Cork Airport is located just four miles from the centre of Cork, and makes the ideal gateway for tourists visiting the southwest of Ireland. It’s the third busiest airport in Ireland and handles about 2.4 million passengers a year. The airport is easy to reach by bus or car and is just off the N27; a taxi between the airport and the centre of Cork will cost between 10 and 15 Euros. Cork airport has over 4,000 short term and long term car parking spaces, and offers special discounted rates for passengers who park regularly.
There is no train service to the airport, although buses will take you to Cork’s bus station, a ten minute walk from the main railway station. Several of the larger Cork Airport rental car companies operate in the arrivals concourse, including Hertz, Budget and Enterprise. There is a clearly marked meeting area inside the terminal for anyone meeting arriving passengers.
Cork Airport is served by about a dozen different airlines, although by far the two biggest carriers are Aer Lingus and the discount airline Ryanair. There are nonstop scheduled flights from Cork to about 40 destinations throughout the UK and Europe, including London, Milan, Paris and Brussels, as well as holiday destinations such as Lanzarote, Tenerife and Faro. Charter flights operate at different times of the year to Majorca, Dubrovnik, Gran Canaria and other destinations.
The airport’s collection of familiar name shops is known as the Loop, and is located airside after security. The shops offer the usual selection of souvenirs, toiletries, jewellery and fashion, as well as some local delicacies including smoked salmon and cheese. Not only do the stores promise that their prices are no higher than the High Street stores, they also offer a convenient option for passengers travelling within the European Union. Shop and Collect allows you to shop before you fly, then pick up your purchases when you get back, all at no charge.
There are several places to eat and drink in Cork Airport, both before and after security, including a couple of Irish style pubs, a coffee bar and a fast food sandwich restaurant. However, one of the best places to relax while waiting is the Jack Lynch departure lounge, which unlike the airline lounges is open to anyone, regardless of their type of ticket. The lounge offers a three hour stay for 25 Euros, which includes free drinks and snacks, Internet access and newspapers and magazines. If you fly frequently, annual membership is available for two people at a cost of 242 Euros.
Cork Airport offers various other services, including a bank, bureau de change and two ATMs, as well as an information desk, free Wi Fi and even a hair stylist.