Aviation fun facts – Why do I take the bus to get to the airplane?

Often, your trip involves a bus ride between the gate and the airplane that will carry out your flight. At some airports, such as João Paulo II Airport, on the island of São Miguel, or Lajes Airport, on Terceira island, in the Azores, this journey is so short that you’ve probably wondered if you couldn’t just walk to the airplane. We explain.

The most common reason for being transported by bus to the airplane is the weather. When weather conditions are not the best, buses are used – if there are no other alternatives such as boarding bridges or corridors, – to prevent passengers from being exposed to rain and wind. However, there is another less apparent reason.

As you can predict, even at the smallest airports there may be several passengers boarding and disembarking simultaneously and, to prevent them from crossing and creating large clusters on the apron, using buses is key.

There are airports, as Lajes Airport, on Terceira island, where the aircraft apron layout is so peculiar that this situation is much more common than you think.

It could even happen that after showing your boarding pass along with your ID at the boarding gate, you get on the wrong airplane. On the other hand, several passenger control points would make it difficult for flights to leave on time. And, as punctuality is one of our main goals, it is not practical to avoid simultaneous departures and arrivals, as this would imply waiting times between take-offs and landings of the several flights.

The next time you travel and have to take a bus ride to the airplane that will take you to your destination, you’ll already know why. It’s always an honor to clarify your doubts and welcome you on board.

Fly with us!

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