5 reviews of Belfast International (Aldergrove) Airport in English
We flew into Belfast International from Leeds Bradford and as I'd already done my homework in terms of checking the transport links into the city, we were all set and ready and got our Airport Express 300 bus tickets (£10 open return) with no problems.
The way back to LBA was a bit different - the check in area at Belfast International is awful. Really, really awful. Soul destroyingly so. Those ridiculous stools in the Caffe Ritazza place, and the five or six metal chairs by the entrance - it's enough to make you want to cry.
Once you've dropped your bags off and got through to departures it's all sunshine and smiles, with a Burger King, a pub, a wine bar and a huuuuuge and comfy Starbucks, but you'd never know this while you're waiting for Jet2 to open their bag drop desk, counting down the minutes as you sob into your overpriced coffee...
Aldergrove is around 30 mins from Belfast and is now almost finished refurbishment. It has improved dramatically inside and seems more like an airport. Theres a few extra shops but it is still lacking for an international airport.
For domestic flights i prefer to go to the city airport but international travellers are well catered for with the now daily scheduled flight to New York. Good but room for improvement.
Oh and take away the parking charge for pick-up and drop-offs!
I regularly travel through Aldergrove, and each time I detest it! If you are lucky enough to be able to check-in online, you can at least avoid the draughty impersonal check-in hall, in which you will inevitably have to join a queue. As you proceed up to the area pre-security, there is a Burger King and a little cafe, that sells extortionately priced food. There are also a few shops, although the airport is undergoing some redevelopment and there may be more retail in the future.
Security itself is possibly one of the most unpleasant I have encountered. On having your boarding card checked by a surly security agent, you are herded to a bland and constantly packed security area, where there are six metal detectors available for use. The staff are generally rude and unpleasant, and one feels that being prepared for security (i.e. pockets emptied, jackets/belts off, liquids out) serves only to heap suspicion upon oneself and inevitably ends up with a thorough search of your bag and a body search as well. Daring to wait for one's travel companions will quickly attract the attention of the more senior members of staff, who will shout at you to move on.
Once airside, the range of shops is limited and the seating uncomfortable. This is particularly noticable at gates 10-14, where more comfortable seats were replaced with hard metal ones a few years ago.
Perhaps the management at BFS should take a look at other International airports, and begin to value their customers and provide a more pleasant start to people's journeys.
- I should also add that the airport is not actually in Belfast, but is nearer to Antrim. There is a bus service costing £6 one way £9 return (at time of writing) to and from Belfast City Centre.
I travelled through BFS the other day, and it is beginning to look like an International airport now! However, the same old problems at security as ever - now there are only three metal detectors and they haven't installed extended conveyor belts for people to place their belongings before being x-ryaed; instead opting for wooden tables at the end of each belt. One would hope that this is just an interim measure, and that rather than doing a half-assed makeover passengers get the international airport experience they deserve.
I have never had a problem with this airport so far - also handy that i live close. Have also found the staff quite pleasant - especially the security ones who I have had a laugh with on a few occasions.
Not the most exciting of airports but as long as theres a coffee shop and somewhere to buy a book I’m happy :)
Write your review of Belfast International (Aldergrove) Airport
Places nearby Belfast International (Aldergrove) Airport
Your bookmark has been removed
Your bookmark has been saved
Did you know?
You can access your bookmarks from our mobile apps!
From now on, we'll make sure you get updates about this place.