Shuttles and Buses from and to Santorini Thira Airport
The only public transportation mode serving Santorini Airport is the intercity KTEL bus. Naturally, a small island like Santorini doesn’t have a railway system, let alone a subway network. Thus, travelers looking for a budget option for their transfers to and from the airport have to settle on the bus.
The Public KTEL Bus from Santorini Airport
The public KTEL buses handle rides from Santorini Airport to Fira, specifically to the central bus station of the island. In fact, every Santorini bus route begins and ends its journey to Fira. Thus, if your accommodation isn’t located in Santorini’s capital, you’ll have to change to another bus at Fira to reach your final destination. Hence, you can travel by bus almost to every part of the island, yet your airport transfer will be indirect. When it comes to direct shuttle connections, Fira is your only option.
The KTEL bus begins its route at Santorini Thira Airport and, after two in-between stops (at the villages Messaria and Karterados), heads to the central bus stop at Fira. Its itinerary is subject to traffic conditions, hence affected by the usual traffic congestion during the summer months. In any case, it usually reaches its destination in about 15-20 minutes.
Fortunately, the Santorini airport public buses are coaches. Therefore, they are comfortable, air-conditioned, and equipped with designated luggage storage space in the bus bottom compartment. Moreover, they don’t have rules regarding luggage dimensions, meaning that excess baggage when traveling via the Santorini bus isn’t a thing. However, they aren’t kitted with restrooms, at least not with operational ones.
Our Tip 1: If you head to Messaria or Karterados, you should let the driver know. Santorini buses often don’t stop at the intermediate stops if the driver notices that no one wants to get on or off the bus.
Our Tip 2: KTEL buses aren’t adapted for wheelchair users.
The Public Buses Time Schedule from JTR Airport
To begin with, the public bus schedule varies depending on the time of the year. Thus, during the winter, the routes are scarcer, while during the summer months, the number of itineraries increases. In general terms, throughout winter, buses leave the airport 6 times a day (every 2-3 hours), from 07:25 am to 07:10 pm on weekdays, while on Saturdays, they depart from JTR only 4 times daily, with their last route being scheduled at 03:10 pm.
On the other hand, during the peak tourist season -and especially from May to September- buses call at Thira Airport from 07:00 am to 11:10 pm with hourly routes, both on weekdays and weekends. Public buses are also running at night, but not from the airport (the airport closes at 10:15 pm in winter and 11:00 pm (00:15 am on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Sundays) in summer anyway)
Our Tip: Please keep in mind that the bus timetable constantly changes without previous warning. What’s more, KTEL buses in Santorini tend to be unreliable when it comes to their arrival and departure times.
Where is the Bus Stop at JTR Airport?
Santorini Airport consists only of one small terminal building. The airport bus stop is located just outside the terminal’s doors, right opposite the airport taxi rank. Thus, even if you are traveling with heavy luggage, you won’t face any difficulties reaching the bus stand.
Bus Tickets from Santorini Thira Airport
Undeniably, airport buses are the most affordable way to travel from Santorini Airport to Fira. A one-way ticket costs as much as 1.60€/1.60$, while tickets are available from the driver inside the bus, only in cash (euros). Please remember to have some small bills with you, as the driver might not have enough change to give you back.
Our Tip 1: Tickets don’t come with seat reservations. Thus, the rule in Santorini airport buses is: whoever comes first seats first. As a result, you may have to wait for the next route if you don’t want to travel standing.
Our Tip 2: If Fira isn’t your destination and you have to change to another bus line, be prepared to pay an additional 1.60€/1.60$ (depending on your destination) for the next bus route to your journey’s end.
Is there a bus from Santorini Airport?
Santorini KTEL buses run from Santorini Airport to Fira -the island’s capital- with hourly itineraries during the summer and less frequent routes the rest of the year. Thus, if your destination is Fira, all you have to do is take the bus from the bus stop located outside the terminal. Otherwise, after reaching the central bus station at Fira, you can hop on another bus to your desired location.
How do you pay for the bus in Santorini?
Tickets for Santorini KTEL buses can be purchased by the driver inside the bus. However, the driver accepts payments only in cash and preferably in small bills.
How much is a bus in Santorini?
A single bus ticket from Santorini Thira Airport to Fira costs 1.60€/1.60$. Nevertheless, if you have to change lines to reach your final destination, you’ll have to pay for your onward transfer as well.