El Salvador International Airport: Busiest Airport in Central America


a plane under the sunset at salvador international airport

El Salvador International Airport, located in San Salvador, is one of the biggest international hubs of Central America. The other one is Panama City. The majority of the flights will be going through El Salvador. So it’s interesting, whenever we take a flight in Central America, we have to do a connection pretty much always in El Salvador, and I would say 95% of the people continue on. Today we’re going to be talking about the El Salvador International Airport.

El Salvador International Airport

It is a connecting airport, and it is structured for that in the respect that it has a million and a half stores, restaurants, lounges, you name it.

Airport Structure

However, the airport is also structured in a way that is incredibly uncomfortable airport.

You cannot just enter an area, your gate, where you’re going to be flying from. Do you know how in other airports you could go to gates which are empty just to sit around and wait here? You cannot.


You have to go through this massive security situation. You have to show your boarding pass. You cannot just go to any random gate. You can only go to your gate and you are literally practically stripped searched.  They are so strict. They go through all your luggage. They take out the stupidest stuff.

They make you remove your shoes. This is already inside the airport. So you’ve already gone to another airport through all of the security measures here. You have to go through it again because there are no international customs since you just are continuing on with a connecting flight. So just have that in mind.

So if you’re going to be going to your gate, just be prepared to stay at your gate. And if it is crazy full – too bad.

Because I had that situation, and flights get delayed all the time, so you want to get out. So if you get out, you have to make sure that you have time to get back in with the same kind of search and security measures once again, which takes, by the way, between ten to 15 minutes. Especially if there’s a line of people to get in and just be prepared for them taking out the stupidest stuff. They could take out all these liquids that don’t even have liquids. It doesn’t even matter.


However, you can go shopping. There are lounges, there are coffee shops, and they do have Internet in the actual airport. So that does make a difference in you spending the time, especially if you don’t have internet or data in that particular area. So it’s a small airport. It’s not really a lot to do there. You can’t get super lost. But you do need time for those connecting flights.

A good connection would be between an hour and a half and 2 hours so that you are not rushing, especially with those security measures.

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Last Updated on September 30, 2023

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