A Guide to Airports in the Dominican Republic

Aerial photo of the Punta Cana Airport (MDPC/PUJ) in the Dominican Republic looking north

Doodybutch / CC BY-SA 4.0/ Wikimedia Commons

The Dominican Republic has seven international airports, each strategically located on the coastline and near the country’s most popular provinces and tourist destinations. As the second largest country in the Caribbean, it’s important that you fly into the airport that is closest to your chosen destination before departure. Be sure to consult distances from your hotel before booking flights.

All airports are fully equipped with duty-free shopping, restaurants, and lounges for those flying business or first class. Arrive with plenty of time to spare, as there can be delays while checking in and long lines during the holidays.

Here’s what you need to know about the Dominican Republic’s seven international airports.

Punta Cana International Airport (PUJ)

Punta Cana, Dominican Republic: Caribbean airport - Punta Cana International Airport - exotic thatched roofs of the main terminal, architure with an almost Polynesian tribal inspiration - air side

mtcurado / Getty Images

  • Location: Cabeza de Toro
  • Best If: You're staying in Cabeza de Toro, Bávaro, Punta Cana, Uvero Alto, or Cap Cana.
  • Avoid If: You plan to spend most of your time in Santo Domingo or Samaná.
  • Distance to Resorts in Bávaro: It's about a 20-minute drive to Bávaro's resorts. Cab fare will vary according to where you're staying in the area. To get from the airport to Bávaro Beach, you can expect to pay about 1,585 Dominican pesos ($30).

This is the Dominican Republic's busiest airport. Receiving over three million passengers a year, Punta Cana's international airport also ranks as the second busiest airport in Latin America and the Caribbean. Privately owned by the Puntacana Group, PUJ has two terminals and over 20 airlines offering direct flights to and from destinations all around the world, including Russia and Canada.

Las Américas International Airport (SDQ)

Exterior of Las Américas International Airport

aniel Lobo / CC BY 2.0 / Wikimedia Commons

  • Location: Autopista Las Américas, Santo Domingo Este
  • Best If: You’re staying in the Colonial Zone, in Boca Chica, or Juan Dolio. It’s also your best pick if you’re planning to stay in Barahona, as you’ll be heading there from Santo Domingo.
  • Avoid If: You plan to spend most of your time on the Samaná Peninsula. The available flights arrive or depart very late at night, and you'll want to avoid the risk of being on the highway during these hours.
  • Distance to Santo Domingo’s Colonial City: The drive to Colonial City will take approximately 30 minutes in light traffic. You'll find official taxis parked at arrivals; average cab fare is 1,320 Dominican pesos ($25). There’s no other official public transit available. Some passengers request Uber, but note that they’re not officially authorized to pick up from this airport.

The second busiest airport in the DR, Santo Domingo serves international destinations from around the world. With two terminals, numerous international airlines fly into and out of SDQ, including Delta, JetBlue, United, Aeromexico, and Spirit. The check-in process can be slow at this airport unless you’re flying first class; several airlines, such as JetBlue, do not currently offer self-service check-in kiosks. Arrive early and wear comfortable shoes. You can pick up rental cars here, or taxi into the city as there are no other public transport options.

Gregorio Luperón International Airport (POP)

Cessna 172 gate guardian at Gregorio Luperón International Airport, Puerto Plata

Dmitry Avdeev / CC BY-SA 3.0 GFDL 1.2 / Wikimedia Commons

  • Location: Puerto Plata
  • Best If: You're staying in Puerto Plata city, Sosúa, Cabarete, Río San Juan, Punta Rucia, or Cabrera.
  • Avoid If: You're staying in the Samaná Peninsula or in Santo Domingo.
  • Distance to Playa Dorada: It will take you roughly 15 minutes to get to Playa Dorada. The average cab fare is 1,849 Dominican pesos ($35).

Near Puerto Plata city and the resorts at Playa Dorada, this airport is small yet conveniently located. From Sosúa to Cofresi, you'll find a host of beach towns and coastal destinations within easy reach.

La Romana International Airport (LRM)

Terminal at International Airport La Romana

giggel / CC BY 3.0 / Wikimedia Commons

  • Location: Carretera La Romana, La Romana
  • Best If: You’re staying at Casa de Campo, in La Romana or Bayahibe.
  • Avoid If: You plan to spend most of your time in Santo Domingo or in Punta Cana.
  • Distance to La Romana city: It can take you anywhere from ten to fifteen minutes to get to La Romana city via car.

Also known as Casa de Campo International Airport, guests who spend most of their time at the luxurious property often fly into this small airport. It’s also near the resorts and hotels in the Dominicus and Bayahibe areas. Airlines that fly into La Romana include American Airlines, Seaborne, and Eurowings. There’s a domestic terminal here for private in-country flights.

Cibao International Airport (STI)

  • Location: Santiago de los Caballeros
  • Best If: You’re staying in Santiago de los Caballeros, Jarabacoa, or Constanza. It also works for stays in Puerto Plata if the cost of flying into STI is relatively cheap; however, bear in mind that it will take just over an hour to drive north to Puerto Plata.
  • Avoid If: You plan to spend most of your time in Santo Domingo, Punta Cana, or Samaná.
  • Distance to Santiago de los Caballeros city: It's about a 30-minute drive to get to Santiago de los Caballeros. The average cab fare is 792 Dominican pesos ($15).

Located just outside the second busiest city in the Dominican Republic, Santiago’s airport receives major direct flights from the U.S., Puerto Rico, Panama, Tortola, and other destinations. Airlines that service STI include Delta, United, and JetBlue. If you’re heading to Puerto Plata, you can rent a car at the airport or hail a cab for about 5,282 Dominican pesos ($100) one way.

Samaná El Catey International Airport (AZS)

  • Location: El Catey, Samaná 
  • Best If: You're staying on the Samaná Peninsula in Las Terrenas or Las Galeras, or if you're heading to Santa Bárbara de Samaná.
  • Avoid If: You plan to spend most of your time in Santo Domingo, Punta Cana, or Puerto Plata.
  • Distance to Las Terrenas: It's about a 30-minute drive to Las Terrenas. The average cab fare is 3,698 Dominican pesos ($70).

Also known as Juan Bosch International Airport, this is the closest airport to the Samaná Peninsula and receives international flights from Delta, JetBlue, Air Canada, and more. Because of the Samaná Peninsula's remote location, it's best to stick to this airport if you're spending most of your time here, as distances can be too long by car from other parts of the DR.

La Isabela International Airport (JBQ)

  • Location: El Higüero, North Santo Domingo
  • Best If: You’re planning to visit neighboring Caribbean destinations, such as Haiti, Cuba, St. Maarten, or Curaçao.
  • Avoid If: You’re flying in from overseas and spending all your time in the Dominican Republic.
  • Distance to Santo Domingo: It will take you about 30 minutes to drive to Santo Domingo.

Also known as Joaquín Balaguer International Airport, La Isabela offers international flights to neighboring Caribbean islands. Airlines that fly through here include Air Century and Sunrise Airways.