Crowded Schiphol, Busy highways expected as summer vacations begin

Schiphol Airport passengers
Passengers buying train tickets as travellers walk through Schiphol Airport. 25 Jan. 2015photo: Tasfoto / DepositPhotos

School's out for summer in northern Netherlands on Friday and that means crowded airports and busy roads. Friday is a peak day for both departures and arrivals at Schiphol, and the airport is therefore expected to be very busy. Sunday is another peak day for departures, according to the airport. 

After Friday, the arrivals at Schiphol will taper off somewhat. Saturday's departures is also expected to be very busy. 

Schiphol advises travelers to keep their time going through security checks as short as possible by making sure they have no prohibited items in their hand luggage. The airport routinely updates travelers on what is and is not allowed to be taken aboard an aircraft. 

The ANWB expects busy roads throughout the weekend as people head out on vacation. People traveling on Saturday in particular should expect long traffic jams on the main routes to the south, the travel association warns. 

Summer vacation officially starts for schools in the northern parts of the country when classes let out on Friday, though some schools ended coursework earlier in the week. Kids and teens in southern Netherlands are already on vacation. And the Midden-Nederland schools are closing next week.

In the Netherlands, traffic was predicted to start piling up at around noon on Friday, according to travel association ANWB. By 12:45 dozens of traffic hotspots were responsible for over 250 kilometers of road congestion. In addition to holiday traffic, there are also a number of events happening in the country this weekend. The ANWB also expects many traffic jams in popular holiday destinations France, Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

Motorists should be prepared to spend up to two hours in traffic at the Gotthard tunnel in Switzerland throughout the weekend, according to the ANWB. 

Schools in North Rhine-Westphalia in Germany are also closing on Friday, so that holiday traffic will join the extra traffic caused by Dutch holidaymakers. There are also many roadworks ongoing throughout Germany, which can cause extra delays.