Vienna's new terminal: connect to your next flight in 25 minutes

Vienna's new terminal: connect to your next flight in 25 minutes

Austria's Vienna International Airport reckons it has cracked what many travellers would consider Mission Impossible: a 25 minute transfer time between arriving and connecting flights.

That world-beating figure is the least amount of time the airport and its airlines reckon it should take to get from your inbound plane to your outbound one at the new Skylink terminal extension.

It's less than half some larger hubs' minimum times and five minutes under Munich, the previous recordholder.

It's also pretty scary and potentially hairy stuff. Would you be comfortable with a half-hour transit time? It almost begs to be put to the test, and we'll do so should the chance ever arise.

With Lufthansa Group subsidiary airline (and Star Alliance member) Austrian Airlines headquartered in Vienna, the airport is a very useful secondary hub if you're not a fan of the larger European connecting airports like Frankfurt, Paris or London.

And the new terminal is light and bright: another big benefit.

The Skylink terminal is used exclusively by Austrian Airlines and Star Alliance partners.

Austrian no longer flies to Australia but the airline and its Star Alliance pals will connect you via several Asian hubs to Austrian's regional network, which is especially strong within the growing markets of eastern Europe.

The three-level construction makes it faster and easier to connect, no matter where you're heading.

All in all, it looks like Vienna could be a serious connection competitor to the bigger airports.

In the new Skylink terminal, you'll find double the terminal space, new vertical connections for short transfers, separate areas for Schengen and non-Schengen connections, more security lanes, a focus on better food options, and a new baggage claim plus central arrivals hall.

New check-in areas are also a feature of the Skylink terminal.

If you were used to the old Vienna terminal for your business travel connections, the airport authority has put together a handy primer on what's changed.

John Walton

John Walton


Aviation journalist and travel columnist John took his first long-haul flight when he was eight weeks old and hasn't looked back since. Well, except when facing rearwards in business class.


  • Rufus


    14 Jun, 2012 08:09 pm

    Not yet seen the new terminal, but I've had plenty of very short connections (including Schengen to non-Schengen) in Vienna and it always seems to work - although you do feel panicked.  

    Austrian seems to specialise in this - they use (or used to use) a lot of bus gates and they've always got a second bus which waits for the connecting stragglers.   Departures still tend to be punctual, though.

    No member give thanks

  • here2go


    19 Jun, 2012 03:29 pm

    Star Alliance seems to be good at this - am looking forward to seeing if my bags make it en route from HEL-MUC via CPH later in the year on SAS with 30 min turnaround.

    No member give thanks


19 Jul, 2019 10:41 pm


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