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Why Does KLM Keep Canceling Flights?  
User currently offlineSchipholjfk From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 579 posts, RR: 6
Posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 10495 times:

Someone with knowledge of KLM ops may be can answer this question... last Tuesday KLM canceled KL 641/642 to JFK. Today I got a call from NWA stating that my flight KL 642 from JFK to AMS on April 15th has been canceled. Does anyone know why would KLM cancel their flight four days ahead of the scheduled departure?

Also what kind of general state are their 747-400 in? I fly their long haul flights 12-15 times a year and when ever I am in their 747-400, it seems they have mechanical problems.... minor things like seat backs not working to engine problems. I have always flown KLM because of their superb technical ops, but the last year has not been good at all. Last summer on the same day, two flights on MD-11 were canceled. The first MD-11 took off and after an hour we returned to Schiphol due to some hydraulic issues and then after hours of waiting a replacement MD-11 taxied us to the runway and after 45 mins of stalling we returned back to the gate with additional problems. Other than their 777, it seems KLM's long haul fleet is really in a need for an upgrade.


The fun of flying... love it !!!
35 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 1, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 10488 times:



Quoting Schipholjfk (Thread starter):
Other than their 777, it seems KLM's long haul fleet is really in a need for an upgrade.

Don' t forget those A332 which I prefer even over the B777.

No idea for the other thing.
-HT



Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently offlineAvek00 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 4368 posts, RR: 19
Reply 2, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 10466 times:

This FlyerTalk thread chronicles the daily KLM longhaul meltdown in great detail:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=695692&page=15



Live life to the fullest.
User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 3, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 10391 times:



Quoting Avek00 (Reply 2):
This FlyerTalk thread chronicles the daily KLM longhaul meltdown in great detail:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/showt...ge=15

Boy, that's quite a list ! Might as well be easier at the moment to list those KL longhaul flights that actually operate at all or on-tme ...

I am more than happy that I haven't found the flight I will take tomorrow on that list: KL 0664 IAH to AMS which should not be affected by all those other a/c having gone tech as this BBJ is maintained by PrivatAir, not by KL.
-HT



Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently offlineSchipholjfk From United States of America, joined Jan 2005, 579 posts, RR: 6
Reply 4, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 10313 times:

Wow... great link Avek00. Amazing how many flights KLM cancels because of unavailable aircraft. This is such disservice to customers.


The fun of flying... love it !!!
User currently offlineSailas From Finland, joined Jul 2007, 280 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 10191 times:



Quoting Schipholjfk (Thread starter):
two flights on MD-11 were canceled

Haha, welcome to the world of MD-11s. I believe AY canceled 2 too many flights this chriostmas on their MD-11s due to problems. But yep about Time for KLM aswel to understand that they cannot last till 2012 with their md-11s. AY's already getting rid of them and by 2009 or 10 cant remember the a340s and a333s will rule Finnish skies!
But yep deffinetley a bummer if so many KL flights are cancelled.



Airlines been on: AY, LX, SR, OS, SK, KF, EZY, FR, BA, LH, AF, TG, DC, FC, TK, KL, BT, CX, QR
User currently offlineAA737-823 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 5766 posts, RR: 11
Reply 6, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 10178 times:

Great, and I just booked on KLM for LAX-AMS and AMS-DFW in two weeks.

User currently offlineBNinMSY From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 332 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 10164 times:

Yes, I noticed KL's afternoon flight IAH AMS on the 20th is out of SABRE however they hve not actioned reservations to advise any one of this. Granted it could be a schedule misload.
But I do wonder?

A call to NWA resulted in NOTHING - they are not the smartest tools in the shed. Acted like "why would you even call us for this. who is KLM?"


User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 8, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 10132 times:



Quoting BNinMSY (Reply 7):
Yes, I noticed KL's afternoon flight IAH AMS on the 20th is out of SABRE however they hve not actioned reservations to advise any one of this. Granted it could be a schedule misload.

And what about the inbound flight from AMS ? Is that one cancelled, too ?
-HT



Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently onlineHB-IWC From Indonesia, joined Sep 2000, 4502 posts, RR: 72
Reply 9, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 10082 times:

The reason for all these irregularities is simple: overly optimistic scheduling. KLM has a widebody fleet of 59 aircraft (22 B747, 17 B777, 10 A332 and 10 MD11) and these aircraft are very heavily scheduled: high utilization, short turn arounds and little spare capacity. This is a mixture that spells trouble, and it regularly does.

Currently, KLM schedules 45 to 48 widebody departures per day from its AMS base. 4 aircraft should be added to that number because they perform double overnight patterns (to Singapore, Taipei, Jakarta and Quito) and are unavailable for dispatch. That leaves for a spare capacity of between 7 and 10 aircraft, which sounds good on paper, but if one considers that KLM is currently putting the MD11 fleet through a cabin retrofit program (1 aircraft permanently unavailable) and that the ageing B747 fleet is undergoing continual C- and D-check operations (2 to 3 aircraft unavailable) then the spare capacity comes down to just 3 to 6 aircraft per day. Add to that routine maintenance operations and the less than ideal dispatch reliability rates of the MD11 and B747 subfleets, and operational irregularities are inevitably ensuing.

As we speak, the most critical days of operation are Fridays and Sundays, both of which see 48 widebody departures. 1 MD11 (PH-KCA) and 2 B747 (PH-BFO and PH-BFS) are in for prolonged maintenance ops and one more B747 (PH-BFM) has been stuck in Shanghai for the past 4 days and is not due back until late on Sunday. All of this led to the cancellation of services to Curacao, Mexico and Shanghai yesterday, with more cancellations in the pipeline for the next couple of days.

To add insult to injury, KLM plans to operate even more flights in a month or so when the full summer schedule will come into place. Currently, the airline operates a reduced operation to Nairobi, Kilimanjaro, Dar Es Salaam and Vancouver and frequencies will be reinforced to all of these destinations in the upcoming weeks, potentially placing even more strain on the operation. With all these irregularities, it seems the days of KLM as "The Reliable Airlines" have long gone...


User currently offlineMk777 From United States of America, joined Oct 2006, 1195 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 10069 times:

KLM has been sending the MD-11 to IAD in lieu of the regular A332. How long will this last. It was nice to see an MD-11 take off today. Are they sending the MD-11 to DEL this summer or the 772ER??

Also, has this substitution to IAD result of all the upgrading and checks on the a/c's, so does the A332 fly to where the MD-11 normally flew and vice versa?



come fly with me
User currently offlineBAW716 From United States of America, joined Nov 2003, 2028 posts, RR: 27
Reply 11, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 21 hours ago) and read 9978 times:



Quoting AA737-823 (Reply 6):



Quoting BNinMSY (Reply 7):
A call to NWA resulted in NOTHING - they are not the smartest tools in the shed. Acted like "why would you even call us for this. who is KLM?"

On this point...I must agree. I found that for as close as NW and KL cooperate, there is ZERO communication between the two airlines, especially within their reservation systems. I had some friends on KL flying on a 777 last week from NRT-AMS (which did operate as scheduled), but I couldn't get them seat assignments on KL through NW. I had to call KL in Amsterdam (yes, AMS!!!) to get the seat assignments for them. Good thing I did too, because the flight was badly overbooked and they left a few people behind...not my friends as they had seat assignments (obtained months ago).

baw716



David L. Lamb, fmr Area Mgr Alitalia SFO 1998-2002, fmr Regional Analyst SFO-UAL 1992-1998
User currently offlineFlyingfool From Netherlands, joined May 2005, 437 posts, RR: 2
Reply 12, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 9818 times:



Quoting BAW716 (Reply 11):
I had to call KL in Amsterdam (yes, AMS!!!)

Not so strange you had to call AMS as KLM has it's home overthere...

Regards, Flyingfool


User currently offlineSandyb123 From UK - Scotland, joined Oct 2007, 1095 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 9583 times:
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Quoting fool (Reply 12):
Not so strange you had to call AMS as KLM has it's home overthere...

Erm, from the US! Having to call overseas like that I think that's a bit off. Doesn't KLM have local offices, especially in key markets?

My folks where recently delayed for hours after a KLM MD-11 went tech in the Caribbean. The interiors are very dated, dirty, with no PTV and poor legroom.

Sandyb123



Member of the mile high club
User currently offlineB747forever From Sweden, joined May 2007, 17063 posts, RR: 10
Reply 14, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 9517 times:



Quoting Avek00 (Reply 2):
This FlyerTalk thread chronicles the daily KLM longhaul meltdown in great detail:

http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/showt...ge=15

After looking on that list, it seems that KLM have some serious problems.



Work Hard, Fly Right
User currently offlineOrlando666 From Netherlands, joined Apr 2005, 168 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 9495 times:

horrible "new" Biz seats, no PVTs in Eco (except 332/77E) I thought MD11's were getting PVTs in Eco also? Dispatch reliability on 74E/MD11 also not good. Personally know many platinum "elite plus" (he he he) who have shifted to other carriers. I hope QR/EY will come to AMS soon.

p.s. to crown it all, KL new 77W has 10-across seating and still middle seat in Biz. Avoid this aircraft if you are below 5'8" height.


User currently offlineLongHaul67 From Norway, joined Jan 2007, 248 posts, RR: 1
Reply 16, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 9389 times:



Quoting Mk777 (Reply 10):
It was nice to see an MD-11 take off today.

The MD-11 is a beauty to spot, no doubt. But if you are waiting for one for hours at the gate with a boarding pass in your hand....

Quoting BAW716 (Reply 11):
Good thing I did too, because the flight was badly overbooked and they left a few people behind...not my friends as they had seat assignments (obtained months ago).

Is it a general rule that people with pre-booked seat assignments are less likely to get kicked off in case of overbooking?


User currently offlineAirNZ From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 14 hours ago) and read 9338 times:



Quoting BNinMSY (Reply 7):
A call to NWA resulted in NOTHING - they are not the smartest tools in the shed. Acted like "why would you even call us for this. who is KLM?"

Was it a codeshare with a NW FLIGHT NUMBER? If not, and it had a KLM flight number, why indeed would you call NWA?


User currently offlineAvek00 From United States of America, joined Oct 2004, 4368 posts, RR: 19
Reply 18, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 9200 times:



Quoting AirNZ (Reply 17):

NWA handles ALL issues regarding KLM in North America. With that being said, if contacting NWA goes nowhere, the next best thing would have been to contact Air France Reservations, who can also take care of KLM issues.



Live life to the fullest.
User currently offlineHT From Germany, joined May 2005, 6525 posts, RR: 23
Reply 19, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 9156 times:

Quoting HB-IWC (Reply 9):

Many thanks for the information and insights here and over at flyertalk !

Quoting Orlando666 (Reply 15):
to crown it all, KL new 77W has 10-across seating and still middle seat in Biz. Avoid this aircraft if you are below 5'8" height.

Copy that.
Meanwhile one has to be picky when it comes to fly KL longhaul, but in the end one is never safe from equipemt substitution at KL.
Overall it is hurting the chances that KL will get my business in future. This is to be see in combination with problems /reduced & changed timiing at KL-Cityhopper to my homebase at HAJ.

Again: KL 0663/0664 to IAH are an exception as it is not run by KL mainline itself but by PrivatAir of Switzerland. 11 hours before my return flight to AMS on this.  
-HT

EDIT:
Could parent AF help out getting the situation a bit straigther by flying the odd rotation with one of their a/c ?
Or is KL better-off to just trying to sit on the problem and hope for it that those a/c that are inop will get back into service soon - while for the meantime the odd flight gets cancelled and pax rebooked on other SkyTeam carriers ?
-HT

[Edited 2008-04-12 06:32:30]


Carpe diem ! Life is too short to waste your time ! Keep in mind, that today is the first day of the rest of your life !
User currently offlineUSflt1778 From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 268 posts, RR: 2
Reply 20, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 9076 times:



Quoting Avek00 (Reply 18):
...the next best thing would have been to contact Air France Reservations, who can also take care of KLM issues.

This is NOT the case in the USA, where AF and KL have zero cooperation due to US antitrust law. Although it will likely change soon, AF cannot market the "AF-KL" brand here: you'll notice the logos are never used together as they are elsewhere around the world. Also, any tickets issued by KL on 074 ticket stock are to be handled by NW inside the US market, as you had stated.


User currently offlineFlySSC From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 7409 posts, RR: 57
Reply 21, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 9023 times:



Quoting HT (Reply 19):
Could parent AF help out getting the situation a bit straigther by flying the odd rotation with one of their a/c ?

AF doesn't have enough aircraft available to "help" its subsidiary KLM ...
Most airlines around the world try to reduce costs and therefor most of them don't have spare aircraft capacity. All the planes are used at their maximum utilization rate.

AF has an advantage over KLM : they can "play" with the commonality A332/A343 and B772ER/B77W which is impossible to do for KLM with 4 different families of Long Haul aircraft : B777, A332, MD11, B744.
And those MD11 are a pain in the ass ! I can't understand they still operate them, refurbish cabin and so on ...

Sell them all and replace them with 10 B777 a.s.a.p !!!


User currently offlineBNinMSY From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 332 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 8949 times:

NW is KLM here in the states. All KLM tickets sold in the US are plated and issued on NW ticket stock.
All KLM phones are routed to NW. KLM has very few employees here in the states in public contact positions.

It's absurd that NW doesn't handle KLM passengers better. I've had the opposite situation while in AMS and KLM was far more helpful.

Personally I feel all the codeshares and cooperation is a bucket of bull.


User currently offlineMeta From United States of America, joined Aug 2005, 337 posts, RR: 0
Reply 23, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 8635 times:

For all those people complaining about how calling NW had no affect for their KLM flights, I have to disagree. I just recently did a return trip to India from the US and when I called NW they pulled up the KLM flight seat map and gave me what I wanted. I also requested my meal for the KLM flights as well. When I got to the flight everything was as I wanted it. Same was with last year when I traveled with KLM.

However, I do agree with people that KLM does need to get rid of those MD11's and 744/74M. They should get some more A330's and B777 and NEED to finally place an order for some B787's or A350's!


User currently offlineFlySSC From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 7409 posts, RR: 57
Reply 24, posted (6 years 4 months 1 week 5 days 10 hours ago) and read 8324 times:



Quoting Meta (Reply 23):
They should get some more A330's and B777 and NEED to finally place an order for some B787's or A350's!

The order for B787 or A350 will be placed before the end of this year by AF-KL, acording J.C Spinetta.
The joint venure AF-KL-DL-NW should be also created soon, now that they received approval from the U.S authorities.
http://www.rttnews.com/sp/breakingne...asp?date=04/09/2008&item=155&vid=0


25 EFHK : [rant on] Flame me, but I'm tired of all the complaining about flight irregularities. To me the fact is clear that operation irregularities do happen,
26 Tango-Bravo : Ah, the "wonders" of the "we're one big happy airline offering you a 'seamless' travel experience" fallacy. Not that it has much if anything to do wi
27 Flyboy_se : I just recently flew on KLM MD11 from AMS to JFK. The plane was clean, great legroom and had huge windows which i just loved.It was my first ever fli
28 BNinMSY : well the inbond AMS IAH on 20Apr is not showing in the schedules now either. So I suppose they are cancellling for that date, but they have not action
29 Burnsie28 : Its not too big of a deal because they can just as easily put you on NW. Never heard of that. This has been discussed to death that KLM switched thei
30 PHKLM : Please note it's departure delays, most of them around 1 hr. On long-haul ops a lot of these delays are made up in flight. Yes, there are problems wi
31 Schipholjfk : I have been flying KLM/NW for years and it seems in the last 3-4 years communication between KLM and NWA staff has come down to "zero". Half of the t
32 Schipholjfk : It's one thing to have your flight canceled, but it is another thing when they are being canceled FIVE DAYS ahead of scheduled flight. You also look
33 Sailas : You have apoint. However as paying customers and according to EU directives we have the right to get reinbursed by the airline. Plus coupns to eat.
34 Flying Belgian : Indeed. In today's context, I can't understand that strategy. Knowing AF's expertise in the 777 maintenance process and KLM's growing know-how of the
35 Avek00 : Actually, AF and KL do have the ability to engage in cooperative sales and marketing in the USA market between themselves, and many AF/KL Transatlant
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