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.
Santorini Airport Transportation
Santorini Airport Transfers
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
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
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.
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
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
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
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