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Santa Maria Airport - All Information on Santa Maria Airport (SMA)

Santa Maria Airport (SMA) Santa Maria Airport (SMA)

Santa Maria Airport

Vila do Porto, Portugal
+351 296 820 020
+351 296 820 020 (Lost + Found)
Santa Maria Airport - All Information on Santa Maria Airport (SMA)

Santa Maria Airport (IATA: SMA) serves the Portuguese autonomous territory of the Azores and is located on the island of Santa Maria, 5 km west-northwest of the urbanized district of Vila do Porto.

It was built at the beginning of World War II by American forces who were given control until the war's end to protect convoys and was a major hub in transatlantic travel until the end of the 20th century.

During this time, Santa Maria Airport became more of a commercial hub thanks to increased traffic from inside the islands and to and from Europe. As a direct result, we manage the aviation corridor's North Atlantic communication obligations.

Arrivals, Departures and Airlines at Santa Maria Airport

Transfer Services at Santa Maria Airport

Santa Maria Airport on Santa Maria Island, Azores, Portugal, has few choices for ground transportation. A taxi from the airport to your hotel will take you there in 10 minutes, making it the most time-efficient option.

Taxis, located just outside the terminal, are a cheap and quick way to get everywhere you need to go in the Azores. A car rental is a viable alternative if you'd rather see the island at your own pace.

Santa Maria Airport is connected to the rest of the island by bus, but only twice daily, so it's important to double-check schedules before planning a trip.

Santa Maria Airport is home to numerous automobile rental agencies, including Hertz, Europcar, Avis, and Sixt.

Rental Car Services at Santa Maria Airport

Renting a car from Santa Maria Airport is the best option for getting to this beautiful area without relying on public transportation. The best attractions in the area are within easy driving distance of a rented automobile.

You could take a trip around the island and do some sightseeing or stroll on one of the many stunning beaches in the area. To get some fresh air and see some of the island's beautiful natural scenery, you may also visit one of the local, national parks.

See and compare all rental car companies at Santa Maria Airport.

Taxi Services at Santa Maria Airport

With this service's help, visitors may easily get across town. Visitors visiting the Azores who don't want to (or can't) rent a car will find taxis a useful mode of transportation.

Since there are so many places to see on the island, these vehicles can also be utilized for sightseeing excursions. Depending on where you're going and how far it is from the airport, the fee could be anything from 10 to 15 Euros. See more information about taxis at Santa Maria Airport.

Train Services at Santa Maria Airport

The central business district is accessible via bus or cab, though. Vila do Porto's airport is within 5 kilometers of the city center.

Visitors should inquire with their hotels in advance to find out if they offer shuttle services to and from the airport. Taxis may be found waiting outside the terminal, and the ride into the center of Vila do Porto takes less than 10 minutes. More information about train services near Santa Maria Airport.

Bus Services at Santa Maria Airport

Several buses leave the airport daily for Vila do Porto, stopping at hotels and other destinations. But remember that there are few transit options on the island.

If you need to get somewhere quickly, you can take a taxi, but remember that they can be quite pricey. You can't get rideshare or use the train. If you'd like to rent a car and drive about the island, you may do so at Santa Maria Airport. More information about buses to and from Santa Maria Airport.

Hotel Shuttle Services at Santa Maria Airport

You can take the shuttle from the airport to your hotel, cruise ship, or other locations in the Azores quickly, easily, and affordably. Up to six people can stay at once, making it ideal for large gatherings. The shuttle can be reserved in advance on the web and offers baggage help as well.

Last-minute transfer reservations are also possible. Drivers are seasoned pros familiar with the area and will see you get where you need to go without incident. But before you book a room on the island, double-check that it has Wi-Fi.

Please see our hotel page for further details.

Rideshare Services at Santa Maria Airport

The Santa Maria Airport does not have any rideshare options. Travelers can still move around the region using other kinds of transportation, though.

Passengers can use the airport's taxi services to reach their desired destinations. It has always been difficult to navigate around Santa Maria due to the irregular hours of operation of the city's bus system.

Parking Services at Santa Maria Airport

Several parking facilities and lots are close to Santa Maria Airport for passenger convenience. They are both absent at the same time, perhaps on separate trips. Parking is available temporarily and permanently in the open lot next to the terminal.

Parking is offered short-term for €3 per hour, seven days a week. Parking fees range from €6 per day to €12 per week if you need to leave your vehicle there for a lengthy period.

See more information about short and long term parking at Santa Maria Airport.

Other Services at Santa Maria Airport

Other passenger services and amenities at Santa Maria Airport on Santa Maria Island, Azores, Portugal, are duty-free shops, restaurants, bars, and cafes. The airport has a lounge where passengers can relax during flight waiting times.

The airport is well-equipped with modern amenities making it comfortable for all travelers who pass through its doors. Additionally, several restaurants near the terminal offer delicious local cuisine before departure or after arrival.

Free Wi-Fi hotspots around the airport enable travelers to stay connected with their family and friends while on holiday. Travelers will also find ATMs inside the terminal building, providing access to cash when needed.

Car rental services and car parking facilities are also available at Santa Maria Airport, making it easier for visitors to explore the beautiful island of Santa Maria and its surroundings.

Disabled Passengers at Santa Maria Airport

The airport offers help for travelers with mobility impairments, hearing impairments, or visual impairments. People with special needs can request assistance at the information desk located in the arrivals hall, and they will be directed to the appropriate service provider.

Passengers needing wheelchair assistance can also make arrangements before their arrival by contacting the Airport Help Desk from Monday to Friday between 09:00 – 17:30 (Lisbon Time). The staff is experienced in providing personalized attention that meets all the passengers' individual requirements.

In addition, passengers requiring medical equipment such as oxygen tanks can reserve those services when making their reservation online or over the phone. Santa Maria Airport guarantees an equal-access journey that ensures disabled passengers can enjoy a comfortable and safe travel experience.

Wi-Fi at Santa Maria Airport

Internet is free, allowing passengers to browse the web or send emails quickly. It also offers other services, such as shops selling food and souvenirs, charging points for electronic devices, banking facilities, and even currency exchange offices.

Baggage Claim at Santa Maria Airport

It offers all the necessary services travelers need, including check-in counters, baggage claim carousels, and customs processing. The staff at Baggage Claim also helps with any questions or difficulties you may have while checking in or grabbing your luggage from the carousel.

This service makes it easier for everyone who needs to travel through Santa Maria Airport, ensuring they get their belongings on time and without any issues.

Information Desk at Santa Maria Airport

Customers can find helpful staff members who are knowledgeable about the area and willing to answer any questions that customers may have. The Information Desk also offers help finding transportation from the airport, such as taxi services or car rental companies.

In addition, they provide maps of the Azores for visitors to plan their trip ahead of time. With its convenient location in the Santa Maria Airport terminal building, travelers can easily access all the necessary travel information before leaving for their destination.

Smoking at Santa Maria Airport

Smoking is now limited to designated parking lot areas and public outdoor areas but not within 10 meters of any entrance or exit. This helps ensure that all travelers, employees, and visitors are safe from second-hand smoke inhalation as they enter and leave the airport terminal.

This restriction applies to traditional tobacco products such as cigarettes, cigars, pipes, and e-cigarettes. Visitors who wish to smoke during their visit must do so far away from public access points to reduce risks associated with smoking near others.

Lost and Found Section at Santa Maria Airport

The Santa Maria Airport in Azores, Portugal, can be busy with travelers during peak season. As such, the airport has implemented an effective Lost and Found Section to ensure all lost items are quickly located and returned to their rightful owners.

Those who have left something behind at the airport can submit a request online or directly contact the customer service department 24 hours a day for assistance.

Restrooms at Santa Maria Airport

The restrooms offer a full range of amenities, including hot water showers, modern sinks and toilets, paper towel dispensers, mirrors, soap dispensers, and hand dryers.

In addition to being clean and comfortable, these restrooms provide an enjoyable experience for travelers that could use some pampering after those long flights.

Nursing Mothers Station at Santa Maria Airport

The station has an armchair, a changing table, and ample storage for necessary supplies. It also includes a refrigerator so nursing mothers can keep pumped milk cold until they are ready to leave the airport.

In addition, the station offers access to electrical outlets for any needed equipment, such as pump adapters or charging devices. This new space provides much-needed support for nursing mothers traveling through one of Portugal's busiest airports.

ATMs at Santa Maria Airport

Several ATMs are located throughout the airport, so it's easy to find one that suits your needs. The kiosks accept all major credit and debit cards and cash withdrawals in Euros.

For added convenience, most machines have English, Spanish, and Portuguese language options, making them accessible worldwide to a wide range of customers.

Currency Exchange at Santa Maria Airport

The currency exchange service is not available at the facility. Please confirm if this is still the situation before flying into Santa Maria Airport in Portugal.

Food and Beverages at Santa Maria Airport

Visitors will find several snack bars, cafeterias, and restaurants serving local favorites such as grilled steak with potatoes or traditional seafood dishes. There are also fast-food outlets for those on the go.

An ice cream shop offers delicious homemade treats for sweet tooths. Passengers can also head to the shopping area to purchase souvenirs such as handmade jewelry from local artisans and snacks like chocolates.

Shopping at Santa Maria Airport

From the moment you enter, you are surrounded by many unique shopping options and local specialties that make this airport stand out. The variety of products available ranges from souvenirs to apparel and accessories, as well as food and beverages.

Whether looking for something specific or browsing around, they can find everything they need at Santa Maria Airport in the Azores. On top of all that, there's always plenty to explore on the premises - from interesting artworks displayed throughout the building to lovely outdoor gardens where guests can take a walk after their purchases.

Pet Relief at Santa Maria Airport

The airport has designated pet relief areas both inside the terminal building. Outside you will find even more space for pets to run around and take care of business if needed before or after their flight. Plenty of shade is available so your pet can stay cool while waiting at the airport. Please understand the regulations regarding live animal transportation at the hub and the inconvenience.

Ticketing Services at Santa Maria Airport

Ticketing Services at Santa Maria Airport offer various flight options, including direct charter, low-cost carriers, scheduled flights, and private jet services—allowing customers to select the most convenient option.

The airport also features a comfortable terminal building with amenities such as restaurants, bars, and shops – providing visitors with all they need before boarding their next plane.

History of Santa Maria Airport

Engineer Colonel Hermnio José de Sousa Serrano led a Portuguese mission to Santa Maria in 1941, including Colonel Frederico Lopes da Silva and Major Fernando Tártaro, as they scouted a potential site for an airfield. They settled on the plateau now known as Pico de Maria Dias.

After waiting another two years, in 1943, technicians from Pan American World Airways landed on the island via the NT Lima. They verified that the area was suitable for building a military airport to supplement the one at Lajes. Therefore, the airfield would help defend the Atlantic crossing naval convoys that supplied Soviet Union's Murmansk port against German U-boat attacks.

A proposal with airports on both sides of the ocean was submitted to António de Oliveira Salazar for approval. Pan American handed the final plan and construction contracts to the Portuguese government.

From 1940 to 1970, the airport served as the island's economic and employment hub. It was a crucial connection in trans-Atlantic travel. Initially, it served as a center for aviation activity, supporting North Atlantic air traffic. It attracted workers from So Miguel and the archipelago while building the airport and related infrastructure.

In 1962, the Portuguese airline Transportes Aéreos began offering connecting flights. By 1969, it was flying passengers nonstop between Santa Maria and New York City, and by 1971, it was flying nonstop between Santa Maria and Montreal. Santa Maria was the only entry and exit point to the Azores. It was a major hub for flights to and from Europe, North America, Central America, South America, and the Caribbean.

On their weekly SST routes between Paris and Caracas in the late 1970s, Air France's Concordes made a technical stop in Santa Maria to refuel. The airport's concessions to support civil aircraft were granted to ANA Aeroportos de Portugal in 1998, together with those of Lisbon, Porto, Faro, Flores, Santa Maria, Ponta Delgada, and Beja. This concession awarded to ANA also covered future infrastructure design, development, and construction.

About Santa Maria Island, Azores, Portugal

Santa Maria is the southernmost and easternmost island in the Azores. It is located south of So Miguel and is part of the group of islands known as the Azores. The island's fame stems from its pristine beaches, unique chimneys, and balmy, dry climate.

Beyond the myths of Atlantis, the expeditions of Portuguese sailors during the reigns of King Denis (1279–1325) and his successor King Afonso IV (1325–1357) first uncovered evidence of a cluster of islands in the Atlantic. These tales were unproven and unconfirmed until 1427 when a sailor named Diogo de Silves discovered Santa Maria (then called Ilha dos Lobos or Ilha do Ovo on nautical charts) on his way to Madeira.

Located 100 kilometers south of So Miguel and 600 kilometers east of Flores, the island occupies the far southeast corner of the Azores archipelago. Santa Maria is a long island that stretches 12 kilometers from northwest to southeast and has a total area of 97.4 square kilometers. Its geological formations are 8.12 million years old, making it the oldest island in the archipelago.

The island's economy went through many of the same fortune swings typical of the Azores. Up to the 16th century, the economy depended on cultivating wheat and woad for sustenance. At the same time, potters began producing and shipping high-quality red clay to So Miguel for use in their creations.

Until the twentieth century, when the United States military erected the airfield at Ginjal, the island was mostly cut off from trade between the New World and Europe. After World War II, it was a vital link in transatlantic air travel. It became a worldwide connection in the middle of the 20th century.

During the airport's development phase, and later when air traffic control for the North Atlantic corridor was headquartered at Santa Maria, the island came to rely heavily on the facility. Before smaller fields on other islands were built or renovated, Santa Maria Airport was the primary entry and exit point to and from the Azores for decades.

Santa Maria's significance as a transatlantic hub declined as the aviation industry evolved, particularly with the rise of long-range airliners. Santa Maria's airport wasn't as important because of the other, more modern airports in Lajes, Santa Maria, and Ponta Delgada.

At the tail end of the twentieth century, the European Space Agency set up a satellite tracking station, reigniting discussion about the island's reliance on the aviation industry. In 2012, EDISOFT submitted a proposal to build a Galileo Sensor Station in Santa Maria; the station was chosen above alternatives in Madeira and the Canary Islands.

After the Atlantic Network of Geodynamic and Spatial Stations antenna was installed in 2010, following a protocol signed in 2010 between the Regional Secretary for Science, Technology, and Equipment) and the Director-General of the National Geographic Institute of Spain, this further solidified the island's position as a technological and communications hub in the Atlantic.

The evolution of cattle herding and milk production differed from the other islands. Almost all of the town's farmland is still in use, showing that agriculture remains the town's primary economic activity.

This kind of enterprise is typically run on a modest scale. It involves forging operations, pastures, and other types of permanent properties. Sheepshead, vejas, red snapper, grouper, wrasse, mackerel, anchovies, needlefish, and frigate tuna are just a few commercially important fish species found in the waters near Santa Maria. Sawmills, tile and block factories, artisanal and handicraft production, and civil construction are the most common types of secondary industries.

Tourism, especially those related to water sports like sailing, windsurfing, water-skiing, sport fishing, scuba diving, beach activities, pedestrian hiking, etc., and rabbit hunting, is a significant tertiary sector in the Azores. Tourists flock to the summertime hotspots of Sao Lourenço, Praia Formosa, Maia, and Anjos for the beaches, natural pools, vacation residences, and festivals.

Anjos, Praia Formosa, Maia, and Sao Lourenço are popular destinations due to their white sand beaches and rock pools. In particular, the white sands of Praia Formosa, which sweep across the water, have made the island famous. Artificial concrete pools connected to the ocean have replaced natural rock pools in the remaining areas.

Weather in Santa Maria Island, Azores, Portugal

Santa Maria Island has a temperate climate with long, chilly, partly cloudy winters and short, warm, humid, dry, and largely clear summers. Over a year, the temperature rarely drops below 52 degrees or rises over 81 degrees.

Hot-weather activities on Santa Maria Island are best experienced between the middle of July and the beginning of September. August, with an average high of 78°F and low of 70°F, is the warmest month of the year, which lasts for about three months, from July to September.

Lows of 66 degrees Fahrenheit or less from December to April characterize the chilly season. The typical temperature range in February on Santa Maria Island is between 56 and 63 degrees Fahrenheit.

Santa Maria Island experiences its wettest days, on average, nine days out of December during the wetter season (September–April). The dry season lasts around five months, from April to September, with the driest days typically occurring in July.

Useful Contact Details in Santa Maria Island, Azores, Portugal

The Portuguese National Emergency Number is 112. This connects you directly with Portugal's National Emergency Service and will ensure you receive the necessary help quickly. If, for some reason, this does not work, you can call +351-296-886-707, which is the contact number for GNR (National Republican Guard) in Santa Maria Island. There is a hospital on the island: Usi Santa Maria - Unidade De Saude Da Ilha De Santa Maria. It provides medical assistance 24/7.


Usi Santa Maria - Unidade De Saude Da Ilha De Santa Maria (Hospital in Vila do Porto, Portugal)

Address: Av. Santa Maria, Vila do Porto, Portugal

Phone: +351 296 820 100


PSP - Esquadra de Vila do Porto (Police in Vila do Porto, Portugal)

Address: Rua Dr. Luís Bettencourt 107, 9580-529 Vila do Porto, Portugal

Phone: +351 296 820 112

Santa Maria Airport Contacts

Address: Vila do Porto, Portugal

General Phone: +351 296 820 020

Lost and Found Phone: +351 296 820 020

Information Desk Phone: +351 296 820 020

Official Website:

Local Information

Drive on: Right

Electricity: 230V/50Hz

Plug: C, F

Currency: Euro

Wi-Fi at Airport: Choose "_VINCI Airports WiFi" and open your Internet browser.

Services at Santa Maria Airport

Useful Information about Santa Maria Airport

Santa Maria Tourist Attractions

Things to see and do in and around Santa Maria Island, Azores in Portugal.

Lounges at Santa Maria Airport

See all the airport lounges, locations and opening times available at Santa Maria Airport

Eating and Drinking at Santa Maria Airport

See all bars and restaurants at Santa Maria Airport, including locations and if they are before or after check-in

Duty Free Shopping at Santa Maria Airport

See all shops available at Santa Maria Airport - plan your duty free shopping in advance