There are over 10 seasonal chartered and scheduled flights
to Banjul Airport (BJL) from several UK and EU airports.
The flight duration from Western Europe is about 6 hours.
Travellers can choose to buy flight only or flight and
hotel accommodation which could be done independently
or via a package holiday tour operator.
The Gambia's tourist season starts around mid-October
and ends in May, though you can still find some scheduled
chartered tourist flights up to the end of June. Some
airlines fly throughout the summer months such as Brussels
Airlines and The Gambia Experience which regularly partners
with reputable carriers to offer flights in the months
of June, July, August and September.
Airfares to Banjul (Yundum) are at their costliest during
Christmas and the New Year, with somewhat lower airfares
during the Easter holidays. The lowest prices could
be had between June to mid-October, which coincides
humid rainy season.
The majority of holidaymakers or short-term visitors
from Europe and the USA come to The Gambia on charter
flights, which are generally cheaper than the scheduled
airlines. However they have set departure and return
dates and cancellation penalties could be pricey.
If you are intending on travelling independently for
the duration of your trip, you may find it more cost-effective,
as well as less hassle, to buy a low-cost package from
a tour operator. Date flexibility on your part can help
you get a package for less than the cost of a flight
only package to Banjul International.
Flights from UK:
The simplest way to get to The Gambia is by tourist
charter flight. There are frequent direct services to
Banjul International Airport from London Gatwick (LGW)
and some from Heathrow. During the tourist season there
are charter flights from Birmingham and Manchester.
Do try to look out for special promotions which are
occasionally offered to fill empty seats during the
tail end of the holiday season and the summer months.
Some of the carriers departing from UK airports are
Thomas Cook Airlines,
Small Planet Airlines, Royal Air Maroc and Titan Airways.
Flights from EU:
There are available direct chartered flights to Banjul
International Airport from Amsterdam-Schiphol Barcelona,
Copenhagen, Madrid, Oslo and Stockholm-Arlanda. Most
direct scheduled flights are from Brussels; one could
fly to Brussels Zaventem Airport and make your connecting
journey to The Gambia.
It may be worthwhile looking into scheduled routes that
go through other West African countries that sometimes
involve a stopover. For example there are many choices
for travelling to Banjul via Ghana, Nigeria or Senegal
if you are commencing your journey from France, Germany,
Italy, Spain, Scandinavia, France or Switzerland. The
majority of European cities offer direct flights to
at least one West African airport which go to Banjul.
Dakar airport (Leopold Sedar Senghor International)
is the closest international airport to Banjul and is
a travel hub to over 20 inbound and outbound cargo and
passenger airlines. Among these are Lufthansa, Emirates,
Kenya Airways, Turkish Airlines and Air France (partners)
as well as the domestic Senegal Airlines.
If you are coming from Ireland you could fly to Gatwick,
Manchester or Birmingham then take a charter to Banjul
or use a scheduled flight via one of the West African
Flights from USA / Canada:
If you are coming to Banjul from North America you should
consider going by charter on a discounted transatlantic
air ticket to London. You might also consider going
to The Gambia via Brussels or Amsterdam for example
and then onto Banjul; sometimes there is a short stopover
in Dakar. If you want to expand your options of European
departure points then consider flights going to other
West African destinations en-route onto Banjul.
Online Flight Reservations:
There are numerous discount travel
and airlines that offer you the chance to reserve your
airline ticket online. Good deals can sometimes be had
via airlines', budget or flight auction
Carbon Offset Schemes:
The way such schemes work is that you contribute a reasonable
small amount of money which is invested into schemes
which for example encourage better energy efficiency
or tree planting projects.
It has become increasingly complicated to figure out
which travel firm is the one selling you a holiday due
to the various vertical and horizontal and takeovers,
alliances, and mergers over the years. Options for consumers
has been reduced, particularly for travellers from Europe,
as independent travel agents have been squeezed within
the travel market.
[The information above should not be relied upon to
make any travel decisions. You should get flight advice
for The Gambia from your tour operator, travel agent
or air carrier.]