Of all the locations you could choose to open a business, we’d wager an airport isn’t the first to enter your mind – but it absolutely should be.

Unlike other locations, you can guarantee a high degree of footfall in an airport, and can calculate the times at which you’ll be busiest to maximise the efficiency of your staff. What’s more, if your product is the right fit, you’ll have a demographic primed and ready to part with their cash. Sales from retail outlets in airports are the only place in the world to rise.

Edinburgh Airport entrance
photo credit: Lebatihem / Flickr

It’s not all plain sailing, however. Floor space, especially in larger flight hubs, comes at an expensive premium – and because airports are usually governmental entities, you may have to wade through mounds of bureaucratic red tape before you’re able to open your doors.

By far the biggest disadvantage is competition. Any international airport will be replete with big hitters like Swarovski, Starbucks, Boots, WH Smith or their local equivalents. You’ll be brushing up against these dons, so you better be prepared.

To give you a helping hand, let’s take a look at what some of the biggest airport businesses do to stay successful, having a gander specifically at Edinburgh Airport.

SkyParkSecure.com

Business parking space

A mainstay of Edinburgh Airport is SkyParkSecure.com, a private parking company specialising in a meet and greet service that picks your vehicle up directly from the front of your terminal. The benefits of private parking are clear – you won’t have to spend hours scouring a car park for a decent spot – but most people mistakenly perceive this as a prohibitively expensive service.

It’s for this exact reason that this provider emphasises the savings you can make via their site. Beyond being a coup for their marketing, the savings offer a reasonable hope for repeat custom, keeping this company on the kerb of Edinburgh Airport for many more years.

BrewDog

Signage at BrewDog, Edinburgh Airport
photo credit: @megan.halsall

BrewDog, the mega-successful craft beer chain, can be found after security, and has become one of the more popular bars in Edinburgh Airport. Beyond its hip marketing knowhow, BrewDog has cultivated a loyal fan base thanks to the unique taste of their high percentage IPAs, and have complemented them with pub grub that’s perfect for an airport setting.

Their Intergalactic Beer Visa scheme, which rewards customers when they visit a BrewDog that they haven’t visited before, also guarantees plenty of one-off visitors.

The Tartan Weaving Mill

The Tartan Weaving Mill in action

Tartan and Scottish airports go together like Ant and Dec, which is why The Tartan Weaving Mill is a long established entity in Edinburgh Airport. This small shop, located after security checks, provides any budding Scotophile the chance to purchase their own tartan kilt, scarf or trouser, all in authentic clan tartan.

Every international airport needs a shop that flies the flag for its respective nation, and Edinburgh is no different.

That’s our list! We hope it’s helped you consider the type of business that soars in an airport. Got any other businesses or airports you’d like to highlight? Then let us know in the comments below.