Guide to Durban International Airport

Anyone who has spent a lot of time in airports knows that sometimes they can be a tedious place to have to wait around. Of course this need not always be the case and this guide should hopefully help unlock the potential of Durban International Airport.

Durban International Airport, formerly Louis Botha Airport, is the main airport serving Durban City. It is located about 18kms to the south of the city and it mostly serves domestic flights. Though there are some international flights to Mauritius and Swaziland, if you want to fly here you will probably have to do so through a connecting flight in Cape Town International Airport or Johannesburg International Airport.

There is construction currently underway on a new international airport for Durban. It is being built near to La Mercy which is located about 30kms north of the city. This new airport is expected to be complete in time for the 2010 World Cup; it will mean that a changeover in Cape Town or Johannesburg will no longer be necessary and it is hoped that this will stimulate the tourist trade for the city. The new airport will be called King Shaka International Airport and when opened will mean the existing Durban International Airport will be decommissioned.

Get out of Durban International Airport
The airport is well served by public transport options, so if you aren’t renting a vehicle at the airport you can find a taxi rank located in front of the Departures Terminal.

There are a number of Taxi companies working from the airport and it is recommended to take one of them rather than one of the independents. These taxi companies include A Hassan, Aussies Radio Taxis, Boshoff, Checkers Radio Taxis and Eagle Radio Taxis.

There are also a number of shuttles that travel from the airport departures terminal into the city as well; these include Sunride Shuttle; Super Shuttle; and Coastal Motor Transport. Cheetah Coaches operate a shuttle service to Pietermaritzburg.

Getting to Durban International Airport
If you are returning your South African car rental to the airport you can simply drive to the airport. The airport is accessible from the M4 Southern Freeway from Durban city centre and is well signposted.

What is in Durban International Airport?
The airside of the airport was recently upgraded and reconfigured: the International Terminal and the Domestic Terminal were split into one terminal for arrivals and another for departures. There is an information centre in the Departures passage and there is also a Teleguide hotel info board and a Mr Info touch screen information are both located in Arrivals.

If you are hanging around waiting for your flight you can head over the Rennes Premier Lounge which is open to anyone. If you are hungry there are a few restaurants that should satisfy such as Spur Family Restaurant, Panarottis Pizza and Pasta, House of Coffees and Gass Cigar Bar. There are a wide range of shops found within the airport including Cosmic Candy; Izimbali Florist Shop, Exclusive books, Sneakers, Rythmic Beat, Big 5 Duty Free and Ocean Africa.

If you need some cash for these shops and restaurants you can find a banking hall, with a bureau de change and ATMs, situated on the ground floor of the Arrivals Terminal. A bureau de change can also be found on the ground floor of International Departures.

If you want to stay connected while you are waiting for your flight you can find a number of Wi-Fi Hotspots located in the departures area past the security checkpoints. There are also Fax and Internet facilities at the tourism information office in the Arrivals Terminal; there are also public telephones located throughout the airport. If you want to hire a phone for your trip in South Africa there is a Cell Phone Rental agent in the public concourse of the airport.

That’s the end of our quick overview of what you can expect in Durban International Airport. For more options have a look at our dedicated Durban car hire homepage. For more ideas for activities that a look at our other South Africa blogs.

If you have any tips about dealing with Durban International Airport or any further questions then we’d be more than happy to see them so please leave your message in the comment box below.