December 12, 2023 Back to all news

Dublin Airport is looking forward to a very busy Christmas with around 1.5 million passengers set to travel through our two terminals over the festive period.

The peak Christmas travel period between Monday, December 18 and Friday, January 6 will see more than 75,000 passengers pass through the airport every day. 

The busiest day for travel in the run up to Christmas is expected to be Friday, December 22 when around 102,000 passengers arrive and depart into Dublin Airport. The busiest day after Christmas will be Friday, December 29 as many festive visitors to Ireland return overseas and as thousands more head off to celebrate New Year's Eve all around the world. 

Dublin Airport’s passenger advice for those flying over the Christmas period remains to arrive 2 hours in advance of a short-haul flight, and 3 hours before a long-haul flight. Passengers checking in a bag should allow additional time of up to an hour. 

According to Graeme McQueen, Media Relations Manager at daa, the operator of Dublin Airport: “Christmas is a magical time at Dublin Airport as families and loved ones from around the world reunite for the festive period and the Dublin Airport team is ready to welcome them over the coming weeks. 

“Every Christmas at Dublin Airport we see the most special of moments, from couples getting engaged to family members seeing each other for the first time in years – sometimes even decades. We'll also be seeing lots of emotional scenes as grandparents, aunts and uncles meet their grandchildren, nieces and nephews for the very first time.

The Christmas excitement kicked off at Dublin Airport this week with the airport's biggest ever festive entertainment programme being rolled out in the terminals between now and the big day.

Almost 1,700 performers from 50 schools, choirs and musical groups across North County Dublin will entertain passengers from today (Monday, December 11) with multiple performances daily in Terminal 1 and 2 at Dublin Airport, right up until Christmas Eve.

The Dublin Airport campus and terminal buildings have been decorated to provide a special atmosphere and true Ceád Míle Fáilte over this festive season. 

Passenger Tips For Christmas Travel

Dublin Airport has today launched its "12 Airport Tips for Christmas" to help ensure passengers move smoothly through the airport over the festive period.

Among the advice issued by Dublin Airport are tips on how to prepare for security screening, the things to check before leaving for the airport and the dos and don'ts when travelling with gifts, including not wrapping presents and not packing snow globes in hand luggage.

Dublin Airport will close on Christmas Day – the only day on which it closes every year - however a number of staff members will remain on duty that day, including the airport’s emergency fire services. 

Flight operations will cease on Christmas Eve after the last flight (Aer Lingus flight EI765 from Tenerife) arrives at 23.00 to ensure that air traffic control space is fully clear for the arrival of Santa’s sleigh after midnight. Flight operations will resume on St. Stephen’s Day when Ryanair flight  FR7378 departs to Marrakech at 05.55. 

Looking ahead to New Year’s Eve, the final passenger flight scheduled to arrive into Dublin Airport will be Aer Lingus flight EI765 from Tenerife at 23.55. The following day, the first scheduled flight of the New Year due to depart from Dublin Airport will be a TAP flight (TP1327) to Lisbon at 04.30.

Graeme McQueen said: “Dublin Airport will have additional Customer Care staff on duty over the Christmas season to ensure passengers have an efficient and smooth journey through the airport. We would also ask passengers to prepare for security screening by removing their outer jacket, hoodies, belts, keys, coins and laptops from cases so that security searches are kept to a minimum. Passengers seeking help in real time should use our new free WhatsApp text helpline, which allows common travel questions to be submitted and answered within seconds by our dedicated customer service team via 087 175 4287.”  

Dublin Airport’s 12 Airport Tips for Christmas: 

  1. Check which terminal you're departing from
  2. Plan to arrive at the airport 2 hours before a short-haul flight, 3 hours before long-haul
  3. Check what time your airline's check-in desk/bag drop opens
  4. Place laptops and electronics in a separate tray
  5. Have your liquids under 100ml in a clear re-sealable bag
  6. Take off boots, heels and shoes with metal buckles as you approach the x-ray machine
  7. Remove jackets, hoodies, scarves, hats and bulky outer garments
  8. Don’t wrap gifts (you may be asked to open them at security)
  9. Don’t bring snow globes in your hand luggage
  10. Don’t bring butter, brandy butter, cranberry sauce in your hand luggage
  11. Bring an empty water bottle to refill after security at one of our hydration stations
  12. Wish our staff a Happy Christmas as you pass through!