“Een reis vol inspiratie”
(Journeys of inspiration)
Skytrax rating: 3 stars
Globally (based in the Netherlands)
- More than 130 destinations
- 66 exclusive routes
- Ex Johannesburg and Cape Town
KLM (Royal Dutch Airlines) is the national flag carrier of the Netherlands, although it is part of the Air France-KLM merger. Air France and KLM continue to operate under their own brand names. KLM provides flights on many routes which are either not serviced by any other airline or on which there is very little other service. 66 of those routes are covered exclusively by KLM, while on another 43 routes there is only one other airline in operation. Besides a 26% stake in Kenya Airways, KLM also has six other subsidiaries, including:
- KLM Cityhopper – regional airline in Europe
- KLM cargo
KLM offers up to four cabin classes on its flights, depending on the nature of the flight. They are:
- World Business Class
- Europe Business Class
- Economy Comfort (intercontinental flights)
- Economy Class
The Economy Class seating configurations (such as eight, nine or ten abreast) depend on the type of plane. Catering on KLM flights is lavish, and even the Economy Class passengers are provided with sandwiches made on the same day as the flight and free drinks. World Business Class comes with a range of creature comforts and technological amenities.
KLM operates a fleet of a little more than 100 planes, and has plans to replace some of them, such as the Boeing 747-400s, in the next few years with Boeing 787-9s and Airbus A350-900s. The upgrade of the fleet may be due more to the advanced age of the existing planes than to any intended expansion of the route network.
KLM has been in operation since the early 1920s and has been involved in a number of accidents, both with fatalities and without. However, the most recent KLM accident involving fatalities was in 1977 (the Tenerife disaster), and there have only been two fatal accidents involving KLM in the last 43 years, and only three other incidents in the same period, which include a hi-jacking over Iraq (1973) and a bird-strike (2004).