Baku Airport - Heydar Aliyev International Airport

Baku Airport Map (Heydar Aliyev international airport, formerly Bina - BAK - GYD)Heydar Aliyev international airport (formerly Bina, after the nearby settlement) is the busiest in the Caucasus, with about 1 million passengers a year. Thanks to the EBRD and the German Government, it has had investment in upgrading navigation aids that have improved safety for air traffic (the airport was the scenario for several accidents, the last serious one with an Azal cargo Boeing 707-323C in 1995).

The airport had a lot of construction work in the 1980's, but the collapse of the USSR resulted in the suspension of the works, with the two main terminals being left incomplete. Increased traffic led to a second runway being opened for wide-bodied aircraft in 1995. The current international terminal was opened in 1993 with precarious conditions. In June 1999, after construction work that seemed to eternalize, the renovated passenger facilities were finally inaugurated.

Azerbaijan - Baku - Passenger bridge (photo Thomson-CSF)The  airport is linked to Baku by two highways, Aiport Highway and Zigh-Airport Highway. It is approximately 25 kilometres east from downtown (travel time: approx. 40 minutes), one kilometre off the Baku-Mardakan road. If you are coming from Baku you will see the access road on your left, in front of an open air market. The main building is divided in four areas, operating as two terminals (north and south, or front and left if you are looking at the building). North terminal is used for domestic and Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) flights (use the left entrance for Nakhchivan flights), and Southb terminal for international flights. A new terminal is under construction and should be ready in 2013. To the left side is located the international terminal, nearby, you'll find the airport hotel. The Sheraton Baku Airport is a modern 200 room unit. Most flights arrive at night so it is prudent to have an hotel booking. There are no foreign airline lounges, but business class passengers receive invitations to the airport's VIP lounge, where they can undergo immigration and customs formalities.

Taxi - Baku (photo by M.Torres - taxis offered by drivers in the customs area, they will cost much more than those just outside the airport building. Choose a licensed car with a TAXI sign. The trip from the airport to the centre of the city costs about 20 manat (less than 20 Euro).

If you don't have a lot of luggage, you have the alternative of  taking Bus No. 16 to the city, which costs less than half manat, the bus-stop is just outside the arrivals zone and leaves you at the AZAL office in Baku (S. Vurgun's park - 28 May street). There are several other buses that stop just in front of the market, if you are willing to walk a few minutes (see the airport map).

Hotel Courtesy Cars: Almost all the major hotels will arrange  to meet you at the airport for about 20 Euro and will have a driver holding up a sign with your name on it.

Car rental is companies are available on the international arrivals area (north terminal). They provide self drive cars, cars with chauffeur, transfers and also Baku-Tbilisi transfers.

Azerbaijan - Baku: AZAL Azerbaijan Airlines Boeing 757-22L - Baku airport, Geydar Aliyev - GYD, at night - photo by Miguel TorresThe IATA airport code for Baku is "GYD" (this will be of use in the West, with less experienced travel agency staff, who never heard of Azerbaijan.) The airport code used to be the more obvious "BAK" but was replaced when the airport was renamed after Geydar Aliyev (ICAO Code: UBBB).

On arrival, when crossing the border always declare to have some cash with you, since you cannot leave the country with more money than you brought in. If you want to get manats on arrival, there is a cash machine on the international terminal, 1st floor.

Azerbaijan - Baku: Baku airport, Geydar Aliyev - GYD, international terminal at night - photo by Miguel TorresAs usual in off-shore oil areas, you also have a good charter service for helicopters and aeroplanes available at Bina airport (contact Azalaero, tel. 242018 or Azalavia, tel. 243714)

When leaving the waiting areas are rather basic, but there is a passable 1st class lounge that just may save your day if you have the right tickets or cards.

Contacts at Baku Airport:
  • General Inquiries 25-79-00
  • Passport Control 24-38-85, 24-31-79
  • Customs 98-02-10, 24-31-47
  • Airport Manager 24-37-14
  • Freight/Commercial Office 24-37-44, 24-37-82
  • Intourist Lounge 24-37-07, 24-13-40
  • VIP Lounge 24-13-40, 24-38-07
  • Telephone booth 24-37-99
  • Veterinary services 24-31-33
  • Geographical co-ordinates: 40.27N 50.04E -1m

    Azerbaijan was admitted in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) in 1992, and since 1996 ICAO has been pouring know-how into the local operations.
    Airlines in Baku
    AZAL - Azerbaijan Airlines - IATA code: J2 / Azerbaycan Havayollari - Azal logoLong gone are the days when you had to go trough Moscow to reach Baku! At present an increasing number of western European airlines connect Baku with Europe and the world.

    In addition, several airlines connect Baku to destinations all over the CIS, making Baku an embryonic regional hub. Several charter companies operate from and to Baku. Scheduled and non-scheduled cargo flights are also available.

    Imair Airline - IATA code: IKThe flag carrier is Azerbaijan Airlines, AZAL, for short. AZAL is a state owned conglomerate, that inherited the Aeroflot structure. It provides cargo services via Azal Avia Cargo. The company controls most the aviation field in Azerbaijan, besides being an airline it also is in areas such as: airports, basic maintenance, traffic control systems, catering, refuelling, security, and even the National Civil Aviation Academy!

    Turan Air logoAZAL also owns Azalhelicopter, which operates flights mostly for the oil industry. At present the fleet includes Boeing 757s, Airbus 319 and ATRs. The fleet is being expanded with more recent Boeing aircraft. AZALflights serve destination in Great Britain, Turkey, Israel, Syria, Iran, China, the United Arab Emirates, Russian Federation and the Ukraine. The company expects to add new destinations as its fleet grows. They have offices in: Allepo, Ankara, Baku, Dubai, Istanbul, London, Kiev, Moscow, Nizhni Novgorod, Samara, St. Petersburg, Tehran, Tel Aviv, Trabzon, Urumchi and Yekaterinburg. In violation of EU sovereignty Azal has also been flying to the occupied part of Cyprus.

    Baku Airways logoThe post Soviet slight de-regulation allowed for the creation of several smaller companies, the other Azeri airlines are: Baku Airways, Forair, Imair and Turan Air. Azerbaijan does not have its own technical centre for aircraft maintenance, so the local airlines have to send their aircraft abroad for routine interventions.
    19 Rashid Behbudov Street, 370000
    Tel: 98-11-67, 98-11-68 
    Fax: 98-11-66 
    Air Pulkovo
    29/11, 28th May Street, 370010
    Tel: 98-29-31
    Fax: 98-29-30
    Air Ukraina
    63 Khagani Street, 370010
    Tel: 98-91-37, 98-91-39 
    Fax: 98-91-38 
    8 Najafgulu Rafiyev Street, 370025
    Tel: 66-01-97 / 66-00-76 
    Fax: 98-05-13
    Austrian Airlines
    44, J. Jabbarli str., Caspian Plazam Baku AZ 1065
    tel.: (99412) 4971822, 4971824
    fax: (99412) 4971827
    Azerbaijan Airlines (AZAL)
    66/68, 28th May Street
    Tel.: 93-71-21, 93-40-04 
    Fax: 98-15-45
    Baku Airways
    21 Azerbaijan av., 370000
    Tel: 93-95-95, 93-79-33
    Fax: 93-33-96
    Bashkir Airways
    135 Khagani st.
    Baku 370000
    Tel. 98-77-17
    Fax 98-39-83
    British Airways
    96 Nizami Street, Landmark Plaza, 370000
    Tel: 97-05-00 / 05 (city centre)
    Tel: 97-26-85 (Bina airport)
    Fax: 97-77-03
    Caspian Helicopters
    3 Yusifzade st., 370007
    Tel/Fax: 66-65-91
    Coyne Airways
    22/7 Samad Vurgun Street, 370000
    Tel: 94-93-32
    Fax: 97-33-03
    Czech Airlines
    Domodedovo Airlines
    16 Samad Vurgun Street, 370000
    Tel /Fax: 92-42-43, 
    34 Khagani Street, 370000
    Tel: 97-15-41 / 42 
    Fax: 97-03-30
    1061 Inglab Street
    Baku 370110
    Tel: 98-33-01
    Fax: 98-68-31
    Imair airlines
    115 Hazi Aslanov Street 
    Baku, 370000, 
    Tel: 934171, 982376, 989100, 989101 (headquarters) 
    Tel: 980970 (Bina airport) 
    Tel: 982438, 984587 (reservations) 
    Fax: 932777, 930478 
    SITA: BAKDDIK (headquaters) / BAKRCIK (reservations) 
    AFTN: UBBBIKXO (headquarters) 
    Iran Air
    85 Salatin Askerova st., 370002
    Tel: 94-75-54
    Fax: 98-34-55
    Kazakhstan Airways
    135/126 Nizami Street, 370010
    Tel: 98-48-43 
    Fax: 97-22-17
    135 Nizami
    Tel: 93-91-39
    Fax: 98-29-57: 
    Kyrgyzstan Airlines
    3 Azadlyg av.
    Baku 370000
    Tel: 938965
    Fax: 938965
    Hyatt Regency Hotel, 1 Bakikhanov Street, 370022
    Tel: 90-70-50, 90-70-51 
    Fax: 90-70-49
    Pakistan Int. Airlines
    85 Salatyn Askarova Street, 370000
    Tel: 95-93-40, 94-88-57 
    Fax: 95-93-40
    Perm Airlines
    135 Nizami, 370000
    Tel: 94-88-56/7
    Fax: 98-29-57
    Samara Airlines
    135/126 Nizami Street, 370010
    Tel: 98-95-71
    Fax: 98-95-71
    Tatarstan Airlines
    135/126 Nizami Street, 370010
    Tel: 98-48-43
    Fax: 98-95-71
    33/35 U. Hajibeyov Street
    Tel: 97-03-30 
    Fax: 98-40-28
    Turan Air
    102 Mardanov Gardashlari st., 370003
    Tel: 94-19-43, 97-14-76 (City centre)
    Tel: 98-92-69 (Bina airport)
    Fax: 98-94-34
    Turkish Airlines
    11 Husi Hajiyev Street, 370003
    Tel: 94-19-43, 94-25-05 (City centre)
    Tel: 98-92-69 (Bina airport)
    Fax: 98-00-47
    Turkmen Airways
    1 Azadlyg Avenue
    Tel: 98-88-58, 93-77-52
    Ural Air 
    135 Nizami, 370000
    Tel: 94-88-56/7
    Uzbekistan Air
    3 Azadlyg Avenue, 370000
    Tel/ Fax: 93-89-65
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