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A Guide To City Of Derry Airport

A Guide To City Of Derry Airport

City of Derry Airport is one of several key airports in Ireland.

Located in Eglinton, around a 15-minute drive from Derry City Centre, the airport is a crucial link to the UK.

Opened in 1941 as a military airbase, City of Derry Airport has a more interesting background than many Irish airport.

Below, you’ll discover everything you need-to-know if you’re flying in or out of it.

Some quick need-to-knows about City of Derry Airport

Although a visit to City of Derry Airport is fairly straightforward, there are a few need-to-knows that’ll make your visit that bit more enjoyable.

1. Location

The airport is conveniently located approximately 7 miles/12 km northeast of Derry City.

2. Car Parking

City of Derry Airport offers both short-term and long-term car parking facilities. It’s worth booking these in advance at peak travel times.

3. Airport Amenities

As this is a relatively small airport, there isn’t endless choice for food. We Make and Fed & Watered are two of the main food outlets.

4. Airline Carriers

Ryanair and Loganair are the primary airlines serving City of Derry Airport, providing direct connections to several destinations across the UK, like Manchester, Liverpool, London and Glasgow.

What to know about arriving in/leaving from City of Derry Airport

city of derry airport

If you’re used to flying in and out of the likes of Belfast International Airport, you have a slightly different experience ahead of you.

City of Derry Airport is much smaller and thus much less busy than the airports in Belfast. Here’s some handy info.

Immigration and customs

As most flights from City of Derry Airport are domestic, immigration and customs are more straightforward and efficient than in airports that offer international flight services.


The airport is served by a dedicated Airport shuttle service to and from Derry city centre. Taxis and car hire are also available.


City of Derry Airport recommend that flyers arrive no later than 2 hours before their flight departure.


There’s no real surprises with going through security at City of Derry Airport – you can expect the same restrictions to be in place on what you can/can’t bring with you (info here).

A brief history of City of Derry Airport

City of Derry Airport was originally established as RAF Eglinton, a Royal Air Force base, during World War II.

It wasn’t until the 1950s that the UK’s Ministry of Defence gave the land back to its original owners.

Considerable investment took place during the 1990s. This allowed for the construction of a new terminal building along with other much needed improvements.

In 1994, it said goodbye to its old name (RAF Eglinton) and it became City of Derry Airport.

The airport grew in popularity during the 2000s with the introduction of routes operated by low-cost carriers like Ryanair.

Things to do near City of Derry Airport


Photos via Shutterstock

One of the beauties of City of Derry Airport is that it’s a short spin away from many of the best places to visit in Derry.

Below, you’ll find a handful of things to see and do a stone’s throw from Derry Airport!

1. Derry City Walls

One of the finest examples of a walled city in Europe, Derry’s walls are steeped with history and offer glorious city views.

2. Tower Museum

Located within the city walls, the very popular Tower Museum offers a look into the rich history of Derry.

3. Guildhall

The Guildhall is a magnificent structure that features stunning stained glass windows and an impressive organ.

4. Peace Bridge

This pedestrian bridge across the River Foyle symbolises unity and reconciliation in the city.

FAQs about City of Derry Airport

We’ve had a lot of questions over the years asking about everything from ‘Where do you park?’ to ‘How long do you need to give yourself before a flight?’.

In the section below, we’ve popped in the most FAQs that we’ve received. If you have a question that we haven’t tackled, ask away in the comments section below.

How early should I arrive at Derry Airport before my flight?

It’s recommended to arrive at the airport at least 2 hours before your flight’s scheduled departure time.

What facilities are available for passengers with reduced mobility?

The airport provides wheelchair assistance, accessible toilets, and dedicated parking spaces.

Are there dining options in the airport?

Yes, City of Derry Airport has a café and bar where passengers can enjoy refreshments.

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