Tenerife airports

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Tenerife Airport may refer to one of two airports on the Spanish island of Tenerife, in the Canary Islands:

  • TFN Tenerife North Airport (1978–present), also known as Los Rodeos Airport
  • TFS Tenerife South Airport (1978–present), also known as Reina Sofia Airport

TFN Tenerife North Airport

Tenerife North Airport (IATA: TFN, ICAO: GCXO), also known as Los Rodeos, is one of two international airports on the island of Tenerife in Spain. The airport is located 11 km by road from the capital Santa Cruz de Tenerife, and is mostly used for connecting Tenerife City with Mainland Spain, for inter Canary Island flights and by low cost airlines. The other airport on the island is the mainly tourist Tenerife South Airport Reina Sofia Airport.

The popular resort of Puerto de la Cruz and the 500 year-old town of La Orotava lie 20 km away.

The route between Tenerife North and Gran Canaria International Airport is the busiest with an average 40 flights per day between the two islands.


In the winter of 1929, many years before the airport had even been built, the field at Los Rodeos was hastily prepared to accommodate the first (though unofficial) flight into Tenerife operated by an Arado VI (D-1594) aircraft operating from Berlin on behalf of Deutsche Lufthansa.

In May 1930, the Compañía de Líneas Aéreas Subvencionadas S.A. (C.L.A.S.S.A.) established the first air link between the Spanish mainland and the Canary Islands using a Ford 4-AT Trimotor (M-CKKA), which took off from Getafe, Madrid to the Los Rodeos field via Casablanca, Cape Juby and Gando in Gran Canaria.

After the final location of the airport had been decided, funds were gathered between 1935 and 1939 to build a small hangar and begin expanding the airstrip which would become Los Rodeos airport. After the interruption of civil flights caused by Spanish civil war, operations into Los Rodeos recommenced on 23rd of January 1941 with a De Havilland DH89A Dragon Rapide operating an Iberia flight from Gando in Gran Canaria.

By 1946, more hangars, a passenger terminal and an 800m paved runway had been built, and the airport was officially opened to all national and international traffic. The runway was stretched at various times during the 1940s and 1950s, reaching a length of 2,400m in 1953, by which time the airport was also equipped with runway edge lighting and an air-ground radio, enabling night operations.

By 1964, runway 12-30 had been stretched to 3,000m to accommodate the DC-8, new navigation aids were installed, and the apron was expanded to provide more parking spaces for aircraft. In 1971, with the prospect of the Boeing 747 flying into the airport, the runway was reinforced and an ILS (Instrument Landing System) was installed.

In the 1977 Tenerife disaster, a PanAm and a KLM Boeing 747 collided on the runway after a KLM plane started to take off without permission from the control tower, killing 583 people – the worst aircraft accident in history.

Following a sharp increase in passenger numbers in the 1990s, the airport underwent a process of modernisation between 2002 and 2005, culminating with a new car park, motorway access ramps, a new four-storey passenger terminal with 12 gates and 6 ‚fingers’, and a new separate terminal for insular flights.

As well as offering a selection of domestic and international connections, Los Rodeos has become an inter-island hub ‚par excellence’, connecting with all six of the other islands.

Tenerife South Airport

Tenerife South Airport (IATA: TFS, ICAO: GCTS), previously known as Tenerife South-Reina Sofia Airport, is one of two international airports located on the island of Tenerife, the largest of the Canary Islands (the second one being Tenerife North Airport). Between its opening and the end of 2006, a total of 173,912,207 passengers passed through the airport.[citation needed] The airport is the busiest of the two Tenerife airports.

The airport is located in the municipality of Granadilla de Abona and was inaugurated on 6 November 1978, by Queen Sofía of Spain, to whom the airport is dedicated; by the end of its first year, 1 million passengers had passed through its doors.

The public bus service TITSA offers cheap and quick services to all parts of the island, Line 343 connects the South Airport (TFS) with the North Airport (TFN)

Tenerife South handled over 7.3 million passengers in 2010. Combined with Tenerife North Airport, the island gathers the highest passenger movement in the Canary Islands with 11,410,305 passengers.


In the late sixties, the island authorities of Tenerife said they needd a new airport at a new location as the existing airport did not meet technical requirements due to adverse weather conditions.

In 1977, the control tower, Terminal building and taxiways were completed.

The airport was opened by Queen Sofía on 6 November 1978. The first flight was an Iberia running flight IB187 from Lanzarote, which was operated by a DC-9. The flight landed at 10:17

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