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Porto Santo Airport

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The Porto Santo Airport

Porto Santo airport was the first airport introduced into the archipelago - the relative low cost of developing the airport being one of the principal factors for its creation nearly half a century ago. The airport also serves as backup landing strip for flights to the Madeira International Airport when the weather conditions are not conducive for landing there. A short two hour ferry trip by sea resolves the issue of eventually getting on the main island itself if for any reason the Madeira International airport remains closed (which has happened under severe wind storms in the past).

The impact of the airport on the island of Porto Santo cannot be taken lightly. This was a very important lifeline and has had an enduring effect on the lives of many residents of Porto Santo Island. It provided for an economy to be had on the island which is predominantly tourism based.

The most profound changes to the airport were completed in 1995 – with a new control tower and improved infrastructure to support a wide variety of plane needing sophisticated logistical support.

The airport now receives flights direct from destinations in the UK and other parts of Europe. In the past many visitors to the island had to land at the Madeira International airport first and then catch a small Fokker light aircraft to hop over to the island. This type of flight is still the most frequent but will be overtaken by the many new and forthcoming flights from other sources soon. The opening of several huge new resorts and the inauguration of the splendid Porto Santo golf course in 2004 will contribute to the continued success of the airport’s future. Currently the airport has supported a visitor turnover well in excess of 200 000 passengers per annum.

The day to day running and management of the airport is conceded to ANAM – “ Aeroportos e Navegação Aérea da Madeira, SA”, a parastatal institution.










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