Prospective travelers to Amsterdam are about to catch a break, thanks to a new pre-flight testing program put together by Delta and KLM.
Starting on December 15, Delta Air Lines and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines will be implementing a COVID-19 testing program on their flights from Atlanta, GA, to Amsterdam. The program will allow passengers to get tested multiple times before and after the flight, and a series of negative tests would result in an exemption from the Netherlands’ 14-day quarantine requirement.
Those participating in the program will take a COVID-19 PCR test five days before their arrival in Amsterdam, followed by a rapid antigen test before boarding in Atlanta, and then a second PCR test upon arrival in Amsterdam.
Pieter Elbers, president and CEO of KLM, said in a statement, “This is a very important and great step forward. Until an approved working vaccine is available worldwide, this testing program represents the first step towards the international travel industry’s recovery […] All stakeholders need to work together on a systematic approach to rapid testing and build these tests into the passenger experience, so quarantine measures can be lifted as quickly as possible. This is fundamental to restore passengers’ and governments’ confidence in air travel.”
On December 19, Delta will also launch a pre-flight testing program to Rome, which would similarly allow passengers to skip Italy’s mandatory quarantine.