to work together on a systematic approach to rapid testing and build these tests into the passenger experience, so quarantine measures can be lifted as quickly as possible. This is fundamental to restore passengers’ and governments’ confidence in air travel,” said Pieter Elbers, chief executive, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines.
The Covid-tested flights will operate four times per week from Atlanta to Amsterdam, with Delta and KLM operating two frequencies each.
Only passengers with negative test results will be accepted on-board.
The flights will initially run for three weeks and if successful, the airlines hope to extend the program to other markets.
Customers will be able to choose the Covid-tested flights when they purchase their tickets online or opt for one of the alternative Delta or KLM daily flights between Atlanta and Amsterdam that are not covered within the trial program.
Entry requirements for the Netherlands normally include ten days of quarantine.
However, by completing a negative PCR test five days before arrival in the Netherlands and self-isolating until departure, customers can choose to complete the quarantine ahead of their departing flight.
No quarantine will be required upon arrival once the customer tests negative via a second PCR test at Schiphol airport.