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Gran Canaria Airport Departures

Whichever means of transport you use to get to Gran Canaria airport, accessing the departures hall is very easy. If you are returning a rental car or parking a private vehicle, the car parks are just a short walk from the terminal building. All public buses, private transfers, tour buses and taxis, drop passengers off at the entrance to the departures hall.

Many airlines now allow you to check in online on a computer or mobile device via their app on which you can store your boarding pass, or you can choose to print it out. Some low-cost airlines actually charge extra to check in at the airport. If you have checked in and you do not have any hold bags, you can proceed directly to security screening. Otherwise, you will need to check the departures board for your flight number to find which of the check-in desks to go to. There are 110 check-in desks on two floors with different areas for international, national and inter-island flights.

Check-In

You should check your airline's website for their specific check-in times, but generally, the desks open two hours before the scheduled departure time and close forty to forty-five minutes before. The check-in clerk will require your national ID card or passport and your boarding pass or booking reference.

Queues tend to be minimal with the number of desks available; however, it is advisable to arrive at the airport early at peak times. While waiting for the desk to open, food and drink is served in the cafeteria and restaurant, and there is a shop for newspapers, magazines, books, souvenirs, etc. Bank ATMs, internet access points and free Wi-Fi are also available in the departures hall.

The airlines have strict regulations about the size and weight of hold and cabin baggage, and the penalties for being over are excessive. Travelling with small weighing scales can save you from making an expensive mistake.

Certain goods are prohibited from being carried on aircraft by international law. The forbidden items include the following:

  • Corrosive materials
  • Guns and ammunition, including toy guns
  • Explosives, including fireworks, and even party poppers
  • Matches and lighters
  • Fuel for lighters
  • Flammable paint
  • Items containing mercury
  • Portable gas stoves
  • Gas cartridges and refills

For full details check the CAA website here. You should be aware that airlines can also impose their own restrictions, so check their terms and conditions.

Security Screening

When you enter the security screening area your boarding pass will be scanned, whether printed or on your mobile device, so have it ready in order to avoid delays.

There is a fast track lane at security in Gran Canaria Airport for some passengers who have paid for preferential services from their airline. You can also buy an Aena VIP pass for €4.00 here.

You will be directed to a conveyor belt on which you should place your bags and you will be provided with a tray for jackets and cardigans, the contents of your pockets, belts, etc. You might have to remove your shoes. Containers of liquids cannot be larger than 100 ml and must be put in the tray in a transparent, sealable bag with a maximum quantity of 1 lt. Electrical devices such as laptops and tablets will go in a separate tray and should be sufficiently charged as you might be requested to start them up.

The trays will pass through an X-Ray scanner and you will walk through a metal detector. You should get a green light, but if you have forgotten to remove any metallic objects a red light will flash and the alarm will sound. In this case, you will be asked to raise your arms and a security officer will scan you for the offending item.

Once you and your possessions have been cleared you can go through to the departures lounge.

Departures Lounge

You can relax in the departures lounge until it's time to board your flight. Information regarding boarding times and any delays can be found on overhead monitors throughout the lounge. Flight announcements are not broadcast on the tannoy system so you should check the boards regularly.

There are a number of shops in the departures lounge from which you can buy souvenirs, sports goods, clothes, books, magazines and newspapers. There is also a wide variety of food and drink available from the cafeterias, takeaways and restaurants.

In the duty-free shop, you can buy alcohol, cigarettes, perfume and gifts at much lower prices than you'll find in the UK. However, in Gran Canaria, these items can be found even cheaper in the resorts. For UK duty-free allowances, check the government website here.

To enjoy the Canarian climate as long as possible, you can purchase access to the VIP lounge with its large terrace and ocean views. More details here.

Around forty minutes before the departure of your flight, the gate number will be posted and then you should head straight there. You will have to present your identification and boarding pass before boarding your plane.