“ Girona-Costa Brava Airport (IATA: GRO, ICAO: LEGE) is an airport located 12km south from the city of Girona, next to the small village of Vilobí d'Onyar, in the north-east of Catalonia, Spain. It is well connected to the Costa Brava, Barcelona and the Pyrenees. „
Girona airport is very efficient for arrivals flew in with my wife and children on Friday 20th August from Birmingham was very impressed with the speed we got through and into our waiting minibus. On our return on Friday 3rd September we arrived 3 hrs prior to take off once we had checked in our baggage we proceeded through secuirty to the departure lounge. One critisism I would have is that the ground floor is not air conditioned and that was a little uncomfortable in searing heat. However the departure lounge is very comfortable with ample seating plenty of opportunity to purchase goods and also a good variety of fast food outlets and outdoor bars. Information about departures is accurate and seemed to be in good time, all in all a very pleasent experience over our 2 visits considering the area and nature of passengers passing through would have no qualms about any further visit.
I have been to this airport a few times, both arrivals and depatures and I found it to be quite a nice airport, even if it is quite small (although I have been in MUCH smaller!)
Girona is in Catalonia, Northern Spain and I have flown to their from Gatwick and Luton, although you can fly there from many other airports and on many different airlines. I have only been there on Ryanair, but many other airlines do operate in and out of this airport.
I found the airport to be very clean and tidy, with all signs in many different languages, so I had no problem with knowing where to go and where things were when I needed them. The staff all were very helpful and friendly, and the duty free stores are amazing, all clean, very tidy and very well stocked with very helpful staff. There is an amazing amount of suveniors, cigarettes, perfume, make up and other expected duty free items.
There is also an area to get hot food and drinks whilst you wait for your flight, with reasonable prices and a large selection of hot foods, drinks, cold foods and snacks. The staff speak quite a few languages, so you can be assured that you will be able to communicate without a problem.
Check in was easy and simple, with the queues being dealt with quickly and efficently. All screens were simple to understand with directions clear and easy. It was very easy to find my check in desk, and the informations area was also easy to locate and use. The toilets in the airport were very clean too, and well stocked I found.
The security checks were through and carried out well, without being made to feel like you had done something wrong, but also making you feel assured about security. They also didn't take longer than necessary, as let's be fair it takes long enough to get through an airport sometimes.
The second time I flew out from Girona, I had been injured and had to be taken through the aiport in a wheelchair and helped onto the plane. The staff at the airport were very helpful in this instance, helping me through the airport, check in and security, and ensuring I had everything I needed to make sure I was as comfortable and as un stressed as possible, especially being a nervous flyer anyway.
I found that the queues were managed quite well, and I was never in a queue for long, no matter what I was queueing for. The staff were very good at keeping things flowing, and at no time did I feel I was just waiting around for anything.
The airport is located about an hours drive away from the main city of Barcelona. I was staying in Platja D'Aro, which was only about a 15 minute drive away. Should you be staying in Barcelona itself, there is another airport which is in Barcelona, I believe this airport to be called Barcelona Rues.
There is a large area for taxis at the front of the airport, and a large car park too, should you need to park or have someone park whilst they wait for you to arrive at the aiport. As soon as you walk out of the large doors of the airport, there is a smoking area, which is always full of smokers when I am there lol.
My flight information was always up to date, easy to read and I never had any problems when using this airport. I personally can not fault anything at this airport as I think they did their job fantastically when I was there, and even the food was not as expensive as you would expect in an airport. If you have to fly to this part of Spain, it is a great airport and I hope you enjoy your time away.
*This review is also on Ciao under the user name of Hailee*
*About the Airport*
Girona Airport (GRO) is situated in Catalonia in the north of Spain. The airport provides links to Barcelona and the Costa Brava. Girona Airport is situated approx 64miles north east of Barcelona city centre. Girona is the 8th busiest airport within Spain and seen 5.2million travellers passing through in 2009 on 48,128 flights. The airport offers connections to the Pyrenees and Andorra as it is a 40minute drive from the French Border. There are 15 boarding gates on the 1st floor of the airport.
The main airline operating from Girona is the budget airline Ryanair. There are 18 UK airports which offer flights to Girona and these are :
There is a selection of places to eat whilst waiting on your flight and adequate seating. These include :
Bier Garden - serves coffee, juices, soft drinks, sandwiches, salads and pasta. Open 5am - 10pm
Food Gallery - serves cakes, sandwiches, various hot dishes at lunch and dinner. Open 24hrs.
La Terraza - serves drinks and snacks. Open 5am - 10pm.
McDonalds - serves burgers, salads, ice cream, drinks etc. Open 5am - 10pm.
Medas - serves hamburgers, sausages, sandwiches, a la carte dishes. Open 5pm - 10pm.
There are 4 shops within Girona Airport. These are :
Aldeasa Duty Free - sells cigarettes, alcohol, sweets, perfumes and cosmetics etc. There is a smaller version of this store further down the terminal.
There are also 2 small shops selling local produce.
ATMs - operated by Banesto, you can withdraw money on the ground floor and passenger only floor.
Internet - WIFI is available on the ground and first floor of the building.
Tourist services - offering various tourist advice and leaflets.
First aid room - located on the ground floor.
*Getting to/from Airport*
There are various modes of transport to and from the airport.
Shuttle Bus services - you can book a seat on a private shuttle bus to your resort www.shuttledirect.com
Airport taxis - these are located in a designated taxi rank outside the main terminal doors. There is a list of average prices on the website and for travelling to Barcelona which is 92km the cost would be approx Euro115. Lloret de Mar would be Euro40. There are supplements if the taxi has to wait on you, for weekend transfers and excess baggage. Each taxi holds 4max people and 1 suitacase and 1 hand baggage each.
Girona Airport Buses - 1hr 10mins to Barcelona and costs Euro12 for the single trip and Euro21 for a return trip. Tickets are available from the bus desk within the airport and timetables coincide with flight arrivals.
Carparking - there are currently 3400 parking spaces in 2 areas. Charges apply.
On arrival to the airport, you can take a trolley for your luggage or carry it to the check in desks. There are 30 check in desks and several of them are reserved for those who have checked in online and wish to drop off their luggage. Once you are checked in, you go upstairs on the escalator and proceed to Customs. If you are wearing boots they request you remove them and put on paper shoes. All items including anything from your pockets must be put in a tray and through security. Once you are through there is a large open plan area with the shops, restaurants and toilets etc and various seating areas where you can look out at the planes taking off and landing. Once your flight is ready to board, your proceed to the gate, go down stairs and out onto the tarmac and onto your plane.
On arriving to the airport, you walk into the main terminal and through Customs showing your passport. You then find yourself in the baggage reclaim where your bags will be offloaded onto a conveyor belt. There are toilets and vending machines aswell as a help desk. You can then proceed to the main doors and head towards your choose mode of transport.
On Sunday 14th March, along with 23 college friends and 3 tutors, we flew from Prestwick to Girona Airport for our trip to Lloret de Mar. We landed and managed to speed through customs though out bags did take quite a while to be offloaded. Whilst there we used the toilet facilities and they were very clean and tidy. Once we had our bags, we headed the bus depot outside and we were met by our coach. My opinion of the arrival lounge is that it is clean, tidy and very well laid out with plenty of space. We didn't have any issues and it was a speedy process.
Returning to Girona Airport yesterday - we arrived ahead of schedule at around 2.30pm and proceeded to the baggage drop off as our tutor had checked us in online and we already had our boarding passes. The airport was very quite and at the time we were the only ones putting our bags through. The ground floor is very spacious and trolleys are available as are toilets and a police service aswell as customer services. We went up the escalators and through Customs - this was fun as they were very rude and expected everyone to know Spanish or they snapped at you but as soon as we were through it was fine. Our flight wasn't departing until 6pm so we had 3hours to kill.
We browsed the shops mainly the Duty Free which is ridiciously overpriced as you would expect though did sell a wonderful selection of perfumes and travel exclusive sets from the likes of Dior and Givenchy. Cigarettes were very expensive as were sweets though I couldn't resist buying some for my fiance as I had some leftover Euros. We were peckish and decided to go to the little cafe. I had a little box of Pringles, a Coca Cola and a cake and it came to around Euros7. I went back to buy my son a Milky Bar which he insisted on when I phoned him and it cost me Euro1.70 which is a total rip off! We also popped into Mcdonalds for an IceCream Sundae which was Euro2.10 which is expensive compared to the UK.
There are a few outside areas upstairs and large bay windows for watching the planes. There is plenty of toilets, phones and also internet facilities. These were all clean and adequate for the requirements which was pleasing. The whole upstairs area is very well planned out and there is enough to keep travellers busy despite being a relatively small airport. We were at the gates for around 5.15pm and started boarding 5mins later. To board you go downstairs, out onto the tarmac and walk along some black and white lines. I accidently went outside the lines and got yelled at off a member of the staff..not amused but I was just eager to get on the plane!
My overall opinion is that Girona Airport, despite being a smaller airport is very clean and tidy and well thought out. I don't plan to visit the area again so it is unlikely that I will have the pleasure of passing through here again but I would recommend it to anyone who is looking to travel to the Costa Brave area.
Cheeky Ryanair! Although they do fly to the city of Barcelona, they bill their flights to Girona as "Girona (Barcelona)" even though it is more than an hour's drive down the motorway to the larger city. Just as well my flights were cheap as the return coach fare to Barcelona costs Euro12 per adult single and Euro21 return. Girona Airport is situated 103 Kilometres north of Barcelona (approximately 64 miles).
In fact, the airport bills itself as "Girona - Costa Brava" and, indeed, many of the passengers on our flight did not board the coach to Barcelona but appeared to be picking up hire cars to head for resorts on the coast. (Lloret de Mar and Tossa de Mar are nearby). Budget and economy airlines from across Europe use this airport from fifty-five airports. Holiday charters use the airport too.
The airport terminal building was spacious, clean and light and airy. The only negative was the lack of seating outside of eating spaces. The cafe-bar and the self-service restaurant both had plenty of seating but if you don't want to buy something to eat or drink the alternative seating was inadequate and the amount of seating at each gate was pitiful. On a positive practical note, the airport facilities used by passengers are all on one level, so good news for wheelchair users or families with pushchairs.
The self-service restaurant serves sandwiches, snacks and pastries as well as a range of hot meals (these were mostly being eaten by Spanish people while the Brits ate junk!). We just had drinks (alcohol is served) and found the prices very reasonable given the location. There was also a small cafe-bar which was almost empty, no doubt because it was hidden away at the opposite end of the terminal building to the main restaurant. Although the airport was reasonably busy we had no trouble getting a table and the staff were busy clearing tables and replenishing food all the time.
There were two shops selling the usual alcohol, cigarettes, fragrances and other gift items; the one beside the restaurant was much larger and had a better selection of items although they are part of the same group. As we were traveling with cabin baggage we hadn't been able to buy any alcohol in town so we took the opportunity to buy a couple of bottles after security and found the prices were, again, quite favourable. Another shop sells book and papers (some in English) and a selection of Spanish food items and speciality (read sangria) drinks. Variety pack of chorizo anyone?
As we had checked in on-line I can't comment on this aspect of the airport but I did notice that there were virtually no queues at the check in desks when we passed though this section of the airport. However, neither were there any holiday charter flights departing around the same time as us so the airport could potentially be a lot busier in the height of summer. Security clearance was a breeze and the staff worked well to make sure people were prepared to go through. (I can't believe there are still some people who don't know they have to take their coat off!)
On arrival at the airport I noticed a car hire office, an accommodation booking service and a tourist information desk. Tickets for the coach service to Girona are bought from a kiosk beside the coach departure point. If you have done your research and have bought a Barcelona Card in advance you can collect this from the information desk at the airport; if you have one you can get a discount on the coach fare. The timetabling of the coach coincides with flight arrivals which makes perfect sense; you may have another hour of traveling but at least you leave straightaway so don't dawdle on arrival! The coach stops only at the main bus station "Estancia del Norte" in the centre of Barcelona.
Other destinations are served by buses from the airport, including Girona of course and the city centre is only about ten or fifteen minutes from the airport. If you arrive late and don't want to continue your journey straightaway, there are several hotels at or near the airport.
Although we were quite tired by the time we finally got to our destination we really didn't mind the extra journey too much as we had paid so little for our flights and we were fully aware of the distance the airport is from the city of Barcelona. In future we plan to fly to Girona again but with the intention of exploring Girona instead. As we are not shoppers and we are happy to sit with a book we don't need much in the way of entertainment so we found the facilities of Girona Airport perfectly adequate. You won't find familiar chains of fast food restaurants or childrens' play areas at this airport and for that reason I can see some travelers might think it's not that great but self-reliant independent travelers will find it is a clean and well run airport - even if it's not really near Barcelona at all!
Further details of how to get from Girona to Barcelona can be found here