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Dortmund Airport lies six miles from the German city of Dortmund’s downtown district, with its share of regional and inter-European traffic increasing at a good rate since 2001 due to the rise in popularity of low-cost carriers. In spite of its recent popularity, onwards transportation to the city and its environs only includes an express bus to Dortmund railway station, shuttle buses to a suburban rail station and Unna city to the east, taxis or car hire in Dortmund Airport. For a fast getaway, self-drive is the best option.
Who to Book With
Avis, Sixt, Europcar and Hertz are the car rental options at the airport, all opening from Monday to Friday from around 08:00 to around 22:00 and with varying hours on weekends. The suppliers’ desks are located opposite the terminal’s main entrance, just before the security checkpoints for Gate 6A.
Need to Know Essentials
Drivers should present the below documents at pick up:
- A valid UK/EU or home country driver’s licence
- A utility bill or passport confirming your ID
- Your booking confirmation
- The credit card used for the reservation
Germany drives on the right and has good roads and generally good drivers, giving no unpleasant surprises for experienced drivers from overseas. Speed limits on dual carriageways and autobahns are 80mph, although this is a recommendation rather than a law, and other rural roads have enforced limits of 62mph. Urban roads are limited to 31mph, and in bad weather an overall limit of 31mph is enforced. Rush hour traffic in the city can cause problems and is best avoided and, as with most German cities, central car parking lots are a feature, making parking easy for visitors. Petrol stations are found in most areas and accept card payments. Warning triangles and a spare set of bulbs, as well as a first-aid kit, should be carried, and seatbelts are compulsory.
For the fastest getaway from the airport to your final destination, hiring a car in advance from one of the airport’s providers is the best choice as there is no train service as yet. A direct airport shuttle bus runs to the city centre, but takes at least 30 minutes dependent on time of day and traffic, and a more frequent shuttle bus links the airport with Aplerbeck U-bahn station for the trip to the centre, taking around 45 minutes. Another bus links to nearby Holzwickede Station for trains to downtown, with the journey taking around five minutes.
There is no direct train service linking the airport with the city, but shuttle buses run to the city’s Central Station, where DB connections to other major German cities are possible. Buses also run to Aplerbeck for U-Bahn connections to Statdgarten and to Holzwickede Station for rail links to Dortmund.
A taxi rank is found outside the terminal’s Arrivals exit east on Level 1. Taxis are licensed and metered, although drivers may be reluctant to use the meter. The journey to the city centre takes around half an hour, dependent on traffic. Fares rise by at least 10 per cent after 22:00 until 06:00 on weekdays and all day Sunday and public holidays.
Dortmund Airport to Dortmund city centre is about £18
Dortmund Airport to Arnsberg is about £55
Dortmund Airport to Cologne is about £125
The Airport Express bus service runs hourly to Dortmund Central railway station between 04:30 and 17:00, Monday to Friday, to 18:30 on Saturday and to 19:00 on Sunday and public holidays. The trip takes around 30 minutes and costs around £6. The Rail and Fly shuttle bus to Aplerbeck U-bahn station is free if a Rail and Fly train ticket for onward journeys is purchased through your airline, and the C41/R52 buses run to Holzwickede Station for hourly trains to Dortmund which take just a few minutes.
Dortmund Airport has a single terminal which deals with around 2.3 million passengers a year, close to its capacity. The number is expected to increase in March 2013 when Ryanair routes to a number of holiday destinations kick in. The airport’s 13 carriers are all low-cost airlines, with only EasyJet offering a flight from London-Luton. Other routes include Palma de Mallorca, Istanbul and various Balkan destinations.
Seven parking areas are provided on the complex, with a total of around 5,000 parking bays available. The closest lot to the terminal is the underground P1 with its special women’s parking area, and the multi-storey P2 is a few minutes’ walk away. The remaining areas, P3 to P7, are used mostly for long-term parking and are linked to the terminal by a shuttle bus. Charges range between an hour’s parking in P1 and P2 for around £3 to 24 hours’ parking at £20 and a week’s parking at around £80.
Wi-Fi internet access is provided at the airport via a pre-paid card which can be purchased at the information desk.
An information desk is located in the main hall.
Service Centre: +49 23 192 1301
Dedicated parking spaces for passengers with reduced mobility in the car parks adjacent to the terminal are provided, and the airport is well-designed for wheelchair users, with lifts, ramps, adapted toilets and seating areas, and assistance with boarding and deplaning, if requested in advance. Assistance is also provided for blind, deaf and mentally-impaired passengers though their airline.
Restaurants and Bars
Airside, you’ll find two small café/bars offering coffee, pastries, snacks and various alcoholic and soft drinks. Landside, there’s also a café and bistro, as well as a general shop selling souvenirs, travel necessities and snacks. On Level 2 of the terminal, in the visitors’ viewing area, is the airport restaurant, Bella Vista, offering a good à-la-carte menu.
There are no VIP lounges at the airport.
Money and ATMs
There are three ATMs located in the airport, in the Departures and Arrivals areas.
Domestic as well as international travellers can purchase duty-free items at the store in the Departures lounge on production of a boarding card. The outlet offers perfumes, cosmetics, alcohol and tobacco products, as well as gifts and chocolates. Cofiserie Druke’s fine confectionery, including chocolate treats, is found in the Arrivals area.