Airport Hotel Service

Beijing International Airport Information

Visitors to the People's Republic of China should wear comfortable walking shoes if they're traveling through Beijing Capital International Airport, known as PEK from the days when the city was known as Peking.

Passengers from North America will likely use Terminal 3, the second largest terminal in the world. This may be only fitting, considering the airport is the second busiest in the world. Terminal 3, which opened in 2008 in time for the Summer Olympics, is also the fifth largest building in the world.

Because Capital is so large, the airport stations "service ambassadors" throughout the terminals to assist passengers needing help.

More than a half-million planes take off and land at Capital annually. This includes cargo planes, as the airport ranks 14th in the world for cargo moved. The airport handled almost 74 million passengers in 2010, with the passenger count increasing annually.

Following their arrival at this behomoth, passengers go through inspection and quarantine, which may involve having their temperatures taken. The next step is immigration where visas will be inspected and passports stamped. Then it is on to baggage claim and customs inspection before passengers are allowed to leave the airport. Along the way, there's a short light rail ride from Terminal 3 to baggage claim.

Because Capital is so large, the airport stations "service ambassadors" throughout the terminals to assist passengers needing help.

The airport opened in 1958 with only a small terminal that is still used today. Another terminal, known as Terminal 1, opened in 1980, but was quickly outgrown, and was renovated when Terminal 2 opened in 1999 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic.

The airport has three runways, with the third opening just prior to Terminal 3.

Most people, especially foreign travelers, get to and from the airport by taxi or airport buses from various parts of Beijing. The airport does, however, have a covered parking garage for those who will be picked up or delivered by Chinese friends.

PEK is popular with the traveling public. "Conde Nast Traveler" magazine named it the world's best airport in 2009. In 2012, PEK was named the best airport in China, the best airport for baggage delivery, and one of the world's 10 best airports by SKYTRAX based on 12 million questionnaires from passengers using 388 airports around the world.

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