Sharm El Sheikh International Airport
Sharm El Sheikh
مطار شرم الشيخ الدولي
|Airport type||Public (former military)|
|Serves||Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt|
|Focus city for|
|Elevation AMSL||143 ft / 44 m|
Sharm El Sheikh International Airport (Arabic: مطار شرم الشيخ الدولي Maṭār Sharm El Sheikh El Dawli) (IATA: SSH, ICAO: HESH) is an international airport located in Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt. It is the third-busiest airport in Egypt after Cairo International Airport and Hurghada International Airport. The airport was previously known as Ophira International Airport.
The airport was opened on 14 May 1968 as an Israeli Air Force base. After the signing of the Egypt–Israel Peace Treaty in 1979 and subsequent Israeli withdrawal from the Sinai Peninsula, it was reopened as a civilian airport.
The largest regular aircraft using the airport was a Transaero Airlines-operated Boeing 747-400. These flights transiting from Moscow ended when Transaero ceased operations in October 2015. British Airways operated the only regular scheduled Boeing 777-200ER service (from Gatwick Airport). However, this service (and others) has ceased due to concerns over the downing of Metrojet Flight 9268 on 31 October 2015.
In 2008, the Egyptian Airports Holding Company (EAHC) announced plans to build a third new terminal at the airport. In July 2009 the Egyptian Holding Company for Airports and Air Navigation (EHCAAN) signed a contract with Spanish construction designers Pointec for the third terminal. The terminal was planned to double the airport's capacity from 7.5 to 15 million passengers per year. The project's primary costs were estimated at $420 million. The design phase was due to be completed by early 2010. International contractors then were invited for an open tender to construct the terminal, which was scheduled to be completely constructed by 2015. By September 2016 construction had not commenced.
On October 31, 2015, Metrojet Flight 9268, en route from Sharm El Sheikh to St. Petersburg, Russia, crashed in the Sinai Peninsula between Nekhel and Housna, killing all 224 people on board, most of them Russian tourists. The jihadist group ISIL, at war with Russian forces in nearby Syria, quickly claimed responsibility for the crash, which was believed by western governments to be the result of a terrorist bombing. Russian investigators confirmed in mid-November that the flight was bombed; the investigation is still ongoing. Following these events, many countries ordered all flights to Sharm El Sheikh suspended until further notice.
In November 2015, passenger numbers significantly decreased due to the downing of Metrojet Flight 9268 on 31 October 2015. This led to airlines cancelling flights from the airport and operating rescue flights for stranded passengers. Governments from Russia and European countries such as the United Kingdom banned airlines from operating to the airport, citing safety concerns that were highlighted following the crash. The Government of the United Kingdom, HM Government advised against all travel to and from Sharm El Sheikh.
In January 2018, it was announced that EgyptAir Express would open a base at the airport for its incoming fleet of Airbus A220s. This would increase the amount of destinations served by the airline at the airport with the possibility of operating to cities in Italy, Germany, Morocco and India non-stop.
On 22 October 2019 the UK lifted the flight ban on flights between UK airports and Sharm El Sheikh.
On 9 August 2021, Rossiya Airlines operated the first flight between Russia and Sharm El Sheikh for the first time in 5 years since the banning of the flights between the resort and Russia, due to the downing of Metrojet Flight 9268.
On 23 May 2007, the airport's second terminal, the new Terminal 1, was inaugurated with a capacity for 5 million passengers per year. The two-level, 43,000-square-metre (460,000 sq ft) terminal features 40 check-in counters and is designed to cater to a large number of international and chartered flights. It has two domestic and six international gates, all of which exit to remote stands. The terminal comprises three building components: two circular-shaped halls fused together by a wedge-shaped intermediate space dubbed 'the boat'. This serves as a passenger transit hub housing passport control, duty-free, and VIP areas as well as cafes/restaurants. The halls, in stark textural contrast to the solid mass of 'the boat', feature airy, billowing tent-like roofs inspired by the indigenous Bedouin culture.
Although known as Terminal 2, this is actually the airport's original terminal building.[dubious ] The building underwent a complete modernisation programme in 2004 and has a passenger handling capacity of 2.5 million passengers per year. Since the inauguration of Terminal 1 in 2007 most airlines have shifted operations to the new building.
In December 2016 Egyptian Airports Company announced plans to extend Terminal 2. EAC plans to expand the terminal and increase its capacity by two million passengers per year, thus taking the total capacity of the airport to 9.5 million. This also includes the construction of a new runway and 40 new airsides.
In November 2019, it was announced part of the expansion of Terminal 2 had been completed increasing the airports annual capacity, from 7 million, to 9 million a year. The plan aims to increase the capacity to 20 million passengers per annum as the number of tourists visiting the resort city is rising, during winter in particular. For now, the number of gates was raised to 12 from 8. The total cost of development works in the airport has reached LE 800 million so far.
Terminal 3 was proposed in 2008 to increase the airport’s passenger handling capacity by 10 million. The airport would be expected to cater to 18 million passengers annually by 2025. The new terminal and runway were planned to be constructed adjacent to the el Salam road. Terminal three and its contact stands would occupy an area of about 183,000m² featuring a departure hall and an arrival hall, serving both international and domestic passengers. The terminal three was to face a new airfield to the north of the existing airport. Its origami shaped roof folds provide shades over the departure area, protect the facades from direct sunlight and provide natural lighting throughout the building. Taxiways and aprons were also to be constructed as part of the project. Other associated infrastructure were to include an electrical or mechanical plant, sheds for security services, a mosque, a car parking area and a wastewater treatment facility. The wastewater from the new building was to be connected to the existing sewer system and would be treated before being conveyed for the purpose of irrigation.
Airlines and destinations
Accidents and incidents
- On January 3, 2004, Flash Airlines Flight 604, en route to Cairo and then Paris as its final destination, crashed in the Red Sea shortly after taking off from Sharm El Sheikh, killing all 148 people on board. Causes for the accident include pilot error and instrument failure, but investigators have been unable to reach a consensus.
- On August 23, 2015, Thomson Airways Flight 476, approaching Sharm El Sheikh at the end of a flight from London Stansted Airport with 189 passengers aboard, took evasive action to avoid a missile traveling toward it; the missile missed the airliner by about 1,000 feet (300 meters), and the plane landed safely. An investigation concluded that the missile was an Egyptian armed forces missile that had strayed from a military exercise.
- "A-Z World Airports Online - Egypt airports - Sharm El Sheikh International Airport (SSH/HESH)". Archived from the original on 15 April 2015. Retrieved 4 June 2015.
- "Airport information for HESH". World Aero Data. Archived from the original on 2019-03-05.CS1 maint: unfit URL (link) Data current as of October 2006. Source: DAFIF.
- Airport information for SSH at Great Circle Mapper. Source: DAFIF (effective October 2006).
- "Sharm El Sheikh International Airport". Archived from the original on 17 November 2015. Retrieved 6 November 2015.
- News, ABC. "International News: Latest Headlines, Video and Photographs from Around the World -- People, Places, Crisis, Conflict, Culture, Change, Analysis and Trends". ABC News. Archived from the original on 8 November 2015. Retrieved 30 May 2017.
- "Egyptair Express eyes Sharm el-Sheikh base with CS300s". ch-aviation. Retrieved 2018-08-20.
- "Sharm el-Sheikh: UK to resume flights after safety ban". bbc.co.uk. 22 October 2019.
- "TUI To Return To Resort City Sharm El Sheikh As Airport Security Restrictions Lifted". simpleflying.com. 3 November 2019.
- "Photos: Sharm El-Sheikh receives its 1st direct flight from Russia since 2015 ban". egypttoday.com. 9 August 2021.
- Dey, Paromita. "Egypt: Tender for Sharm El-Sheikh airport works - ConstructionWeekOnline.com". www.constructionweekonline.com. Archived from the original on 14 January 2017. Retrieved 30 May 2017.
- "Sharm El Sheikh Airport annual capacity becomes 9M passengers". egypttoday.com. 4 November 2019.
- "The new terminal three and runway". airport-technology.com. Retrieved 5 June 2021.
- "Route Analysis: Moscow-Sharm el-Sheikh". routesonline.com. 1 September 2021.
- Casey, David (4 June 2021). "Routes in brief: Air Astana, flynas, GOL and more". routesonline.com.
- "Air Arabia Egypt to introduce direct flights from Sharm el Sheikh to Jeddah". 30 May 2021.
- "Air Arabia to operate flights between Sharm El Sheikh and Yerevan". armradio.am. 11 June 2021.
- Liu, Jim (28 May 2019). "Air Astana adds Sharm el Sheikh service from June 2019". routesonline.com.
- "Charter programme". kusadasi.ro.
- "Timetable". aircairo.com.
- "Air Cairo to resume Sharm el Sheikh-Rome service". aaco.org. 28 October 2021.
- "Air Cairo is operating a new route between Sharm El Sheikh and Tashkent in Uzbekistan". aaco.org. 18 November 2020.
- "Air Cairo adds Russia to its network destinations". aircairo.com. Retrieved 14 October 2021.
- "Rinas / Flights start with Hurghada and Sharm el-Sheikh in Egypt". diasporashqiptare.al.
- "Flight Schedules and Airline Availability". tez-tour.com.
- "Charter schedule" (PDF). aviolet.rs.
- "Flights from Sharm el-Sheikh to Moscow Domodedovo Airport on AlMasria Universal Airlines now". eturbonews.com. 4 October 2021.
- "Sharm El Sheikh, Egypt". bologna-airport.it. 30 January 2018.
- "New flights from Italy to Sharm El Sheikh". 8 February 2018.
- "Flight schedule". animawings.com.
- "Flight Schedule". aero.kg. Retrieved 2019-05-20.
- "Charter flights to open from Baku to Sharm El-Sheikh". azernews.az. Retrieved 2018-09-24.
- "Availability". tui.ru.
- "Flights". anextour.com.ua.
- "Airline Startup – Bees Takes On Ryanair's Buzz In Eastern Europe". simpleflying.com. 16 March 2021.
- "Belavia resumes charter flights to Sharm el-Sheikh". 20 April 2016. Retrieved 30 May 2017.
- "Flights to Sharm El Sheikh". corendonairlines.com.
- Liu, Jim (27 January 2020). "Corendon Airlines S20 Network expansion". routesonline.com.
- "Sharm El Sheikh". atlantisrejser.dk. 30 January 2018.
- "EasyJet holidays adds 10 routes for summer 2021". travelweekly.co.uk. 11 February 2021.
- "After 5 years easyJet returns to fly to Sharm El Sheik from Malpensa". malpensa24.it. 15 January 2020.
- "easyJet from Amsterdam to Sharm el Sheikh and Innsbruck this winter". aviation24.be. 20 July 2021.
- "EasyJet launches 10 winter holiday routes". travelweekly.co.uk. 20 July 2021.
- "easyJet launches winter Naples-Sharm el-Sheikh route". lagenziadiviaggi.it. 26 July 2021.
- "Timetable". flyedelweiss.com.
- Liu, Jim. "Edelweiss Air adds 3 African routes in 4Q20". Routesonline. Retrieved 27 August 2020.
- "EgyptAir to start weekly flight service from Sharm El-Sheikh to Luxor on 27 October". english.ahram.org.eg. 15 October 2021.
- "Russia resumes flights to Egyptian resorts after 6 years". independent.co.uk. 9 August 2021.
- "Coral Travel". coraltravel.pl.
- "Routes in brief: Flydubai, S7 Airlines, Qatar Airways and more". routesonline.com. 28 May 2021.
- "Fly Egypt to start Hurghada-Yerevan flights". en.armradio.am. 1 June 2021.
- "Route map". flynas.com.
- "Flight list". freebirdairlines.com.
- "Lithuania's GetJet secures TUI Baltics charter contract". ch-aviation.com. 29 September 2021.
- "Gulf Air Returns To Alexandria, Sharm El Sheikh This Summer". newsofbahrain.com. 4 June 2021.
- "HiSky will operate charter flights for Amara Tour from for airports in the country". boardingpass.ro.
- "Flight schedule". neosair.it/en.
- "Route map". nileair.com. 30 January 2018.
- "Flight Search". pegasys.pegast.ru.
- "Pegasus Adds New Egyptian Service from late-Oct 2014". airlineroute.net. Retrieved 4 June 2015.
- "Qatar Airways highlights Egypt: launches Sharm el-Sheikh, resumes Luxor and increases Cairo". aviation24.be. 30 September 2021.
- "Flight schedule". bgoperator.ru.
- "S7 Airlines expands Egypt, UAE service". routesonline.com. 9 September 2021.
- "Flight Schedule". saudia.com.
- "freight monitor". online.joinup.ua.
- "SWISS Shifts Focus To Leisure Travel, Sustainability". airlinegeeks.com. 20 July 2021.
- "Flight Timetable". tui.co.uk.
- "TUI targets a regional return to Sharm El Sheikh in 2021". ukaviation.news. 22 October 2020.
- "Sharm El Sheikh". tuifly.be.
- "Charter flights timetable". flyuia.com.
- "Schedule". Uralairlines.ru.
- Liu, Jim (20 November 2017). "WindRose adds Lviv – Sharm el Sheikh service in W17". Routesonline. Retrieved 20 November 2017.
- "Wizz Air to commence Milan services to Sharm el-Sheikh and Casablanca in Jun-2021". centreforaviation.com. 11 May 2021.
- "Mega Expansion: Wizz Air Announces 18 New Routes Out Of Naples". Simple Flying. June 16, 2021.
- "Inside Wizz Air's New Rome Expansion: 32 New Routes". simpleflying.com. 13 May 2021.
- m.b.H, Profi Reisen Verlagsgesellschaft (October 7, 2021). "Wizz Air stockt Angebot ab Wien auf". tip - Travel Industry Professional.
- "Wizz apre base a Venezia nell'estate 2022". October 6, 2021.
- "British Sharm el-Sheikh flight in 'missile' incident". November 7, 2015 – via www.bbc.co.uk.
Media related to Sharm el-Sheikh International Airport at Wikimedia Commons