On which runways do aircraft land at Schiphol?

Schiphol has a set of runways with five take-off and landing runways: 

  • the Kaag runway (06-24)
  • the Zwanenburg runway (18C-36C) 
  • the Buitenveldert runway (09-27)
  • the Aalsmeer runway (18L-36R) 
  • the Polder runway (18R-36L) 

There is also the Schiphol-Oost runway (04-22). Relatively less use is made of this short runway. In principle, the runways can be used by day for both take-off and landing. With the exception of the Aalsmeer and Polder runways, all runways can be used in both directions. The Aalsmeer runway may only be used for landing of aircraft approaching from the south and take-offs in a southerly direction. The Polder runway may only be used for landing of aircraft approaching from the north and take-offs in a northerly direction. The possibilities for use are limited for each runway and each direction. Safety takes priority in the handling of air traffic. This also applies for the use of the take-off and landing runways. Whether a runway can be offered for take-offs or landings depends on the wind, visibility, the condition of the runway and the rigidity. The availability and accuracy of the Instrument Landing System (ILS), which can be used for landing even in poor visibility conditions, and the lighting equipment may also be determining factors for the availability of a runway. Which of the available runways are deployed is determined on the basis of the GPBS. This determines which runways and runway combinations merit first preference from the point of view of safety and which cause the least noise pollution.