Barcelona El Prat Airport is located 12km to the south-west of Barcelona City and 3km from the shipping and cruise liners port. The journey into the city centre by taxi takes about 15-20 minutes, or you can catch a rapid Aerobus or metro train which both run at regular intervals. All transport options are very easy to find with the taxi rank and bus stop are outside the arrivals terminals and the metro station in module C of T2.
If you are flying in for for more than a "city break" and want to explore the province of Catalonia, the easiest way of getting around is to hire a car with five rent a car firms with desks in the arrivals areas of both terminal buildings. Car hire is a competitive business in Spain so make sure that you shop around to secure the best deal and book as far in advance as possible as this usually makes it cheaper.
The airport has two terminals with modules A, B and C in Terminal 2. The large new Barcelona Airport Terminal 1 is a completely separate building about 10 minutes away over the other side of the airfield. If you are transferring between terminals then the best thing to do is to get the shuttle service which runs every 7 minutes from outside T2 and stops at T1, T2 and T2C (for easyJet passengers).
Don't think of getting a taxi between the two terminals as when I was in a hurry recently and went to do this they wanted to make a €25 minimum charge which is absolute rubbish as it only costs €22 to get right into Barcelona!
Most of the short haul UK airlines operate from Terminal 2 (AerLingus, Bmibaby, easyJet, Jet2.com) with British Airways (long haul) flying from T1.
When an airline says it operates flights to Barcelona check it really is El Prat and not Girona which is 90km away and often referred to as Barcelona. If you do make this mistake you can transfer there by bus or train from the airport bit it adds on time (and frustration) getting to your destination if you are on a long weekend break.
Terminal 2 has limited shopping facilities and a couple of places to get something to eat and drink . There are a couple of duty free outlets but all the major shops and cafes, bars and restaurants are now in the very modern Terminal 1 which handles domestic (eg: Malaga-Barcelona) and international flights.
Expect Barcelona Airport to be pretty packed as it is the second busiest airport in Spain (after Madrid) handling 39.711.276 passengers with 288.878 flight operations in 2015.
By Linda Craik Google+
An overview of all the facilities including buses, shops, etc.
Find out which car hire companies at based in and around the airport.
What options are available to you: buses, transfers, taxis, trains, etc.