“ Milas Bodrum Airport Turkey. The airport is situated 36kms northeast of the town of Bodrum, and 16kms south of Milas. A new international terminal was completed in 2000 and the old terminal is solely used for domestic flights. The terminals host about 2.5 million travellers per year. „
My husband (!) and I recently went on honeymoon to the Bodrum Peninsula and so flew into Bodrum airport. I had never been to Turkey before and so wasn't quite sure what to expect from the airport at all.
On arriving in the airport on the plane, the airport looked quite small but well kept with buses ready to take us to the airport, only a very short journey. The heat hit us like a brick wall on leaving the plane and we got onto the bus and were taken to the airport, clutching our passports with our ten pound notes in there ready to buy our visas. I had heard that it's a nightmare queuing for the visas but there were only the passengers from our plane and it took no time at all. There were 4 people in kiosks at passport control and we simply handed over our passports with a tenner each tucked inside and our passports had the visa sticker stuck in and stamped to say we'd entered the country. The visa is a multiple entry visa which is valid for 90 days from point of first entry. The cost for a UK resident is £10 no matter what age so for those families with a few children it got quite expensive!
We then moved through to a security check where we put our hand luggage through the usual monitors and walked through the metal detectors. The staff on hand were friendly and efficient. Then, we came to get our baggage. The airport was very quiet and only our flight to be dealt with so our bags came speedily and without any trouble. I took the opportunity to visit the loo while my husband waited for the bags and the toilets were ok, rather smelly but not unclean. The toilet flush was operated by foot which was more hygienic that a hand operated flush and the taps and paper towel dispensers were operated by a movement sensor. After we collected our bags we went straight out to find our transfer bus which was easy to do - straight out of the door and there are pick up places for taxis, buses and transfer buses along with the holiday reps from various companies.
A week later, we returned to the airport for our flight home and found the airport much busier. There is an initial security check to get through before you can check in your bags and your luggage and hand luggage must go through the x-ray check and we had to walk through the metal detectors once we had entered the airport. Once through this first security check we went to check in our bags and joined the queue. Check in seemed to take ages per family/person but we finally got there. The girl behind the desk was friendly and spoke good English (neither of us have a word of Turkish). We checked our bags in, got our boarding cards and went to go through the second security check. As in the UK, it is now not allowed to take any liquids over the amount of 100ml through this security check and there are bins to allow you to dispose of any liquids, gels or creams before going through passport control. Any liquids, gels or creams must be 100ml or less and be presented separately in clear plastic bags, just as it is here. We went through passport control and had our passports stamped to say we were leaving the country and then went through to duty free. The duty free area is very small but contains a good selection of alcohol, tobacco, perfumes, watches and other jewellery. I didn't spend a great deal of time here as we were starving and went to seek out food.
We found the restaurant which sold fast food type meals such as burgers and chips, chicken shish kebabs, pizza slices, and soft drinks. Items could be bought separately or as meal deals. We had been warned that it was expensive to eat in the airport but we were really hungry and had ages to wait until we ate on the plane so threw caution to the wind. I had a pizza slice with a mixed topping, chips and a fanta and my husband had the chicken shish kebab, chips, salad and a sprite. The portions were generous and it cost us 48 Turkish Lira which is about....£24!!!!!! Bloomin' expensive but it tasted good and were were very hungry!
We wandered (in a state of shock) into a gift shop next to the restaurant and there were loads of last minute souvenirs to be bought as well as sweets and toys. We bought some Turkish Delight under duress from the sales assistant. There was a special deal of 4 boxes for the price of 3 and I only wanted two boxes but she kept reinforcing the deal so much so that I felt I wouldn't possibly be allowed to by anything fewer than 4 boxes! However, I got the two and the girl was pleasant as we said goodbye (I was quite scared of her hard sell technique!)
We went to sit in the waiting area on comfortable seats and we noticed there were only 3 gates to board from. We had a while to wait and the airport was lovely and cool due to the air conditioning which was great as it was nigh on 40 degrees celcius outside. Our flight was called, we went to queue up at gate 2 and we went speedily through the queue onto a very hot very crammed bus to be taken to our plane. That was the only unpleasant part of our airport experience at Bodrum (apart from paying a grossly inflated price for our food!). There were no hitches, not too long a wait in any queue and the staff were friendly and helpful at all times.
My teenage son was flying to Bodrum to meet up with his brother and because I was flying to Bodrum myself later in the week, I took more than the usual interest in the airport and more especially the website.
WHERE IS IT?
The Airport is actually called milas- Bodrum airport but is commonly referred to as Bodrum airport. It is situated on a peninsula on the south west coast of Turkey and juts out into the Aegean sea. The airport itself is 36km from Bodrum itself and 16km south from the town of Milas, so that's why it's called milas Bodrum because it's between the two towns.
If I go onto the website, I am told that the airport has a new international terminal which was finished in 2000, whilst the old terminal is now used for domestic flights. Having seen this "spacious" new terminal, I am impressed because i saw it pre 2000 and it really has improved
The airport boasts a number of facilities including: cafe, shops, car rental, parking, an information desk which is near the front entrance currency exchange and a cash machine. It also boasts some reasonably okish toilets (but still not fantastic), and although they are a bit whiffy there seem to be plenty of people cleaning them
MY EXPERIENCE OF THE AIRPORT
I have been to this airport a number of times now and it seems to be getting more and more ordered and less confusing.
When you leave the plane there is the usual sheperding onto the bus and then into the airport terminal. There is then a queue for visas which cost 10GBP or 15 Euros, but thankfully the queue went down very quickly and the air conditioning meant that no one was feeling all hot and irritable. Once the visas are collected there is a smaller queue to get these stamped and whilst the whole exercise took less than half an hour I did wonder why we can't buy visas pre visit and then just get them stamped on entry. Baggage collection was slow but relatively painless as was finding transport from the airport- lots of taxis, coaches etc.
Leaving the airport was the usual thing- lots of people with cases but before we got into the airport we had to queue up to have the actual cases scanned. I have seen this done in several airports now and because of security tend to like the idea. Thankfully the area in which passengers queue is shaded, and the process was quick- scan and then through the security gate minus coins and belts etc.
There is an information desk close to the door and a small shop selling sweets and other bits and pieces along with a small cafe. The whole place is light and airy and people are free to wander outside once the cases have been checked in which is quite pleasant because there is a cafe outside so fresh (and very hot) air is there for the taking.
Once into the departure lounge there are the usual duty free shops (two of them) and an uostairs and downstairs cafe selling drinks and food at ridiculous prices. We knew this was going to be the case so had taken our own drinks to the airport and surprisingly, after all of the security checks they let us through departures with full bottles of water.
I used the website to check on the arrival time of both my sons into Bodrum. This is actually very professional and completely at odds with the airport itself. Simply log on to the home page, www.bodrum-airport.com and click the arrivals 9if you have a pop up blocker this must be disabled). There is a list of all the flights arriving into the airport along with information about the flights. So, i knew that some flights were delayed but i also knew when a landing was imminent because the number of the luggage reclaim area came onto the screen. I was also first to knnow when the plane had landed so i could inform his brother to collect him.
A very professional arrivals/departures facility!
It's an airport- not the best but certainly not the worst i have ever been to. There are plenty of seating areas in the airport although once through into departures the sheer volume of travellers makes getting a seat tricky.
The cafe sells food and drinks at really exorbitant prices so take your own drinks, but i suppose this is supply and demand and with a fairly captive audience, i suppose I would do the same.
There are lots of staff sweeping and generally keeping the place clean, so there are no bits of litter anywhere and in the smoking areas outside it looked as though they were constantly emptying ash trays and even serving drinks to people just randomly sittiing on the chairs.
We weren't delayed (thankfully) so my experience is probably an ok one, but had I ever been delayed here then the very hard chairs would have probably been incredibly uncomfortable.
An ok airport which gets you in and out the country efficiently, although the visa thing still troubles me!
Thanks for reading.