Los Angeles International Airport – often referred to as LAX – is one of the busiest airports in the world and the United States, handling almost 700 flights daily to over 150 cities worldwide. It has nine passenger terminals comprising a sprawl of international brands, restaurants, and duty-free shops. The Airport is itself an attraction, with its historic Theme Building housing the famous Observation Deck over 70 feet above ground. LAX’s present complex was constructed in 1961, although the aviation field has been around since 1928.
LAX consists of nine terminals. The new Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) serves mostly international flights. Terminal 1 handles domestic flights by two airlines, AirTran Airways and Southwest Airlines. Terminal 2 has flights traveling to both US and limited international cities, including Hawaii, Canada, New Zealand, and China. Terminal 3 processes flights to Australia, and mostly low-cost carriers flying domestically.
The Airport offers frequent shuttle services to transport travelers between terminals without charge. The A Route will get you from one terminal to another, the C Route takes you to and from Parking Lot C, and the G Route links the terminals to the Metro Rail. Shuttles A and C operate 24/7, and each shuttle can be boarded at the blue LAX Shuttle & Airline Connections signs in front of each terminal.
The Arrival Hall in each terminal is located on the lower level, and the Departures are on the upper levels.
Services and Facilities
As one of the largest airports in the country, LAX has plenty of services to keep travelers comfortable and entertained. There are international-brand restaurants and boutiques decking the halls, with duty-free outlets located after security clearance. The striking Theme Building offers the starry Encounters Restaurant – designed by Walt Disney Imagineering – and a stunning view on its deck. The free-of-charge Flight Path Museum alongside the main terminal exhibits artefacts documenting the history of South California’s aviation.
LAX also offers an interesting Public Art and Exhibitions Program, which showcases works by local and regional artists through cultural performances and temporary and permanent exhibitions around the Airport.
Cell phone rentals are located on the lower level of TBIT; faxing and photocopying can be done at TBIT’s currency exchange booth; Wi-Fi is provided at a fee by T-Mobile; and high-speed Internet kiosks are provided also at a cost.
Should you require medical services, LAX’s first aid station is located on the Departure Level of TBIT and is open daily from 10am to 10pm.
For longer layovers, passengers can head to one of the world-class hotels surrounding LAX. From a quick shower and relaxing spa to a comfortable rest in a quiet room, these hotels can offer weary travelers a more comfortable transit at LAX.