Travel Insider: Top tips for a smooth passage through Dublin Airport
Dublin Airport is getting busier by the day... here's how to make your visit as hassle-free as possible.
So Dublin Airport is on course for its busiest ever year.
Passenger numbers jumped a whopping 15pc from January to June, and new routes keep on coming - this weekend alone, over 350,000 passengers are expected to pass through both terminals... a huge jump on last year.
Great and all as this is, mounting crowds can put a sour mood on any trip, so it's worth taking a few tips on board to ease the stress.
First, check in online before leaving home so you can head straight to the bag-drop or security lanes. Make sure to check which terminal your airline is flying from (Ryanair is T1; Aer Lingus T2), plan to arrive at least 90 minutes before your departure for short-haul flights, and leave three hours for US Preclearance - downloading US Customs Declaration forms from dublinairport.com to fill in before travel.
When you arrive, take a photo or note of where you park. It's amazing what can slip your mind over a one or two week holiday!
If you're travelling with infants or buggies, take the family lanes through security. Otherwise, try to take the lane furthest right in T1 and furthest left in T2 - these line you up beside the fast-track channel, which can let regular punters through during quiet moments. Remember to pack liquids in 100ml containers in clear, resealable plastic bags measuring 20cm x 20cm. You'd be surprised at the number of people who forget.
A final tip: Dublin Airport has a Shop & Collect service that allows you to pick up purchases when you return home… so you don't have to cram them into your carry-on. A little preparation goes a long way!
The Maldron Hotel, Dublin Airport
Parking costs can quickly add up at Dublin Airport, especially if you elect for the convenience of the short-term multi-storeys. The Maldron Hotel Dublin Airport (maldronhotels.com) has a Stay, Park and Fly package that may come in useful, however. It offers an overnight stay, car parking for up to 15 days and free bus transfers to either Terminal 1 or 2 from €199 per room (i.e. two people). On the return leg, customers can use a hotel pick-up phone to catch the shuttle bus back to retrieve their car.
For an extra cost, you can streamline your Dublin Airport experience that bit further: €5.95 buys you a fast-track security pass, plus SMS flight updates and a complimentary newspaper, for example. And €19.95 is the cost of three hours in the DAA's executive lounges in either terminal - with complimentary papers, drinks and snacks thrown in (it's a nice treat if you have a long-ish wait). For €39.95, there's concierge assistance for groups of up to six people. The extra services are available to book online, before you travel, at dublinairport.com.
NB: All prices subject to change/availability.