Recife/Guararapes–Gilberto Freyre International Airport

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Recife/Guararapes–Gilberto Freyre International Airport
Aeroporto Internacional do Recife/Guararapes–Gilberto Freyre
Aeroporto do recife.jpg
Inside view of the airport
Airport type Public/Military
Operator Infraero
Serves Recife
Elevation AMSL 10 m / 33 ft
Coordinates 08°07′35″S 034°55′22″W / 8.12639°S 34.92278°W / -8.12639; -34.92278Coordinates: 08°07′35″S 034°55′22″W / 8.12639°S 34.92278°W / -8.12639; -34.92278
Website Infraero REC
REC is located in Brazil
Location in Brazil
Direction Length Surface
m ft
18/36 3,300 10,827 Asphalt
Statistics (2014)
Passengers 7,157,805
Aircraft Operations 75,419
Metric tonnes of cargo 27,039
Statistics: Infraero[1]
Sources: Airport Website,[2] ANAC[3]

Recife/Guararapes–Gilberto Freyre International Airport (IATA: RECICAO: SBRF) is the airport of Recife, Brazil. The name Guararapes is a reference to the Guararapes Battle, fought in the surrounding area. Since 27 December 2001, the airport has been named after Gilberto Freyre (1900–1987), a renowned sociologist who was born in Recife.[4]

It is operated by Infraero.

Some of its facilities are shared with the Recife Air Force Base of the Brazilian Air Force.


Originally called Ibura Airport, the airport had its name changed to Guararapes Airport in 1948. The facility originated at the time of World War II, when a new airport was built to replace the earlier airfield, Parque do Encanta Moça. With the end of the War, the facility became strategically important as a technical and refueling stop on the route from South America to Europe.

On 18 January 1958, a new passenger terminal was inaugurated, replacing the original facility. During this time, runway 14/32 was extended from 1,800 m (5,906 ft) to 2,010 m (6,594 ft), and runway 18/36 was extended from 1,800 m to 2,400 m (7,874 ft).

In 1979, an agreement with Infraero was made in order to further develop the airport complex. The passenger terminal underwent its first major renovation in 1982 and another enlargement in 1990.

In 2004 a brand-new passenger terminal was built, including a new shopping mall, thus generating more traffic and revenue. Furthermore, a new concourse was opened in 2004 and the airport's capacity increased from 1.5 to 9 million passengers/year. Today, the runway is 3,300 meters (10,827 ft) long, the longest in Northeastern Brazil.

On 31 August 2009 Infraero unveiled a BRL 8.75 million (USD 4.6 million; EUR 3.2 million) investiment plan to upgrade Guararapes International Airport, focusing on the preparations for the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, Recife being one of the venue cities. The investment was spent in finishing the passenger terminal renovation, installing 8 more jetways.[5] The work was completed on 1 July 2011, and the airport is now considered ready for the FIFA Cup.[6]

The Brazilian Integrated Air Traffic Control and Air Defense Center, section 3 (Cindacta III) is located in the vicinity of the airport.[7]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

Airlines Destinations
American Airlines Miami
Avianca Brazil Brasília, Fortaleza, Natal, Petrolina, Rio de Janeiro-Galeão, Salvador da Bahia, São Paulo-Guarulhos
Azul Brazilian Airlines Aracaju, Belém (begins 22 march 2016),[8] Belo Horizonte-Confins, Brasília, Campinas, Campina Grande (begins 29 march 2016),[9] Curitiba, Fernando de Noronha, Fortaleza, Ilhéus (begins 22 march 2016),[10] João Pessoa (begins 22 february 2016),[11] Maceió, Natal, Porto Seguro (begins 2 april 2016)[12] Presidente Prudente, Ribeirão Preto, Salvador da Bahia, São Paulo-Congonhas (begins 2 april 2016),[13] São Paulo-Guarulhos, Teresina, Uberlândia
Condor Frankfurt
Copa Airlines Panama City
Gol Airlines Belém, Belo Horizonte-Confins, Brasília, Curitiba, Campina Grande, Cuiabá, Fernando de Noronha, Fortaleza, Goiânia, Manaus, Natal, Petrolina, Porto Alegre, Rio de Janeiro-Galeão, Rio de Janeiro-Santos Dumont, Salvador da Bahia, Santarém, São Luís, São Paulo-Congonhas, São Paulo-Guarulhos, Vitória
TAM Airlines Aracaju, Brasília, Buenos Aires-Ezeiza, Fortaleza, Goiânia, Juazeiro do Norte, Maceió, Manaus, Porto Alegre, Rio de Janeiro-Galeão, Salvador da Bahia, São Paulo-Guarulhos
TACV Praia, Sal
TAP Portugal Lisbon

Accidents and incidents[edit]

  • 1 November 1961: a Panair do Brasil Douglas DC-7C registration PP-PDO flying from Sal to Recife, during its final approach struck an 84-m hill 2.7 km from the runway and broke up. The aircraft was doing a night approach too low and outside the regular traffic pattern. Forty-five passengers and crew out of the 88 persons aboard died.[14][15] The aircraft was operating the Voo da amizade (Friendship Flight).
  • 28 July 1968: a United States Air Force Douglas C-124C Globemaster II registration 51-5178, flying from Paramaribo-Zanderij to Recife, while on approach to land at Recife, flew into a 1890 feet high hill 80 km away from Recife. The 10 occupants died.[16]
  • 11 November 1991: a Nordeste Embraer EMB110P1 Bandeirante registration PT-SCU, operating flight 115 from Recife to Maceió, during on initial climb had an engine failure followed by fire. The aircraft crashed on a populated area. All 13 aircraft occupants and 2 persons on the ground died.[17][18]
  • 15 September 2001: a TAM Airlines Fokker 100 registration PT-MRN, operating charter flight 9755, flying from Recife to Campinas-Viracopos, had an uncontained engine failure en route and 3 cabin windows were shattered by engine debris fragments. The plane made an emergency landing at Belo Horizonte-Confins. One passenger was partially sucked out through a window and held by another passenger until the aircraft landed. The passenger did not survive, though.[19][20]
  • 13 July 2011: a Noar Linhas Aéreas Let L-410 Turbolet registration PR-NOB operating flight 4896 from Recife to Natal crashed shortly after take-off from Recife. All 16 occupants were killed.[21][22]


The airport is located 14 km (9 mi) from downtown Recife, 1.5 km (1 mi) from Boa Viagem Beach, and 25 km (16 mi) from Suape port.

See also[edit]


 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Air Force Historical Research Agency.

  1. ^ "Movimento operacional da rede Infraero de janeiro a dezembro de 2013" (PDF) (in Portuguese). Infraero. 4 February 2014. Retrieved 15 June 2014. 
  2. ^ "Airport Official Website" (in Portuguese). Infraero. 
  3. ^ "Lista de aeródromos públicos" (in Portuguese). ANAC. 
  4. ^ "Lei n˚10.361, de 27 de dezembro de 2001" (in Portuguese). Lei Direto. 28 December 2001. Retrieved 21 May 2011. 
  5. ^ Rittner, Daniel; Braga, Paulo Victor (31 August 2009). "Infraero vai gastar R$5 bi em reforma de aeroportos". Valor Econômico (in Portuguese). pp. A4. 
  6. ^ "Infraero conclui obra no Aeroporto Internacional do Recife" (in Portuguese). Diário de Pernambuco. 1 July 2011. Retrieved 1 July 2011. 
  7. ^ "Cindacta III" (in Portuguese). Brazilian Air Force: Departamento de Controle do Espaço Aéreo DECEA. Retrieved 4 May 2011. 
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^ "Accident description PP-PDO". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 20 May 2011. 
  15. ^ Germano da Silva, Carlos Ari César (2008). "Buraco negro". O rastro da bruxa: história da aviação comercial brasileira no século XX através dos seus acidentes 1928–1996 (in Portuguese) (2 ed.). Porto Alegre: EDIPUCRS. pp. 197–203. ISBN 978-85-7430-760-2. 
  16. ^ "Accident description 51-5178". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 20 May 2011. 
  17. ^ "Accident description PT-SCU". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 20 May 2011. 
  18. ^ Germano da Silva, Carlos Ari César (2008). "Fogo na decolagem". O rastro da bruxa: história da aviação comercial brasileira no século XX através dos seus acidentes 1928–1996 (in Portuguese) (2 ed.). Porto Alegre: EDIPUCRS. pp. 364–369. ISBN 978-85-7430-760-2. 
  19. ^ "Accident description PT-MRN". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 23 May 2011. 
  20. ^ Marra, Lívia (16 September 2001). "Avião da TAM acidentado em Minas havia sido revisado no mês passado" (in Portuguese). Folha Online. Retrieved 23 May 2011. 
  21. ^ "Accident description PR-NOB". Aviation Safety Network. Retrieved 13 July 2011. 
  22. ^ "Noar emite comunicado sobre acidente em Recife" (in Portuguese). Panrotas. 13 July 2011. Retrieved 13 July 2011. 

External links[edit]