When traveling to The Netherlands, you most likely travel to, via, or from Holland via Amsterdam Airport Schiphol. Schiphol is a name many people are familiar with as one of the larger hubs in Europe.
You might think Amsterdam Airport it’s the only airport in Holland, but that’s not true. Did you know there are four alternative airports in Holland other than Schiphol? All four, especially Rotterdam and Eindhoven, can be convenient for travel within Europe.
What you’ll learn in this post:
- What other airports in Holland are useful
- Where these airports are
- Which airlines use them
- What destinations they serve
- Transportation options from each airport
- Airport hotels near the airports
Table of Contents
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Amsterdam Airport Schiphol
The IATA code for Amsterdam Airport Schiphol Airport is AMS. And this is the official airport website: schiphol.nl. The distance from the airport to the city center is only 10 miles / 15 kilometers.
Schiphol is the main airport in this country. You will most likely use this airport if you come from outside of Europe. Even within Europe, most flights arrive in and depart from Schiphol.
This airport has significant benefits and some drawbacks:
- The airport is close to Amsterdam
- It has a train station within the terminal building
- You have many choices (destinations and departure times)
- The shopping and restaurant options are extensive
- It’s won prizes as one of the top airports in the world
- There are many ground transportation options available
- One Terminal concept, you never have to go outside
- The airport is large (getting from A to B takes longer than at a local airport)
- The airport is busy and can be crowded at times
- It can take longer for baggage to arrive
How to get to the airport?
As you expect from a major airport, many ground transportation options are available to get to or from the airport. I have written a post about how to get from Amsterdam Airport Schiphol to Amsterdam.
Major airlines from Schiphol
Amsterdam Airport Schiphol is home to KLM/Delta, its hub in Amsterdam. Also, most other major carriers worldwide have services to Amsterdam. The three largest carriers at Schiphol are KLM (the national airline), easyJet, and Transavia.
As the home carrier, there are significant benefits to flying KLM or Delta:
- Most flights out of Amsterdam are with KLM or Delta
- They offer the most non-stop destinations
- You can offset your CO2 emissions if you book directly on the KLM website
- If you have lounge access, the KLM crown lounge is terrific and has just renovated
Visit KLM here for flight options and prices.
easyJet is the 2nd largest operator out of Schiphol. All flights depart from the low-cost H gates with barely any facilities. It’s well worth paying extra for Speedy Boarding when you book your ticket. You’ll be on board first (avoiding a lengthy time standing and waiting to board your flight), and you won’t have any issues with overhead luggage bin space.
Service onboard is more professional than other low-cost airlines. I always enjoy flying easyJet. Another benefit is that they fly to some London airports not served by KLM. I love flying in and out of Gatwick for London because it’s so easy to get to the city from there, compared to Heathrow.
easyJet is considered a low-budget airline (but one of the nicer ones). Still, you’ll have to pay for extras, including food, beverages, and baggage.
Transavia offers many “low-cost” flights from Amsterdam to Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East destinations. They’re not always that cheap, but they can be an excellent choice due to the number of destinations they serve which are not often served by other airlines.
Spend the night at an Airport hotel?
Sometimes when you fly late or early or have a long layover, you want to spend the night at the airport. Read my separate post: “Spend the night at a Schiphol transit hotel,” to learn more about the different hotel options available at Schiphol, from transit hotels in the terminal building to surrounding airport hotels in the area with a shuttle.
Eindhoven Airport, The Second Most Important of the International Airports in The Netherlands
The IATA code for Eindhoven Airport is: EIN. And the airport website is eindhovenairport.nl. The distance from the airport to Eindhoven city center is 5 miles / 7 kilometers, and Amsterdam is 80 miles / 130 kilometers away.
Eindhoven Airport grew from a small regional and military airport to Holland’s most significant low-cost hub. It’s now the second airport in the Netherlands in terms of passenger numbers.
Eindhoven Airport is ideally situated to visit cities like Den Bosch, Eindhoven, and Maastricht. Or the beloved Efteling Theme Park Resort or the Designers Outlets in Roermond. Amsterdam is about 90 minutes away.
How to get to the airport?
Bus 400 and 401 connect the airport with the city center. These buses have low-entry access and enough space for luggage. You can take a direct train to Amsterdam from the Eindhoven central train station, which takes 90 minutes.
Major Airlines at Eindhoven Airport:
The major airlines in Eindhoven are Transavia, Ryanair, and Wizzair. You can choose to fly to many destinations in Europe and just outside. I (Gerjo) am on a Transavia flight from Tel Aviv to Eindhoven, writing this post.
Transavia is a great airline to fly. They are a daughter company of KLM, the national carrier of Holland. Since Transavia is considered a low-cost carrier, expect to pay for extras like your seat reservation, a checked bag, and your food and drinks during the flight.
Transavia flies with modern 737 aircraft in an all-economy configuration. If you want more legroom, book a seat on row one or an emergency exit row.
The cabin crew on Transavia is outstanding. You can tell their training emphasizes customer service. If you’re lucky enough to catch my friend Sylke on your Transavia flight, please say hi. She is the friendliest flight attendant I know!
Ryanair also flies an all-Boeing 737 fleet with Economy seats only. Seats are infamously tight compared to any other airline. If you’re familiar with Spirit Airlines in the US, you know what we mean.
It’s well worth the extra money to spend on seats with extra legroom, like row one and the exit row seats.
Also, check carefully what airport you’re flying into with Ryanair since Ryanair takes city names quite liberal. Sometimes it’s the main airport in a city. Still, more often than not, it’s an alternative airport, usually hours away from the city you intend to travel to.
Also, confirm Ryanair’s weight and size requirements, even by 1 inch or 1 lb. They will gladly charge you if you don’t. Charisma won’t get you anywhere with Ryanair. But they’ll love your credit card.
Why do we usually not fly Ryanair?
Ryanair can offer amazingly low fares. Still, changes are near zero; you’ll soon find me flying Ryanair, except if there are no other options.
Why? These low prices very quickly become not so little when all the extra fees they charge and transportation costs from these “alternate” airports are added to your base fare. Before you know it, you can fly a legacy carrier, easyJet, or Transavia (both nicer) for almost the same price.
Also, note they have exotic charges for using the overhead bin luggage space and exorbitant fees to check in at the airport (make sure to check in online!).
The main drawback for me is that they work with cabin crew who don’t have the best pronunciation skills in English, which makes me uncomfortable being on a plane, especially in an emergency. Customer service training with Ryanair is also not high on their list of priorities, so it’s just not a pleasant experience for me. But that is personal. Meeting the right conditions, they will jet you across Europe for €10 if you’re lucky.
Wizz Air is a Hungarian-based low-cost airline with a base in Eindhoven. It’s an attractive airline because they fly to many destinations in Eastern Europe that not many other airlines fly to. Like North Macedonia, Georgia, and the Baltic States. But also to more well-known destinations in Poland, Hungary (like Budapest), and Vienna in Austria.
This is a low-cost carrier. Thus, be prepared (again) to pay for extras like a seat reservation, luggage, and food and drinks on board.
Hotels Eindhoven Airport:
There are a few hotels near Eindhoven airport, two I can recommend:
- Tulip Inn Eindhoven Airport: this hotel is above the terminal building. It’s hard to beat its location. The rooms are comfortable and colorful. Click here for more information and to check availability for the Tulip Inn Eindhoven Airport hotel.
- Holiday Inn Eindhoven Airport: this is my personal favorite. The hotel is a 10-minute walk from the terminal, which is a drawback compared to the Tulip Inn right at the terminal, but the hotel is new and modern. Rooms are just that comfortable; you don’t want to leave. Check the availability of the Holiday Inn Eindhoven Airport Hotel. If you don’t want to walk, you can catch a bus. The first stop is Flight Forum, right opposite the hotel.
Sometimes the Novotel Eindhoven Hotel gets recommended by other websites. But I don’t recommend this hotel. Yes, it’s a comfortable 4-star hotel. But it’s much further from the airport than the Holiday Inn and has no airport shuttle. It will be a 20-25 minute walk from the terminal building. Not fun with luggage.
Rotterdam / The Hague Airport (province of South Holland)
The IATA code for Rotterdam, The Hague Airport, is RTM. And the airport’s website is rotterdamthehagueairport.nl. The distance from the airport to Rotterdam is 4 miles / 6 kilometers. And the distance from the airport to Delft is just 7 miles / 10 kilometers. To The Hague, it’s only 12 miles / 18 kilometers. And it’s 45 miles / 75 kilometers to get to Amsterdam from Rotterdam Airport.
Many business travelers use Rotterdam The Hague Airport. It’s a small terminal building with over 40 destinations, including London City Airport. It’s easy to see why business travelers like this airport.
It’s also convenient for visitors to Rotterdam, The Hague, or Delft. You’re in and out of the terminal and at your final destination within minutes.
I wrote separate posts for things to do in these great cities. Rotterdam: Things to Do in Rotterdam Delft: One Day in Delft and Be Enchanted by this Beautiful Small City.
How to get to Rotterdam Airport:
From Rotterdam Central Station you can take a bus to the airport. Travel time is about 20 minutes. From The Hague Central Station, you can take a Metro and then a short bus ride to the airport—total travel time: 40 minutes. From Delft train station you can take a direct bus to Rotterdam airport. Travel time is about 30 minutes.
Airlines at Rotterdam Airport:
The two major airlines are British Airways to London City Airport and Transavia, which fly to many European destinations, mainly sunny destinations in Southern Europe.
Hotels Rotterdam Airport:
Three hotels are either directly adjusted to the terminal building or within walking distance. We can recommend all three.
- The Wings Hotel Rotterdam The Hague airport is part of the terminal building. The hotel features modern luxury-looking rooms. They get the highest rating on Booking.com of all three airport hotels. Click here for more information and to check availability for the Wings Hotel Rotterdam, The Hague airport.
- Ibis budget Rotterdam The Hague Airport. Another good hotel option, more budget but almost as close to the terminal building, is the Ibis budget. Rooms are small but modern, colorful, clean, and adequate. Click here for more information and to check availability for the Ibis Budget Rotterdam The Hague Airport hotel.
- The Best Western Plus Rotterdam Airport Hotel is located just 700 meters (765 yards) from the terminal building, still within walking distance. And another good choice if you want to stay at the airport. Click here for more information and to check availability for the Best Western Plus Rotterdam Airport hotel.
Maastricht Airport (province of Limburg)
The IATA code for Maastricht Airport is MST. The airport’s website is maa.nl. Distance from the airport to Maastricht is 10 miles / 15 kilometers. To Aachen (Germany): 25 miles / 40 kilometers. And from the airport to Liège (Belgium), also 25 miles / 40 kilometers. The distance from the airport to Amsterdam is 125 miles / 200 kilometers
Maastricht Aachen Airport is a tiny airport for commercial flights in the South of the Netherlands. It’s used mainly for cargo flights due to its location on the border of three countries. Surprisingly it’s the 2nd largest airport in Holland for cargo flights.
It also has a few commercial flights, operated mainly by Ryanair and Corendon. This airport is convenient if you visit Maastricht in Holland, Aachen in Germany, or Liège in Belgium. The primary benefit of this airport is that there is never a line anywhere. But your travel options are limited.
How to get to Maastricht Airport:
From Maastricht station, you can take a bus to the airport. Travel time is around 20 minutes.
From Aachen (Germany), you can take a train to Meerssen (in the Netherlands), then switch to a bus to the airport: The total travel time is about 1 hour and 15 minutes.
You can take a train from Liège (Belgium) to Maastricht Station in the Netherlands first and then take the bus. The total travel time is also 1 hour and 15 minutes.
From Amsterdam, you take the train to Maastricht Station. Then you take the bus to the airport—total travel time: 3 hours. I advise you to travel 1st class on this journey. The journey will be quieter and more comfortable than in 2nd class.
Hotels near Maastricht Airport:
Maastricht Airport is small, and there aren’t any airport hotels nearby. The best thing to do is look for accommodation at your final destination, like Maastricht, Valkenburg, Aachen, or Liège.
Groningen Airport Eelde
The IATA code for Groningen Airport is: GRQ. The airport’s website is https://www.groningenairport.nl/. The distance from the airport to Groningen is 6 miles/9 kilometers. The distance from the airport to Amsterdam is 125 miles / 200 kilometers.
Groningen Airport is the smallest airport in the Netherlands and is in the North. It offers a few scheduled services across Europe and a few holiday destinations in Turkey. Changes are slim if you’ll use this airport. But when you visit this area, you might be able to combine it with a lovely sun destination in the south of Europe with Transavia or London.
How to get to Groningen Airport Eelde:
From Groningen, take a bus directly to the airport. Travel time is about 30 minutes. From Amsterdam, take an intercity train to Groningen first and then connect to the bus. It’s a 3-hour trip in total. I advise you to travel 1st class on this journey. The journey will be quieter and more comfortable than in 2nd class.
Hotels near Groningen Airport Eelde:
Groningen Airport, just like Maastricht Airport, is that small there aren’t any airport hotels near the airport. The best thing to do is look for accommodation at your final destination, like Groningen.