San Francisco location
San Francisco International Airport AddressP. O. Box 8097
San Francisco, CA 94128
Phone Number: 1-800-I-FLY-SFO
San Francisco International Airport stands out as being the country's first airport to have a fully-automated screening system for all baggage. SFO also holds the honor as being named one of the thirtieth busiest airports in the world. However, there are other reasons why San Francisco International Airport stands out with people in San Francisco. Topping the list is their "Fly Quiet" program. Since 2000, the airport officials and airlines have worked hard to keep plane noise to a minimum for area residents. By shifting some flights to runways that are farther from residential areas and helping certain homeowners sound-proof their homes, the airport which is located a little more than ten miles from the heart of the city, has truly shown the residents of San Francisco that they care about their community.
California laws prohibit smoking in any public building and within twenty feet of the main entrances, exits, and windows. For this reason, the airport has set up some smoking areas a good distance from the building.
SFO is pretty easy to navigate. Shaped much like a snowflake, the airport starts with the main hall and then branches into three main terminals and two international wings. Terminal 2 is the only terminal that is presently undergoing renovations and closed to all airline traffic. The parking garages are found to the south of the main hall and in the middle of the snowflake shaped building. A decent tram system (AirTrain) brings passengers to the parking garages and terminals.
Directions to SFO
San Francisco International Airport is not hard to find. Drivers should look for two key roads: Highway 380 East and 101 South. The airport is off the 101 South heading towards San Jose and signs are easy to follow providing the driver is paying attention to signs.
Drivers coming from the 280, either north or south, need to get off at the exit for Highway 380 East and then take the turnoff for the 101 South heading for San Jose. Watch for the San Francisco International Airport sign and take that exit. Follow the signs from this point.
The Main Hall is home to check-in and security for all international flights. From the Main Hall, passengers can either take the AirTrain to their terminal or walk the passage to the two International wings for boarding. There are dozens of ATMs, restaurants, shops, and other handy businesses for passengers to utilize while waiting for flights. The Aviation Library and Museum is also located in the Main Hall. Many works of art are found throughout the Main Hall and all terminals, so passengers with a fondness for art will want to take time to enjoy these works.
Terminal 1 is broken into Boarding Area B and Boarding Area C. This terminal serves domestic (U.S. and Canadian) flights only. Access to Terminal 1 is easy when using the AirTrain system from other terminals and the parking garages or by walking from Terminal 3 through the deserted Terminal 2 building. Terminal 1 is the smallest of the airport's working terminals at 850,000 square feet. Boarding Area B houses gates 20 to 36 and Boarding Area C houses gates 40 to 48. Terminal 1 is located on the east side of the airport in the three o'clock position. Terminal 1 serves Air Canada, AirTran Airways, Alaska Airlines (Domestic flights), Continental, Delta, Frontier (Flights from SFO will be ending in 2007), Hawaiian, Horizon Air, Northwest (Domestic flights), Sun Country, and US Airways.
More of an eyesore than anything, Terminal 2 is presently closed for renovations. Prior to 9/11, plans were to drastically improve the airport's busiest terminal, but money woes led to a halt in construction six years ago. For now all the 600,000 square foot terminal does is serves as a walkway between Terminal 1 and Terminal 3. Additionally, the SFO Medical Clinic is on the lower level of this terminal. In January 2007, the airport approved three contracts hoping to complete renovations and turn the terminal into a thriving location for tourists once again.
With a Boarding Area E and Boarding Area F, Terminal 3 is on the left side of the airport at the nine o'clock position. At over one million square feet, this is the largest of the domestic terminals. The AirTrain system brings passengers from the parking garages or other terminals to Terminal 3. Passengers can also walk from Terminal 2 to Terminal 3 by walking through Terminal 2. Terminal 3 handles domestic and Canadian flights only. Boarding Area E houses gates 60 to 67, and Boarding Area F houses gates 68 to 90. Terminal 3 serves American Airlines, Midwest (Seasonally), Ted, United, and United Express.
San Francisco International Airport's newest terminal opened in 2000. Not only is this the United State's largest international terminal, but it was also designed with earthquakes in mind and sits on what are essentially huge shock absorbers. After passing through ticketing and check in in the Main Hall, passengers simply walk through hallways to boarding areas A or G.
There are two levels to this terminal with the upstairs housing many restaurants and shops and the downstairs packed with airport departure lounges. International Boarding Area A houses Gates 1 through 12. Located to the right of the Main Hall, there is an Animal Relief Area before the security checkpoint. To the left of the Main Hall is the International Boarding Area G. This wing houses Gates 99 to 102. An area for pets to relieve themselves is available before the security checkpoint. The International Terminal serves Air China, Air France, Air New Zealand, Alaska Airlines (Mexican flights only), All Nippon Airways, Asiana, British Airways, Cathay Pacific, EVA Air, Japan Airlines, JetBlue, KLM, Korean Air, LACSA, Lufthansa, Mexicana, Northwest (International flights), Philippine Airlines, Qantas, Singapore Airlines, Spirit, TACA, Ted (International flights), United (International flights), and Virgin Atlantic.
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