Flying to Libya – Mitiga Airport, Tripoli

Ben Crowley
June 15, 2024


If you’re travelling to Libya, chances are you’re going to fly there. There are of course options of crossing land borders, especially from Tunisia or Egypt, but the vast majority of travellers will fly in.

Unfortunately, Tripoli is hardly a hub and there isn’t a huge number of options, and the options are relatively expensive, but there still is enough to get you in and out of Libya safely.

At the time of writing the main Tripoli International Airport is closed. The airport closed in 2014 and there are currently no plans for it to reopen. In the meantime, the main airport servicing the Libyan capital is Mitiga, airport code MJI.

Mitiga was an Airforce base for much of its history, before becoming a commercial airport in the mid 1990s, and then finally in 2018, becoming Tripoli’s sole airport, which it has fulfilled, with a short exception in 2019 and 2020 when it was closed due to airstrikes. During 2019, Misrata became the main airport, which is roughly 200km east of Tripoli – obviously not the most convenient airport location.

Mitiga Airport is 8km from the centre of Tripoli and is very small, with one arrival gate, four departure gates, one café airside and two cafes landside, a small selection of shops and money changers. There are no skybridges and instead you’ll need to be bused to your aeroplane.

While there are many destinations to and from Mitiga Airport, chances are you’ll be flying from/through Istanbul, Tunis or Cairo. These are the only international destinations with daily flights to well connected airports. If you can, flying through Tunis is usually the cheapest, followed by Cairo, with Istanbul being the most expensive.

The flight time from Istanbul is three and half hours, from Cairo two and half hours and from Tunis it’s just an hour flight.

There are also several airlines, including Afriqiyah, Libyan Wings, Tunisair, Medsky, Libyan Airlines, Fly Oya, Egyptair, Berniq and Turkish. Obviously, Egyptair and Turkish Airlines are the most reliable, however, out of the Libyan airliners, it’s normally accepted that Libyan Wings is the most reliable, safest and with the best service. Libyan airline companies are notorious for cancellations and delays so paying a little extra for a better reputation is often a safe bet in this case.

Several Libyan airline companies cannot be booked online and instead need to be booked directly via an authorised ticket office.

There are also options to Malta, Rome and Amman, but these are not daily options and obviously aren’t necessary the easiest for connections, but they do work for some people. Royal Jordanian flies from Amman Airport. A last option for those travelling via the Middle East is to try and jump on a flight from Jeddah, which are usually catering for the Hajj/Umrah crowd. These can quite often be much more affordable options.

When you arrive in Tripoli, you will be pulled aside and questioned before going through immigration regardless of your visa status. The usual questions of where you have been, what you’re planning on doing and where you are staying will be asked. It’s all formalities and eventually you will be allowed to continue your travels.

Now that you know it’s possible to book flights to Tripoli, why not organise your Libyan adventure by contacting us .

Ben Crowley

Ben Crowley

Co-founder of SAIGAtours, Ben is known for his extensive trivia knowledge, which comes in very handy for long bus rides! He loves a good road trip and has a passion for driving some of the most dangerous and exciting roads in the world. When not traveling he loves playing and watching sport, and is an excellent squash player.

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