Things to know before travelling to Alicante Airport: Quick Guide

Alicante Airport is one of the best airports in Europe and it is also the third busiest airport in Spain. It’s common for people to experience some level of anxiety when arriving at a new international airport for the first time. This article will guide you through what questions can you ask yourself before travelling to Spain and Alicante Airport so that you can be better prepared when your trip finally arrives!

Alicante Airport (Spanish: Aeropuerto de Alicante) is an international airport near Elche in Spain’s Valencian Community which provides daily flights to different cities in Europe and the rest of the world. It was opened in 1994 and has one terminal building with 2 floors and 4 jetways. The airport has a lot to offer and we will see why there are many reasons for its popularity. The airport is capable of handling up to 3 million passengers per year with its single runway measuring 3,290 metres long and 45 metres wide.

Major airlines such as Air Berlin, Ryanair, EasyJet, and Spirit operate out of Alicante Airport. It offers transit passengers free wifi with a maximum speed of 60mbps.

Alicante Airport has the most modern baggage system in Europe with an electronic-tagging system that can optimize flight security by removing checked bags from circulation while they are still on the ground – even if they belong to a different airline.

If you are going to travel to Alicante from the United Kingdom, you need to know:


  • All passengers on flights from the United Kingdom must take their passport.

  • Passengers from EU countries and the United Kingdom may make use of the ABCs (automatic control systems).

  • It will be compulsory for British passengers, like those travelling from other non-EU countries, to have their passport stamped and answer a series of security questions asked by National Police officers.

Travelling with minors

  • Travel by or with children is subject to specific restrictions.

  • Border police, both inside and outside the European Union, have a specific mandate to pay special attention to minors.

  • Consult the requirements for minors who are travelling alone or travelling accompanied.


  • Pets must pass through an airport authorised by the Ministry of Agriculture for the entry of animals from a third country and they will be subject to the same requirements applied to animals from third countries.

  • Their valid microchip , rabies vaccination and health certificate will be requested. Pets from Northern Ireland are not subject to these requirements.

  • At unauthorised airports, only guide dogs for the visually impaired may enter, provided that the Ministry of Agriculture has granted authorisation to their owners. To request this authorisation, owners must use the following email:

  • Customs may detect nonconformities. Should this occur, the options are:

    • Return the animal, which means returning it to its country of origin on the earliest available flight. If it cannot travel with its owner, this option must be accepted by the airline.

    • Quarantine the animal, if the previous option is not possible. Quarantine will last for 14 days and will take place at an authorised centre that has an agreement in place. After this period the animal can return to its usual residence and must undergo home isolation.

  • For further information, consult the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food website.


  • Baggage must be subjected to customs inspections upon arrival.

  • In the European Union there are restrictions on plant-based products and products of animal origin in order to prevent the entry of pathogens and diseases.

  • It is prohibited to bring plant-based products from third countries into the European Union without phytosanitary certification (seeds, plants, fruit, vegetables, flowers, etc.).

  • Bringing products of animal origin (meat, milk, fish and derivatives, etc.) into the European Union is prohibited. Meat, milk and derivative products from the United Kingdom are prohibited under all circumstances.

  • There are some exceptions to products of animal origin that can exclusively be brought into the EU for private human consumption. Check the website of the Tax Agency to see a full list of these types of products and the restrictions on each.

VAT refund

  • A Value Added Tax (VAT) refund can be requested for goods purchased during a stay in Spain (mainland and Balearic Islands).

  • Check the conditions in the VAT refund section.

Travelling to Alicante (Spain) after Brexit: most common questions

Do I need a visa to travel to Alicante from the UK?

No. From 1 January 2021, UK nationals will continue to be exempt from the visa requirement when crossing the external borders of the European Union for short stays (up to 90 days in any 180-day period). This visa exemption does not provide for the right to work in the Union and is subject to the reciprocity mechanism applicable to third countries.

Will there be border controls in Alicante Airport?

From 1 January 2021, UK nationals travelling to the EU and the Schengen area will be treated as third-country nationals and will therefore be subject to border controls at the Schengen border. This means that intended stays on the territory of EU Member States cannot exceed 90 days in any period of 180 days, and UK nationals will have to comply with the entry conditions for third country nationals.

What if I am travelling with pets?

If you are travelling with pets you will still be able to do so, but you will need to have an animal health certificate issued by the UK health authorities and enter through one of the authorised airports or ports of entry. For more information, see the website of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.

Will Spain recognise my British driving licence?

From 1 January 2021, driving licences issued by the United Kingdom will no longer benefit from mutual recognition under EU law. In Spain, valid and current driving licences issued by the UK authorities will entitle their holders to drive in Spain for a period of six months from 1 January 2021. After this six-month period, the regime foreseen for licences issued in third countries will apply, under the terms regulated by current traffic regulations, unless the Kingdom of Spain and the United Kingdom reach a bilateral agreement recognising the exchange of their driving licences.

Will I have access to health care in Spain?

Yes, the social security coordination protocol of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement between the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community, on the one hand, and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, on the other hand, provides for health cover for a British tourist staying in Spain. British citizens should contact the British institution to find out which document accrediting their rights they will be issued with.


What are the requirements for travelling with pets to Alicante Airport from the UK?

From 1 January 2021, all pets coming from Great Britain and its dependencies (excluding Northern Ireland) must be introduced through an airport or port authorised as a Passenger Point of Entry and be accompanied by a Health Certificate. For more information see the relevant section (Dogs, cats and ferrets/Birds/Other Species).

What are the requirements for travelling with pets from Alicante to the UK?

There are no changes to the health requirements for bringing pets from Spain to the UK, so they can continue to travel with a European pet passport issued in Spain or another EU-27 country (those issued in Great Britain will not be valid, but those issued in Northern Ireland will be). They must have microchip identification, a valid rabies vaccination and a deworming treatment between days 1-5 prior to their trip.

Personal baggage

Will personal baggage be subject to any additional screening in Alicante?

From 1 January 2021, all personal luggage of passengers travelling between Great Britain and its dependencies (excluding Northern Ireland) and Spain, as well as postal and other parcels, may not consist of products of animal origin. Vegetables may not be carried unless the corresponding phytosanitary certificate has been issued.

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