(This article was last updated on November 11th, 2017)
Schiphol first started in 1916 as a military airbase, transformed from a former ship dock named Fort Schiphol. At was later slowly turned into a civilian airport after the first world war (in which the Netherlands was neutral). Now it’s the 3rd busiest European airport after Heathrow (London) and Charles de Gaulle (Paris) and ranks 12th globally. In 2016 Schiphol processed a record number of 63.6 million passengers, an increase of over nine percent over 2015.
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 budget travel 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 widely implemented and travellers whose cards lack it may have difficulty at certain locations. Cash is still king for those visitors.
Amsterdam from the air on route to Schiphol back in 2014.
There are several ways to get from Schiphol to the Red Light District. The fastest and cheapest option is by train. We’ve made a good explainer here. Trains depart from Schiphol to Amsterdam Central Station 6 times an hour. How much is a train ticket from Amsterdam airport to Amsterdam’s Central Station? A train ticket costs 4,- euros. Within 18 minutes you’ll be at Central Station, from there it’s just a 5 – 10 minute walk to the Red Light District. For instructions on how to walk from Central Station to the Red Light District look here.
The distance from Schiphol airport to Red Light District by car is around 23 kilometers (14 miles). A taxi from Schiphol to Red Light District will cost you around 57,- euros with the standard taxi companies. Uber prices range between 27,- and 37,- euros. For UberBLACK expect to pay between 48,- and 64,- euros for your trip to the Red Light District.
While at Schiphol Airport, passengers can take time to visit the large shopping areas, whilst The Rijksmuseum offers an opportunity for travellers to take a sneak peek into both classical and contemporary art at their annex. Since 2010, a permanent library, the world’s first, has been operating in the airport. Visitors of Schiphol soon after opening reported it to be one of the best rated spots in the airport. Several other airports have since copied the concept. The library has about 500 books written by well-known Dutch authors, translated into more than 40 languages to serve as literary business card for foreign tourists. In addition to literature there is also a large selection of children’s books and books in the field of art, history, photography, design and the city of Amsterdam.
In case you are a fan of rooftop viewing areas, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol will not disappoint. The large rooftop viewing area, called the Panorama terras is accessible to the public and any enthusiasts who can enter free of charge through the airports land side. The deck viewing deck offers a great view of the planes standing at the C, D and E piers of Schiphol.
In case you want to exchange your money, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol may not be the best place to do it, given the long waiting lines. This airport is also very large so it can take you up to 30 minutes of walking between gates which doesn’t help if you also have to wait long for exchanging your currency.
Click here to check find out how to get from Schiphol to Red Light District Amsterdam