Santa Cruz Viru Viru International Airport VVI
is now Bolivia's busiest airport and serves the country's south-eastern part including Santa Cruz de la Sierra, its second-largest and most industrialized city with over 1.5 million inhabitants.The City of Santa Cruz, located in the more tropical region of Bolivia, offers first-class hotels, fine restaurants, a great museum and colonial churches. Santa Cruz residents seem to be more of European heritage, and Spanish is the prevailing language.
As all Bolivian Airports were nationalized in early 2013, there is no official Airport site available.
VVI Airport is located within the province Warnes - accessible from motorway 7 (Santa Cruz-Montero) - and is near the City of Santa Cruz de la Sierra - Bolivia's most prosperous and populous city. (Airport Contact: tel. 171 - 3385000.)
With a long runway, and an estimated 0.8 million passengers a year, Viru Viru International Airport is hub to Boliviana de Aviacion and is served by a number of international airlines offering direct and connecting flights to all points of the globe. American Airlines serves Viru Viru from Miami Airport.
NOTE: US citizens will need a tourist visa - see http://bolivia.usembassy.gov/information-on-bolivian-visas.html
Viru Viru International Airport has one passenger terminal.
For tourist, hotel & transportation information go to the booth located in the Main Hall. The banks and ATMs accept Visa, Mastercard, American Express, Electron, Maestro & Cirrus. A foreign exchange service is available on level 2 of International Arrivals; duty-free shops and luggage storage are located in the connecting passage between the Main Hall and Domestic Arrivals.
There are a number of places to eat and shop (duty-free is cheaper than anywhere else), as well as rental car facilities.
VIP Lounge Santa Cruz de la Sierra, open 24/7, is in the pre-boarding internatinal area, near door 6.
For transfer passengers needing to take a nap
Viru Viru Aurport offers Nap Rooms
for long- and short-term parking are available in covered and non-covered parking facilities.
Present & future Airport developments:
The operating Consortium SABSA (Abertis & Aena) was nationalized in early 2013. While the present Government's airport site for Viru Viru could not be found - a reputable source disclosed that in October 2015 a request for China's financing of a US$500M project has been issued, which is to turn the Airport into a regional passenger & cargo hub. A master plan was drawn up, upon completion of which a consruction plan will be set up to include a new runway, 3 passenger terminals, cargo facilities, and related projects.
April 2016 update: Papers were signed and t
he Airport's modernization & expansion project (undertaken by Beijing Urban Construction Group) is to become a regional hub for passenger & cargo flights - tentatively to be completed by 2019.
In August 2016, funding for improvement works were being negociated.
Current Bolivian airlines include privately-owned Aerocon (firstname.lastname@example.org); and State-owned 'BoA Boliviana de Aviacion'. (All other airlines serving Viru Viru Airport are listed separately.