Brussel's Zaventem Airport Handy Guide to Navigating The Airport!

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Brussel's Zaventem Airport Handy Guide to Navigating The Airport!
Learn all the essential details you'll need to know when you land in Brussel's Zaventem Airport (BRU), including where to stay in or around the airport and the transportation options to Brussel's city center.
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Brussels, the capital of the EU, is a vibrant city worth visiting! With a never-ending supply of things to do in Brussels, it truly never gets dull in Brussels! From going to their delicious chocolate tastings to exploring its beautiful museums around the city, you'll definitely have a blast exploring what Brussels has to offer!

We've covered two nearby airports, the busy Amsterdam Schiphol and the big and widely renowned Charles de Gaulle Airport. Today, we're going to be exploring the Brussels Zaventem Airport! 

Before we jump in, are you traveling to Brussels but not landing in Zaventem? That's likely because you're landing in Brussel's South Charleroi Airport then. No worries if you're confused, keep reading, and we'll answer all of the questions you have on the airports in Brussels.

Brussels Airport Logo
Image Courtesy of Brussels Airport


Are there two airports in Brussels?

Yes! The capital of Belgium has two airports. The main one is Zaventem Airport, with airport code BRU. However, a second one, South Charleroi Airport, has airport code CRL. The latter is located about 55 km south of Brussels. If you still need to buy your ticket try to land in Zaventem as it is way closer to the city center.

Where is Brussels Airport?

Zaventem Airport is located in the municipality of Zaventem, about 20 km northeast of Brussels city center and 45 km south of Antwerp. Not sure how to get to Brussel's city center? There are plenty of options at the airport.

Brussels Airport Terminal
Image Courtesy of Cancun Airport

How to get from Brussels Airport to the city center

Luckily, there are several options to reach the city center from Brussels Airport. Here are some of the most popular ones!

By taxi

If you don't have much time and money is not a problem, you can easily book a taxi. A ride will take slightly less than 20 minutes and cost you about €45. Taxis run all day, so if you're arriving at the airport late at night, sharing a cab with friends may be a great option. 

If you are having a hard time convincing your friends to pay all that money on a taxi, opt for an Uber. 

By bus

The cheapest option is by bus. Two main buses depart from the airport, bus number 272 and bus number 471. Click on the links to check their schedules. Bus 272  will take you to the city center in about 30 minutes while bus 472 is faster and will take only 18 minutes. A ticket will cost you €3, and you can buy one at the vending machines at the airport. 

Brussels Airport Transportation Options
Image Courtesy of Brussels Airport

Train

The train is more expensive and will cost you €12.70. However, this is an excellent option if you arrive late at night as trains run almost 24/7. You can buy your ticket at one of the many machines inside the airport, and you will arrive in the city in about 17 minutes. 

How big is Brussels Airport?

Brussels Airport is one of the biggest in Europe and is served by 74 different airlines. Unfortunately, this means that if you're just here for a layover, you need to make sure to have enough time between flights. Otherwise, you may have to run for kilometers from one gate to another. 

Luckily, Brussels Airport only has one terminal with three different gate areas A, B and T. If you have a lot of time to spend here don't worry! The whole airport has access to free wifi, and there are many comfortable couches where you can work and plenty of shops to kill time before your next flight. 

Covid-19 rules at Brussels Airport

After your trip to Belgium, depending on the country you're flying to, you may need to take a Covid test. Luckily, you will find a Covid-19 Test Center inside the airport located outside the departure hall. If you just arrived in Brussels and you received an SMS with a code asking you to get tested, you can do so at the Covid-19 test center on level 0. Prices vary depending on the test. 

For instance, a Standard PCR test will cost you €67. In this case, you will receive a result within 24 hours. If you need your results right away, you can opt for a fast PCR test, which will cost you €135. You can also book an antigen test for the price of €55.

Brussels Airport COVID-19 Test Center EcoLog
Image Courtesy of Brussels Airport

Hotels near Brussels Airport

There are several hotels within walking distance from Brussels Airport. The closest option is the well-known Sheraton Brussels Airport Hotel offering direct access to the terminals. A room here will cost you about €123 per night. 

Another option is Novotel Brussels Airport, where you will be able to spend a night for about €85. This hotel features an on-site restaurant, and its reception is open 24/7. Lastly, you can also try Crowne Plaza, where a night will cost you about €113. 

This hotel also features an on-site fitness and wellness center for you to keep yourself in shape between flights. 

Novotel Brussels Airport Entrance
Image Courtesy of Accor Hotels

Can you sleep at the Brussels Airport?

The airport staff is usually quite accommodating with people sleeping in the airport. If you are well prepared, it should not be too difficult to spend a night or take a quick nap here. Brussels Airport has one main terminal with three levels and two piers. Pier A is for flights within the EU, Africa, and NY, while Pier B serves most other areas and non-Schengen countries. Pier A is the best option for comfortability. 

It is full of benches, and here you will find some large couches where you can take a nap before your flight. If you'd like to bring your own air mattress, you might want to check the fourth floor, which usually is less busy. Bring blankets with you to help you fall asleep in the otherwise busy airport! 

Ready to plan your trip to Brussels?

With all of that information, you're officially prepared to tackle navigating Brussels Airport like a pro! Know exactly where to spend the night, from booking the airport hotels to sleeping right inside the airport. Know precisely which transportation options to take from the airport to Brussel's City center!

Before you start your adventure exploring the city of Brussels, make sure you're well prepared with a travel plan. Anything could go wrong, and its best to be prepared! 

Let us help you prepare for your trip with our brand new and free social travel planner! 

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Cristina Miceli Blog
Written by:
Cristina Miceli
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