Santorini Airport, Hotels, & Transportation

GreeceSantorini › Airport
by Santorini Dave • Updated: April 29, 2022

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Santorini Airport Car Rental

Travelers with luggage enter and exit the white, low-slung building of Santorini Airport

Santorini airport is small, with only one drop-off/pick-up area that stretches for about 100 metres in front of the terminal. Finding departure and arrival entrances or meeting people or drivers is never difficult.

My recommendation: It’s much easier picking up a rental car at the Santorini airport than in Fira, Oia, or at the ferry port. I highly recommend using RentalCars.com to reserve a car in advance (especially if you require an automatic transmission).

The Santorini Airport (JTR) is located on the east side of the island, about 5km from Fira, Santorini’s scenic capital city and transportation hub. Year-round, there are daily flights between Athens and Santorini; from May to October, the airport serves direct flights from many European cities.

Though it is small and easy to navigate, the Santorini Airport is often crowded and chaotic. We recommend that departing passengers with carry-on luggage arrive at the Santorini Airport at least one hour prior to their flight; those checking bags should arrive two or more hours in advance. If possible, check-in for your flight ahead online to save some time.

Arriving passengers have many transportation options to get from the Santorini Airport to their destination, including bus, taxi, pre-booked car service, car rental, and private hotel transfer. Taking the bus is the cheapest option and relatively easy, especially if your destination is Fira. Pre-booking a car service is the easiest way to get from the Santorini Airport to your hotel, and costs only a bit more than taking a taxi. We recommend Welcome Pickups. All of these transportation options are explored in detail below.

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Map of Santorini Airport

Santorini Airport Transportation

Santorini Airport Transfers

A man holds a welcome placard advertising the name of a private transfer service, Welcome Pickups
The easiest way to get a private transfer from the Santorini airport to your hotel is to pre-book with Welcome Pickups. It’s about the same price as a pre-booked taxi and there will be someone waiting at the airport for you with a welcome sign. (The above photo is from the Athens airport but it looks similar to the Santorini welcome sign.) When you book, you get a confirmation email with the photo of your driver so you know exactly who to look for.

Booking (and paying) ahead avoids the need for cash on hand to pay the driver, and your driver will monitor your flight to be aware of any changes or delays. This is a great option for families and large groups; larger vehicles can be reserved for parties of more than four people and child car seats are available by request.

Most hotels will pick you up from the airport but; although some hotels provide this service free of charge, generally it will cost more than a taxi or private transfer, and probably more than one day of a rental car.

Santorini Airport Car Rental

Customers with luggage stand in line at car rental kiosks, under filtered light from the slatted ceiling above.

Rental car kiosks line the small arrivals area at Santorini Airport.

Renting a car is a good option if you plan to explore much of the island during your stay. Roads on Santorini are generally well-maintained and easy to navigate, with adequate signage in both Greek and English.

RentalCars.com is the best site for reserving a rental car from the Santorini airport. Book in advance and your car will be waiting at the airport for you – literally, a 30-second walk from the arrivals door. The rental car companies located at the Santorini Airport are Avance, Avis/Budget, Hertz/Thrifty, Sixt, and Suntime. Other car rental companies (Drive, Alamo, National, Enterprise) have locations nearby, and may provide airport pick-up and drop-off service. (Read more about our specific advice for renting a car in Santorini.)

If you plan to rent a car on Santorini, it’s recommended that you get an International Driving Permit in advance of your trip. These are issued through agencies like AAA (US), CAA (Canada), the UK post office, and AAA Australia. Cost varies by country from about $5 to $25, and IDPs are valid for one year. Greek law requires foreign drivers to carry an IDP in addition to a driver’s license; although many rental agencies may rent to you without one, being caught without one could cause you to incur hefty fines in the case of an accident or citation.

Santorini Airport Bus

A large, white bus sits outside the Santorini Airport, with the airport control tower in the background.

It’s easy and inexpensive to get from the airport to Fira by bus.

Airport bus service runs regularly from the airport parking lot to Fira and costs €1.80. Fare is paid in cash only, so it’s a good idea to make sure that you have some coins or small bills on hand before you exit the airport. (There are ATMs and a currency exchange booth located in the arrivals area.) There’s plenty of room for luggage on all Santorini buses and they are comfortable and air-conditioned. The trip from the airport to Fira takes about 10 minutes.

To get to other villages (Firostefani, Imerovigli, Oia, Kamari, Perissa & Perivolos, Akrotiri, and Pyrgos), you’ll need to switch buses in Fira (and buy a separate ticket).

There are 7 to 15 buses every day to Fira, departing from the Santorini airport every hour to 90 minutes from 6:15 to 11pm, with more frequency in the high season. In high season there can also be a bus between the airport and Santorini ferry port, but this isn’t always a certainty. There are no late night buses from the Santorini airport to Fira.

All buses to the airport depart from Fira. To reach the airport from the beach or any other village, you’ll need to change buses in Fira (and buy a separate ticket).

Santorini Airport Taxi

Travelers load their suitcases into the back of a taxi at the Santorini airport

Securing a taxi at the Santorini airport requires good luck or a long wait.

Taxis in Santorini are hard to get – there just aren’t that many (only 37) for such a popular island. There is a taxi stand directly across from the arrivals hall of the Santorini airport, but depending on the time of day, there aren’t always taxis. Be prepared to queue and wait.

Taxis in Santorini are not metered, with prices generally negotiated before setting out. Taxi fare to Fira or Oia from the Santorini Airport should be around €25-30; expect fares to increase in the evening and nighttime hours. Fare is paid in cash. There is a strict four passenger limit in Greek taxis.

Santorini Airport Shuttle

Sign advertising prices for an airport shuttle bus service

Shuttle buses may seem like an inexpensive option, but per-person costs add up quickly.

Shared shuttle service is available to and from the Santorini Airport for the cost of about €15 per person. These can be booked in advance or on-site at a kiosk in the arrivals area. Though you might luck out and get a shuttle to yourself, shuttles take multiple passengers and can make up to four stops per route. And although the rate may initially seem cheaper than a pre-booked car service, per-person fares can add up quickly. Generally, a shuttle is only a cost-effective (semi)private option for those traveling solo.

Uber and Lyft at the Santorini Airport

There is no Uber or Lyft on Santorini.

Santorini Airport Hotels

Hotel near Santorini Airport.

Marvarit Suites is the closest hotel to the Santorini Airport. Free shuttle, free breakfast, fantastic friendly service. (In the photo you can see the two runways at the airport.)

The two closest towns to the Santorini airport are Fira and Kamari. Both are about 10 minutes by taxi from the airport, and both have many hotels in all price ranges, from budget to luxury. There is no need to pick an actual Santorini airport hotel. You will still need to take a taxi, bus, shuttle, or car service regardless of where you stay. No hotels are within walking distance of the Santorini airport.

Having said all that, the closest hotel to the Santorini airport is Marvarit Suites in the adjacent village of Monolithos. It’s actually quite nice. There’s a swimming pool and they offer a free shuttle to and from the airport. Nikki Beach is the best beachfront hotel close to the Santorini Airport – but it’s still not within walking distance.

Santorini Airport Information & Photos

Travelers queue in a snaky line to check in at a small airport.

This is the departures area at Santorini Airport, the airport is small and usually crowded during high season.

Line of departing travelers at the Santorini Airport, extending out the door and down the sidewalk

Lines for check in and departure can often extend outside the airport and down the sidewalk. Arrive early if you need to check in or check bags.

Travelers with luggage wait to check in at an airport.

Check in at the Santorini Airport. Passengers queue at the counter for the airline they’ll be traveling on.

Electronic monitor showing line and gate information for departing flights

Overhead monitors indicate which counter and which gate departing passengers will use.

Two women dressed in airport uniforms give directions to a group of travelers.

There are also airport staff available to offer assistance, if needed.

An airport sign pointing the way to security, passport control, and the boarding area.

Signs are clear and written in both Greek and English, making it very easy to figure out where to go.

Travelers line up to get their passport checked at Santorini Airport security

After checking in and checking luggage, passengers go through security.

Travelers in a snaky line to airport security

The security line can be long, but it usually moves pretty quickly.

Waiting for departure at the Santorini airport.

The gate area is often busy and standing room only downstairs, in the main waiting area.

Cart selling sanwiches, beverages, and snacks at the Santorini Airport

There’s a small cafe stand downstairs in the gate area selling beverages and snacks, as well as a handful of fast-casual restaurants selling grilled food, burgers and salads, pizza and pasta, and “artisan” international refreshments.

A brightly-lit sign advertising free wifi at the Santorini airport

There’s also free WiFi, which often works.

Waiting area in Santorini airport.

Upstairs is an outdoor waiting area with snack bar that’s a much more pleasant spot to sit.

Outdoor cafe tables on a wide airport sidewalk

There is one outdoor restaurant at the Santorini Airport, located to the right of the main entrance and specializing in fast-casual Greek and Mediterranean cuisine. This is the only restaurant in the public, outfacing portion of the airport.

Santorini airport departures.

Passengers arriving at and departing from the Santorini Airport take a short 1-minute bus ride between the terminal and the airplane.

A group of drivers wait for their passengers with labeled signs.

After going through customs, arriving passengers exit into the arrivals area. Hotel and private transfer drivers wait here for their customers. There are ATMs and currency exchange here for those who need cash for taxi and bus fare.

View from the arrivals are at Santorini airport, looking out toward the parking lot

Looking out from the arrivals area, you can see more drivers waiting for their customers, as well as signs pointing the way to buses and taxis.

Bus at Santorini airport.

The bus stop at the Santorini airport is immediately outside the Arrivals doors.

Bus tickets at Santorini airport.

The bus between the Santorini airport and Fira costs €1.80. To get to other towns requires switching buses in Fira and buying a separate ticket.

A printed sign posted to a bulletin board shows the bus schedule to the Santorini Airport

For those catching the bus from Fira to the airport, there’s a posted schedule at the Fira bus station.

Taxis at Santorini airport.

The taxi queue is also directly outside the Arrivals doors, just across the street.

People exit the Santorini Airport at the arrivals area

Picking up rental cars at the Santorini airport is quick and convenient, as the rental car desks are located in the Arrivals area just as you exit. This is also where you can book shuttle transfer. The following companies have rental desks here: Avance, Avis/Budget, Hertz/Thrifty, Sixt, and Suntime.

Rental cars at Santorini airport.

The rental car parking lot is a 30 second walk from the Arrivals area of the Santorini airport.

Cars parked in a parking lot at the Santorini airport

Looking from the rental car parking lot back towards the Arrivals area.

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