Illinois Posts

The Best Airports for Not Flying

We don’t know anyone who gets excited about going to the airport because of all the delicious food and fun things to do.

That said, when I was in college and regularly flying in and out of Pittsburgh Airport, the plethora of mall-stores and decent eateries made it a nice place to get bumped.

Check out this list of five US airports that are doing a good job on the shops-and-eateries front. (Even a couple of lounges with free WiFi and pet parks! Get it together, Pittsburgh!)

Google Takes the Guesswork out of Navigating the Airport

Leave it to the geniuses at Google to turn their mapping powers on airports!

It’s just for Android right now, and only for a handful of cities – but anything that means not having to look at that maze of signage is a good idea as far as we’re concerned.

And they’re doing it for IKEA too.

We. Heart. Google.

Chicago Airports are Going Green!

Did you know there was such a thing as the ‘2011 Airports Going Green’ conference?

Well there is, and it just wrapped up in Chicago, where Aviation Commissioner Rosemarie Andolino talked about the Windy City’s big plans for green programs at O’Hare International and Midway.

We’re talking solar power, alternative vehicle fuels, even a composting program that will divert an estimated 200 tons of waste annually from local landfills!

Read all about it!

A Surprisingly Good Summer for Air Travel

Economic times might currently be difficult, but more people took flights in June 2011 compared with the same month for 2010. This is the announcement from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics, which recently announced that in June 2011, US airlines were responsible for carrying 66.1 million passengers in total.

This is up by 1.6 percent on June 2010, showing that air travel is still has popular as ever. The three busiest airports in the United States for June 2011 were Atlanta International (ATL), Chicago O’Hare International (ORD) and Dallas/Fort Worth International (DFW).

ATL Airport, which is the busiest airport in the world, saw a total of 4 million passengers enplaned in June 2011. ORD Airport saw a total of 2.7 million passengers in the same month and DFW Airport enplaned a total of 2.5 million in June.

Andy Maclean+

High Fuel Prices Leading to Flight Reductions?

It has been reported that rising prices of jet fuel are encouraging airlines to cut back on the numbers of flights they are offering from a range of US airports. For instance, one airline is reducing its flights from Newark Liberty International Airport by 3% and from its hub at Houston by 3.8%.

Another airline has been reported as reducing its flight capacity from LAX by 4%, from Washington Dulles Airport by 4.9% and from Chicago O’Hare by 7.2%. Also, Denver International Airport is set to see a reduction in seating capacity from one airline of between 11 and 17%, making it one of the hardest hit airports.

Despite these cuts in flights, possibly due to high prices of fuel, there are few signs that passenger numbers are dropping at the major air hubs such as those mentioned above. This suggests that there will be the same number – or even more, depending on growth – of passengers trying to access fewer flights.

This can lead to TSA delays when checking into airports, which is naturally something that all travelers want to avoid if possible. One option is to book and reserve off-site parking online before you are due to fly; this ensures you have a parking space ready for when you need it, allowing you to park and then take the free off-site shuttle to the airport, rather than driving round in the hope of finding a space at the airport and ending up late.

At a time when anything you can do to make the flying experience easier is welcome, making plans for your airport parking is definitely a good idea.

Andy Maclean+