Pickup and dropoff zone

- changes to be aware of for your next airport visit

From passport control to luggage: A rundown of who does what at Edinburgh Airport

Last updated Apr 28, 2022

To borrow a phrase often used in aviation - it's a team game.

We at Edinburgh Airport work closely with a range of partners, from airlines and baggage handlers to retailers, to ensure your journey through the terminal goes as smoothly as possible.

A lot of planning and organisation goes into the daily operation at EDI, and a great degree of teamwork is required to keep things ticking along - whether it's getting people through security, returning luggage to passengers, or preparing food and drinks at the restaurants and bars.

As an airport we provide the facility, but we're not the only ones to operate within it. Therefore it seems only right that we talk you through the whole team and take a closer look at who does what at Edinburgh Airport.

Managing the official airport car parks

We've got six on-site car parks at Edinburgh Airport: terminal parking, multi-storey, mid-stay, long-stay, plane parking, and our valet parking service FastPark.

As an airport we deal with pricing, taking and managing bookings, and the day-to-day running of the car parks and pick-up/drop-off zones, including our free option.

Other off-site car parking operators do exist, however we don't have any involvement in these. You can find out more about our official airport parking, or arrange your own booking, by clicking here.

Got a parking query? We're the people to ask. You can check out our parking Q&A, or interact with the website chatbot.

Long Stay Parking

Who does what at the check-in desks

Your airline will decide opening and closing times for check-in desks, and staff from their handling agent partner will meet you at the front of the queue.

There are three different agents operating in the airport - Menzies, Swissport and WFS - and chances are your airline will have a contract with one of these. However it's worth noting some airlines do run their own desks.

We'd always advise you check-in online before travelling to the airport, but we understand that may not be possible if you've got bags to drop. Different airlines open their desks at different times, but we've put a handy guide together letting you know when best to arrive (please be aware these times are subject to change).

Check out your check-in desk opening times at Edinburgh Airport

Getting you through airport security

The security operation is an Edinburgh Airport operation. We've been quite open in saying we may see queues here in the coming weeks and months, but we're doing all we can to keep these to a minimum.

Our superb teams will be working tirelessly to keep things running as smoothly as possible, and we're still recruiting more staff to help them out. You may also see airport staff from other departments doing their bit to help at the busiest times.

We're also asking passengers to be well prepared in order to avoid any unnecessary delays - follow our top tips for a smooth journey through security here.

Flying for all the family: Top tips if you're coming to Edinburgh Airport with the kids

And what about the airport operation?

We have a highly-skilled team who manage the day-to-day running of the operation in the terminal. If there's an issue with a lift or escalator, an IT outage, or even a passenger in need of emergency assistance - they'll work to sort it without a moment's hesitation. They'll also be in constant contact with our partners so they know exactly what's going on at all times.

We offer special assistance and additional support to passengers who need it - whether this be through the availability of an accessible toilet or the provision of mobility equipment. You can find out more about this on our special assistance webpage.

Our restaurants, bars and shops

Unfortunately we can't take the credit if you enjoy the best cocktail you've ever had in the airport. The same goes if you find some fantastic bargains in the post-security shops. The credit goes to the wide range of retail partners we have on-site.

Although we don't directly manage the operation, we facilitate the space for retailers, restaurants and bars to operate in, however the management of these outlets is up to them, working closely with us at the airport. If you want a comparison think of the model as being similar to a shopping centre - we are the centre, our partners are the outlets within it.

However we're more than happy to point you in the right direction. Want to know where you can grab a bite to eat in the airport? Check out our guide here. After a place to get yourself a coffee? Have a look at our blog article on the subject.

Wetherspoons - The Sir Walter Scott

Checking your passport at border control

Step forward UK Border Force. They look after this part of the airport.

Immigration and passport control - the section you step into as soon as you enter the airport from the airfield - comes under the control of the UK Government. UK Border Force staff operate this part of the airport, and we can't interfere with their processes.

Of course this area is only for passengers arriving on international flights. If you're flying in on a domestic journey you'll not need to worry about this and you can head straight through to baggage reclaim.

Doing some shopping when you're on holiday? Check the rules on what you can and can't bring in to the country here.

Returning your baggage

Similar to the way check-in desks operate, the airline you're flying with will have a contract with a handling agent who operate on their behalf.

The handling agent - whether it be Swissport, Menzies, or WFS - will be responsible for handling and delivering your bags to you upon your arrival in the baggage hall. Though these teams operate within the terminal the baggage process is an airline task. We know they are going to be busy over the summer months, and we're asking passengers to keep this in mind when waiting for bags.

If you've got any questions about your baggage your best bet is to get in touch with your airline and they'll be able to help you out.

Hand luggage rules explained: Items you can and can't take through security

Transport links

Hopping on a bus or tram, or catching a taxi, as part of your journey to and from the airport? Or would you rather hire a vehicle from Avis, Enterprise, Europcar, Hertz or Sixt based in our Car Rental Building a five minute walk from the terminal?

We've no shortage of transport options at EDI, and while we work with transport providers and ensure there's space for them to operate in, it's ultimately up to them to look after timetables, frequency and the operation of their services.

You can find out more about Edinburgh Airport's transport links on our website.

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