Flybe are the largest airline offering flights from Manchester Airport

Manchester Airport Overview and History

Manchester International Airport (MIA) is the UK’s fourth busiest air transport centre, and the largest outside London.

As early as 1926, senior local figures in Manchester recognised the need for a local air-transport centre, leading in 1934 to the earmarking of land in the ‘Ringway’ area south of Manchester for use as an airport. Operations finally began on 25th of June 1938, with KLM as one of the early partners, only to be interrupted by World War Two the following year.

Peacetime service was resumed in 1946, and by the following year passenger numbers had tripled to more than 7,000. By 1958 the airport was handling around 500,000 passengers annually, and growth continued so that by the late 1970′s this figure was passing through the airport every month, via 15 airlines flying to 37 destinations in the UK, Europe and North America.

The 1980′s saw further expansion, and in 1989 HRH the Princess of Wales opened a new Domestic terminal.
Moving forward, the airports future should be secured by the commencement in 2007 of a £35m redevelopment programme to build a large shopping centre alongside terminal one.

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Parking Facilities at Manchester Airport

Parking is available for long and short-stay passengers and can be booked via the internet, telephone on 0871 310 2200 or on arrival.
Long stay rates begin at £20 per day and are capped at £50 per week. Short-stays are charged at £2.00 per half hour up to £26.50 per day. Ground transport to and from MIA is via road, rail, coach and bus.

Up to six services per hour connect MIA with Manchester Piccadilly train station, where travellers can connect to national rail services to other parts of the country. Onward tickets can be booked online and collected from the self-service machines in the baggage reclaim hall.
Coach tickets are available to pre-book via telephone (subject to a booking fee) on +44 (0) 8705 80 80 80, or can be purchased from MIA’s transport hub ‘The Station’.

Buses run to a variety of destinations including the Aviation viewing par, Buxton, Altringham, the popular Trafford shopping district as well as Manchester city centre (reached via services 43 and 105). Alternatively, taxi ranks can be found outside all three terminals.

Transport Links to Manchester

MIA is situated approximately 10 miles from Manchester city centre, which can be reached via the M56 and A5103. Also within 20 miles of the airport are the satellite towns of Warrington and Macclesfield, while the airport itself has several attractions to recommend it including a ‘Viewing Park’, where visitors can tour famous planes such as the Concorde, DC-10 and AVRO RJX.

The park is situated off the A538 between Junction 6 of the M56 motorway, where visitors can also observe take-off and landings. While the airport itself is fairly isolated, the short journey to the city centre means travellers can take advantage of Manchester’s leisure, tourism and hospitality options with ease soon after arrival.

Manchester Airport Conference and Business Facilities

Conferences can be staged at the dedicated conference and banqueting area, where ICT facilities include overhead projection, PA and centralised control consoles as well as phone and fax.

A covered walkway also connects terminals one and two to the site of the airports conference facilities at the nearby Radisson SAS hotel, which offers advanced conferencing technology, as well as the chance to use the ‘Shower and Change’ facility, which can be booked through the Radisson reception desk on +44 (0) 161 490 5000.
Each terminal also has an Executive Lounge for business travellers and nearby hotels, not counting the Radisson, includes the Crowne Plaza and Hilton.

Manchester Town Information

Manchester is a vibrant, bustling centre of activity, rivalling London in its range of food and nightlife, and is a local leader in culture, sport, shopping and tourist activities. Notable local attractions include the Urbis museum of city life (free entry, 0161 605 8200), the Imperial War Museum North, the Museum of Science and Industry and the Manchester Art Gallery.

Gourmands can enjoy cuisine from all corners of the world in restaurants such as Simply Heathcotes, Le Mont, Chinese fare from the Chinatown district and the famous ‘Curry Mile’, in the suburb of Rusholme, home to one of the UK’s widest selection of Asian food.

Nightlife is equally as varied, with bars and clubs concentrated in the city centre and live music venues scattered throughout the city.

However Manchester is also rich in history and heritage. In its role as the ‘cradle of the Industrial Revolution’, Manchester was central to the development of steam power, the cotton industry and several notable scientific innovations in the 19th century, some of which can be viewed at the Museum of Science and Industry, 0161 832 2244).

Cultural attractions include the 0161 876 2121, Lowry gallery complex, the Imperial War Museum North (, 0 161 836 4000), for sports fans the Manchester United Museum (0161 868 8861) is an essential part of any visit to the city.

A wide range of major stores can be found in the Millennium Quarter, housing the MEN Arena (Europe’s largest indoor arena, staging music and other events), the Printworks (a state-of-the-art entertainment complex), Selfridges department store and Urbis urban museum.

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