KLM Adjusts Rapid Antigen Testing Requirements for Crews After Governmental Approval

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Johannesburg, 25 January 2021

After constructive consultations with the Dutch National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM), KLM has developed a safe alternative testing protocol for crews leaving the airport in countries that are not on the governmental list of safe countries. This includes an alternative whereby, among other things, the rapid antigen test for this crew will be arranged at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol before departing from and after returning to the Netherlands. In addition, there are local safety guidelines at the destinations. The Dutch government has indicated that this protocol meets the requirements.

KLM has also implemented the flight ban from the United Kingdom, South Africa and South America to the Netherlands as of 23 January and this remains in effect despite the new protocol. Cargo flights are excepted to operate within the government measures.

For passengers travelling to Amsterdam from high-risk areas antigen tests are required by the Dutch government, in addition to the already existing PCR test requirement. The necessary procedures have also been put into effect. For a number of customers, the imposed 4-hour limit for this antigen test also causes practical problems, because not all airports in the world have antigen testing facilities. KLM will help customers where possible in this regard.

The operation to the limited set of safe countries remains unchanged. Keeping flight operations running in a safe and responsible manner is and remains KLM’s priority and has been since the COVID-19 outbreak in early 2020. This has enabled KLM to maintain essential travel, repatriation and the transport of necessary cargo so far. In addition, KLM has taken numerous measures on board, such as HEPA filters, facemasks and adjustment of the onboard service, to ensure the safety and health of our customers and staff.

KLM continues to contribute to the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. To this end, consultation remains necessary on effective and practicable appropriate measures for aviation while taking into account international agreements.