Schiphol claims to operate Heathrow’s 3rd runway and provide the UK with global links
Schiphol airport has launching an aggressive advertising campaign, making out that it is offering more than 100 daily flights to the UK, enabling Britons to connect to 275 destinations across the world. Schiphol now serves 23 UK airports in Britain, compared with 12 offered by Gatwick and only 7 by Heathrow. Schiphol has 5 runways – compared with Heathrow’s 2 [of course, they cannot all be used at the same time – probably in practice only two are used at once]. Schiphol hopes to have more passengers etc than Heathrow within a decade (don’t they all?). The Telegraph is promoting this story, to help pile on pressure for new runways in the south east, and also as part of its continuing campaign against APD – wanting flying to be even more under-taxed than at present. The Telegraph, and Schiphol, are promoting the fear that Heathrow might be overtaken some time, with threats that ….”the Government is outsourcing Britain’s airports and jobs to our European competitors.”
Schiphol claims to operate Heathrow’s third runway
Amsterdam is laying claim to be recognised as a British hub airport operating Heathrow’s third runway.
By David Millward, Transport Editor (Telegraph)
7 Nov 2012
It is launching an aggressive advertising campaign capitalising on what critics say is a shortage of runways in London and the South East.
The Amsterdam airport says it offers more than 100 daily flights to the UK, enabling Britons to connect to 275 destinations across the world.
It now serves 23 UK airports in Britain, compared with 12 offered by Gatwick and only seven by Heathrow.
Schiphol, which has five runways – compared with Heathrow’s two [of course, they cannot all be used at the same time – probably in practice only two are used at once],, is already Europe’s leading airport for emerging market destinations such as China.
It is also expected to outstrip Heathrow in terms of passengers and flights within a decade.
Its cheeky self-promotion will intensify pressure on the Government to tackle the problem of lack of runway capacity in the South East.
Last week Sir Howard Davies, the former head of the Financial Services Authority, unveiled his team which will carry out an investigation into how Britain can retain its hub status.
His team is due to produce an interim report by the end of next year and a comprehensive study after the 2015 election, a move which has led to accusations that the Government has kicked the decision on new runways into the “long grass”.
Boris Johnson, London’s mayor, who is backing a new airport in the Thames Estuary rather than a third Heathrow runway, has repeatedly accused the Government of dithering and handing the initiative to Britain’s continental rivals.
A Heathrow spokesman said: “If we had more capacity these flights could be coming through the UK bringing jobs, economic growth and tax revenues.
“Instead the Government is outsourcing Britain’s airports and jobs to our European competitors.”
Comment from an AirportWatch member:
Heathrow’s third runway is here in Amsterdam, says Schiphol airport
7 November 2012 (Evening Standard)
Dutch aviation chiefs have brazenly launched a fresh campaign to promote Schiphol as a hub airport for Britain.
They are even said to have cheekily nicknamed one of the six runways at the Amsterdam airport “Heathrow’s third runway”.
A new advert unveiled last week boasts of more than 100 daily flights from the UK to Schiphol, with connections to more than 275 destinations around the globe.
The Schiphol Group president Jos Nijhuis said: “Each year we serve seven million passengers to and from Britain. In September UK business travellers voted us best European airport for the 23rd time. We are proud to be the UK’s preferred non-British airport.”
The Dutch airport stressed that it serves 23 destinations in Britain, compared with Gatwick’s 12 and Heathrow’s seven. But it strongly denied rumours it plans a seventh runway to become Britain’s top hub airport if no more runways are built here in coming years.
The new campaign was launched as the British Government came under fire from Boris Johnson for delaying a final report into UK airport capacity until after the 2015 election. “No wonder airport operators at the likes of Schiphol are rubbing their hands with glee,” said the Mayor.
“Increasingly Schiphol can afford to promote itself as a British hub airport serving Europe precisely because we are dithering in the long grass here at home.
“At the same time, having failed to take the third runway option off the table, the Government is now hearing ever louder noises from those who want not just a third but a fourth runway at Heathrow.” Mr Johnson argues that a four-runway hub airport should be built in the Thames estuary or at Stansted.
Heathrow, which wants the Government-commissioned inquiry to examine proposals for up to four runways there, stressed that if it had more capacity it could run flights that currently use Schiphol.
A spokesman said: “They would bring London jobs, eco-nomic growth and tax reven-ue. Instead the Government is outsourcing airports to our European competitors.”
Mr Nijhuis reportedly made the joke about Schiphol operating “Heathrow’s third runway” at a recent aviation conference. The airport auth-orities insist that if a seventh runway were built there at least one of the existing runways would be closed.
The Department for Transport stress-ed that the UK is one of the best-connected countries in the world. A spokesman added: “Maintaining that is vital to our economy.”