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Amsterdam Airport

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol, the 4th busiest airport in Europe

Schiphol opened in 1916 as a military airbase, transformed from a former ship dock named Fort Schiphol. Now an important European airport, it ranks as the 4th busiest in Europe and the world’s 5th business by international passenger traffic. In 2010, over 49 million passengers passed through its gates reflecting a 10% increase from the previous year.

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. Amsterdam from above.
This is how Amsterdam looks like from above. Year: 2014.

While at Schiphol, passengers can take time to visit the large shopping areas, while The Rijksmuseum offers an opportunity for travelers to take a sneak peek into both classical and contemporary art at their annex. For three years now, since 2012, a permanent library, the world’s first, has been operating in the airport. Visitors can enjoy over 1200 books translated into 29 languages.

In case you are a fan of rooftop viewing areas, the Amsterdam Airport Schiphol will not disappoint. The large rooftop viewing area, called the Panoramaterras is accessible to the public and any enthusiasts who can enter free of charge through the airports landside.

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol

Built using the one terminal concept, Schiphol has all of its facilities under one roof. The area is however divided into three halls; 1, 2 and 3. The areas are separated to handle Schengen areas in hall 1, both Schengen and non-Schengen in hall 2 and Schengen, non-Schengen and low cost piers in hall 3.
When traveling through Schiphol and Europe, it is important to have a credit card with a chip. This technology is now being rapidly accepted and travelers whose card lack it may have difficulty at certain locations. Cash is king, though.

In case you want to change money, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol may not be the best place to do it, given the painfully long lines. Additionally, this airport is a very huge and it can take you up to 30 minutes, walking between gates. As a result, it is advisable to wear comfortable shoes if you will be landing in Amsterdam. Holland’s capital is a “walking city”. Everything is doable by foot, as the city itself isn’t that big. For example: Going from the Red Light District to the Anne Frank House is just a 12 minute walk.

You could also consider to rent a bike. It’s the fastest way of transportation in Amsterdam. It’s not for nothing that the Amsterdammers do everything on their bikes.

Did you know that Amsterdam has more bicycles than inhabitants?

If you must spend the night in the Amsterdam Airport, then you won’t be alone. Many people spend the night here. Be sure to grab a comfortable spot for your snooze, and in case you get hungry in the middle of the night. Alternatively you can visit the huge supermarket or the Starbucks near Arrival 4. Safe travels across Europe!

CLICK HERE to check out on how to get to the Red Light District from the Amsterdam Airport Schiphol.