New Lisbon Airport To Open By 2034, Replacing Current One

New Lisbon Airport To Open By 2034, Replacing Current One

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It’s not often we see an entirely new airport built, especially in Europe. After all, it’s hard to find a large enough plot of land, and then you have all kinds of environmental and budget considerations. While we’ll see how this plays out, Portugal is planning on opening a major new international airport, replacing the current one.

New Lisbon Airport plans revealed

Portugal has become an increasingly popular tourist destination in recent years. If you’ve visited the country, you’ve probably flown through Lisbon’s Humberto Delgado Airport (LIS), which is… not great. Fortunately there are plans to change this, eventually.

Portuguese Prime Minister Luis Montenegro has this week announced the site for the country’s new largest international airport, replacing the current Lisbon Airport.

The new airport is expected to be built on the site of a military airfield in Alcochete, around 40 kilometers (or 25 miles) east of Lisbon, across the Tagus river. The plan is for the new airport to open within a decade, by 2034, though let’s see how that goes. The airport is expected to cost around €9 billion to build, and that will be funded through European Union funds, public-private partnerships, and airport tariffs.

There has been discussion of a new international airport near Lisbon for decades, though the challenge has been agreeing on a location for it to be built. The location that has now been chosen has been recommended by a technical commission, factoring in several considerations.

The new airport won’t complement the existing airport, but rather will replace it altogether. However, that’s still a decade down the road, and in the meantime, the existing airport will continue to be expanded. Existing airport operator ANA is also expected to manage the new airport.

In order to make the airport more accessible from Lisbon, a third bridge will be built across the Tagus river. It remains to be seen what kind of public transportation will be offered, though I have to imagine there will be high speed rail.

Lisbon is getting a new international airport

Let’s see if this airport becomes a reality

There has been talk of a new airport in Lisbon for as long as I can remember, so it’s nice to see that a location has been decided on. However, I wouldn’t yet consider this project to be a sure thing, both in terms of it actually happening, and in terms of the timeline.

This airport has been announced by the country’s new administration, which came into power just two months ago. Portugal has seen a boom with its tourism industry in recent years, so of course it’s great optics to be prioritizing building a new airport ASAP, in order to support that.

However, let’s see how this evolves. It’s rare we see an entirely new airport built, and I imagine there will be all kinds of lawsuits, budget concerns, environmental reports, etc. Furthermore, if you add in an eventual administration change, and/or any major economic issues, this project could be deprioritized.

This latest development is no doubt progress, but I certainly wouldn’t bet on a 2034 opening.

Building a new airport is no small task

Bottom line

Formal plans have been announced for a new airport to be built for Lisbon, replacing the existing one. The new airport is expected to cost €9 billion, and should open in 2034. For decades there have been plans for a new airport, so it’s nice to see that a location has finally been decided on. Now let’s see if the airport actually becomes a reality…

What do you make of the plans for a new airport in Lisbon?

Conversations (18)
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  1. Uncle Goose Guest

    People here are really....interesting. you clearly know nothing of Lisboa. they've been in talks with that site for the location for at least 5 years. They should go ahead and build a massive nice airport, Ubers are cheap as hell and that distance isnt so bad really if they plan it correctly. the current airport, and ive been going since I was kid to my 40s, is amazingly convenient....but it really aint realistic esp for...

    People here are really....interesting. you clearly know nothing of Lisboa. they've been in talks with that site for the location for at least 5 years. They should go ahead and build a massive nice airport, Ubers are cheap as hell and that distance isnt so bad really if they plan it correctly. the current airport, and ive been going since I was kid to my 40s, is amazingly convenient....but it really aint realistic esp for Lisboa's hopes to truly bring PT to modern viable times and not just some tourist hub. and by that time it will be more than warranted. its too close to city. Lisbon's actually quite tiny. it's a cheap uber to go anywhere. the actual city has great public transit if so inclined. wish the best for my 2nd home and lovely city of Lisboa.

  2. Mark Guest

    I went to Lisbon last year and my only abiding memory of the airport was how convenient it was for the city (well, that and some initial confusion at being directed to the ANA lounge). Much like TXL in that regard - pretty useless at anything bar the flying in and out bits but really close to my ultimate destination. And it's the flying in and out bits that really matter to me in an airport anyway...

  3. iamhere Guest

    Agree with the comments. The current airport may not be great but its location is great. Furthermore, does the city really need a new airport and how delayed and how much over budget will it be....

  4. Pete Guest

    Another conveniently located airport being moved to the middle of nowhere. Ugh.

  5. BLIS Guest

    Local here. Some notes:
    -The most interesting Lisbon air news lately is actually that we are getting a nonstop to Seoul. It is real and 100% happening, unlike this airport. https://www.timeout.pt/lisboa/pt/noticias/lisboa-vai-ter-voos-directos-para-a-coreia-do-sul-050724 (use google translate)
    -The amount of time and controversy this project already has in its wake is LOL.
    -For spicy takes, google Ryan Air CEO's comments
    -Re location, not excited about going over the bridge. We have basically LCY or...

    Local here. Some notes:
    -The most interesting Lisbon air news lately is actually that we are getting a nonstop to Seoul. It is real and 100% happening, unlike this airport. https://www.timeout.pt/lisboa/pt/noticias/lisboa-vai-ter-voos-directos-para-a-coreia-do-sul-050724 (use google translate)
    -The amount of time and controversy this project already has in its wake is LOL.
    -For spicy takes, google Ryan Air CEO's comments
    -Re location, not excited about going over the bridge. We have basically LCY or better distances from center right now - for me personally 15-20 mins door to door! And we will then be forced to have a JFK or DEN haul.
    -Public transit is challenging around Lisbon and while I hope they have a highspeed train or similar, it is absolutely not guaranteed. Hopefully EU rules will force it.

  6. InternationalTraveler Gold

    The current airport maybe “not great” in terms of the design of newly built airports. However its location is great, very close to the city of Lisbon and with short distances within the airport. For travelers who want to visit Lisbon, it’s a nice airport.

    1. glenn t Guest

      My memories of arriving at LIS is arriving at a remote stand, being bussed forever around the airport in ant-like progression to an ugly ground arrival point.
      Then a trudge up to Arrivals to multiple super-long snaking queues to submit to bored or surly Immigration officials, and suspicious Customs inspectors.
      Not in any sense "Welcome to Lisbon/Portugal !"
      The ensuing trip into central Lisbon was probably shorter than the endless driving around...

      My memories of arriving at LIS is arriving at a remote stand, being bussed forever around the airport in ant-like progression to an ugly ground arrival point.
      Then a trudge up to Arrivals to multiple super-long snaking queues to submit to bored or surly Immigration officials, and suspicious Customs inspectors.
      Not in any sense "Welcome to Lisbon/Portugal !"
      The ensuing trip into central Lisbon was probably shorter than the endless driving around the airport environs from plane to arrival processing.

  7. TravelinWilly Diamond

    Delta will fly to the new Lisbon airport if those routes continue to make DL the number 1 carrier in the Milky Way.

  8. Nelson Diamond

    "Fortunately there are plans to change this, eventually."
    Those plans are there for decades (5+) and I bet a lot on it that this one also won't go over "a plan." As usually in Portugal, they are amazing in building plans.
    Unfortunately I'm quite sure the reality will only happen when there will be a major disaster. Still amazed how they manage that much traffic with only one RWY.

  9. frrp Diamond

    Lisbon airport is a reason to avoid lisbon.

    1. Throwawayname Guest

      LIS is one of the most convenient hub airports in the whole of Europe- it's literally inside the city, has a metro station, the fast track security works really well, baggage delivery is reliable, lounge and retail offerings are more than sufficient, there's no huge amount of walking to the [Schengen] gates etc.

      Admittedly , the passenger experience does deteriorate if one is flying outside of the Schengen zone, particularly if that's with a connection,...

      LIS is one of the most convenient hub airports in the whole of Europe- it's literally inside the city, has a metro station, the fast track security works really well, baggage delivery is reliable, lounge and retail offerings are more than sufficient, there's no huge amount of walking to the [Schengen] gates etc.

      Admittedly , the passenger experience does deteriorate if one is flying outside of the Schengen zone, particularly if that's with a connection, but it really is very handy for O&D passengers within the zone.

    2. yoloswag420 Guest

      Yeah I hate airports that are like an hour away from the city.

      LIS does struggle with gate space and so many of them were remote stands.

    3. glenn t Diamond

      Arriving/departing at OPO is a better way to go.

    4. N1120A Guest

      Unless you have a rental car. OPO is awful for that.

  10. Morgan Diamond

    New airport being built in Sydney (western Sydney) and its on schedule I think

    1. glenn t Diamond

      Yep, the 3 decades of: here? or there? and general handwringing is over, and ancillary works are underway. No hi-speed railway though, just a link to the nearest existing train station.

  11. Car Guest

    What needs to be done is move the Low Cost airlines to the new airport...

  12. A_Japanese Gold

    I hope they learned how to avoid the quagmire of Berlin Brandenburg Airport.

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The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

BLIS Guest

Local here. Some notes: -The most interesting Lisbon air news lately is actually that we are getting a nonstop to Seoul. It is real and 100% happening, unlike this airport. https://www.timeout.pt/lisboa/pt/noticias/lisboa-vai-ter-voos-directos-para-a-coreia-do-sul-050724 (use google translate) -The amount of time and controversy this project already has in its wake is LOL. -For spicy takes, google Ryan Air CEO's comments -Re location, not excited about going over the bridge. We have basically LCY or better distances from center right now - for me personally 15-20 mins door to door! And we will then be forced to have a JFK or DEN haul. -Public transit is challenging around Lisbon and while I hope they have a highspeed train or similar, it is absolutely not guaranteed. Hopefully EU rules will force it.

1
InternationalTraveler Gold

The current airport maybe “not great” in terms of the design of newly built airports. However its location is great, very close to the city of Lisbon and with short distances within the airport. For travelers who want to visit Lisbon, it’s a nice airport.

1
yoloswag420 Guest

Yeah I hate airports that are like an hour away from the city. LIS does struggle with gate space and so many of them were remote stands.

1
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