Bournemouth Airport

Bournemouth Airport has been adding chapters to the story of aviation history on the South coast of England since 1941. Originally an RAF base during wartime, its first use was as a home to Spitfires, Wellingtons and Typhoons, before it was transferred to the Ministry for Civil Aviation at the end of the war. As a commercial operator, it was one of the first intercontinental airports in the UK, flying to destinations such as New York, Sydney and Cairo, while on the ground it had an important role in aircraft production between the 1950’s and the 1970’s.

Since then the airport has changed ownership several times, moving from Bournemouth and Dorset Council, to the National Express Group, before passing into the hands of its current owners- The Manchester Airports Group. Over the years new airlines have set up bases at the airport, and added to the routes they offer from Bournemouth, particularly since the recent airport expansion. Along with vastly increasing the retail and catering space in the new terminal building, this expansion work has meant that Bournemouth Airport now offers national and international flights to around 40 destinations, along with running occasional fly-cruise holiday packages, flying schools, and Royal Mail/Cargo flights.

Among the 40 destinations on offer to holidaymakers flying from Bournemouth are new routes to Antalya and Bodrum in Turkey, Dubrovnik in Croatia, Malta, Porto in Portugal, Sharm el Sheikh in Egypt, and inland flights to Manchester Airport. These destinations sit alongside established routes offered at the airport, which include Verona, Turin, Pisa, and Naples in Italy, Enontekio in Finland, Geneva in Switzerland, along with Alicante, Girona and Murcia in Spain.  Flights to these and other destinations are run from the airport by Thomson, Thomas Cook, Ryanair, Flybe, Easyjet, First Choice and Palmair, while there are also partnerships with tour operators such as Crystal Holidays, A ski specialist, and Santa Vacations, who run seasonal trips to Lapland.

Along with its choice of destinations, the airports other selling point is its location, which is well connected to road and rail networks, and easily accessible via local public transport services. The airport is located off the A338 and travel information is available from the airport which covers directions from the South West, the Sussex and Kent coastline, the Midlands/North England, and the London area. Locally there is an airport shuttle bus available, operating from Bournemouth Town Centre 362 days of the year, which also links up with Bournemouth’s train station. Other transport options include United Taxi’s services from Bournemouth, Poole, Christchurch and Southampton, and Dorset’s eco-aware car sharing service.

Those travelling to the airport by car will find long and short stay car parks on-site, both of which are a short walk to the terminal building. These official car parking facilities can be paid for on departure, or pre-booked at a cheaper price.  There are also a range of facilities available inside the airport both before and after security which include car rental, travel shop and foreign exchange services, Wifi internet access, and shopping/catering services. These include WH Smith, The World Duty Free store, Espresso Coffee House and Joes Kitchen and Coffee House for all the hungry travellers.

It’s estimated that by the years 2014/15, around 3 million passengers will be making use of Bournemouth airport and its new terminal/facilities. The question is, after reading all about the airport, will you be one of those 3 million?

Bournemouth Airport Practical Information

Bournemouth Airport Parking – www.best-airport-parking-deals.co.uk/car-parks/bournemouth-airport-parking.html