KLM Launching Flights To Austin In 2020

Filed Under: KLM

Austin’s transatlantic expansion just keeps on rolling, and I didn’t see this one coming.

KLM Launching Amsterdam To Austin Flights

It has today been announced that KLM will be launching 3x weekly flights between Amsterdam and Austin as of May 4, 2020.

The flight will be operated by an Airbus A330-300 with the following schedule on Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays:

KL667 Amsterdam to Austin departing 12:40PM arriving 4:10PM
KL668 Austin to Amsterdam departing 6:00PM arriving 10:25AM (+1 day)

The flight will cover a distance of ~5,090 miles in each direction, and is blocked at 9hr25min eastbound and 10hr30min westbound.

KLM’s A330-300s feature a total of 292 seats, including 30 business class seats, 40 extra legroom economy seats, and 222 standard economy seats.

KLM’s A330 business class

The press release notes that changes will be made to the long haul KLM network to free up slots at Schipol to make this flight possible, though no information has been provided regarding what these changes will look like.

KLM CEO Pieter Elbers had the following to say about this route:

“We have built up a robust transatlantic network thanks to our joint ventures with Air France and Delta Air Lines. We will continue to optimise this network. As part of this we launched services to Boston and Las Vegas in the summer and are now adding Austin to our North American destinations.”

Austin will be KLM’s 19th destination in North America, and this flight will be operated as part of the joint venture between Delta and Air France-KLM. Austin has increasingly become a focus city of Delta, so I think it’s safe to say that this flight is part of that overall effort.

This Is Austin’s Fourth Transatlantic Route

As far as transatlantic flights go, at this point Austin has:

Clearly most of these flights have been quite successful, as British Airways has even sometimes operated a 747 in the market.

Bottom Line

Of the major European airlines, British Airways has by far been the most adventurous with the transatlantic routes they’ve launched. KLM has historically been much more conservative with their growth, which is why this Austin route is so cool to see.

I imagine they’ve done their research and the demand is there, given their transatlantic joint venture with Delta.

What do you make of KLM’s new Austin route?

Comments
  1. KLM willl cut the Havana route in order to make slots available for Austin! Cool route, but sad to see HAV go.

  2. @Daniel agreed that this will likely replace HAV. I would imagine this route has much greater profit potential.

  3. I live in Austin, and I’m thrilled. It’s a great town but the limited long haul service at Bergstrom is an ongoing PITA.

  4. “Austin’s transatlantic expansion just keeps on rolling, and I didn’t see this one coming.”

    You should read my blog more. 😉 I’ve been saying that we get either AMS or CDG service in 2020 for the last year. It had to wait for all the new gates to open at the airport – until this spring the airport had only two long haul capable gates but now there are six – that wasn’t done in time to open sales for the 2019 season, and the airport had to get its ducks in a row for subsidies. [Amsterdam is one of the key cities targeted by the airport to subsidize new service https://viewfromthewing.com/2019/08/27/austin-is-looking-to-hand-out-subsidies-for-new-international-routes-and-hawaii/%5D

    By the way Lufthansa’s Frankfurt flight replaced Condor service this past spring.

  5. New routes like this may only be “successful” thanks to the huge incentives the city of Austin is offering to attract new service. See here for the new program just adopted last week (I doubt the timing of this new route announcement is a coincidence):
    http://www.austintexas.gov/edims/document.cfm?id=327599

    These programs are becoming more common among secondary airports and can add up to millions in fee waivers / marketing expenditure for the first couple years. Let’s see if the routes stick once those expire…

  6. Am happy to continue to see flights added to my current city, but with all these new gates and terminal expansions, the Achilles heel will be the current immigration and baggage claim set up before clearing customs. Came back from Cancun w/ Sun Country at the same time a BA 747 landed and it was chaos. Now potentially 4 transatlantic flights will land within a couple hours? Geez.

  7. Love getting new flights to my city — but I’m spoiled and fly to Houston to take Singapore to Europe. Sorry KLM!

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