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Varna Airport (Bulgarian: Летище Варна, Letishte Varna) (IATA: VAR, ICAO: LBWN) is the airport of Varna, the historical maritime capital of Bulgaria. Varna Airport is the third largest airport in Bulgaria and an important destination during the summer leisure seasons. The airport is located 10 kilometers from the center of Varna near the town of Aksakovo. The airport serves Varna, Golden Sands and northeastern Bulgaria. The busiest season for the airport is from the end of May to the beginning of October.

Varna Airport

Летище Варна
VarnaAirport logo.png
VAR Terminal2.jpg
Summary
Airport typePublic
OwnerRepublic of Bulgaria
OperatorFraport Twin Star Airport Management AD
ServesVarna, Bulgaria
LocationVarna, Bulgaria
Hub for
Elevation AMSL70 m / 230 ft
Coordinates43°13′55″N 27°49′31″E / 43.23194°N 27.82528°E / 43.23194; 27.82528Coordinates: 43°13′55″N 27°49′31″E / 43.23194°N 27.82528°E / 43.23194; 27.82528
Websitewww.varna-airport.com
Map
VAR is located in Bulgaria
VAR
VAR
Location of airport in Bulgaria
Runways
Direction Length Surface
m ft
09/27 2,517 8,258 Asphalt
Statistics (2018)
Passengers2,281,134 Increase15.8%
Aircraft movements17,776 Increase11.4%
Source: Bulgarian AIP at EUROCONTROL

HistoryEdit

The history of the airport dates back to 1916 when two sheds for the first hydro-port in Bulgaria were built in the Peinerdzhik area (present-day Chaika residential area).[citation needed] Irregular mail-plane service from Sofia to Varna was held between 1919 and 1920 and it was not until 1947 that a permanent airline between the two cities was established. What had grown into Tihina Airport was situated west of the present-day Asparuhov bridge and was indeed quite primitive for the demands of a modern city.[citation needed] Thus in 1946 a decision was made and a new airport was constructed several kilometres west of the city, near the village (now town) of Aksakovo, with local people enthusiastically working on the site together with the constructors. Construction and improvement continued throughout the years, with a new terminal built in 1972 and a new runway in 1974.[citation needed]

In 2013, a new passenger terminal opened and the one constructed in the 20th century was closed down.

There are domestic and international flights from Varna to about 70 destinations in 25 countries, with Bulgarian and foreign airlines. The airport is close to the Port of Varna and the railway system. The airport has one asphalt-covered runway 09/27 with ILS CAT I system on 09 edge and a parking apron for 24 aircraft. In June 2006 the Bulgarian Government awarded Fraport AG Frankfurt Airport Services Worldwide a 35-year-long concession on both Varna and Burgas airports in return for investments exceeding €500 million, including a new passenger terminal by 2008.

From 15 October 2011 until 28 February 2012, Varna airport was closed for a reconstruction of the runway. All flights were operated to/from Burgas Airport.[1]

In 2016 the airport handled 1,689,595 passengers - a 20.8% increase compared to 2015.

TerminalsEdit

 
The runway
 
Terminal 2 gate area

The airport has three terminals: Terminal 1, built in 1972 (closed), Terminal 3 (opened in June 2007), which was used during the summer season, and the new Terminal 2, opened in August 2013.

Terminal 1Edit

Terminal 1 (closed) was extended several times over the years. The departures area had 21 check-in counters and six security checkpoints. In the terminal there were various outlets: cafes, fast food restaurants, currency exchange, and duty-free shops. There were ten boarding gates. The arrivals area had two luggage belts, as well as currency exchange and a tax-free shop. Terminal 1 still has a VIP room and business lounge. In 2010 the VIP room was renovated. As of 2014, all flights, including no-frills, are managed by Terminal 2. Hence, the old terminal is closed except the VIP area.

Terminal 2Edit

Terminal 2 started operations on 18 August 2013. In December 2011 the construction work on the new Terminal 2 began. T2 has a capacity of 1,800,000 passengers per year and 25 check-in desks. It covers an area of 18,000 square metres. T2's buildings are designed so that their capacity can be increased as an extension to the existing architectural part. The first passenger service on T2 was a domestic flight to Sofia operated by the national carrier Bulgaria Air and first international passengers served were on a Belavia flight from Minsk. T2 was designed by London-based architecture firm Pascall+Watson.[citation needed]

Airlines and destinationsEdit

The following airlines operate regular scheduled and charter flights at Varna Airport:[2]

AirlinesDestinations
Aeroflot Seasonal: Saint Petersburg
Austrian Airlines Vienna
BRA Braathens Regional Airlines Seasonal charter: Aalborg, Billund, Odense
Brussels Airlines Seasonal: Brussels
Bulgaria Air Sofia
Seasonal charter: Bratislava, Copenhagen, Heraklion, Košice, Moscow–Sheremetyevo, Nantes, Paris–Charles de Gaulle, Rijeka, Saint Petersburg, Tel Aviv–Ben Gurion, Warsaw–Chopin, Wrocław, Yerevan
Bulgarian Air Charter Seasonal charter: Beirut, Berlin–Schönefeld, Berlin–Tegel, Catania, Cologne/Bonn, Dresden, Düsseldorf, Erfurt/Weimar, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Hanover, Katowice, Kuwait, Leipzig/Halle, Munich, Münster/Osnabrück, Nuremberg, Paderborn/Lippstadt, Salzburg, Stuttgart, Tel Aviv–Ben Gurion, Vienna, Warsaw–Chopin
Condor Seasonal: Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Hanover, Leipzig/Halle
easyJet Seasonal: Berlin–Schönefeld, London–Gatwick
Enter Air Seasonal charter: Gdańsk, Katowice, Poznań, Warsaw–Chopin, Wrocław
Edelweiss Air Seasonal: Zürich
Eurowings Seasonal: Cologne/Bonn, Düsseldorf
Seasonal charter: Stuttgart
Finnair Seasonal: Helsinki
LOT Polish Airlines Seasonal: Warsaw–Chopin[3]
Seasonal charter: Katowice[4]
Lufthansa Seasonal charter: Munich
Luxair Seasonal: Luxembourg[5]
NordStar Seasonal charter: Moscow–Domodedovo[6]
Norwegian Air Shuttle Seasonal: Copenhagen, Helsinki, Oslo–Gardermoen
Pobeda Seasonal: Moscow–Vnukovo[7]
Red Wings Airlines Seasonal charter: Moscow–Domodedovo, Saint Petersburg
S7 Airlines Moscow–Domodedovo
SkyUpSeasonal: Kiev–Boryspil[8]
SmartLynx Airlines Seasonal charter: Riga
Smartlynx Airlines Estonia Seasonal charter: Tallinn
SmartwingsSeasonal: Brno, Lyon,[9] Nantes, Ostrava, Paris–Charles de Gaulle, Prague
Seasonal charter: Lille, Tel Aviv–Ben Gurion[2]
Smartwings Poland Seasonal charter: Katowice, Wrocław
SunExpress Deutschland[10] Seasonal: Cologne/Bonn, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Hanover, Leipzig/Halle, Munich, Stuttgart
Thomas Cook Airlines Seasonal: Manchester[11]
Thomas Cook Airlines Scandinavia Seasonal charter: Bergen, Bodø, Copenhagen, Gothenburg–Landvetter, Harstad/Narvik, Helsinki, Oslo–Gardermoen, Stavanger, Stockholm–Arlanda, Trondheim
Transavia Seasonal charter: Amsterdam
TUI Airways Seasonal: London–Gatwick, Manchester[12]
TUI fly Belgium Seasonal: Brussels, Ostend/Bruges
Seasonal charter: Lille, Nantes,[13] Paris–Charles de Gaulle
TUI fly Netherlands Seasonal: Amsterdam
Turkish Airlines Istanbul [14]
Wings of Lebanon Seasonal charter: Beirut
Wizz Air Beauvais, Bergamo, Berlin–Schönefeld, Cologne/Bonn, Copenhagen, Dortmund, Eindhoven, Hamburg, Larnaca, Liverpool, London–Luton, Memmingen, Vienna
Seasonal: Tel Aviv–Ben Gurion[15]
Yakutia Airlines Seasonal charter: Moscow–Vnukovo[2]

StatisticsEdit

TrafficEdit

Traffic at Varna Airport
Year Domestic
passengers
Change International
passengers
Change Total
passengers
Change Aircraft
movements
Change
1998
35,208
238,470
273,678
1999
57,955
  64.6%
453,864
  90.3%
511,819
  87%
2000
67,508
  16.5%
624,181
  37.5%
691,689
  35.1%
9,425
2001
48,121
  28.7%
884,428
  41.7%
932,549
  34.8%
9,549
  1.3%
2002
45,457
  5.5%
1,045,252
  12.1%
1,090,709
  16.9%
9,006
  5.7%
2003
41,583
  8.5%
1,144,766
  9.5%
1,186,349
  8.8%
10,107
  12.2%
2004
47,575
  14.4%
1,271,552
  11.1%
1,319,127
  11.2%
11,277
  11.6%
2005
49,705
  4.5%
1,496,175
  17.7%
1,546,925
  17.3%
13,616
  20.7%
2006
54,243
  9.1%
1,468,415
  1.8%
1,522,658
  1.6%
14,721
  8.1%
2007
79,058
  45.7%
1,399,035
  4.7%
1,478,093
  2.9%
14,971
  1.7%
2008
119,459
  51.1%
1,313,244
  6.1%
1,432,703
  3.1%
15,129
  1.1%
2009
155,734
  30.4%
1,050,801
  20%
1,206,535
  15.8%
12,699
  16.1%
2010
154,974
  0.5%
1,043,982
  0.6%
1,198,956
  0.6%
12,577
  1.0%
2011
117,431
  24.2%
1,046,453
  0.2%
1,163,884
  2.9%
11,263
  10.4%
2012
126,952
  8.1%
1,084,244
  3.6%
1,211,196
  4.1%
10,739
  4.7%
2013
130,668
  2.9%
1,173,011
  8.1%
1,303,679
  7.6%
11,516
  7.2%
2014
126,991
  2.8%
1,246,095
  6.2%
1,387,494
  5.2%
12,063
  4.7%
2015
125,860
  0.9%
1,272,834
  2.2%
1,398,694
  0.8%
11,959
  0.9%
2016
134,548
  6.9%[16]
1,536,594
  20.7%
1,689,595
  20.8%
14,818
  23.9%
2017[17]
 
 
1,970,700
  16.6%
15,950
  7.6%
2018[18]
 
 
2,281,134
  15.8%
17,776
  11.4%
2019 (01.01-30.04)[19]
 
 
247,732
  3.1%
2,178
  12.3%

Busiest routesEdit

Busiest routes at Varna Airport[20][2]
City Airport(s) Weekly Departures
(Summer 2018)
Airline(s)
  Moscow Domodedovo Airport
Sheremetyevo Airport
Vnukovo Airport
39
Azur Air, NordStar, Red Wings Airlines, S7 Airlines
Bulgaria Air
Bul Air, Pobeda, Rossiya, Yakutia Airlines
  Sofia Sofia Airport
24
Bulgaria Air, Wizz Air
  Katowice Katowice Airport
18
Bulgarian Air Charter, Enter Air, Ryanair Sun, Small Planet Airlines, Travel Service, Voyage Air
  Warsaw Chopin Airport
Modlin Airport
15
Bulgaria Air, Bulgarian Air Charter, Enter Air, Ryanair Sun, Small Planet Airlines
Voyage Air
  Leipzig Leipzig/Halle Airport
14
Bulgarian Air Charter, Condor, Small Planet Airlines, SunExpress Deutschland
  Düsseldorf Düsseldorf Airport
13
Bulgarian Air Charter, Condor, Eurowings, SunExpress Deutschland
  Tel Aviv Ben Gurion Airport
13
Bulgaria Air, Bulgarian Air Charter, Corendon Airlines, Travel Service, Wizz Air
  London Gatwick Airport
Luton Airport
12
BH Air, easyJet, TUI Airways
Wizz Air
  Prague Václav Havel Airport
12
SmartWings, Travel Service
  Saint Petersburg Pulkovo Airport
12
Bulgaria Air, Red Wings Airlines, Rossiya
  Hannover Hannover Airport
11
Bulgarian Air Charter, Condor, SunExpress Deutschland, Voyage Air
  Istanbul Atatürk Airport
11
Turkish Airlines
  Munich Memmingen Airport
Munich Airport
11
Wizz Air
Bulgarian Air Charter, Lufthansa, SunExpress Deutschland
  Vienna Schwechat Airport
11
Austrian Airlines, Bulgarian Air Charter, Wizz Air
  Berlin Schönefeld Airport
Tegel Airport
10
Bulgarian Air Charter, easyJet
Bulgarian Air Charter, Sundair
  Frankfurt Frankfurt Airport
10
Bulgarian Air Charter, Condor, SunExpress Deutschland
  Stuttgart Stuttgart Airport
9
Bulgarian Air Charter, Eurowings, SunExpress Deutschland, Voyage Air
  Brussels Charleroi Airport
Zaventem Airport
8
Ryanair
Brussels Airlines, TUI fly Belgium
  Cologne Cologne/Bonn Airport
8
Bulgarian Air Charter, Eurowings, SunExpress Deutschland
  Hamburg Hamburg Airport
8
Bulgarian Air Charter, Germania, SunExpress Deutschland

Ground transportEdit

Bus line 409 connects the airport with Varna city center and resorts nearby (route: Varna Airport – Mall Varna – Varna Bus Station / Grand Mall – City Center – Saints Constantine and Helena - Golden Sands).[21]

Incidents and accidentsEdit

  • On 5 June 1992 Balkan Bulgarian Airlines Tupolev 154B overran runway 27 in bad weather conditions. There were no casualties, but the plane was written off.[22]
  • On 24 May 2013, Air VIA flight 502 from Leipzig/Halle to Varna overran runway 09 at Varna Airport after touchdown. Two passengers were injured during evacuation.[23][24]
  • On July 8 2014, Lars Mittank, a German student vacationing in Golden Sands, mysteriously disappeared near Varna Airport. Mittank had been alone in Bulgaria the previous two days and reported to be behaving strangely, and was last seen on security cameras fleeing from the airport into the surrounding forest.

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Varna Airport Closes for Runway Overhaul in October". Retrieved 7 June 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d "Flight Search". www.varna-airport.com.
  3. ^ "Nowe trasy z Polski. Przewoźnik zapowiada inauguracyjny rejs". tvn24bis.pl.
  4. ^ "LOT wykona z Katowic rejsy czarterowe dla Rainbow Tours". pasazer.com.
  5. ^ https://www.luxair.lu/en/destinations/varna
  6. ^ "Route map". nordstar.ru. 25 April 2018.
  7. ^ "Pobeda Airlines LLC, Aeroflot Group - Flights schedule". www.pobeda.aero.
  8. ^ Liu, Jim. "SkyUp Airlines S19 network expansion summary as of 01JUL19". Routesonline. Retrieved 2 July 2019.
  9. ^ "SmartWings.com - Cheap flights not only around Europe". www.smartwings.com.
  10. ^ "Flight schedules". sunexpress.com.
  11. ^ "Timetable".
  12. ^ "Flight Timetable - TUI Airways". www.tui.co.uk.
  13. ^ TUI fly Belgium begin seasonal service to Varna on route Lille-Varna-Nantes-Lille
  14. ^ https://www.ch-aviation.com/portal/news/73915-turkish-airlines-postpones-move-to-istanbul-new-to-1q19
  15. ^ money.bg (12 July 2018). "Wizz Air спира полетите до 8 дестинации от София и Варна".
  16. ^ "Главна дирекция "Гражданска въздухоплавателна администрация"". www.caa.bg.
  17. ^ http://www.fraport.com/content/fraport/en/misc/binaer/traffic-figures/traffic-figures-fraport-group/2017/monthly-traffic-figures/traffic-sheet-en/jcr:content.file/traffic-sheet-2017-december_en.pdf
  18. ^ "Monthly traffic figures" (PDF). 2018.
  19. ^ "Monthly traffic figures" (PDF). 2018.
  20. ^ Flightradar24. "Flightradar24.com - Live flight tracker!". Flightradar24.
  21. ^ "Начало". Archived from the original on 1 September 2013. Retrieved 7 June 2015.
  22. ^ Harro Ranter (5 June 1992). "ASN Aircraft accident Tupolev 154B LZ-BTD Varna Airport (VAR)". Retrieved 7 June 2015.
  23. ^ "Морски - Самолет излезе от пистата на летище Варна, две жени са със счупени крайници (допълнена и видео) - видео - Dnevnik.bg". www.dnevnik.bg. Retrieved 7 June 2015.
  24. ^ "The Aviation Herald". Retrieved 7 June 2015.

External linksEdit

  Media related to Varna Airport at Wikimedia Commons