Bahrain Airport Information
Bahrain International Airport (BAH) can be found at the northern tip of the archipelago and country officially named the Kingdom of Bahrain. The small but ancient country is situated near the western shores of the Persian Gulf, and is highly developed, a centre for finance in the Middle East. Receiving millions of visitors each year, this nation of modern Arab culture and long history of ancient civilisations needs a world-class airport, and that’s what it is getting.
As one of the busiest airports in the Middle East, Bahrain International Airport flies nine million passengers a year. A refurbishment in 2006 to add parking space, retail outlets, security systems and to resurface the runways has seen it brought up-to-date and named Best Airport in the Middle East at the Skytrax World Airport Awards in 2010. Further updates are planned and underway for the airport, which will see two new terminals opened to triple the passenger capacity.
Currently, the airport has one terminal, which is home to plenty of services for tired, hungry and forgetful travellers. There are travel agents, telecommunication stores, restaurants and cafes, car rental counters, bookshops and duty free outlets. Gulf Air has a business class lounge, the Falcon Gold Lounge, in the terminal which caters to its business or first class passengers. It offers sleeping cubicles, food and drinks, a children’s section, personal media players, and more. There is also a Marhaba Lounge, which is available at a charge for travellers on any airline, in any class. It has a business centre, full buffet, showers and a smoking area.
BAH is the primary hub for Gulf Air and there are 23 other passenger airlines which operate flights out of the terminal. Most flights departing Bahrain Airport are flying to other Middle Eastern cities, with Abu Dhabi, Doha, Muscat, Riyadh, Kuwait and Dubai as very common destinations. There are flights to various major European destinations departing regularly, and there is also a service to Washington in the United States. Flights arriving in Bahrain follow similar patterns.
Customs inspections are made upon arrival to Bahrain International Airport to check for banned items. These include drugs (a prescription should be shown for medicines), firearms and weapons, religious propaganda and offensive printed materials or films. Any currency over BD10,000 should be declared for monitoring and statistical purposes.
Bahrain Airport is on the island city of Muharraq, connected by causeways to the capital city of Al Manamah. It is a short drive from the capital’s CBD, at around ten kilometres or twenty minutes. Very close by the terminal is Amwaj, a traveller-friendly compound which contains top-notch hotels, restaurants and a bar and nightclub.