Review of KLM Cityhopper flight Amsterdam Porto in Economy

Airline KLM Cityhopper
Flight KL1713
Class Economy
Seat 17F
Aircraft Embraer E-190
Flight time 02:35
Take-off 04 Jul 20, 12:40
Arrival at 04 Jul 20, 14:15
WA   #113 out of 142 Airlines A minimum of 20 Flight-Reports is required in order to appear in the rankings. 268 reviews
ThomasDutch
By GOLD 487
Published on 6th July 2020

Introduction


While Europe  has been in a lockdown for quite some time and making it almost impossible for us to travel within Europe or outside, I decided to book myself a flight as soon as possible when Europe announced that borders are opening within the Schengen countries to promote tourism as well. 

While Portugal opened it's borders on the first of July for tourists and the Dutch authorities considered Portugal to be a ''yellow'' country (Yellow translates to caution, but generally safe) , I decided to book a short trip to Porto on the 4th of July to return to my country the day after. A few days ahead of my departure, the Dutch government without explanation changed the Lisbon and Porto districts to ''Orange'', which means that it is only advised to go there for essential travel and all insurances will not cover your expenses if needed.

After this change I investigated it a bit of myself and verified other information/advisory travel to Portugal with neighbouring countries like Germany and Belgium and decided that I'm willing to take a chance and go ahead with my travel, so the itinerary I booked is as followed. 


Routing

  • KL1713 - Economy - Amsterdam - Porto → Embraer E-190 You are here
  • TP2471 - Economy - Porto → Lisbon - ATR 72-600 Coming soon
  • TP2886 - Economy - Lisbon → Amsterdam - Embraer E-190 Coming soon

Amsterdam Airport Schiphol


I travelled by car to Amsterdam Airport Schiphol as I didn't fancy taking the public transport from my hometown, which could be quite a hassle sometimes and reserved a parking spot at P3 in Amsterdam for 50 EUR. I received a free upgrade from Amsterdam to park my car in P1 instead of P3 for the same price and took it as P1 is attached to the terminal.

On the day of my departure I left my home about 9.45 am to arrive a hour later at Amsterdam with a three to six minute walk to the terminal via the hallway in the picture below. 


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While I already checked in online, I decided to check in with one of these self check-in machines to obtain my boarding card on paper as a backup in case my mobile phone's battery dies. It's one of the regulation of KLM to practise social distancing as certain machines have been turned off. The airport itself made it mandatory to wear face masks in the check-in area and security control zone (while the Dutch law only says that masks are to be worn in Public transport).


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Security control was done in a few minutes as there was literally no que and I ended up in quite a deserted terminal with many shops closed. It's hard to imagine that this is Amsterdam as it is usually packed with travellers.


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I ordered myself a coffee at one of the starbucks in Amsterdam which was probably one of the busiest shops in the terminal as there was quite a wait. Once I received my coffee, I sat down on one of those chairs with an excellent view over one of Amsterdam's apron, though there was not a lot of activity. A sole 787 of Tuifly Netherlands and two Airbus A319s of Croatia Airlines and British Airways in the distance.


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While most shops are open in the main terminal are mostly open, the impact of covid-19 is clearly visible in the piers of Amsterdam as literally everything, but one food kiosk is open as the photo shows below.


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Our flight for today would departure from gate B18, which meant that we would have the be transported by bus to one of it's remote stands. Boarding was called right on time and was orderly organized by zones. From this moment it is mandatory to wear a face mask until you exit the aircraft with the exception when you consume your drinks and food.


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KL1713


Social distancing was almost completely ignored by our passengers upon boarding as you can see in the photo below, but our flight would be operated by PH-EZI, which is a 10.6 year old Embraer E190 who has solely been in service to KLM Cityhopper in a 2-2 configuration. The E190s are still among one of my favourite aircraft to fly on in terms of comfort.


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Tow truck was already waiting for our departure.


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Two papers were already placed on our seats before boarding containing a Portuguese locator form (in case a positive passenger was found positive, so they could locate other people in close contact) and a paper explaining the Portuguese guidelines for Covid-19. It also came with a cute little KLM pen, which I kept as a small souvenir. I also expected a package of food, but KLM did not inform us that it was the first day of normal service again.


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Unfortunately the weather is not cooperating in the Netherlands today, but seat 17F gives you an excellent wing view.


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Legroom is decent too, however the photo does not really do justice to the amount I had… though BA Cityflyer's E190s are more generous with legroom.


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Pushback was done three minutes past our original departure time and it took only a few minutes for us to depart as runway 24 was the active runway for today.


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Breaking through the clouds.


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While the terminal was far from busy, the flight on the other hand was completely full with economy passengers. Only the first row of the cabin was business and that also was full.


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Face masks are mandatory and it can become very muggy while wearing them so these air vents are an absolute lifesaver. Also the state (except the seats, which showed several signs of wore) the aircraft was top notch and very clean.


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The literature available in your seat pocket. A safety card, a sick bag and KLM's magazine which has been covered in some sort of disinfected substant (written on the magazine itself). While the magazine is updated monthly, I wonder why nobody of KLM noticed that ''Adria Airways'' is still written in their magazine as non-alliance partner.


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About fourty minutes into flight, the flight attendants started their complimentary food and drink service as It used to be before Covid-19, but the flight attendants completely forgot to provide 50% of the cabin with their food package and served us only drinks, so here is my sparkling water for a solid hour.


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When the flight attendants returned back for a clean up service, I made a remark to one of the flight attendants that she had forgotten to provide the food service to 50% of the cabin (in a friendly matter). She quickly realised it, apologized and explained that it was the first day of normal service for them after Covid-19 and quickly returned to provide the other 50% with some food. The box contained a sandwich with beemster cheese and a spread of Amsterdam Onion, a cup of water and a ''stroopkoekje''.


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Soon after the late food service, the descent was engaged and it meant that we would arrive in Porto ahead of time. The flight crew checked in with us to inform us about the latest arrival information, weather information and thanked us for flying with KLM. The landing of Porto is a very scenic one.


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The landing was flawless and I spotted this Airbus A330neo of TAP.


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Disembarking was done quickly after without any organization and was done like it usually is done before the pandemic with a decent walk to the baggage drop area.


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Tourist bonus PORTO


Bonus : Click here display
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Verdict

KLM Cityhopper

7.6/10
Cabin8.0
Cabin crew9.0
Entertainment/wifi7.0
Meal/catering6.5

Amsterdam - AMS

7.6/10
Efficiency8.0
Access6.5
Services7.5
Cleanliness8.5

Porto - OPO

7.0/10
Efficiency7.5
Access6.0
Services7.5
Cleanliness7.0

Conclusion

Despite the airport being somewhat deserted in terms for what it has seen, the flight was completely full and it also felt that there were little measures taken against covid-19 other than wearing a face mask. The flight though was still very enjoyable with excellent flight attendants who definitely loved their job despite that small mistake.

Related

8 Comments

  • Comment 557998 by
    Matthevv 35 Comments

    Hi Thomas, thanks for this amazing trip report! Great that you finally had an opportunity to travel after the lockdown has eased :) The flight seemed to be fairly full yet enjoyable (except for this little mistake 😅). You took some fantastic pictures of Porto, which I also find a fabulous city, I’ll assuredly come there again.
    PS. I was flying a domestic flight from KRK to WAW yesterday and the same thing happened with respecting COVID-19 measures. Masks were the only thing people really cared about.
    Cheers,
    Matthevv.

    • Comment 558006 by
      ThomasDutch GOLD AUTHOR 473 Comments

      Hi Matthev,
      Thanks for the compliment. Yeah, I still have three itineraries left to Asia, but at the moment I'm still unsure whether I am allowed to go, so I'll keep my fingers crossed, but Porto is definitely a place to return to. Except the mask, I think people are just tired of the entire situation like me.
      Thanks for coming by.

  • Comment 558035 by
    KL651 TEAM 4481 Comments

    Thanks for this review.
    Clearly with most long haul flights not having resumed schiphol must be pretty deserted except for gates B and C.
    Nice to see a full flight and that the standard service is now back.

  • Comment 558233 by
    East African 1521 Comments

    The only positive impact of the C-19 is the deserted terminal.
    Good idea from KL to provide a pen.
    Interesting bonus with lovely photos
    Thanks for sharing

    • Comment 558263 by
      ThomasDutch GOLD AUTHOR 473 Comments

      While it is definitely pleasant in terms of not having an overcrowded terminal, it is also much harder to kill your time with so many features being closed at the airport. Yes, Porto is absolutely worth visiting if you are into a cozy city with history. Thanks for stopping by.

  • Comment 558561 by
    KévinDC TEAM SILVER 5273 Comments

    Despite the full flight, it sounds like you were happy to be back in the air again! I'm impressed with KLM offering normal service post-Covid, while so many other airlines are using it as an excuse to cut costs. KL and LH are definitely stand-outs in Europe for having preserved service standards.

    Great report as always and I enjoyed the tourism bonus.

    Thanks for sharing!

    • Comment 558600 by
      ThomasDutch GOLD AUTHOR 473 Comments

      Hi Kevin,

      Actually it was the first day for KLM to be back to normal service. Prior to those days, the lunchbox was awaiting at your seat upon boarding and only coffee, tea and water was being served prior to that.

      Thanks for stopping by and I would definitely recommend you to pay a visit to Porto if you haven't already so.

      Cheers,

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