Frequently Asked Questions | Airporter
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Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to book Airporter?

The best advice is YES. Passengers travelling to and from the Airport want to know that there seat are guaranteed and we do not want to disappoint anyone. If you have not booked however you can purchase tickets on the day providing there is availability on the coach.

Where does the bus leave from in Derry/Londonderry?

The coaches all depart and arrive from the front of our Head office, this is marked on the booking system as Airporter HQ Cityside. The address is 1 Bay Road Derry Londonderry BT48 7SH. We are located in the Da Vinci’s Complex at the bottom of the Culmore road just beside the Ulsterbank and are clearly visible from the roads approaching the Pennyburn roundabout from all directions.

Where does the bus stop?

Bookings can be made to and from the following bus stops:

  • Airporter Headquarters, 1 Bay Road, Derry~Londonderry, BT48 7SH
  • Altnagelvin, Glenshane Road (at the Translink bus stop before the traffic lights at the Hospital)
  • Claudy Crossroads (Translink Bus Stop)
  • Dungiven (in the lay by beside the primary school – Translink Bus Stop)
  • Maghera Flyover (on the main road, opposite the park & ride – Translink Bus Stop)
  • Toome (on the main road opposite the park & ride – Translink Bus Stop)
If travelling in a group, can passengers’ board at different stops e.g. Altnagelvin and Claudy?

Yes, but again, this can’t be booked in such detail, so if you have passengers getting on at different places, book the seats for the FIRST pickup (for example, Altnagelvin) and in the comments section add the additional stops (for example, “one passenger getting on at Claudy”)

Can I stop a bus and get off between stops?

Buses can only pick up and set down passengers at marked bus stops.

You must not attempt to board or alight from a moving bus or from a bus which is stationary at a point which is not a designated bus stop such as traffic lights and road works etc.

Where does the coach leave from at the Belfast International airport?

The coach at the International Airport departs AND arrives at a bus stop opposite the entrance door. Here’s how we explain the location if you have arrived at the airport and are departing the International airport: Go out the exit doors and cross the pedestrian crossing. You’ll find yourself on a long pedestrian island; turn left and walk up the pedestrian island to where you’ll find two large bus stops. This is where you’ll find our Airporter coaches and the Translink buses (and timetables for both).

Where does the coach leave from at the Belfast City airport?

Super easy – exit the George Best Belfast City airport and go straight across the pedestrian crossing and you’ll find us parked to the left of the taxis.

Does Airporter have a service operating between the two airports?

Yes, though by default. Our scheduled service connects both the George Best Belfast City airport AND the Belfast International Airport to Derry/Londonderry, so by default we also offer a connecting service between the airports and we always have seats available. These seats cost just £10.00 per person can be booked at the Belfast Welcome desk at either airport or purchased from the driver.

Do I need to print my ticket?

It’s not necessary to have a printed copy of your ticket (though the truth is, our customers often feel more confident travelling with one, particularly on the journey FROM the airports). Whether you book by phone or online you will be issued with a CONFIRMATION number (or REFERENCE number, both mean the same thing) and this number is all you need as proof of booking and payment.

Can I purchase my ticket at the airports?

There are a number of ways to purchase Airporter tickets: The best way to book is online at www.airporter.co.uk, and it’s always best to purchase your tickets online before you travel. You can also book with our Customer Service Team – in the office or over the phone – and pay by cash or by card. If you arrive at the airport and you haven’t booked a seat, you can either purchase tickets (single or return) from the Belfast Welcome centre, located in the arrivals area of both Belfast International and George Best Belfast City airport. If you wait to purchase your ticket from the Airporter driver, you can only purchase a single fare and the driver will only be able to accept cash.

Can I pay cash to the driver?

Drivers can only take cash for a one-way journey. This is however subject to availability and pre booking is always advised.

Do you have a reduced child fare?

Children under the age of 3 can travel for free on the lap of an adult, while children travelling in a car seat and those aged 3-15 will pay half price.

Children aged 16 and over will be charged an adult fare.

Do you offer a discounted rate for students?

We do not have any specific student discount rates. However, passengers can avail of our frequent discounts offered online. These are advertised via our social media links and website.

I had problems making a booking/payment online. What should I do?

If your booking has been successful, you’ll receive a confirmation email within a few minutes.

if you haven’t received this within an hour of buying your ticket, please call our helpline on

+44 (0)28 7126 9996

Can I use my Smartpass?

Absolutely! Passengers who have a DRD Smartpass that has been issued by the Department of Regional Development can travel for free on our services. To qualify for free travel passengers must produce their card number upon booking and show their card to the driver on the day of travel.

For more information on how to apply for a Smartpass follow the link below:

www.nidirect.gov.uk/articles/60senior-smartpass

What happens if I forget my DRD Smartpass?

Smartpasses must be produced when travelling. Passengers without a valid Smartpass will be required to pay the appropriate standard fare for the journey.

More information on lost/out of date Smartpasses can be found here

www.nidirect.gov.uk/articles/60senior-smartpass

Can I use my UK bus pass?

No, each region within the UK pays the cost for their own regions’ users, so the only passes which we can accept are the 65+ (blue), the 60+ (orange) and the ROI (purple) Smartpasses issued by the DRD. You must present your pass to our staff at the time of booking and we take the Smartpass number off it. We also accept the blind passes and the half fare passes which are issued by the DRD (Northern Ireland). For more information on the eligibility for these passes contact the DRD or your local Ulsterbus station.

Can I amend the date or time of my ticket after purchase?

Tickets can be amended up to 24 hours prior to the travel date/time. Please be advised that some changes may incur extra charges. You can do this by calling our Customer Service Helpline on

+44 (0)28 7126 9996

Can I cancel my Airporter ticket?

As long as we know before you travel, then absolutely! Cancellations have to take place during office hours (24 hours’ notice is what’s in the terms and conditions), but as long as we know about it, we can cancel all or part of your ticket. In the case of those purchasing our Cancellation insurance a full refund will be applicable (less the cost of the insurance) for those who have not purchased the insurance a credit may be issued for the journey but not a refund. Once the journey has past, however, the tickets cannot be amended or refunded.

What are your office opening hours?

Mon – Fri – 8am – 6pm

Sat – 8am – 3:30pm

Sun – 10:30am – 6pm

How much luggage can I carry?

To make sure all of our customers are comfortable and safe, we limit the size, type and quantity of luggage/belongings that you bring on our buses.

Each passenger is permitted to carry one large suitcase and one hand luggage bag each.

We reserve the right to refuse permission for you to bring any item on to our buses.

Can I bring sports equipment on the bus?

Unfortunately, we cannot carry golf clubs, surf boards, canoes, kayaks, bicycles (even those in a box) or any over sized sports or musical gear. Drivers will not be able to accommodate these items even if you have made a reservation.

Can I bring my pet on the bus?

Animals of any species are not permitted on any of our buses, either in the cabin with the passengers or in the storage compartment. Guide dogs and assistance dogs are allowed at all times.

Can I take food or drink on the bus?

Usually, yes but hot drinks should be in a suitable travel container such as a flask or takeaway coffee cup with a lid.

Alcohol is strictly forbidden at all times on any vehicle. Please be considerate and avoid eating and drinking items (such as strong smelling foods) which other customers may find unpleasant.

Can I use an E-Cig/vape on the bus?

Smoking and the use of electronic cigarettes are strictly forbidden at any time on our buses.

Is there Wi-Fi on the bus?

There is! We became the first coach company in Northern Ireland to introduce Wi-Fi on board in 2009 and it’s available across the whole fleet. Getting online is pretty easy – your Wi-Fi device will find it automatically for you, though we do find that coverage at the top of the Glenshane can be patchy.

Do you have power sockets available on the bus?

Yes we are currently upgrading our fleet to luxury 16 seater vehicle’s all of these will be fitted with power points at specific seats As many of us now travel with i-phone, laptop, DVD players etc., and this is something we are asked for more frequently.

Is there a toilet on the bus?

Our buses do not have toilets on board. Please be advised that there are toilet facilities at our headquarters.

What happens in the case of flight delays?

In the event of flight delays we are happy to find you a seat on the next available service at no extra charge, providing there is availability to do so. Equally, if you arrive earlier than scheduled we’ll be happy to find you a seat on an earlier service providing we have seats to do so. Its not necessary to contact the office, although if you do know well ahead of time that there is a delay it can make it easier to change the reservation. However, we will always defer to the driver at the airport who will know exactly what is available.

Why does the Airporter service not wait for passengers from flights that have been delayed?

Airporter is a government licensed, public transport provider. We hold what’s termed a stage carriage licence which permits Airporter to operate a scheduled timetable operation connecting Derry / Londonderry to the two Belfast Airports.

By law we must operate in accordance with the published scheduled times and our punctuality performance is of paramount importance throughout the operation. Our operation is audited annually by the government and our licence renewal process is a thorough analysis of existing operational performance.

We fully appreciate the stresses that our passengers are under and the impacts that making flights and delayed flights can have in their overall journey & transfer experience. In respect of this, over the past 6 months we have purchased an additional 4 new vehicles and have increased our daily schedules from 13 to 17 departures daily.

It is an unfortunate event that can happen where passengers’ flights do get slightly delayed and has major impacts on their connecting transfers.

We plan to further expand the frequency of our service in the future to assist with these inconveniences and will obviously keep all our passengers informed of these changes as and when they happen.

Will/Can the bus wait?

This is probably one of the hardest customer service decisions that we have to make on a daily basis. We know it only takes 10 seconds to miss a bus, and when you do miss it, you’re left feeling frustrated, very often tired and annoyed. But, we also have to guarantee – as best we can – the delivery of our timetable, so that when our passengers’ book, they know when they will arrive and depart. Our rules are as follows: if we have passengers that are reserved, the driver will wait 60 seconds past the time of departure from the airport. Airporter departure times are strictly adhered to, so if you are booked to leave Derry/Londonderry at (for example) 0530, the coach departs at 0530 on the dot.

What do I do if my flight is too late for last coach or too early for first coach?

You have several options for this one; the one that most people choose is to use our Award Winning private transport which was designed to accommodate one leg of the journey by schedule service and the other leg of the journey by private coach bus (depending on the size of your group). You make all your arrangements with us, we book everything for you and you can choose your private transfer at whatever time you choose, and will be automatically adjusted if your flight is delayed. So for example, let’s say you have an outgoing flight at 3:00pm but the return flight isn’t in until 1:00am – you could take the 11:30am Airporter coach departure on the way out, and we’ll arrange a private transfer to pick you up after your holiday at 1:00am. The cost depends on the size of your group, so give us a shout for more details.

Derry~Londonderry to/from the Belfast Airports