October 25, 2005
This morning I got to Schipol earlier than I had planned…well…actually all of the delays I expected from it being my first experience with public transport around Amsterdam didn’t occur, so I got there on time: 2 hours before my flight. I knew I had wanted to sign up for Privium a few weeks back, so I stopped by the office to fill out the application. Thirty minutes, one form, 110 Euros, and an iris scan later and I walked out of their Schipol office ready to go. Privium allows you to skip all lines at the airport: security screening on the way in, customs on the way out, closer parking, and business class check in. So now it was time to try it out for the first time.
There were a dozen or so people waiting to go through security, but I skipped them and went to the Privium line: no wait. Slide my card in, wait a few seconds, walk over to the iris scanner, look at the mirror, and the gate magically opens. The attendant on the other side then guided me to a x-ray machine and pulled me to the front of the line: no wait. I just went through what should have taken 10 minutes or more in two. Next week when I come midday I am looking forward to seeing the monstrous line I will be able to skip.
Now skipping a long line at the beginning of your trip is nice, but the last thing you want to do at the end of a long day is sit and wait in another long queue waiting for the customs officials to view your passport and ask those questions. You just want to get out of the airport as quickly as possible. Tonight after coming in from London, the line for customs was huge. But I sailed right past it.
Just like I mentioned a few weeks back, if you travel through Schipol at least 3 or 4 times a year this is totally worth it. I am expecting to be going through these lines a couple dozen times so it just gets better and better each time.