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Sofia Airport
5.6 out of 10  5.6 out of 10
18 reviews

 



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SOFIA AIRPORT customer review :  3 March 2014 by N Geo    (Cyprus)

Rating : 0/10

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Cleanliness

Facilities

Recommended

I was shocked by the dirty toilets: no water to flash the toilet or to wash your hands! No toilet paper, the most dirty airport I visited around the world. Airport management must consider this and take the appropriate action.



SOFIA AIRPORT customer review :  19 May 2012 by Susan Moore    (UK)

Rating : 5/10

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Recommended

What struck me about this airport was how empty it was. Several of the shops were closed and many of the others, including alcohol, were very poorly stocked. There is nothing to do but the good point is that there was free wifi there. However on my most recent visit they seem to have removed seating and power sockets that were plentiful before. The airport was quick to get in and out of.



SOFIA AIRPORT customer review :  20 January 2012 by Angelo Tzarevski    (South Africa)

Rating : 6/10

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Recommended

The new terminal is a lot more modern than the old one, but the airport cannot compare to other major EU airports. T2 seems somewhat dingy after you check-in and go through security. Signage is sparse but the terminal is small so it is easy to get around. Duty free is almost non-existent and cafes/restaurants are expensive compared to others in Sofia. The staff's attitude is mediocre.



SOFIA AIRPORT customer review :  19 December 2011 by Antonia Ni    (Singapore)

Rating : 2/10

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Recommended

As I'm Bulgarian, I've been flying in and out on multiple occasions. T2 is modern and convenient but seems empty compared to other EU or worldwide airports. In terms of facilities, there is nothing much to do waiting for your flight. Luckily, there is WiFi. Duty Free lacks variety, the cafes are overpriced and the shops over- priced. Always go to the taxi kiosk and ask for estimation for your fare. Public transport connects the Central area and the airport. Overall, the Bulgarian hospitality and food and entertainment need to be advertised better.



SOFIA AIRPORT customer review :  5 July 2010 by Arlene Olver   (UK)

Customer Rating :  3/5

3 Star Rating   

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We've flown in & out of Sofia several times now and have used both terminals (depending on who we've flown with). I'd agree with others that prices for drinks etc are OTT but that's common to most airports. Another reviewer mentioned going to a taxi kiosk - you really should book a cab at the desk and be put into it by the person managing the rank if you don't want to be ripped off. The person in the office will give you an estimate (between x & y depending on the traffic) of cost to your destination. We've used ok taxis to and from the Central Bus Station a few times and have never been charged more than the estimated fare. Do make sure you book at the desk though. There is a shuttle bus service to the City Centre - we haven't given this a go yet but have seen the buses and they seem quite frequent. One thing to watch out for I'm afraid is being over charged at the duty free shops. This has happened to us a few times. Ask for the till receipt as well as your credit / debit card receipt and check the number of items on the till receipt against what you actually bought. Do this as close to the shop as you can, and go back if you need to. Someone else was waiting to query her bill while we were being dealt with. The woman in the shop claimed that there was some problem with their bar coding system. If this is so, they should get it sorted out - the problem seems to having been going on for quite some time.


SOFIA AIRPORT customer review :  10 June 2010 by D Callaghan   (Ireland)

Customer Rating :  3/5

3 Star Rating   

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Sofia Airport Terminal 2, being light and spacious, but calm and quiet. The baggage reclaim took forever! There were 3 or 4 baggage reclaim belts but only one was being used for 3 flights that had just arrived. The baggage took forever to come round and when it did it was all wet and slushy from the snow outside and several bags were damaged. Free WiFi so I could check e-mails etc while I was waiting for bags. When leaving, check in staff weren't the nicest but did what they had to efficiently. The security checkpoint is in the middle of the airport between the check in hall and arrivals. The security check was quick, but this was because they were very lax about everything, many people went through with bottles of water and drinks and they were generally making the minimum of effort. Had to pass through passport control again which was quick. Upon arriving in Bulgaria we had docked at a jet way so walked off the plane and into the airport. When leaving our plane was parked at a remote stand so we went to a bus gate to be bussed to the aircraft. Shops were hard to find but I found this quite refreshing instead of usual duty free shops squashed into the corner of every other airport I usually go through.


SOFIA AIRPORT customer review :  22 February 2010 by D Kemp   (UK)

Customer Rating :  2/5

2 Star Rating   

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Flight inbound to Sofia arrived on time, but took nearly an hour for luggage to start coming on the carousel in dribs and drabs. On the outbound flight back to Gatwick the security was slack (a fellow flier was allowed to take bottled water in) and security staff rude in both directions at passport control. The prices were astronomical in the airport (Ģ4 for a can of beer which I didn't purchase) and Ģ5 for two half filled cold cups of coffee with huffy and eye rolling service from a snotty woman in the cafe booth. Seriously not what was needed after a days travelling and the prospect of further travelling to come. The airport was clean and although small appeared spacious. Overall the airport was okay but let down by the staff who are in need of training in customer service, regardless of what language they or the travellers speak. Saying that this is the only choice for most travellers coming into Bulgaria, however we were disappointed as to how the airport prices were exploiting the travellers using it the most we have experienced in any country so far.


SOFIA AIRPORT customer review : 8 January 2010 by Henning Brogaard

Customer Rating : 4/5

4 Star Rating

The airport as such is very pleasant. I am only talking about terminal 2. Itīs a small airport with limited facilities. Prices are high, but I donīt know any airport which is cheap. Immigration and customs formalities are quick, kind and very effective. It is an agreeable airport until you leave the building and start looking for a taxi - you can rest assured that you will be cheated the way you canīt imagine. If it is possible ask your hotel to order transport for you.


SOFIA AIRPORT customer review : 22 October 2008 by P Bedson

Customer Rating : 3/5

3 Star Rating

T2 is modern and OK but T1 is like something out of the Third World not an EU member state! Taxi drivers in Bulgaria are bandits - do not accept an offer from a tout in the arrivals hall - you could easily end up having to pay €60 or €70 - there are two or three little booths opposite from where you emerge in arrivals. Go to them and tell them where you are going - they give you a little form to give the driver and there is usually someone to point you at the right car. If you do this the rate will be reasonable (but still twice the rate back from town if you get an honest driver - ask your hotel to get you a car). Airside facilities are not great and the bars are very expensive


SOFIA AIRPORT review : 10 October 2008 : by S Reed

Customer Rating : 2/5

2 Star Rating

The new airport has a lot of space, but there are already signs that the building work might have been a tad rushed. While I was waiting for a BA flight a small piece of rubbish dropped from above, followed by a large but (mercifully) dead cockroach. The range of food on offer was limited, poor and expensive although the ice cream stall is worth a visit. Bulgarian food is normally good, but there is no sign of any Bulgarian grub inside the airport, not even a slice of banitsa. The authorities have missed a great chance to promote the food and culture of the country. Elsewhere there could be sales points for good Bulgarian souvenirs plus a good choice of folklore CDs. Bulgaria has a wonderful music culture which many visitors have come specifically to sample. The gentleman in the duty free was very helpful about the different products but, again, the range was very limited. However, I enjoyed the relative peace and quiet.



Sofia Airport review by B Cale

6 April 2008   Customer Rating : 4 Star Rating

"Public transport not advertised". Go to the Sofia Airport Web site. Click on Transport under Services. Then click on Buses on the left hand menu.

Sofia Airport review by Lawrie Hall

5 April 2008   Customer Rating : 2 Star Rating

Sofia Terminal 2 is easy to use. That's it. It is a big rip-off if you need to eat or drink. Mind you, yesterday (2/4/2008) the restaurant was closed, and knowing that Bulgaria Air only provides a sandwich on its 2030 flight to London made things difficult as well as expensive (if it had been open). Coffee in central Sofia 1.5 to 2 lev. airport 4.5 lev. 50cl beer in Sofia downtown 2 lev, small-town Bulgaria 1.2 lev. Airport 6 lev. Outrageous. Don't even ask about spirits. Gets even worse airside. So be prepared. There is a taxi prepayment if you arrive at the airport and want to go downtown, but be prepared to haggle to go back to the airport from the City. Public transport not advertised and incredibly difficult to find out about. Under no circumstances take a taxi from the Central Rail or bus Station. Taxi driver will calm you by saying he will use the meter - but will flag a tariff 4-5 times the official rate. Sad but true. Probably the worst airport in Europe for rip-off.


Sofia Airport review by Lee Melbourn

26 October 2007   Customer Rating : 1 Star Rating

Sofia Aiport T1 - Whilst everyone is raving about the new terminal, if you are unlucky and have to use T1 be prepared. It is awful. Probably one of the worst airports I have been to. Considering this is the capital of Bulgaria, there is nothing there. The only thing that was open was a news-stand. I bought a paper then discovered it was 7 days old! This place needs knocking down.

Sofia Airport review by Maurice Kardas

18 October 2007   Customer Rating : 4 Star Rating

It was a great relief that the new terminal was opened beginning of this year. Arriving is very quick. Departing is still a mess. Being an elite plus member of Skyteam I use the business check in. This counter however is normally not there or is being used by everybody. There are 2 business lounges. Use the one downstairs, a lot larger and more seats and tables to work on. Also duty free is improving. Pleasant airport although the business lounge could do with AC.

Sofia Airport review by Jack Sheldon

28 May 2007   Customer Rating : 3 Star Rating

Used Sofia this week and the new terminal made a favourable impression. On arrival, there was no line at immigration and having no luggage I was on the street within about 10 minutes of touch-down, before the person collecting me had turned up. On departure, arrived at the airport at 6:05 am for a 07:10 departure, had accomplished check-in, security and immigration with 10 minutes. The airport terminal is a bit spartan and there are still very few outlets. I was given access to the "business lounge", which looks like it was designed by EasyJet (it's all in bright orange too!). All access to and from planes seems to be by bus. There are finger docks but they don't seem to be in service at all and most of the planes are parked at remote gates. The one plane parked in front of a finger dock, wasn't attached to it. The toilets looked as though they hadn't been cleaned in a long time, but overall the airport gave a generally professional impression.

Sofia Airport review by George Tamamdjiev

14 February 2007   Customer Rating : n/a

The new terminal is now open and some of the airlines are using this facility. The building is brand new, very spacious. Some of the shops and restaurants are not opened yet but this airport is miles better than the old one.

Sofia Airport review by Ivan Ilieff
27 October 2006

Being a Bulgarian native I fly into and out of SOF on a regular basis. The old building cannot possibly handle the increasing passenger traffic and the launch of the new shiny terminal is being posponed since November of 2005 until present day. SOF has the unfriendliest check-in staff in Europe and the United States (New York excluded). Make sure you check the weight of your luggage carefuly before leaving for the airport and distribute the luggage evenly in your bags. I was made to remove stuff out of my 55-pound suitcase and put it in my 35 pound one at the check-in desk in front of the entire line or else threatened with an excess luggage charge. Early mornings turn SOF's departure hall into a zoo, since a few carriers (LH, OS, AZ, BA) have flights departing between 6 and 8AM carrying primarily connecting passengers for long-haul flights out of the major hubs in Europe. The airlines usually send their planes to arrive in Sofia late on the previous evening so that they can depart early in the morning. On several occasions, however, due to technical problems at SOF, (the explanation given when that actually happened to me was that the lighting system on the runway was out of commission) said planes never make it to SOF in the first place. So it is a good idea to check with your airline the night before your departure to ensure your plane had safely landed. Bar on the second floor (departure hall) is way too overpriced - they charge EUR3.50 for a beer, with an average price in the city for the same brand of about EUR1. Security and passport control are usually smooth and once on the airside a visit to the duty free shop is a must since it still offers the lowest prices of tobacco and liquor in the world (A carton of Marlboros costs EUR 15.00!!!) Transfer to the planes is by bus and the boarding procedure is nonexistent, since everyone is trying to cram on the plane at the same time. Bulgarians are very skilled in running and pushing people around, so even if you are the last one to board the bus, that is the first one to get off the bus and climb the stair onto the plane, there is no guarantee that you won't be overrun by the crowd. Overall the airport is inadequate for a capital city, hopefully the new terminal will soon change the gateway to my home country.

Sofia Airport review by Nakasone Yasuhiro
6 November 2005

Sofia Airport is easily one of the worst airports I have used. Avoid planes arriving during the day, especially in the early afternoon as there are 7 or 8 planes landing at the same time resulting in chaos and traveller misery. Before arrival: Prepare for small planes, full of people who carry all their baggage onboard. If you get on the plane late, there won't be place in the overhead compartments for your stuff. If possible, ask the flight attendant for a seat close to the exit. If you don't fly business, and are on a plane with an aft door, get a seat near the aft door. The locals flying on the plane spontaneously burst in applause on touch-down; it beats me why given what awaits you after landing. Arrival: Getting off the plane: Passengers are required to get off the plane and board a bus to the terminal building. Bring an umbrella and water-proof shoes in case of bad weather, because the buses stop away from the plane and the terminal building; and jumping over large pools of water is how you get to the bus/terminal. Try to get on the second bus, because it stops in front of the passport control booths that work better. Passport control: Sit on the right side of the bus, near the door, and be ready to run for the passport control booth. Avoid control booths after #3 (my experience is they tend to work slower than #1 to #3, and that the queues there are even less ordered than those in the first three. Boot #1 is the crew priority booth, and if several planes land at the same time you may wait a long time before the crews get checked. Booths are numbered 1 to maybe 8, the last four or five seem always closed, numbers run from right to left. Queuing is quite chaotic, so be prepared to be pushed, especially by the locals, to have people get in the line in front of you, etc. etc. Be prepared that the passport control official may go out of the booth at any time for a cup of coffee or a cigarette, and that he/she isn't answerable, polite or anything. Except for crews, there are no priority lines; flying business into or outside of Sofia is generally quite pointless, as there is almost no difference in the way business passengers are treated by the staff. Don't expect announcements of any kind. You're supposed to know what you're doing anyway, right? The luggage: there is random wait for the luggage. In bad weather, the bags come in wet and dirty. I have not had problems with lost baggage, so I can't comment on that. The customs: Very convenient. At night there are usually one or two sleepy people there who try to ignore the passengers. During the day there are more people, but I have never been asked for anything. The arrival hall: Another nightmare. Usually full of people who seem to have little or no buisness there, and get in the way of the folks with bags. Since the arrival hall is small, it is over quickly. Ignore the people who come to you and in broken English offer you a taxi ride. Fare to the city: go to the counter of OK Supertrans taxi in the right corner of the arrival hall, and have someone to get a cab for you and come with you to the car. Once I was refused a booked ride by one of the drivers because my bags were "too big". The fare is (Nov. 2005) around 25 eurocents a kilometer; a fare to the city center is about 6-8 leva. Before departure: again, avoid daytime flights. Early morning flights are early, but arrival, check-in, security, passport control and boarding are a breeze. Arrive about one hour before boarding, and double the time if you travel daytime. A traffic jam develops around 2:30pm because of all the people who come to the airport to greet arriving passengers, and that you may wait for up to 15-20 minutes on the last kilometre of the road to the airport. Check-in: there is no advantage in flying business on check-in. There is a serious advantage in early arrival. The people on the check-in speak some English, but are generally grumpy and unhelpful. Make sure you've got the seating you asked for, because the planes are usually crowded. Security control: this is a nightmare about as bad as the passport control on the way in. There are two checkpoints, and no matter how many people are queued up, usually only one is in operation. The queue usually goes halfway into the departure hall, in front of the check-in counters - undoubtedly very convenient for everyone. Prepare for a long wait here during daytime. Passport control: usually easy, the bottleneck is the security check. Boarding: board the bus last, and stand on the right side. Getting on the plane: Try to get first, in order to avoid full compartments.









 


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