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Belfast is served by two airports. Belfast International Airport (BFS), is approximately 20 miles from Belfast city centre and handles both international and domestic flights. The other airport, George Best Belfast City Airport (BHD) is situated 2 miles from the city centre and mainly handles domestic flights within Ireland and the UK. Although there are not many of European and international destinations served by the two airports the number is currently growing and Belfast is also easily reached via connecting flights from many UK cities. Most of these are operated by budget airlines and offer very reasonable fares if booked in advance.
Scheduled flights in and out of Belfast International Airport ( BFS ) serve many cities in the UK along with European destinations. There are also direct flights to Newark, USA and Toronto, Canada. In addition there are many European and international charter destinations. The main airlines operating out of Belfast International are Easyjet, Aer Lingus and Jet2. Aer Lingus codeshares with British Airways, and is a member of the OneWorld Alliance, with many long haul passengers travelling to Belfast through their hub at London Heathrow.
Ulsterbus operate the 300 Airport Express bus service between the Europa Buscentre in Belfast city centre and the airport. The journey takes 30 - 45 minutes and costs £7 single, £10 return. Taxis can be hired outside the terminal building and a number of car hire firms are available with the terminal. The journey from the airport to Belfast takes about 25 minutes. There is no direct train service from the airport but trains do run to Belfast from the nearby town of Antrim, and bus 109A connects the airport and Antrim every hour or so.
Scheduled flights out of George Best Belfast City Airport ( BHD ) operate to England, Scotland, the Isle or Man and the Republic Of Ireland. The main airlines operating out of the airport are FlyBE, BMI and Manx2. Many long haul passengers travel to Belfast through the BMI hub at London Heathrow.
The 600 Airport Express bus runs from the airport to the Europa Buscentre in the city centre. The journey takes 15-20 minutes and costs £2.20single, £3.30 for a return ticket which is valid for 30 days. Alternatively a free shuttle bus may be requested just outside arrivals to take you to Sydenham train station, where half-hourly trains between Bangor and Belfast call. The journey to Belfast Central, Botanic, City Hospital and Great Victoria Street (for Europa Bus Centre) takes 10 - 15 minutes, and costs £1.60 single. In addition taxis can be hired outside the terminal, with the fare to the city centre being around £10. Car hire is also available within the terminal.
Check out the new Belfast Visitor Pass, available for 1, 2 or 3 days which acts as a travel pass within the city and offers discounts to many attractions, shops and restaurants. These are available to purchase at the Tourist Information Desks at both Airports and at the Belfast Welcome Centre, 47 Donegall Place Belfast. Prices are currently £6.50, £10.50 and £14 per adult depending on the number of days, child prices are £4, £6 and £7.75
Belfast can be reached by ferry from Liverpool in England and Stranraer in Scotland. Norse Merchant Ferries operate the Belfast - Liverpool route and the journey takes around 8 hours. Stenaline runs the Belfast - Stranraer route and the journey takes less than 2 hours by fast ferry, and 3 hours 15 minutes by slow ferry.
Larne, 23 miles north of Belfast has ferries from Troon (Summer only) and Cairnryan (near Stranraer) operated by P&O while Stenaline have a service to Fleetwood (near Blackpool).
Belfast can be reached from most towns and cities in Ireland, north and south, via the bus and rail network. The buses are operated by Ulsterbus and the trains by NI Railways, both of which fall under the one integrated authority called Translink. These also link in seamlessly with the bus and train companies in the Republic of Ireland, Bus Eireann and Irish Rail, respectively, to provide a service that covers all of Ireland.
It is also possible to book bus or train and ferry tickets to allow passengers to travel from any town or city in the UK to Belfast. Bus and ferry tickets can be purchased through National Express, train and ferry tickets can be bought from any UK rail station or SailRail.
Most buses arriving in Belfast terminate at the Europa Buscentre, and most trains terminate at Central Station. Both of these are in the centre of Belfast.