Edinburgh Airport

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Edinburgh Airport
Port-adhair Dhùn Èideann
Edinburgh Airport Terminal.JPG
Airport type Public
Owner Global Infrastructure Partners
Operator Edinburgh Airport Ltd.
Serves Edinburgh, Lothian, Fife, the Scottish Borders and Central Scotland
Location Ingliston
Elevation AMSL 136 ft / 41 m
Coordinates 55°57′00″N 003°22′21″W / 55.95000°N 3.37250°W / 55.95000; -3.37250Coordinates: 55°57′00″N 003°22′21″W / 55.95000°N 3.37250°W / 55.95000; -3.37250
Website edinburghairport.com
EGPH is located in Edinburgh
Location in Edinburgh
Direction Length Surface
m ft
06/24 2,556 8,386 Asphalt
12/30 1,797 5,896 Asphalt
Statistics (2014)
Passengers 10,200,000
Passenger change 13-14 Increase4%
Aircraft Movements 111,736
Movements change 12-13 Increase1.3%
Sources: UK AIP at NATS[1]
Statistics from the UK Civil Aviation Authority[2]

Edinburgh Airport (Scottish Gaelic: Port-adhair Dhùn Èideann) (IATA: EDIICAO: EGPH) is located at Ingliston in the City of Edinburgh, Scotland, and was the busiest airport in Scotland in 2013, handling just under 9.8 million passengers in that year. It was also the fifth busiest airport in the UK by total passengers.[2] It is located 5 nautical miles (9.3 km; 5.8 mi)[1] west of the city centre and is situated just off the M8 motorway.

The airport is owned and operated by Global Infrastructure Partners, which also owns and operates Gatwick Airport and London City Airport.[3]


Early years[edit]

Turnhouse Aerodrome was the most northerly British air defence base in World War I used by the Royal Flying Corps. The small base opened in 1915 and it was used to house the 603 (City of Edinburgh) Squadron from 1925, which consisted of DH 9As, Westland Wapitis, Hawker Harts, and Hawker Hind light bombers. All the aircraft used a grass air strip.

In 1918 the Royal Air Force was formed and the airfield was named RAF Turnhouse and ownership transferred to the Ministry of Defence.

When the Second World War broke out, RAF Fighter Command took control over the airfield and a runway of 3,900 ft (1,189 m) was paved to handle the Supermarine Spitfire. During the Battle of Britain, Nos 3, 65, and 141 Squadrons were present at the airbase.

Post World War II[edit]

When the war ended the airfield still remained under military control, but by the late 1940s the first commercial services were launched. In 1947, British European Airways started a service between Edinburgh and London using Vickers Vikings followed by the Viscount and Vanguard series.

In 1952 the runway was extended to 6000 ft to handle the Vampire FB5s operated by the based 603 Squadron; and an aircraft carrier Catcher Net (never used) was installed to protect traffic on the adjacent A8 road. In 1956 a new passenger terminal was built to offer improved commercial service and five years later it was extended. After the disbandment of 603 Squadron in March 1957, the Ministry of Defence transferred ownership to the Ministry of Aviation in 1960 to offer improved commercial service to the airport. Flying was temporarily diverted to East Fortune, which had its runway extended to accommodate the airliners of the period.

Change of ownership[edit]

Aerial view of Edinburgh Airport

In 1971 the British Airports Authority took over the airport and immediately started to expand it by constructing a new runway and terminal building. RAF Turnhouse was finally closed in 1997.[4]

The present terminal building, designed by Sir Robert Matthew, was constructed in 1977 and has been upgraded in recent years, with new car parking facilities and an extended arrivals hall.

Although the original main runway 13/31 (which is now 12/30) served the airport well, its alignment had the disadvantage of suffering from severe crosswinds and the other two minor runways were very short and could not be readily extended, so movements were transferred to a new runway (07/25 which has since become 06/24) in an addition completely outside the original airfield boundary. This runway, completed in 1977 is 2,556 m (8,386 ft) in length, and was able to take all modern airliners including Concorde. A new terminal was built alongside the runway to cater for the additional traffic. The old terminal and hangars were converted into a cargo centre.

The only international services from Edinburgh during the 1980s were to Amsterdam and Dublin, but in the following years links were opened to destinations in France and Germany. By the end of the decade BAA had been privatised and funds were used to extend the current terminal building and create parking aprons.

In 2005, a new 57 m (187 ft) tall air traffic control tower was completed at a cost of £10m (€16m). An extension to the terminal opened in September 2006 called the "South East Pier". This extension initially added six gates on a new pier to the South-East of the original building. A further four gates were added to the South East Pier at the end of 2008.

On 19 October 2011, BAA Limited announced its intention to sell the airport, following a decision by the UK's Competition Commission requiring BAA to sell either Glasgow International or Edinburgh Airport.[5] BAA announced on 23 April 2012 that it had sold Edinburgh Airport to Global Infrastructure Partners for a price of £807.2 million.[6]

Passenger traffic at Edinburgh Airport reached a record level in 2013 with nearly 9.8 million passengers and over 111,000 aircraft movements.[2] Also in 2013, a further extension to the passenger terminal was announced, taking the terminal building up to the Edinburgh Airport tram stop. The opening of the Edinburgh Trams in May 2014 created the first rail connection to Edinburgh Airport.

Airlines and destinations[edit]


Airlines Destinations
Aer Lingus Regional
operated by Stobart Air
Cork, Dublin
Air Canada Rouge Summer seasonal: Toronto-Pearson
Air France
operated by Hop!
Paris-Charles de Gaulle
Air Lituanica Winter seasonal: Vilnius
American Airlines Summer seasonal: New York–JFK (begins 8 May 2015)[7][8]
Atlantic Airways Summer seasonal: Vágar (begins 29 March 2015)
Austrian Airlines
operated by Tyrolean Airways
Winter seasonal charter: Innsbruck
BA CityFlyer Summer seasonal charter: Faro, Ibiza, Palma de Mallorca
Winter seasonal charter: Chambery, Toulouse
BH Air Summer seasonal charter: Burgas
British Airways London-Gatwick, London-Heathrow
British Airways
operated by BA CityFlyer
Brussels Airlines Brussels
operated by Stobart Air
easyJet Alicante, Amsterdam, Athens, Basel/Mulhouse, Belfast-International, Berlin-Schönefeld, Bristol, Copenhagen, Funchal, Geneva, Hamburg, Kraków, Lisbon, London-Gatwick, London-Luton, London-Stansted, Lyon, Madrid, Milan-Malpensa, Munich, Paphos, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Prague, Reykjavik-Keflavik, Tenerife-South
Summer seasonal: Bodrum, Dalaman, Dubrovnik, Heraklion, Naples, Nice, Palma de Mallorca
Winter seasonal: Grenoble
Edelweiss Air Summer seasonal: Zürich[9]
Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi (begins 8 June 2015)[10]
Flybe Belfast-City, Birmingham, Cardiff (begins 1 June 2015), East Midlands, Exeter, London-City, Manchester, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Southampton
Summer seasonal: Bergerac (begins 23 May 2015), Jersey (begins 2 May 2015), Newquay (begins 23 May 2015)[11]
Winter seasonal charter: Geneva, Innsbruck
operated by Loganair
Kirkwall, Norwich, Stornoway, Sumburgh, Wick
Freebird Airlines Summer seasonal charter: Antalya
Germanwings Summer seasonal: Cologne/Bonn
Iberia Express Madrid (begins 29 March 2015) [12]
Jet2.com Budapest, Prague
Summer seasonal: Alicante, Dubrovnik, Faro, Ibiza, La Rochelle, Málaga, Menorca, Murcia, Palma de Mallorca, Pula,[13] Reus,[14] Split (begins 24 May 2015),[15] Toulouse, Venice-Marco Polo, Verona[16]
Winter seasonal: Chambéry, Salzburg
Winter seasonal charter: Geneva
KLM Amsterdam
operated by KLM Cityhopper
Lufthansa Frankfurt
Niki Summer seasonal: Graz, Linz, Vienna
Norwegian Air Shuttle Copenhagen, Malaga (begins 31 March 2015),[17] Oslo-Gardermoen
Summer seasonal: Stockholm-Arlanda
Qatar Airways Doha
Ryanair Alicante, Barcelona,[18] Charleroi, Dublin, Faro, Fuerteventura, Gdańsk, Kraków, Lanzarote, London-Stansted, Málaga, Malta, Moss, Rome-Ciampino, Santander, Tenerife-South, Weeze
Summer seasonal: Béziers, Bologna, Bordeaux, Bratislava, Bremen, Corfu, Gothenburg-Landvetter, Gran Canaria,[18] Hahn, Kaunas, Marseille, Palma de Mallorca, Pisa, Poitiers, Poznań
Scandinavian Airlines Copenhagen (begins 29 March 2015)
Summer seasonal: Oslo-Gardermoen,[19] Stavanger,[19] Stockholm-Arlanda
Thomas Cook Airlines Summer seasonal charter: Dalaman, Gran Canaria, Palma de Mallorca, Tenerife-South, Marrakesh
Thomson Airways Charter: Gran Canaria, Lanzarote, Tenerife-South
Summer seasonal charter: Alicante, Cancún, Corfu, Dalaman, Enfidha, Ibiza, Orlando-Sanford, Palma de Mallorca, Paphos, Rhodes, Sharm el-Sheikh
Winter seasonal charter: Geneva, Innsbruck
Turkish Airlines Istanbul-Atatürk
United Airlines Newark
Summer seasonal: Chicago-O'Hare[20]
Virgin Atlantic
operated by Aer Lingus
London-Heathrow (ends 26 September 2015)[21]
Vueling Summer seasonal: Barcelona


Airlines Destinations
DHL Aviation East Midlands
operated for Royal Mail
East Midlands, London-Stansted
operated for Royal Mail
Aberdeen, Inverness
Titan Airways
operated for Royal Mail
TNT Airways Liege, East Midlands
Star Air
operated for UPS
Cologne/Bonn, East Midlands


Passenger numbers[edit]

Number of Passengers[2] Number of Movements[22] Freight
Edinburgh Airport Passenger Totals
1997-2013 (millions)
1997 4,214,919 99,352 27,548
1998 4,588,507 100,134 23,260
1999 5,119,258 101,226 17,715
2000 5,519,372 102,393 17,894
2001 6,067,333 112,361 16,169
2002 6,930,649 118,416 21,232
2003 7,481,454 118,943 24,761
2004 8,017,547 125,317 27,376
2005 8,456,739 127,122 29,595
2006 8,611,345 126,914 36,389
2007 9,047,558 128,172 19,292
2008 9,006,702 125,550 12,418
2009 9,049,355 115,969 23,791
2010 8,596,715 108,997 20,357
2011 9,385,245 113,357 19,332
2012 9,195,061 110,288 19,115
2013 9,775,443 111,736 18,624
Source: United Kingdom Civil Aviation Authority[23]

Busiest routes[edit]

Aircraft from British Airways and Flybe at Edinburgh Airport
Gate lounge area
Busiest routes by country (2013)
% change
1  United Kingdom 4,667,517 Increase03.8
2  Spain 919,572 Increase011.8
3  Netherlands 562,605 Decrease00.8
4  Germany 515,333 Increase07.8
5  France 494,191 Increase00.8
6  Ireland 489,854 Increase01.0
7  Italy 268,880 Increase08.5
8  Poland 239,592 Increase09.2
9   Switzerland 228,682 Increase07.3
10  Belgium 152,069 Increase032.0
11  Denmark 151,783 Increase043.3
12  Portugal 138,076 Increase032.7
13  USA 137,372 Decrease05.5
14  Turkey 116,841 Increase054.7
15  Norway 112,956 Decrease02.0
Source: UK Civil Aviation Authority[2]
Busiest domestic routes (2013)
Rank Airport Passengers handled  % change
1 London-Heathrow 1,356,191 Increase 8.0
2 London-Gatwick 695,766 Steady 0.0
3 London-City 335,094 Increase 3.4
4 London-Stansted 326,524 Decrease 5.3
5 Bristol 306,160 Increase 4.1
6 Birmingham 286,002 Decrease 0.4
7 London-Luton 274,703 Increase 1.8
8 Belfast-International 244,552 Increase 3.6
9 Southampton 207,566 Increase 1.5
10 Belfast-City 129,261 Increase 3.3
Source: UK Civil Aviation Authority[2]
Busiest international routes (2013)
Rank Airport Passengers handled % change
1 Netherlands Amsterdam 562,360 Decrease 0.8
2 Republic of Ireland Dublin 413,081 Increase 3.5
3 France Paris-Charles de Gaulle 279,408 Decrease 2.5
4 Germany Frankfurt am Main 171,025 Increase 17.7
5 Spain Alicante 153,766 Increase 41.5
6 Switzerland Geneva 152,913 Increase 6.6
7 Spain Palma de Mallorca 143,007 Increase 14.9
8 United States Newark 135,048 Decrease 5.7
9 Spain Tenerife South 127,605 Increase 14.8
10 Denmark Copenhagen 126,641 Increase 53.8
11 Spain Malaga 126,443 Increase 19.6
12 Poland Kraków 114,696 Increase 3.0
13 Spain Madrid 112,352 Decrease 0.6
14 Portugal Faro 100,055 Increase 26.3
15 Italy Milan-Malpensa 99,536 Increase 0.5
16 Belgium Brussels 93,132 Increase 60.8
17 Czech Republic Prague 89,608 Increase 86.7
18 Germany Munich 88,352 Decrease 2.9
19 Spain Barcelona 82,341 Increase 0.5
20 Turkey Istanbul 70,230 Increase 238.4
Source: UK Civil Aviation Authority[2]

Access and ground transportation[edit]


Lothian Buses Airlink 100 airport express bus to Edinburgh

The airport lies on the A8 Glasgow-Edinburgh road, and can be easily reached by the M8 (from Glasgow) and the M9 (from Stirling). The airport is also within easy access from the M90 motorway (from Perth) via the Forth Road Bridge.

Lothian Buses provide public transportation to the airport with the Airlink 100 express bus from Edinburgh city centre,[24] as well as the number 35 direct to Ocean Terminal and N22 with the same destination but alternative route. Additionally, Stagecoach operates the newly formed JET express bus service, previously AirDirect 747 between the airport and Inverkeithing railway station and Ferrytoll Park and Ride in Fife.[25]

There are currently no direct rail links to Edinburgh Airport, although it lies very close to the Fife Circle and the Edinburgh-Glasgow railway lines. A project to build the Edinburgh Airport Rail Link was cancelled in 2007 after a change in Government.[26]


Edinburgh Airport tram terminus

The airport is served by Edinburgh Trams, a light rail link from the terminal to Edinburgh city centre. The system runs from Edinburgh Airport tram stop and travels across the western suburbs of Edinburgh on a segregated track; when the trams reach Haymarket railway station they switch to street-running mode and travel through the city along Princes Street. Edinburgh Trams began operation on 31 May 2014.[27][28]

As a cheaper alternative to the cancelled Edinburgh Airport Rail Link project, an additional interchange station is currently being constructed on the Fife Circle Line. Edinburgh International Gateway station which will provide an interchange with airport tram services. This station and upgrades were finally approved by the Scottish Parliament in 2012.[29] The station is expected to open by December 2016.


In April 2008 work began on the resurfacing of the main runway. This project, at a cost of £16m,[30] was due to be completed by the end of November 2008 and will prolong the life of the runway for a further 15 years.[31] In the end, the work was completed around 10 days ahead of schedule and on budget.[32]

A £40m extension to the departure lounge has been built, work commenced in December, 2008.[31]

£250m is to be spent on the airport over the next decade.[31] BAA has made provision in its Master Plan for the airport for an extension to the current runway 06/24, which would allow larger aircraft to serve longer haul destinations. There are plans to expand further by adding a new runway and terminal by 2020 which would accommodate up to 20 million passengers per annum.[33] BAA projects that by 2030 Edinburgh Airport will be handling 26 million passengers per annum. Development has recently begun at Edinburgh Airport on a £40 million departure lounge extension project which will see the current lounge double in size as well as a new security search area and a greater choice of bars, restaurants and shops. The departure lounge opened on 18/11/09.[34]

The likelihood of an additional runway has been thrown into doubt following a revised masterplan in January 2011, with passenger numbers expected to be lower than previously thought - 12.3 million by 2020 and 20 million by 2040.[35]

Accidents and incidents[edit]

On 27 February 2001, a Loganair Shorts 360 (G-BNMT) operating a Royal Mail flight to Belfast, crashed into the Firth of Forth shortly after taking off from Edinburgh at 1730 GMT. Both crew members were killed, and there were no passengers on board. A fatal accident inquiry later blamed a buildup of slush in the aircraft's engines before the crash. Protective covering had not been fitted to the engine intakes while the aircraft was parked for several hours in heavy snow at Edinburgh.[36][37]



  1. ^ a b Edinburgh - EGPH
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h CAA: UK Annual Airport Statistics
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "Site Record for Edinburgh, RAF Turnhouse". Canmore. RCAHMS. Retrieved 8 January 2013. 
  5. ^ BAA: "BAA to sell Edinburgh Airport"
  6. ^ BAA announces sale of Edinburgh Airport
  7. ^ http://airlineroute.net/2014/11/01/aa-s15europe-update1/
  8. ^ http://www.dailyrecord.co.uk/business/business-news/american-airlines-launch-edinburgh-new-4660319
  9. ^ New Edelweiss route in S14
  10. ^ http://www.etihad.com/en-us/about-us/news/archive/2014/etihad-airways-to-start-daily-edinburgh-flights-in-2015/
  11. ^ http://www.flybe.com/timetableClassic/timetable.jsp?selDep=EDI&selDest=XXX
  12. ^ http://airlineroute.net/2014/12/11/ib-europe-s15update1/
  13. ^ New Jet2 route to Pula in S14
  14. ^ New LS route to Reus in S14
  15. ^ "Airline Routes-Oct. 14, 2014". Air Transport World. 14 October 2014. Jet2.com begins weekly Edinburgh-Split service May 24, 2015.  Archived 15 October 2014 at the Wayback Machine
  16. ^ New Jet2 route to Verona in S14
  17. ^ http://airlineroute.net/2014/12/12/dy-spain-s15/
  18. ^ a b "Ryanair Flight Timetable". Ryanair. 
  19. ^ a b "SAS Summer 2014". edinburghairport.com. 17 January 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2014. 
  20. ^ New UA route to ORD
  21. ^ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/transport/11143578/Sir-Richard-Bransons-Virgin-Atlantic-ends-Little-Red-domestic-service.html
  22. ^ Number of Movements represents total aircraft takeoffs and landings during that year.
  23. ^ UK Airport Statistics
  24. ^ "Edinburgh Airport - City Centre frequent express shuttle". Lothian Buses. Retrieved 20 January 2010. 
  25. ^ "Airdirect 747". Stagecoach Group. Retrieved 20 January 2010. 
  26. ^ "It's £30m down the drain". Edinburgh: The Scotsman. 27 September 2007. Retrieved 2010-01-20. [dead link]
  27. ^ http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-27602618
  28. ^ "Route map". Edinburgh Trams. 2009. Retrieved 20 January 2010. 
  29. ^ Stevenson, Stewart; (Minister for Transport) (27 September 2007). "Edinburgh Airport Rail Link". Scottish Parliament. Retrieved 12 January 2010. 
  30. ^ Runway revamp ready for take-off
  31. ^ a b c /display.var.2469632.0.More_investment_for_airport_following_runway_resurfacing.php More investment for airport following runway resurfacing
  32. ^ New look runway set for take off after £16m upgrade project heralds "great future" for capital's airport
  33. ^ Evidence supporting airport expansion is flawed, says government adviser
  34. ^ Edinburgh Airport outlines 2030 vision
  35. ^ Edinburgh Evening News:Airport chiefs called on to ditch second runway plans
  36. ^ Scotsman: Pilots praised as sheriff confirms snow caused crash, 13 November 2003
  37. ^ Accident description and details.
  38. ^ "ASQ Award for Best Airport in Europe" Airports Council International. 14 February 2012. Retrieved 2012-04-13

External links[edit]

Media related to Edinburgh Airport at Wikimedia Commons