Auckland Airport Quick Guide for Tourists

You have explored all holiday destinations in the world and arrived to the conclusion that New Zealand is where you will be vacationing soon? Chances are, you’ll be arriving at Auckland Airport – and you’ll need to know where to go, what to do, and how to get around once you get there! The best way to ensure your trip goes as smoothly as possible is to plan, plan, plan. Let us help you plan ahead by discovering what this bustling and busy New Zealand airport has in store.


It’s New Zealand’s Biggest!


Located at Ray Emery Dr, Auckland 2022, New Zealand, and reachable by phone via +64 9-275 0789,

Auckland Airport is New Zealand’s largest and busiest airport. Having had 15,231,802 passengers in the year ended November 2014, it’s easy to see that this is a very bustling establishment! The airport is situated close to the residential suburb of Mangere, and Airport Oaks, a service hub suburb 21 kilometres  or 13 miles south of downtown Auckland. It is both a domestic and international hub for Air New Zealand – in 2014 Auckland Airport saw 8,294,538 international and 7,016,977 domestic passengers. It’s the New Zealand hubs of Virgin Australia and Jetstar Airways, also out of Australia. The international terminal at Auckland Airport is open for business 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The Auckland Airport domestic terminal is open from 5 am to 11 pm daily.

The Auckland Airport officially opened with a “grand air pageant” on Auckland Anniversary weekend, the 29th to 31st of January 1966 following years of planning; previous to that, it had been the Auckland Aero Club’s airfield since the late 1920s. Construction and expansions have been undertaken over the years, and today’s Auckland Airport boasts an international and domestic terminal with more expansions planned for runways.



Bragging Rights:

Auckland airport - Airbus Express

Auckland airport – Airbus Express


  • In the past decade, the Auckland Airport was rated in the top 3 worldwide at least once, for airports handling five to fifteen million passengers annually.
  • Auckland Airport has also been voted the 12th best airport in the world in 2013 at the annual Skytrax World Airport Awards, and also winning Best Airport in the Australia/Pacific region.


Public Transportation To And From Auckland Airport


Understand exactly how to get to Auckland Airport – or how to get around once you’ve landed there! There are a couple of options if you aren’t traveling by car or taxi.


  • AIRBUS Express: AIRBUS Express buses operate 24 hours a day, with a frequency of at least thirty minutes. The trip will take you approximately 50 minutes. This express bus will service both terminals at the Auckland Airport and Central Auckland. The express bus makes its way to the Downtown Ferry Terminal via Mount Eden Station and Queen Street. The Downtown Ferry Terminal is situated opposite the Britomart Transport Centre, which has bus and train connections to the wider Auckland area.
  • 380 Airporter: The Airporter buses operate half-hourly to Manukau and hourly to Onehunga all week long from 5 am to 11 pm, Monday to Friday, 6:30 am to 11:40 pm Saturday and Sunday. This frequent bus service will operate between Onehunga, both Auckland Airport terminals and Manukau City via Papatoetoe Station. Passengers are able to connect to the rail services to Britomart Transport Centre at Onehunga, Papatoetoe or Manukau stations, with the most time efficient option being a transfer at Papatoetoe.


Getting Picked Up Or Dropped Off At Auckland Airport


International terminal pick up and drop off


A designated public area for pick up and drop off is found in the middle forecourt lane for immediate pick ups and drop offs only, simply look for the signs when you enter the Auckland Airport international forecourt. If you are waiting for a traveller, use The Wait Zone, there are over 50 spaces where you can wait free of charge for up to 30 minutes.

If you’re wanting to spend some time with friends or family inside the Auckland Airport, you’ll need to park in one of the car parks directly across from the terminal. You can even book your short term parking in advance online to save up to 60%. Visit to find out how.


Domestic terminal pick up and drop off


There is a designated area located on the Auckland Airport domestic terminal forecourt for immediate pick ups and drop offs only. Alternately, if you need to spend more time in the airport, you can make use of the covered short term carpark which allows for 10 minutes of free parking.


International and Domestic Flights – What You’ll Need To Know To Find Your Gate

Auckland Airport International Terminal

Auckland Airport International Terminal

Auckland Airport International Terminal

If you’re flying internationally, you’ll need to locate your appropriate check-in counters. These can be found at the eastern end of the international terminal building, on the ground level of the Auckland Airport.

  • Gates 1–10 are situated in Pier B; Gates 1-9 are single-airbridge gates and Gate 10 is a twin-airbridge gate.
  • Gates 4A, 4B, 4C and 4D are bus gates utilized when passengers require to be transported to aircraft parked at remote stands. They are situated east of Pier A and are accessed from the lounge for gates 2 & 4.
  • Gates 15 and 16 are situated in Pier B, and are twin airbridge gates, with the capability to handle A380 aircraft with simultaneous double-deck boarding.
  • Gates 17 and 18 are remote gates located west of Pier B. If boarding of aircraft is required from these stands, the passengers are bussed from one of gates 4A – 4D.
  • Gates 70 – 73, 76 – 80, and 82 – 83 are remote gates located either side of Pier A. If boarding of aircraft is required from these stands, passengers are bussed from one of gates 4A – 4D.


Auckland Airport Domestic Terminal


  • Jetstar Domestic Services operate from gates 20, 21 and 22, which are jet bridge gates.
  • Air New Zealand mainline services operate from gates 24 to 33. Gate 24 is a tarmac gate, while gates 25, 26 and 27 do not exist.
  • Gates 28 through to 33 all have jet bridges, Air New Zealand Link Services operate from the regional section of the Auckland Airport Domestic Terminal. This is situated at the eastern end of the terminal and is comprised of gates 34 to 48, excluding gate numbers 37, 38 and 44 which do not exist. These gates are attached to the terminal by covered walkways, and passengers are required to walk across the apron and to the aircraft.
  • Gates 50 through 59 are used by 3rd level operators Air Chathams, Great Barrier Airlines, Flight Hauraki, Fly My Sky, Sunair and Inflite Charters.


Getting between terminals

There’s a free terminal transfer bus service that operates every 15 minutes between the Auckland Airport international and domestic terminals. The free bus operates from 5 am to 10:30 pm daily. The airport maps will show you where to find the transfer buses – you can check them at Alternately, you can follow the signs posted to a walkway for a 10 minute walk between terminals.


Baggage Services at Auckland Airport

SmarteCarte can store your luggage securely! Passengers in the Auckland Airport can even have their luggage sealed in a recyclable, transparent polythene cover to protect it from any scratches, moisture or any other form of tampering. If you are over your baggage allowance, Smartecarte also arrange for Unaccompanied Luggage to be couriered to your desired destination.


Location: Opposite Check-In Counter 67, Ground Floor International Terminal (Opposite Qantas Business check in)

Opening hours: Open between  3:45 am to 11:15pm, 7 days a week

Phone: +64 9 257 3322

0508 BAGGAGE (22 44 24)

Fax:    +64 9 257 3324



  • Reduce unnecessary baggage fees – Smarte Carte features good rates on “airport to door” baggage delivery in more than two hundred countries, with three different shipping options; Air Express, Air Economy and Sea* (to restricted destinations only)
  • Avoid hidden baggage costs – SmarteCarte’s prices are all inclusive and won’t surprise you with any extra fees, and because they will deliver direct to your door, passengers do not need to worry about any customs clearance, extra delivery fees, or any additional charges when their bags are delivered.
  • Take advantage of the convenience of direct to door delivery – As a passenger, you will not need to collect and clear any excess baggage through customs at your destination airport, unlike unaccompanied luggage.
  • FREE protective baggage wrapping with any excess baggage transaction.
  • FREE packing boxes and packaging if needed.


Bags can be left at The Collection Point for NZ$3. Please remember to pick up your bags from the Auckland Airport by 11 pm on the same day.


Eating at Auckland Airport

Hungry? You’ll usually end up needing to grab a bite to eat while you’re en route, and Auckland Airport offers a range of different Bars and Restaurants, Cafés, Asian Cuisine Restaurants, Fast Food Restaurants and healthy snack options while you’re on the go.


Aukland Airport Domestic Terminal Food Options:

Eating at Auckland Airport - Sudima

Eating at Auckland Airport – Sudima


  • Dunkin Donuts
  • Espresso Plus
  • Hayama
  • Hub
  • McDondald’s
  • Shakey Isles
  • Sumo Salad
  • Take Off
  • Tank
  • The Bach Alehouse and Café
  • The River Café
  • Wishbone


Auckland Airport International Terminal Food Options:


  • 24/7 Store
  • Bookmarque Café
  • Burger King
  • Café Espresso
  • Down Under Bar
  • Dunkin Donuts
  • Espresso Bar
  • Flight Bar
  • Hayama
  • Juicydetails
  • KFC
  • Long White Café
  • McDonald’s
  • Retro Espresso
  • Shaky Isles
  • Silk Road
  • Subway
  • Takehome
  • Tank


Shopping Options in Auckland Airport

Grabbing a gift on the go, or doing a little last minute shopping is a breeze at Auckland Airport. You can find luxury sunglasses and watches, books and magazines, toys, games, travel accessories, wines, jewelry, liquor, candy, electronics, fragrances, beauty products, champagne, cognac and art, plus much more. If you have something in mind, you can always check with to find out whether Auckland Airport carries the type of item you’re looking for while you’re there, and where exactly you can locate it.


Auckland Airport And Safety


  • All departing passengers in Auckland Airport are subject to security screening prior to boarding the aircraft. Auckland Airport reminds passengers that any sharp items, such as nail clippers, scissors, pocket knives or metal nail files may not be packed in carry-on luggage, so please ensure that any items of this nature are packed in your checked luggage.
  • Make sure you aren’t carrying any inflammable liquids gasses or other dangerous goods with you.
  • Any laptop computers must be removed from carrying bags at the security point, and screened separately. Your electronic equipment will not be damaged by the x-ray screening process.
  • Your checked baggage is also subject to the screening process. Please contact your specific airline for further information about what may and may not be brought on board.
  • Your baggage should never be left unattended in public areas. Any such baggage will be treated as suspicious. All of your baggage should be clearly tagged with your contact details and with you at all times.
  • Auckland Airport passengers and airport visitors are warned that any threats or comments made about carrying of weapons or explosives – whether claimed to be a joke or not – have to be taken seriously and may result in refusal of carriage onto the flight as well as prosecution.
  • Any passengers with medical conditions should contact their airline in relation to the carriage of any necessary medical equipment through screening points as well as on board their flight.
  • For any advice on travel warnings, visas and consular services, you can visit the Smart Travel website at
Visit the New Zealand destinations category to learn more about other places to visit in New Zealand!