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727tiger
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LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Sun Mar 24, 2013 10:06 pm

Wife, son and I have a two-hour layover on SWA in LAX Terminal 1 on 4/7 (on our way from MCI-OAK for his college visit to Berkeley). That's an LAX terminal I haven't experienced. Any suggestions for in-terminal eating?
 
PacNWjet
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Sun Mar 24, 2013 10:46 pm

According to the LAX website, the following dining establishments are located in Terminal 1:

Backlot Deli
California Pizza Kitchen ASAP
Camacho's Cafe
Gordon Biersch Brewery
Home Turf Sports Bar
La Brea Bakery
McDonald's
Pinkberry
Starbucks (two of them, of course)

There's also a See's Candies shop.
 
aklrno
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:35 am

None of those restaurants are very good. I think the sandwiches at La Brea Bakery are among the best choices. If you happen to have an AMEX platinum card you can wait in the USAir lounge near gate 2. No food there beyond some apples and nuts. Free drinks, though.

If you get there early and don't mind an extra pass through the TSA, walk outside and across the street to the Encounter restaurant/bar. Its in the weird looking Theme building that looks like a flying saucer hanging from arches. Lots of people knock the food there, but it isn't bad, just expensive. You could just have a bowl of soup or a salad, both are OK to me. The view is great. The decor in the restaurant is also weird. Kind of Star Trekie. Just be sure to get back in time for the TSA line getting back into T-1.
 
zrs70
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Mon Mar 25, 2013 4:20 am

Quoting aklrno (Reply 2):
If you happen to have an AMEX platinum card you can wait in the USAir lounge near gate 2.

The AMEX card only works if you are flying US.
17 year airliners.net vet! 2000-2016
 
aklrno
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Mon Mar 25, 2013 7:52 am

Nope, the platinum card works no matter what airline you are flying on at USAir lounges. I do it all the time.
 
Cubsrule
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Mon Mar 25, 2013 12:39 pm

Quoting aklrno (Reply 2):
Just be sure to get back in time for the TSA line getting back into T-1.

I would not leave Terminal 1 security on a two hour connection unless you have status or are flying Business Select. The TSA line can be 45 minutes at any time with very little rhyme or reason.

Personally, I think the deli is the best of the thin restaurant choices, but as others have said, that's sort of a backhanded compliment. The spotting isn't too bad out at the end of the terminal.
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727tiger
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:07 pm

Thanks, everyone. I had noted the Terminal 1 restaurants list on LAX's website. You all have confirmed my suspicions. We'll probably aim for the deli. I'm not going to risk passing through TSA and get stuck in a lengthy line, though it will be a Sunday morning instead of a weekday morning. Still, better safe than sorry. Plus, we'll have mid- to low- A boarding numbers on SWA, so I don't want to get delayed and not make it to the gate until they're calling the Bs or even Cs. Would like to park myself out at the end to take in some spotting, but we'll see.

Headed back to MCI from OAK on 4/9, our stop is in ABQ, and I know that place like the back of my hand.
 
AirAfreak
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Tue Mar 26, 2013 3:02 am

Here is the brutal truth... it's all garbage and all a very poor representation of what Los Angeles offers regarding dining. It's an embarrassment and I truly sympathize for my friends when I hear of Terminal 1.

If you can, walk down to the Tom Bradley Terminal and dine at Daily Grill. This is located landside, so a boarding pass is not needed. Daily Grill is no Mr. Chow, NOBU, or Comme Ca, but at least it's decent. If you have a short connection time, find a bar and hang out there. Order a bloody mary if you get hungry and wait until you arrive at your destination to eat a proper meal.

Also, there is a hidden TSA Screening Checkpoint on the Mezzanine level. Take the elevator up to the Mezzanine level and you will find a shorter queue. If you take the central escalator up to the security level, turn right towards Gate 1 and you will find it.

Bon Voyage,

AirAfreak =]
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727tiger
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Tue Mar 26, 2013 12:14 pm

Thanks, AirAfreak, I didn't know about the mezzanine level TSA checkpoint. We're probably only going to be snacking at LAX, given our early departure from MCI. We're headed to San Francisco for a late lunch when we arrive in OAK. But, we may take your advice and head to the TBT, depending on how things look when we arrive at LAX.

A couple of years ago, I wasn't very impressed with Terminal 6's restaurant offerings, either, but we were with a group of high school kids, so hard to break away from them to explore other options.
 
aklrno
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:40 pm

If you are worried about time, TBIT is a worse idea than the encounter. The walk will eat up a lot of time. Daily Grill is not fast food, so service can take a while. In any case, the food isn't as good as a real daily grill. All those LAX restaurants are modeled on famous LA restaurants, but operated by Delaware North. Quality suffers.

The second TSA checkpoint operates when things get busy, but I've never had a choice. TSA directs you where they want and I've never been able to just go to the checkpoint I want. LAX T1 is nearly my least favorite TSA, but that said the travelers are mostly experienced and the lines move fast.

Having TSA direct you to a line can also be a good thing. Families are usually directed to their own lines so I rarely find myself behind families with children there.
 
roseflyer
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Wed Mar 27, 2013 8:08 pm

Quoting 727tiger (Reply 6):
Thanks, everyone. I had noted the Terminal 1 restaurants list on LAX's website. You all have confirmed my suspicions. We'll probably aim for the deli. I'm not going to risk passing through TSA and get stuck in a lengthy line, though it will be a Sunday morning instead of a weekday morning. Still, better safe than sorry. Plus, we'll have mid- to low- A boarding numbers on SWA, so I don't want to get delayed and not make it to the gate until they're calling the Bs or even Cs. Would like to park myself out at the end to take in some spotting, but we'll see.

I agree not to leave. Terminal 1 is very crowded with all of WN's flights and US flights too. The security lines can be long. With a 2 hour layover, it is not worth leaving the secure zone.
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
 
AirAfreak
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Thu Mar 28, 2013 3:45 am

Quoting 727tiger (Reply 8):

If you decide to go to TBIT, walk and do not wait for the connection bus. Two hours might be pushing it, so you may want to avoid this altogether.

The hidden TSA Checkpoint Monsters can be avoided when taking the elevator directly to Mezzanine so the officers won't even be around to engage you.

Terminal 1 is very crowded versus Terminal 5, for example, so I would consider staying within the secure area. The local news come Thanksgiving and Christmas Holiday will always stand outside of Terminal 1 saying, "arrive at the airport at least 4 hours in advance..." When you have low-cost airlines, they attract a higher percentage of passengers, so expect heavy wait times at TSA Screening.

And, please don't waste your money on the offerings at Terminal 1. Find a bar and drink. Your SFO flight will be over before you know it and you'll far appreciate 'saving room' for the delicious cuisine SF has to offer!!!

Enjoy your travels!!!

Quoting aklrno (Reply 9):

Just an FYI, if you take the elevator located just west of the WN Tix Counters, you can avoid the TSA Agents altogether giving you the choice of the hidden screening area. This is my little insider tip for the one time I had to go through the very sad terminal.

Bon Voyage,

AirAfreak
Do you lead an Intercontinental life?
 
aklrno
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Thu Mar 28, 2013 6:10 am

Quoting AirAfreak (Reply 11):
Just an FYI, if you take the elevator located just west of the WN Tix Counters, you can avoid the TSA Agents altogether giving you the choice of the hidden screening area. This is my little insider tip for the one time I had to go through the very sad terminal.

Just to verify this, can we get someone who has been there more than once and knows whether the second screening area is open at all times? My experience (closer to 100 times) is that it is not, but if I'm wrong I'd like to know for sure. Those elevators are mighty slow, so I'd hate to waste a round trip.
 
AirAfreak
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RE: LAX Terminal 1 Layover

Thu Mar 28, 2013 6:27 am

Quoting aklrno (Reply 12):

Allow me to confirm this for weekday departures leaving at 0745 am local time.
Do you lead an Intercontinental life?

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