Manchester Airport (MAN) is the third-busiest airport in the United Kingdom and the busiest outside London. Manchester has direct flights to over 200 destinations on four continents.
Facilities at Manchester Airport
There are three terminals at Manchester Airport that are all within walking distance to each other. All terminals have all the shops and restaurants that you would expect at a large international airport as well as business lounges for frequent flyers.
There are several places to eat and drink at the Terminal 1 including Bar MCR, Burger King, Giraffe, Greggs, Mi Casa, Pret a Manger, Starbucks, The Grain Loft, The Pasty Shop and Upper Crust.
Terminal 1 has two business class lounges: the Aspire and Escape Lounges. Business class travellers flying Aegean, Austrian, Finnair, Lufthansa, Swiss, TAP Air Portugal and Turkish Airlines have access to the Aspire Lounge and business class travellers flying Brussels Airlines have access to The Escape Lounge. Diners Club holders have free access to both lounges and American Express Platinum cardholders and Priority Pass members have free access to The Escape Lounge. Regardless of which airline you are flying you can pay to visit either lounge. Both lounges have free food and drink (including beer and wine).
Places to eat and drink at Terminal 2 include Broderick’s, Burger King, Cabin, Caffè Nero, Frankie & Benny’s, Greggs, Spinning Jenny and Upper Crust.
Terminal 2 also has both the Aspire and Escape Lounges. Business class travellers flying Cathay Pacific and Qatar Airways as well as American Express Platinum cardholders and Priority Pass members have free access to The Escape Lounge and Diners Club holders have free access to both lounges. It is also possible to pay to visit either lounge. Both lounges have free food and drink (including beer and wine).
Places to eat and drink at Terminal 3 include Caffè Nero, Costa, Delice de France, Flat White Coffee Club, KFC, Kiosko, Port & Pickle, The Nook, Trattoria Milano and the Lion & Antelope pub.
There are two lounges at Terminal 3: the British Airways Lounge and the Escape Lounge. The British Airways Lounge is available to business class travellers flying American Airlines, British Airways and Iberia. Holders of the American Express Platinum card, Diners Club cards and Priority Pass members get into The Escape Lounge and it is also possible to pay to get into this lounge. Both lounges have free food and drink (including beer and wine).
Both terminals also have the usual selection of shopping options including branches of Boots, Harrods, M&S Simply Food, WHSmith, duty-free shops and a usual selection of clothing, sunglass and luggage shops. Seriously, who waits till they get to the airport before buying their luggage?
Aviation Viewing Park
The airport also has an Aviation Viewing Park at the southwestern side of the airport perimeter set up specifically for aircraft enthusiasts. The Aviation Viewing Park has cafe and gift shop catering to plane spotters as well as several aircraft on display including a British Airways Concorde, one of only two Hawker Siddeley Trident 3B aircraft and the last aeroplane to be built in the UK, a BAE Avro RJX.
When you arrive at the airport, signs will tell you which terminal to go to. In most cases airlines use the following terminals (although it is best to double-check before passing through security in case of last-minute changes):
- Aegean – Terminal 1
- Aer Lingus – Terminal 1
- Aeroflot – North Terminal
- Air Arabia – Terminal 1
- Air Canada – Terminal 2
- Air Canada Rouge – Terminal 2
- Air France – Terminal 3
- Air Malta – Terminal 2
- Air Transat – Terminal 1
- American Airlines – Terminal 3
- Aurigny – Terminal 1
- Austrian – Terminal 1
- Balkan Holidays – Terminal 1
- Belavia – Terminals 1 and 2
- British Airways – Terminal 3
- Brussels Airlines – Terminal 1
- Cathay Pacific – Terminal 2
- China Airlines – South Terminal
- Cobalt – Terminal 1
- Delta – Terminal 2
- easyJet – Terminal 1
- Emirates – Terminal 1
- Etihad – Terminal 1
- Eurowings – Terminal 1
- Finnair – Terminal 1
- Flylolo – Terminal 2
- Germania – Terminal 2
- Hainan Airlines – Terminal 2
- Iberia – Terminal 3
- Iberia Express – Terminal 3
- Icelandair – Terminal 1
- Iraqi Airways – Terminal 1
- Jet2 – Terminals 1 and 2
- Jetsgo Holidays – Terminal 2
- KLM – Terminal 3
- Libyan Airlines – Terminal 1
- Loganair – Terminal 3
- Lufthansa – Terminal 1
- Norwegian – Terminal 1
- Olympic Holidays – Terminals 1, 2 and 3
- Oman Air – Terminal 2
- PIA Pakistan International – Terminal 2
- Pegasus Airlines – Terminal 1
- Qatar Airways – Terminal 2
- Ryanair – Terminal 3
- Sardatur Holidays – Terminal 2
- SAS Scandinavian – Terminal 1
- Saudia Airlines – Terminal 2
- Singapore Airlines – Terminal 2
- Small Planet Airlines – Terminal 2
- Swiss – Terminal 1
- Tailwind – Terminal 2
- TAP Portugal – Terminal 1
- Titan Airways – Terminal 1
- Tui – Terminal 2
- Turkish Airlines – Terminal 1
- United Airlines – Terminal 2
- US Airways – Terminal 3
- Virgin Atlantic – Terminal 2
- Vueling – Terminal 3
Getting to and from Manchester Airport
Manchester Airport has excellent transport connections to central Manchester and other destinations throughout northern England.
Manchester Airport railway station has nine services per hour to Manchester Piccadilly with most trains continuing onward to other destinations in the north of England as well as to Scotland and Wales.
From Manchester Airport there are hourly trains to Blackpool North, Chester, Doncaster, Leeds, Llandudno, Middlesbrough, Sheffield and York plus trains every two hours to Edinburgh Waverley and Glasgow Central.
The airport train station is just a two-minute walk from Terminal 1, a six-minute walk to Terminal 2 and eight minutes to Terminal 3.
The journey time from the airport into Manchester Piccadilly station is around 15 minutes and the standard one-way fare is £3.90.
The Metrolink tram also runs between Manchester Airport railway station and the city centre, taking a slower route through Manchester’s southern suburbs. Trams run every 12 minutes and are a handy option if you’re staying near Old Trafford or the Salford Quays area.
Bus and coach
You can also get to Manchester Airport by bus or coach with local bus services operating around the clock.
There are buses to Manchester and its suburban area as well as direct bus services top Buxton, Telford and Wrexham.
Many National Express coaches also stop at Manchester Airport going to destinations throughout the UK including direct coach services to Birmingham, Blackpool, Bradford, Bristol, Chester, Coventry, Edinburgh, Heathrow Airport, Leeds, London, Newcastle upon Tyne, Plymouth and Stansted Airport.
Buses and coaches stop next to the airport railway station.
Hotels near Manchester Airport
There are several hotels close to Manchester Airport.
Away from the airport terminals, there are another three hotels on Runger Lane at the extreme western edge of the airport (the Holiday Inn Express and two Premier Inn hotels) and there is also a Marriott around a 10-minute walk beyond the Runger Lane hotels. If you’re staying at one of these four hotels you will need to take a shuttle bus to get to the airport.
There is also another Premier Inn hotel at Heald Green, which is probably a better option if you’re travelling by public transport and can’t afford one of the four hotels within walking distance of the terminals. This hotel is right next to Heald Green railway station, which just one stop away from the airport.
Click the name of the hotel in the following table to read our full review of that hotel.
|Radisson Blu Manchester Airport||The top choice (and the most 'airporty') of Manchester's airport hotels. It is a short walk to all the airport terminals and it is the only hotel directly connected to the terminal building by a covered walkway.|
|Hilton Manchester Airport||A four-star hotel with nice rooms and great facilities. It is walking distance to all the terminals at Manchester Airport.|
|Crowne Plaza Manchester Airport||A four-star hotel with nice rooms and great facilities. It is walking distance to all the terminals at Manchester Airport.|
|Clayton Hotel Manchester Airport||A good accommodation option that is usually the best value of the four hotels within walking distance to the airport terminals.|
|Holiday Inn Express Manchester Airport||The Holiday Inn Express is a large modern hotel located on Runger Lane at the western edge of the airport. It is necessary to take a shuttle bus to the airport terminal.|
|Premier Inn Manchester Airport (Runger Lane South)||This Premier Inn is a modern budget hotel on Runger Lane at the western edge of the airport. It is necessary to take a shuttle bus to the airport terminal.|
|Premier Inn Manchester Airport (Runger Lane North)||This modern hotel is the newer of the two Premier Inn hotels on Runger Lane. It is necessary to take a shuttle bus to the airport terminal.|
|Manchester Airport Marriott Hotel||The Manchester Airport Marriott is a large sprawling complex that feels a little dated in places. It is one of the worst located hotels near the airport and it is necessary to take a shuttle bus to the terminal building.|
|Premier Inn Manchester Airport (Heald Green)||Although farther from the terminal than most other airport hotels, this budget hotel is preferable to the Runger Lane hotels if you're relying on public transport. There is a train station next door with regular services to Manchester Airport (with a journey time of only five minutes).|
There are a couple of other hotels that advertise as airport hotels that are not included in the above table. These are the Britannia Airport Hotel and the Airport Inn (also run by Britannia). These two are not particularly convenient as they have poor access by public transport (the Britannia Airport Hotel is a 40-minute bus ride away and the Airport Inn does not even have direct bus access to the airport). You’re seriously better-off staying in central Manchester than one of these two hotels.