Copenhagen Airport (IATA: CPH), also known as Kastrup, is the busiest airport of the Nordic countries, located on the island of Amager in Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark. Beside Copenhagen, the airport also serves Malmö, the capital of Scania province in Sweden as both are linked via the Öresund-bridge.
Copenhagen is not only the main airport for the densely-populated Øresund region, but also the main air transportation hub for Scandinavia, the main hub for the joint Danish-Swedish-Norwegian carrier SAS Group and one of Europe's major hub airports. There is a large number of intercontinental connections to Copenhagen, as well as a dense network of short-haul connections from Copenhagen to destinations in all of Europe and specifically in the Nordic countries.
Compared to other major European hub airports, like Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport or London Heathrow Airport, Copenhagen Airport provides comparable coverage in terms of connections, but is much smaller in both actual size and passenger volumes, and can provide a calmer, more pleasant experience. Its location in the south of Scandinavia makes reaching most European destinations reasonable, and actually flight times to metropolies in the Baltic region and in Eastern Europe are generally twice as short as from major hub airports in Western Europe.
Copenhagen Airport is a compact airport with two terminals for check-in, but with a common post-security departure and transfer area, thus making transfers very smooth. The airport handles in excess of 25 million passengers a year, which puts it in the same league as Zurich Airport and Vienna International Airport. It has also been consistently topping the charts for the Nordic region, serving as a European and intercontinental hub for all of them due to its location.
The airport opened in 1925 and became hub of Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) upon its establishment in 1946. It has been growing ever since, with the current terminal 2 opening in 1960 and terminal 3 in 1998. After the opening of the Øresund Bridge to Malmö, Sweden, the airport has also been the primary airport for the southern Sweden.
Copenhagen's international connections are mainly provided by two competing Scandinavian carriers, both with long-haul bases at the airport:
- SAS Scandinavian Airlines flies to New York, Chicago, Beijing, Shanghai and Tokyo
- Norwegian flies to New York, Los Angeles, Fort Lauderdale in Florida and to Bangkok
SAS is a member of Star Alliance, meaning that many of their flights are codeshared or can be interlined with local Star Alliance partners. Therefore, you can take advantage of a one-ticket flight to, from or via Copenhagen even if your origin or destination is not directly served by SAS. Norwegian is not a member of any alliance, but they offer connecting flights from Copenhagen to their European destinations on one ticket with an intercontinental flight.
Other airlines offering intercontinental connections to Copenhagen are SAS's Star Alliance partners Singapore Airlines (to Singapore) and Thai Airways (to Bangkok and Phuket), as well as competing SkyTeam carrier Delta with a seasonal connection to New York and Pakistan International Airlines to Islamabad and Lahore.
Apart from that, Emirates and Qatar Airways fly between Copenhagen and their hubs in the Persian Gulf region, where you can take advantage from their dense network of connections to Asia, Africa and Australia.
Copenhagen Airport is also the only airport with year-round diect regular scheduled passenger service to Greenland, operated by Air Greenland.
Connections within Europe and the Mediterranean
Both SAS and Norwegian offer a dense network of connections between Copenhagen and other destinations within Scandinavia. In particular, they both offer frequent flights between the triangle of capitals - Copenhagen, Oslo and Stockholm, with a pretty hourly frequency, and very competitive pricing.
Apart from that, both carriers have extensive networks within Europe and the Mediterranean (including North Africa and the Middle East). SAS flies to most European capitals, and has a particularly dense network of connections across the Baltic Sea, to Finland, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania, as well as to Poland, where it serves the majority of even small airports. There is also a fairly good network of connections to the United Kingdom and, perhaps surprisingly, to Italy, where even smaller airports like Bologna are served.
Norwegian, apart from Scandinavia, has bases at London Gatwick and across Spain, meaning frequent service between Copenhagen and those destinations. They also serve a number of other European cities from Copenhagen, and in the summer they fly to most of the popular tourist destinations around the Mediterranean.
Apart from those two airlines, almost all major European carriers have a connection to Copenhagen from their main hubs. As Denmark holds sizeable immigrant communities from various European countries, even smaller carriers have frequent connections to the likes of Sarajevo or Belgrade. Apart from Norwegian, the only other low-fare carrier serving Copenhagen is Easyjet - Wizzair and Ryanair choose to serve Malmo Sturup instead.
Check-in and security
For check-in, Copenhagen Airport has two terminals:
- Terminal 2: Domestic and international scheduled and chartered departures.
- Terminal 3: Domestic and international scheduled departures from Star Alliance member airlines as well as Air Serbia, Alsie Express, Danish Air Transport, Estonian Air, Icelandair and Widerøe.
The terminals are in the vicinity of the railway and metro stations.
The terminals share the airport's only security facility. In 2013, Copenhagen Airport was awarded World’s Best Airport Security Processing by Skytrax.
Gates and transfer
After passing security or arriving for a connection flight, you are in one large departure area, with access for all gates. The gates can be separated in the following sections, sorted from west to east:
- A29-A34: "The domestic yard", previoysly used for small flights for domestic departures. Currently the gates are used for international destinations inside the Schengen area.
- A18-A28: Used for domestic departures and international destinations inside the Schengen area.
- A2-A17: "Finger A", used for domestic departures and international destinations inside the Schengen area.
- B2-B19: "Finger B", used for domestic departures and international destinations inside the Schengen area.
- C2-C10: Used for domestic departures and international destinations inside the Schengen area.
- C15-C40: Used for international destinations outside the Schengen area.
- D1-D4: Used for domestic departures and international destinations inside the Schengen area.
- D101-D104: Used for international destinations outside the Schengen area.
- F1-F6: "CPH Go", used for low-cost departures for international destinations outside the Schengen area.
- F7-F10: "CPH Go", used for low-cost departures for international destinations inside the Schengen area.
No gate is located more than 33 minutes walk from each other.
All arrivals exits to Terminal 3.
Copenhagen Airport is adjacent to the Øresund Motorway (route E20), which connects Copenhagen with Malmö, Sweden via the Øresund Bridge. It is a toll bridge. As of September 2015, the price for crossing in a car is DKK 345. From Malmö, the rest of Sweden is connected by motorways.
Most parts of Denmark is connected to the motorway network.
The airports has several parking facilities, with those near the terminals very expensive, and those far away somewhat cheaper. The far parking areas has a free bus connection to the terminals.
A railway station (Københavns Lufthavn, Kastrup Station, sometimes called CPH Airport Station and wrongly Kastrup Station) is located in terminal 3. The station has frequent connections to Copenhagen and Malmö, as well as InterCity-trains for the rest of Denmark and a few daily SJ 2000 express trains for Stockholm. The frequent Øresund trains between Copenhagen and Malmö continues in Denmark to Elsinore and in Sweden to a number of destinations in Scania and other parts of Götaland.
The travel time to Copenhagen Central Station is 12 minutes, and 20 minutes to Malmö Central Station.
In terminal 3, the terminus of Copenhagen Metro line M2 is located (Lufthavnen Station). The metro is very frequent and runs to Vanløse via the central Copenhagen interchange station Nørreport Station.
The travel time to Nørreport Station is 15 minutes.
For prices, see Copenhagen#Get around.
The bus terminal is located outside of terminal 2. The airport is only served by a few local buses (lines 5A, 35 and 36), which are charged in the same way as the metro and local trains.
Taxis are located just outside the terminals. A ride to central Copenhagen costs around DKK 300.
A free airport bus connects the terminals and the parking areas every 15 minutes (though, at night every 20 minutes).
After passing security, no gate is more than a 20 minute walk away and no more than roighly half an hour from each other.
When waiting for your fight to depart, there are quite a few shops and restaurants to keep you entertained. There are also six lounges at the airport, moreover the Hilton opposite the road offers conference facilities.
- CPH Lounge (Terminal 2). Some first and business class passengers may enter for free. The lounge has beverages, snacks, newspapers, free Wi-Fi and printing facilities. It also has a small kitchen and library. DKK 169.
- Aspire Lounge (Terminal 2). Drinks, snacks, Scandinavian newspapers, free Wi-Fi.
- Aviator Lounge (Terminal 2). Drinks, snacks, free Wi-Fi. More like a cafe.
- SAS Lounge (Terminal 3, Pier C). For SAS frequent flyers. Fast Internet, salad buffet, office spaces.
- SAS Gold Lounge (Terminal 3, Pier C). For SAS Gold members, otherwise the same as the SAS Lounge
- Regus Express business lounge (Terminal 3). Meeting rooms, refreshments, bathrooms, private work rooms from DKK 80.
Eat and Drink
From a DKK 50 Danish hotdog and a beer to fine dining, at Copenhagen airport there is something for everyone's taste.
- Foodmarket (Located after security in the international departure area as well as the domestic departure area). 04:30-22:00. Serves pre-made sandwiches, wraps and salads.
- Ciao (Located before security in Terminal 3). 07:00-21:00. A healthy self-service fast food place.
- Burger King (Located before security in Terminal 3). 07:00-24:00. A fast food restaurant
- Grab and Fly (Two locations after security in the international departure area). 06:00-21:00, Saturdays 06:00-20:00. Sandwiches and salats to go. They also have relatively cheap and delicious hot dogs.
- McDonald's (Located outside the airport). 10:00-23:00 (Fridays and Saturdays 10:00-00:00). A fast food restaurant.
- 7-Eleven (Located before security in Terminal 2 as well as Terminal 3). 24 hours. A convenience store
- Steff's Place (Located before security in Terminal 2, two places after security in the international departure area and at the baggage claim for international arrivals). various hours. A traditional Danish pølsevogn (hot dog stand).
- YamYam ToGo (Located after security in the international departure area). 10:00-21:30 (Saturdays 10:00-20:30). Rice and noodle stand.
- Horizon All Day Restaurant (Located at the adjacent Hilton Hotel). 05:30-22:30 (Weekends 06:30-22:30). A buffet restaurant with Danish and international dishes.
- Le Sommelier Bar & Bistro (Located after security in the international departure area). 05:00-23:00. Serves French inspired light dishes.
- MASH (Located after security in the international departure area). 11:30-21:30 (Saturdays 11:30-20:30). A modern American steak house.
- København (Located after security in the international departure area). 06:00-21:00. Serves classic Danish dishes with a modern twist.
- Prego (Located after security in the international departure area). 05:00-22:00 (Saturdays 05:00-21:30). Serves pizza and pasta.
- O'Learys (Located after security in the international departure area). 07:00-23:00 (Saturdays 07:00-22:00). An American style sport bar, serving burgers, ribs etc.
Cafes and bars
- Axis Bar & Lounge. 08:00-01:00. A casual bar at the adjacent Hilton Hotel.
- Baresso Coffee (Located both before security in Terminal 3, as well as after security in the international departure area). 04:30-21:00. A coffee house.
- Bryggeren (Located before security in Terminal 2). 11:00-00:00 (Fridays 11:00-00:30). A classic tavern with foosball, sport in the television and music.
- Caffé Ritazza (Located before security in Terminal 2). 05:00-21:30. A coffee house.
- Carlsberg Bar (Located after security in the international departure area). 06:00-22:00. A bar with cold beer and sport in the television.
- Joe & The Juice (Two places after security in the international departure area). 05:00-21:00 (Saturdays 05:00-20:00). A juice bar, which serves sandwiches and coffee.
- Kaffekværnen (Located after security in the international departure area). 07:00-00:00. A coffee place.
- Lagkagehuset (Located both before security in Terminal 2, as well as two places after security in the international departure area). 05:00-20:30. A high quality bakery.
- Starbucks (Located both before security in Terminal 3, as well as two places after security in the international departure area). various hours. A coffee house.
- The Bar (Located after security in the international departure area). 06:00-21:00 (Saturdays 06:00-20:00). A bar with drinks and small dishes.
- Segafredo (Located after security in the international departure area). various hours. Coffee to go.
- Caviar House & Prunier Seafood Bar (Located after security in the international departure area). 08:00-22:00 (Saturdays 10:00-20:00). Serves caviar, smoked salmon and seafood.
- Hamlet Nordic Dining (Located at the adjacent Hilton Hotel). 18:00-22:30. Serves new Nordic á la carte dishes.
Copenhagen Airport has a large number of shops in the international departure area, including fashion, living, electronics, toy, and souvenir stores.
The middle section of the terminal (between the B and C gate areas) are dedicated to high-end fashion and accessories, among others you will find Gucci, Burberry and BOSS stores there. Other types of stores often have two outlets, one east and one west of this section. These include Scandinavian Souvenirs, FineFood with domestic and international delicacies from fine cheese to foie gras and artisanal beer, WHSmith with books and last but not least the five Heinemann Tax Free stores.
As this is Denmark the airport features is a special LEGO store too, near the A gate area. If you're interested in fine Danish porcelain, there's a Royal Copenhagen store opposite the B gate area.
The whole airport has Wi-Fi coverage. You need your email address and country of origin to login (free). In addition, lounges have their own Wi-Fi networks.
The airport has a post-security prayer room, located approximately in the junction between Terminal 2 and 3, near the C pier.
- See also: Copenhagen/Amager#Sleep
There is exactly one hotel at the airport. For a larger choice, consult the Amager article. Also, central Copenhagen itself is just 12 minutes away by local train.
- Hilton Copenhagen Airport Hotel, Ellehammersvej 20, 2770 Kastrup, ☎ +45 32 501 501. Check-in: 14:00, check-out: 12:00. Landside, right outside the terminal complex with a walkway connecting to the terminal.
- Copenhagen - the capital of Denmark, with lots of things to see and do. If you don't have time to see the attractions of central Copenhagen, see what Amager has to offer.
- Malmö - the capital of Scania in Sweden, right across the Øresund