Palma de Mallorca Airport
Palma de Mallorca Airport, known by the airport code PMI, provides domestic and international air services to the Palma region of Spain from the small community of Can Pastilla. The airport is among the busiest in Spain especially during the summer months when travelers journey to the island to enjoy the nearby Spanish beaches.
The airport is also known as Son Sant Joan airport. This translates to Saint John in English and refers to the ancient town located on the island.
History of the Palma de Mallorca Airport
Early air operations in the area centered on float planes that provide passenger and mail service to coastal islands. Commercial air operations began in the 1930s with the facility also utilized by the military. Expansions to the airport in the 1950s allowed it to accommodate larger numbers of passengers each year. In 1962, the airport first saw 1 million passengers and has continued to grow over the years. The most recent passenger counts tallied about 23 million passengers pass through the gates each year.
Palma de Mallorca Airport operates four terminals known as modules. Module A provides air service to and from destinations outside the Schengen Treaty. The Schengen Treaty allows residents of the countries within the treaty to cross borders without passing through customs. Module A contains the customs station and other facilities associated with foreign travel but is only operational during the summer holiday travel periods.
Modules B, C and D all provide domestic and regional service to passengers within the boundaries of the Schengen Treaty. The airport provides a total of 204 check-in counters with about 70 gates and 15 baggage claim areas. Some of the gates are located away from the terminal area and are reached by shuttle buses.
The upper level of the modules provide an observation deck where travelers can watch the aircraft on the airside of the airport or the passengers in the departure lounge areas within the terminal. There is no free wireless Internet within the terminal although Internet kiosks and fee wireless areas are available for travelers who want to stay in touch with the rest of the world. The terminals do not include any conference or business centers as most travelers would rather spend time on the beaches of the area.
The airport has a stated capacity of about 24 million passengers per year but, because of its highly seasonal usage, sees its largest passenger numbers in a limited time. The airport has a peak hourly capacity of about 12,000 passengers, which comes into play during the summer. Future plans include upgrades to increase passenger capacity to as many as 38 million people per year.
The two parallel runways are located on opposite sides of the terminal and air operations complex. Both runways are served by taxiways allowing aircraft to reach the terminal area without interfering with other aircraft. The runways are both about 3,000 meters in length, or 10,000 feet, and are equipped with lights and an instrument landing system. The airport operates around the clock with noise restrictions in place. The runways accommodate about 200,000 takeoffs and landings each year.