You can save a lot of money on airfare if you’re willing to fly into a different airport and then use land transport to get to your final destination. We did exactly this recently when we travelled from Jerez to Fuerteventura — instead of paying €300+ for a “direct” flight, which would include a stopover, we got a friend of ours to drive us to Seville airport, then flew to Lanzarote. Since the flight arrived late, we booked a room in Puerto del Carmen, then travelled on to Fuerteventura the next day. When we left the islands, we flew from Fuerteventura to Milan — we rarely do round trips!
If you’re thinking of doing something similar, either to save money or to see more of the Canary Islands (after all, why see just one of them when you can see more?), you’ll need to know how to get from Lanzarote to Fuerteventura.
Airport-Puerto del Carmen (or Playa Blanca)
The budget way to travel from the airport to Puerto del Carmen is by bus. Unfortunately it stops running at 10pm, so if you arrive at night, you’ll have to take a taxi. Our 15-minute trip cost around €13 and the driver was friendly and took the fastest route. The taxi stand is right outside the exit doors of the airport terminal.
If you arrive in the morning and aren’t interested in hanging around on Lanzarote, you can catch bus 61 direct from the airport to the port.
Puerto del Carmen-Playa Blanca
If you’re travelling with the biggest (and most expensive) ferry company, Fred Olsen, there’s apparently a free shuttle to the port from Puerto del Carmen. We chose to travel with Naviera Armas, who had a really good special offer on at the time (€14 one-way compared to Fred Olsen’s €22), so we travelled to Playa Blanca by public bus.
These buses run regularly but not often, and the route can be changed if there’s a special event on — Carnaval, in our case. Luckily the route change didn’t come into effect until 2pm, and we wanted to catch the 12.05 bus.
I say 12.05 because that’s what was on the timetable I saw online, but the bus actually arrived at 12.20. Since its a 40-minute trip, it would have been a rush to get to the port to catch the 1pm boat — luckily, though, our tickets were for the 3pm departure.
Bus 61 costs €2.65 from Puerto del Carmen to Playa Blanca, and you can catch it from Avenida Las Playas, the main road along the beach. There’s a stop opposite the casino, but be aware that the bus stop signs face the road — so look out for taxis in the taxi rank: they share the space.
The journey covered at least a third of the island, so it’s a cheap way to see some of the sights of Lanzarote, such as the arid hills and white villages. We arrived in Playa Blanca at around 12.55 and wandered into the town centre, where we followed a pedestrian street all the way to the port — allow at least 15 minutes to find your way, though the walk itself is only about ten minutes.
There are two or three ferry companies to choose from, and in winter you’ll probably be fine buying your ticket on the day, though the websites will encourage you to purchase in advance. It’s certainly worth checking the timetables in advance, as there are often two-hour gaps between departures. However, there are bars and restaurants at the port, so you can have a drink while you wait.
The ferries leave right on time, so make sure you board at least 15 minutes early — the gangway came in five minutes before our departure time on our ferry. It’s a short trip: 20 or 25 minutes depending on which company you travel with, and you’ll be dropped in the beach town of Corralejo.
From here you can catch a bus to many parts of the island, such as the capital Puerto Rosario. To get to the airport you’ll need to travel to Puerto Rosario and then get another bus, but if your final destination is Corralejo, you’ve already arrived! It’s pretty small so if you don’t have too much luggage you should be able to walk to your accommodation.