Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport (IATA: BUD, ICAO: LHBP), formerly known as Budapest Ferihegy International Airport, is the international airport serving the Hungarian capital city of Budapest, and the largest of the country's five international airports. The airport offers international connections primarily within Europe, but also to Africa, Asia, and the Middle East.
In 2011, the airport handled 8.9 million passengers. Budapest Liszt Ferenc International Airport is located 16 kilometres (9.9 mi) east-southeast of the centre of Budapest, accessible by the Üllői road. The airport was renamed in honor of Ferenc Liszt, the virtuoso pianist and composer, on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of his birth. The airport can accept the Boeing 747, Antonov An-124 and Antonov An-225 but most of the traffic comprises Airbus and Boeing twinjets. Weather seldom diverts aircraft, when this does happen planes usually land at Bratislava or Vienna. It was the hub for Malév Hungarian Airlines until the airline's bankruptcy on 3 February 2012, when at 6 a.m. Malév ceased its operations after almost 66 years of service. Before its closure, the airline had more than one third of the air traffic at the airport, and about 40% of the revenues at Budapest airport originated from Malév operations.
Originally called Budapest Ferihegy International Airport (Budapest Ferihegy Nemzetközi Repülőtér), on 25 March 2011 it was officially renamed Budapest Ferenc Liszt International Airport, in honour of Franz Liszt - a Hungarian pianist and music composer. The change caused some controversy because the Committee of Geographical Names, which is the sole competent body in (re)naming geographical objects, suggested another version (Liszt Ferenc Nemzetközi Repülőtér, Budapest–Ferihegy) in order to keep the historical name. In retaliation, the chairman and several members of the committee were removed, two of them were fired of their workplace.
Popularly, the airport is still called Ferihegy as before. Ferihegy is the name of the neighbourhood around the airport. The name is derived from that of Ferenc Xavér Mayerffy (1776–1845), the former owner of an estate who established vineyards and contributed to the development of viticulture in Pest-Buda. "Feri" is a diminutive form of Ferenc while "hegy" means hill. In fact the area is almost totally flat but originally there was a 147 m high sandy hillock which was levelled in the 1940s during the constructions works of the airport.