This is an unofficial guide to Shannon Airport

Departing

Shannon Airport is not in the direct vicinity of any major cities, the airport is about 25 kilometres west of Limerick, which can be reached via the N18 in about 30 minutes outside of rush hour. Ennis is a little over 20 kilometres to the north.

  • M18 – Driving south from Ennis,
  • Take the M18 to the N19 turnoff on the right.
  • N18 – From Limerick, take the N18 (a partial toll road) and take the N19 turnoff on the left.
  • M7 – Arriving on the M7 takes drivers past Limerick, at which point they pick up the N18 and follow the directions above.

If you are driving to the terminal and need to drop off a Shannon Airport hire car first, follow the signs to the turn-off on the Airport Road (N19) to the Europcar drop-off location. It’s best to allow 30 minutes for the return procedure.

From the car hire drop-off point, passengers are transferred to the terminal via shuttle bus. As you enter the Departures Hall, ticketing desks are on the outside wall to the right and left, and the check-in counters are straight ahead. Passengers are advised to allow plenty of time before departure to check-in and clear security.

Check-in 

Shannon Airport’s check-in area is on the first floor. As you are approaching the terminal from the front, enter through the left-hand set of doors. Ticketing desks are to the immediate right and left on the outside walls. On the opposite side of the room are the check-in counters in two rows.

When planning your departure, make a point of checking your ticket or flight itinerary. This will indicate what time the check-in counters open. Be mindful of the closing time indicated on the itinerary. This is usually 45 minutes before the flight departs, after which time airlines will not admit passengers even if they have already purchased a ticket.

The amount of hand luggage permitted on the plane depends on the airline, but most permit one bag small enough to fit in the overhead compartment, along with one personal item, such as a camera case, briefcase or purse. Be sure to review the list of prohibited items before you pack your carry-on bag. Certain items, such as excess quantities of liquids or gels, are permitted in the hold but not in the cabin. Packing accordingly speeds up the check-in process.

Baggage

Your bags will be weighed, tagged, scanned and potentially hand-searched. The process can be a little stressful, but there are a few simple steps you can take to streamline the process.

You’re allowed to take one carry-on bag with you onto the airplane. In addition to this, you can a personal item such as a small backpack, a camera or a laptop. It can be tempting to try to put too much in your hand luggage so that you’ll have access to it on the plane. However, an overstuffed or disorderly bag can stall your progress at security. Bear in mind that security officials will allow jewellery, keys and loose change in the passenger cabin. However, these items may set off the security scanner. If possible, they’re better tucked away in your checked bag.

It is worth checking with your airline before you depart to enquire about luggage size and weight allowances. Every airline has its own policies, and many levy fees for overweight or additional bags.

The terminal also offers a porterage service operated by ICTS International. There are courtesy porterage phones located throughout the terminal. It’s wise to book in advance if you have the opportunity. ICTS also runs the airport’s left luggage service. The left luggage desk is in the arrivals area adjacent to the Atlantic Coffee Company.

If you lose a bag or any personal property aboard the plane, enquire with the airline. Enquiries made for luggage lost within the terminal should be directed to the lost property office in the arrivals area.

Security

Security is a top priority at Shannon Airport, and you’ll want to do some planning and preparation to make sure that your screening process is quick and uneventful. Try to get as much in your checked luggage as possible. Not only does lighten your load while you’re in the terminal, it also means moving faster through security.

Queues move quickly at the security checkpoint, but it still a good idea to allow plenty of time. You can speed the process by having everything ready when you arrive at the screening point. Don’t carry anything gift-wrapped, as this will have to be opened if it sets off a security alarm. It’s also worth doing a quick check as you’re dressing for your flight to make sure you aren’t wearing something with too much metal in it.

Computers need to be pulled out of their carry cases before sent through the scanner. Finally, loose change, mobile phones, and metal jewellery are permitted on board, but they’re best left in your carry-on bag to speed the screening process.

Don’t forget that EU Liquid Regulations restrict the quantity of gels, pastes and liquids that can be brought on the plane. These items can only be carried on in 100-millilitre bottles, the entire set of which need to fit inside a litre-sized re-sealable plastic bag.

Prohibited Items

Just being mindful of what you wear and taking a few extra minutes to organise your luggage will go a long way towards reducing the time it takes to pass through the security checkpoint.

The list of items that cannot be carried onto an aeroplane is long but predictable. Most of the items that are not allowed are not the sorts of things a passenger would plan on taking with them in the first place. The exception is liquids and gels, which are carefully restricted by an EU regulatory aeroplane.

Liquids can be kept in the hold with your checked bag. Any that are brought on board the plane must be kept in 100-millilitre bottles, all of which must fit into a single litre-sized re-sealable bag. Exceptions are made for baby food and medicines, which should always be carried in the original bottle and with a prescription.

The following items may not be carried into the passenger cabin:

  • Scissors, paper knives or razor blades
  • Billiard cues, bats and clubs
  • Cutlery or knives with blades of any length
  • Darts or hypodermic needles
  • Metal nail files
  • Workman’s tools
  • Catapults and other projectile-firing weapons
  • Replica or toy guns