Los Angeles
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LAX - Needs an update!

  • Mar 16, 2007
  • by
Rating:
-1
Pros: Most major airlines use this airport

Cons: Outdated facilities, overcrowded, dirty, poorly organized

The Bottom Line: Outdated, underserved, poorly organized. The only good thing about LAX is that you can fly anywhere from here.

I have had the opportunity to use Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) on about ten occassions, but for national travel and international. As a frequent traveler, I have used many many airports, from Paris France, London England, Rome Italy, Washington DC to Atlanta Georgia. I feel I am qualified to review airports. My last visit to LAX was in March 2007.

The first thing that a traveler notices is the sheer volume of traffic, both human and airlines. There are over 70 international and 87 domestic airlines that use this airport from Air Lingus to United Airlines, both national and international. If you want to go Pacific overseas, chances are you will fly through LAX. Here is a map of the terminal :
http://www.lawa.org/lax/terminalMap.cfm

There were approximately 60 million passengers that travel through the airport annually. Of course, there are volumes of buses, taxi's and parking structures. It is quite amazing to just sit back and watch the flow.

The good: most major airlines use LAX so it is convenient to use this airport. This airpot was established in 1961 and is well known and heavily used. The layout of the terminals is fairly easy to use as they are numbered 1-8. Certain airlines are associated with each terminal.

There are lots of eateries here, ranging from nice restaurants such as Wolfgang Puck to the omni present Starbucks and McDonalds, Burger Kings, Cinnabon, California Pizza Kithcen, Java Java and others less familiar. There are kiosks that have books and candy (See's) but no where to really sit and enjoy. If you have several hours in between flights, my best suggestion is to get a bit to eat and then hang out in your concourse.

There are all major car rental agencies located here. A listing:

Advantage
Alamo
Avis
Budget
Dollar
Enterprise
Hertz
Fox/Payless
National
Thrifty

The bad: this airport is seriously out of date. The facilities and furnishings are worn and dirty. It is a major drag to get to the airport, parking is outrageoulsy expensive so the best bet is have a friend (or taxi) drop you off. There are approximately 11,000 parking spaces available at the airport. There is more reasonably priced off campus parking, but this requires a bus trip to the lot(s) and another round of lugging your baggage around plus tipping more people.

Just picking up passengers is difficult as you compete with many buses,cars and taxis. Many other airports have the subway as a close walk or even have a station in the airport. Not LAX! The subway doesn't even come close so it is not an option.

There are people movers which are fast moving elevators but no trams as there are in other major airports. This means getting to your terminal requires lots of walking though major crowds.

Lack of signage is a big problem as well. The departure and arrival boards are often out of order. Exits are not clearly marked and baggage pick up is generally a mystery. My strategy when using this airport is to follow the crowd that is departing from my plane. This usually leads to the correct luggage carousel.

This airport is loud, confusing and generally slightly organized chaos. I prefer to use Burbank Airport or Ontario which are both nearby and serve less air traffic but is much better organized and I don't feel so stressed.

Once at the airport, there are long congested lines of confused people and outdated services. There are long lines for everything, ticket gates, luggage check in, bathrooms, eating establishments. This airport has not been upgraded in 40 years and it shows.


TIPS FOR MAXIMUM EFFICIENCY

Arrive early - 2 hours minimum
Do not drive personal automobile to LAX
Wear comfortable shoes - as there is lots of walking
Use curbside check in
Wear purse securely over shoulder/Wallet secure in pocket
Have cash in hand - avoid long lines for ATM
Schedule flights for "off times" to avoid crowds
Purchase E ticket to avoid ticket counter

LAX
One World Way
LA, CA 90045
(310) 417- 0440



Recommended:
No

Best Suited For: Singles
Best Time to Travel Here: Anytime

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More Los Angeles International Airp... reviews
review by . April 02, 2010
posted in UP UP & Away!
   LAX might not rank high in passenger satisfaction (although I would disagree) but when it comes to planespotting it is unmatched. LAX has arguably some of the best vantage points and spots to gaze, watch, identify and take photos of your favorite commercial planes. I'll share some really great spots.      In-N-Out   This is probably the most famous spot to watch planes land on runway 24 at LAX. The planes literally hover over the famous LAX In-N-Out and …
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A working professional, partner and mother.      I am a tech gadget loving person who enjoys saving time and money in my daily life.      I review computer products, … more
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Wiki

Los Angeles International Airport (IATA: LAX, ICAO: KLAX, FAA LID: LAX) is the primary airport serving Los Angeles, California, thesecond-most populated metropolitan area of the United States. It is often referred to by its IATA airport code LAX, with the letters usually pronounced individually. LAX is located in southwestern Los Angeles in the neighborhood of Westchester, 16 mi (26 km) from the downtown core.

With 59,542,151 passengers in 2009, LAX is the seventh busiest airport in the world and is served by direct flights to North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia, Oceania, and the Middle East. The airport is a major hub for both United Airlines and Alaska Airlines and a focus cityfor American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Allegiant Air, Air New Zealand and Virgin America. It also serves as an international gateway for Delta Air Lines.

The airport also functions as joint civil-military facility, providing a base for the United States Coast Guard and its Coast Guard Air Station Los Angeles facility, operating 4 HH-65 Dolphin helicopters.

LAX is the busiest airport in California in terms of flight operations, passenger traffic and air cargo activity, followed by San Francisco International Airport (SFO). LAX is also the only U.S. airport to serve 3 or more international destinations with ridership of 1 million passengers or more per year (Tokyo-Narita, London-Heathrow, Taipei).

Although LAX is the busiest airport in the Greater Los Angeles Area, the region ...

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