Daniel Oduber Quirós Airport in Liberia, Guanacaste has come a long way.
Less than two decades after it served fewer than 100,000 passengers a year, the Costa Rican airport now welcomes more than 1 million people annually. And Tuesday, it marked a new milestone when KLM’s flight 717 landed there at 8 p.m.
The arrival marked the inaugural flight to Liberia International Airport for KLM.
The plane, a Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner, received a traditional water-cannon salute before stopping at its gate.
Acaba de aterrizar por primera vez en el Daniel Oduber Quirós la aerolínea @KLM, de esta forma se conectará Ámsterdam con Liberia. ¡Desde ya saludamos a todos los nuevos turistas que nos visitarán! 🇨🇷 pic.twitter.com/l64YmoUA9F
— Carlos Alvarado Quesada (@CarlosAlvQ) October 30, 2019
KLM, the world’s oldest operating airline and the flag-carrier airline of the Netherlands, announced the new route earlier this year. During the tourism high season, Costa Rica now receives KLM flights from Amsterdam-Schiphol on Tuesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays.
The flight first lands at Juan Santamaría International Airport near San José before continuing to Guanacaste-Liberia. It then returns directly to Amsterdam — a route of more than 5,500 miles with a scheduled travel time of nearly 10 hours.
Passengers can fly to or from either Costa Rican airport on the same ticket, according to KLM.
“Guanacaste is the second-largest region of Costa Rica,” Pieter Elbers, KLM’s CEO, said at the time. “The region is known for its beautiful nature, which makes it a unique holiday destination in combination with San José. All this makes Guanacaste Liberia a valuable addition to our KLM network.”