Airports and Airlines - Pisa Airport


We flew out of Pisa Airport to fly to Athens.

The time of our flight was close to 6pm but after researching about Pisa Airport and how slow it was, we were there early to try and beat the long lines it was known for.

What a waste of time being there so early. It made no difference.

Because...

Our airline didn't open up for check in until well under 2 hours before the flight. So we waited a long time for nothing... but perhaps that's an issue with the airline as opposed to the airport.

The airport itself isn't too bad. It has live music playing outside but once you're inside under the air con, you can't hear any of it which makes sense, otherwise, we wouldn't be able to hear any announcements.

There is public transport that takes you directly from the Pisa Airport to Pisa's central train station which was clearly marked everywhere. But if you arrived in the departure area looking for the car rental area, you'd be a little screwed. Yes, it doesn't make sense to have signs around the departure for car rental as most would need signage from arrivals, but sometimes not all car rental customers are flying in - aka, us. The signage was nowhere to be seen except when you were closer to the arrivals area.

The good thing though, is that since the car rental area is quite a walking distance from the terminals, they have a shuttle that can take you to the car rental area. But when Nathan went to use it, the driver said he will be 5 minutes and that it would be faster to walk there.... except when Nathan got there (under 5 minutes), he saw the shuttle pass him. Yeah, awesome.

The departure area (where we spent most of our time waiting super early... for nothing) was quite busy - all day long. There are two separate departure/check in areas - A and B. When looking at the departure screen for details, it lets you know which of the two areas you will find your airline, area B being a little further walk around the corner.

There aren't enough chairs in the departure area for those waiting for their check in (does any airport ever have enough) but if you were wise, you could choose the few seats that are close to a power socket and charge your phone or other device (which we were able to do).

There are a few cafes in the airport and their toilets were pretty decent - I have seen worse at airports.

After checking in and going through customs, your boarding pass is scanned by an airport worker and you are split into two lines. If, while purchasing your tickets at Pisa Airport, you paid extra to have quick security checks, you were sent to the faster line through customs. If you didn't - like us - you were sent into the longer line to go through customs. And it was just one long line for two custom scanners. Even at other airports if you weren't fast tracked, there would be more than two scanners.

On the other side when you eventually went through, their duty free was pretty small and there were maybe a couple of cafe/food options (none of them fast food) and because the airport is fairly small, the departure gates are quite close together. But again, not enough seats so a lot of people were sitting on the floors or waiting in imaginary lines.

As it is a small airport, every plane is reached via tarmac.

Most announcements are done in both Italian and English.

Their trolleys cost money to use - €1.

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