Moderators: jsumali2, richierich, ua900, PanAm_DC10, hOMSaR

 
acavpics
Topic Author
Posts: 364
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2018 2:54 am

Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 12:58 am

I have noticed that many international airports such as YYZ, EWR, MIA and many others have a set up in their CBP equipped terminals in which arriving passengers disembark and then take escalators to corridors above the departures lounge in order to get to the arrivals facility. As we know, arrivals facilities (customs/immigration, baggage claim) are located on the ground floor. Therefore, wouldn't it make more sense to build the arrivals floor (corridors included) entirely below the departures level, as is the case in BOS (Terminal E), JFK, BOM (Terminal 2)?

I though that would be far more efficient than to send passengers up a level then multiple levels down. What are the advantages of having arrivals corridors above the main level?
 
User avatar
Polot
Posts: 10517
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:01 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 1:02 am

There might not be enough room under the terminal for those corridors, especially if it is a concourse being added and integrated into to a preexisting building.
 
User avatar
janders
Moderator
Posts: 1104
Joined: Mon Dec 11, 2017 4:27 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 1:05 am

Keep in mind below the departure level is the ramp level in many terminals, which would include things like bag room and sorting system, support offices, vehicle parking etc.

Its often very easy to simply use what would be empty space up towards the ceiling to create arrival corridors.
"We make war that we may live in peace." -- Aristotle
 
tullamarine
Posts: 2482
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 1999 1:14 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 1:21 am

Until 9/11 there wasn't a requirement to separate departing and arriving interntional passengers. Maybe when the requirement came in, it wasn't practical to add an arrivals concourse below the main departures concourse which has all the retail etc so it was easier to add a level above.
717, 721/2, 732/3/4/5/7/8/9, 742/3/4, 752/3, 762/3, 772/E/W, 788/9, 300,310, 319,320/1, 332/3, 359, 388, DC9, DC10, F28, F100, 142,143, E75/90, CR2, D82/3/4, SF3, ATR
 
airplanedaj
Posts: 205
Joined: Wed Aug 14, 2013 1:05 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 1:26 am

There may even be a bit of an architectural element, especially if the airport has a view of the skyline. This applies mostly to the corridors than the actual holding and customs areas though. Almost a "Welcome to our city! We want the first thing you see to be our skyline as opposed to an artificially lit corridor"
 
acavpics
Topic Author
Posts: 364
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2018 2:54 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 2:49 am

airplanedaj wrote:
There may even be a bit of an architectural element, especially if the airport has a view of the skyline. This applies mostly to the corridors than the actual holding and customs areas though. Almost a "Welcome to our city! We want the first thing you see to be our skyline as opposed to an artificially lit corridor"


Haha I never thought about that.

Actually there is a way to welcome arriving passengers to a city through corridors: Decorate the walls with eclectic artwork. If you have ever arrived at BOM Terminal 2, you will see vibrant traditional Indian paintings, sculptures, and even come electrically powered mobile artwork along the walls. Without doubt, a great way to welcome foreigners to a country.
 
United1
Posts: 4155
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 3:36 am

acavpics wrote:
I have noticed that many international airports such as YYZ, EWR, MIA and many others have a set up in their CBP equipped terminals in which arriving passengers disembark and then take escalators to corridors above the departures lounge in order to get to the arrivals facility. As we know, arrivals facilities (customs/immigration, baggage claim) are located on the ground floor. Therefore, wouldn't it make more sense to build the arrivals floor (corridors included) entirely below the departures level, as is the case in BOS (Terminal E), JFK, BOM (Terminal 2)?

I though that would be far more efficient than to send passengers up a level then multiple levels down. What are the advantages of having arrivals corridors above the main level?


I’m not sure there are many advantages or disadvantages really per say. I think it just has to do with the way the airport and architect piece together the project. At SFO for instance if you arrive into G or A on an international flight you stay on the same level. Departing passengers are on the level above and take escalators down to the gate hold rooms. ORD international arrival passengers take escalators down a level, EWR TC international arrivals take escalators up a level...really is quite varied.
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
Nordsteve
Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Jan 01, 2019 6:03 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 3:46 am

If you need to separate the levels for space reasons, it makes sense to put the departure level below the arrival level. You need more space for the departure level (gate lounges, concessions, bathrooms) as people spend time waiting.
 
United1
Posts: 4155
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 3:47 am

tullamarine wrote:
Until 9/11 there wasn't a requirement to separate departing and arriving interntional passengers. Maybe when the requirement came in, it wasn't practical to add an arrivals concourse below the main departures concourse which has all the retail etc so it was easier to add a level above.


At least in the US, and I believe Canada as well, you have never been able to mix arriving and departing international passengers. With one or two notable exceptions the US never has allowed transit without customs clearance...that has been in place even before 9/11. The only exceptions being a couple of sterile transit lounges NZs AKL-LAX-LHR had a lounge at LAX being the example that comes to mind.

If you are referring to most non US international airports you generally don’t need to clear customs before connecting to another international flight. AMS being a great example of that. If you transit through AMS unless you are entering the Netherlands or on a flight connecting to another schengen country you can just walk to the gate for your next flight. You never actually enter the schengen zone.
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
ProfH
Posts: 7
Joined: Thu Apr 16, 2020 9:51 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 3:52 am

United1 wrote:
tullamarine wrote:
Until 9/11 there wasn't a requirement to separate departing and arriving interntional passengers. Maybe when the requirement came in, it wasn't practical to add an arrivals concourse below the main departures concourse which has all the retail etc so it was easier to add a level above.


At least in the US, and I believe Canada as well, you have never been able to mix arriving and departing international passengers. With one or two notable exceptions the US never has allowed transit without customs clearance...that has been in place even before 9/11. The only exceptions being a couple of sterile transit lounges NZs AKL-LAX-LHR had a lounge at LAX being the example that comes to mind.

If you are referring to most non US international airports you generally don’t need to clear customs before connecting to another international flight. AMS being a great example of that. If you transit through AMS unless you are entering the Netherlands or on a flight connecting to another schengen country you can just walk to the gate for your next flight. You never actually enter the schengen zone.


I wonder what the efficiency that could be gained by doing that for those connecting in the US is. It could help US airlines if connections from, say, Europe to Latin America, were not such a grueling and unpredictable experience... Any thoughts?
 
User avatar
TWA772LR
Posts: 7242
Joined: Thu Nov 17, 2011 6:12 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 5:06 am

IAH actually has a below-departures arrival corridor in terminal D and above-departures corridor in E.
When wasn't America great?


The thoughts and opinions shared under this username are mine and are not influenced by my employer.
 
USAirALB
Posts: 2268
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:46 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 5:08 am

I find that those airports in the US that have elevated arrival corridors (PHL, LAX, RDU, MIA) ultimately have longer walking distances to CBP; you have to take an escalator up, and then walk to an escalator that leads you down to a passageway that takes you to CBP.

I prefer CLT's approach: every international arrival gate is directly connected to an escalator that leads you down into CBP.

I like SFO's approach as well: the international terminal was built one level higher than the departure gates, requiring departing passengers to take an escalator/elevator down at their departure gate to reach their aircraft. Upon arrival, they simply walk straight through to CBP. ICN is built that way as well.
RJ85, F70, E135, E140, E145, E70, E75, E90, CR2, CR7, CR9, 717, 732, 733, 734, 735, 73G, 738, 739, 744ER, 752, 753, 762, 772, 77E, 77W, 789, 319, 320, 321, 332, 333, 343, 359, 388
 
United1
Posts: 4155
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 5:24 am

ProfH wrote:
United1 wrote:
tullamarine wrote:
Until 9/11 there wasn't a requirement to separate departing and arriving interntional passengers. Maybe when the requirement came in, it wasn't practical to add an arrivals concourse below the main departures concourse which has all the retail etc so it was easier to add a level above.


At least in the US, and I believe Canada as well, you have never been able to mix arriving and departing international passengers. With one or two notable exceptions the US never has allowed transit without customs clearance...that has been in place even before 9/11. The only exceptions being a couple of sterile transit lounges NZs AKL-LAX-LHR had a lounge at LAX being the example that comes to mind.

If you are referring to most non US international airports you generally don’t need to clear customs before connecting to another international flight. AMS being a great example of that. If you transit through AMS unless you are entering the Netherlands or on a flight connecting to another schengen country you can just walk to the gate for your next flight. You never actually enter the schengen zone.


I wonder what the efficiency that could be gained by doing that for those connecting in the US is. It could help US airlines if connections from, say, Europe to Latin America, were not such a grueling and unpredictable experience... Any thoughts?


I’m not sure it’s worth changing the laws and building all of the required infrastructure for one simple reason...the US is geographically not a great place to connect through. Except for Latin America, to some extent Canada and UK to NZ we are really far out of the way. Most of the connecting traffic that US carriers could hope to pick up is EU to Latin America which is already very well served with non stops on multiple carriers. There is some but no where near as much Asia to Latin America traffic so probably not worth the investment for that. You can connect passengers to Canada but you would still be backtracking as you overfly Canada to get to the US from Asia and Europe. At the end of the day the US is a giant O&D market...if you are going to the US it’s usually because that’s where you want to travel too.
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
theasianguy
Posts: 169
Joined: Thu Dec 11, 2014 10:31 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 5:32 am

I find this question very interesting, and it is one that I frequently think about myself as well.

While I can't directly answer your question, I do notice a preference for above vs below is strongly tied to continent and region, as well as the construction date of the terminal.

In Western Europe, there is a preference for above corridors at LHR, CDG, AMS, FRA. Some of the older areas of those airports have mixed departures/arrivals. I believe only LHR T4/T5 has arrivals below.

In the US, terminals constructed before say, 2003-2004, seem to have arrivals below (SFO, SEA, ORD, JFK, BOS) while newer terminals are predominantly above (LAX, DFW, IAH, MIA, PHL). In Canada, I know YVR, YYZ, and YUL are all above. Of course, this is just a general trend, and there are definitely exceptions.

The vast majority of Asian airports have arrivals below. The only major exceptions I can think of are NRT T1 and PEK.
 
tullamarine
Posts: 2482
Joined: Thu Aug 05, 1999 1:14 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 5:37 am

theasianguy wrote:
I find this question very interesting, and it is one that I frequently think about myself as well.

While I can't directly answer your question, I do notice a preference for above vs below is strongly tied to continent and region, as well as the construction date of the terminal.

In Western Europe, there is a preference for above corridors at LHR, CDG, AMS, FRA. Some of the older areas of those airports have mixed departures/arrivals. I believe only LHR T4/T5 has arrivals below.

In the US, terminals constructed before say, 2003-2004, seem to have arrivals below (SFO, SEA, ORD, JFK, BOS) while newer terminals are predominantly above (LAX, DFW, IAH, MIA, PHL). In Canada, I know YVR, YYZ, and YUL are all above. Of course, this is just a general trend, and there are definitely exceptions.

The vast majority of Asian airports have arrivals below. The only major exceptions I can think of are NRT T1 and PEK.

In addition you have SIN and KUL which have maintained a single level with departing and arriving passengers mixing hence the need for security clearance at the individual gates.
717, 721/2, 732/3/4/5/7/8/9, 742/3/4, 752/3, 762/3, 772/E/W, 788/9, 300,310, 319,320/1, 332/3, 359, 388, DC9, DC10, F28, F100, 142,143, E75/90, CR2, D82/3/4, SF3, ATR
 
Bradin
Posts: 348
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2016 5:12 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 5:53 am

The most logical reason I can come up with is space. Realistically, how often are those corridors actually being used at any given point in time? It makes sense to suspend those corridors in the air on both sides, above the departure levels and let people transit through smoothly because all the arrival passenger traffic is being funneled to CBP. Save the space for more important things like lounges, retail, and space to sit around.

When I transit through LAX's new TBIT, they have this implementation and I actually like it a lot. No fighting people going against you traffic wise, smooth traffic flow, and I get in and out extremely quickly. Before COVID-19 brokeout, I flew in on TBIT and decided to talk with the crew who flew my plane. I was literally the last passenger off the plane. I went from Gate 154, up the escalators, through the sterile corridor and into CBP in record time, and I still beat my colleagues to the TBIT baggage claim - thanks to Global Entry.

It's efficient, and it works extremely well in my book
 
Wingtips56
Posts: 1273
Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2010 1:26 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 6:06 am

A big difference centers on the countries where one goes through Passport Control to leave the country. Arrivals and departures can then be mixed, with arriving passengers staying in bond, changing gates and shopping between flights. Departing passengers mix in the same shops and go to the gates. To leave the area, you either get on a plane or you exit through Customs/Immigration, even if you never actually departed. (I've done that, being an unaccommodated standby passenger.)
In the U.S., domestic and international departures are not segregated, except by the instance of separate concourses that only schedule domestic or international departures. So arriving passengers cannot enter the departures area without first exiting through Customs/Immigration and coming back in (through Security). (Different for pre-cleared arrivals.)
Prior to 9/11, and perhaps ending before 9/11 for other reasons, some U.S. airports did have transit lounges, where one could transfer between international flights without having to go out through Customs/Immigration. I've done it at MIA and SJU back then, and DFW had some minimal transit lounge options. Not any more.
In Europe, one may be able to go through the Duty Free shops on arrival, before exiting Customs, but again, not in the U.S.
Having the arrivals corridors upstairs makes sense certainly for any airport that may not have previously separated arrivals and departures, as all you need are bland passageways to the Customs exit, being more easily added, and requiring much less real estate than the departures level with waiting areas, shops, restaurants, lounges and all.
Yes, T5 at LHR is a different animal. I arrived once out on the C concourse when the trains were inoperative. We had to go down multiple flights of stairs/escalators to the very bottom, underground level, down with the gophers, to walk all the way to the main building (below even the rail line) and then climb back up. It was quite a long walk, and not a cheerful arrival by any terms.
Worked for WestAir, Apollo Airways, Desert Pacific, Western, AirCal and American Airlines (Retired). Flight Memory: 181 airports, 92 airlines, 78 a/c types, 403 routes, 58 countries (by air), 6 continents. 1,119,414 passenger miles.

Home airport : CEC
 
Toinou
Posts: 257
Joined: Sun Apr 14, 2019 8:21 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 7:12 am

ProfH wrote:
United1 wrote:
tullamarine wrote:
Until 9/11 there wasn't a requirement to separate departing and arriving interntional passengers. Maybe when the requirement came in, it wasn't practical to add an arrivals concourse below the main departures concourse which has all the retail etc so it was easier to add a level above.


At least in the US, and I believe Canada as well, you have never been able to mix arriving and departing international passengers. With one or two notable exceptions the US never has allowed transit without customs clearance...that has been in place even before 9/11. The only exceptions being a couple of sterile transit lounges NZs AKL-LAX-LHR had a lounge at LAX being the example that comes to mind.

If you are referring to most non US international airports you generally don’t need to clear customs before connecting to another international flight. AMS being a great example of that. If you transit through AMS unless you are entering the Netherlands or on a flight connecting to another schengen country you can just walk to the gate for your next flight. You never actually enter the schengen zone.


I wonder what the efficiency that could be gained by doing that for those connecting in the US is. It could help US airlines if connections from, say, Europe to Latin America, were not such a grueling and unpredictable experience... Any thoughts?


To improve such kind of connections, I agree that transit without having to clear immigration would be a real plus. But to really work, it would need to include not having to ask for a visa for such kind of transit.
From the people I know in Europe, those who travel to Latin America tend to avoid transiting through US at almost any cost.
 
Lofty
Posts: 688
Joined: Sun Mar 16, 2008 5:23 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 8:28 am

When LHR T5 was originally designed they looked at this issue.

The answer all comes down to the design of the building for LHR T5 its design means you enter the terminal with a large open space, which is carried through to the departures lounge, for departing passengers the environment and feeling is more important.
 
User avatar
chunhimlai
Posts: 597
Joined: Wed Jun 03, 2015 11:03 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 11:04 am

In short, it make the interior more spacey and reduce cost on construction
 
User avatar
calstanford
Posts: 65
Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2017 2:16 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 11:44 am

It’s architecture more than anything. Has nothing to do with which countries allow transit and how.
E.g. as we talked about some US airports have top level departing traffic (SFO), others have lower level departing traffic (LAX TBIT).
In Asia we have mixed (SIN, KL) or top level departing traffic (HKG, BKK), others such as the new IST airport is lower level departing traffic (old Atatürk was the other way around).
It’s a design question and not a country specific or even continent specific one.
 
baje427
Posts: 790
Joined: Mon Aug 01, 2011 12:42 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 11:51 am

In Miami it almost feels like you have to walk back to the country you just arrived from. In BGI there is one arrivals terminal and one departures a design like that would only be practical for a small international airport.
 
peterinlisbon
Posts: 1773
Joined: Wed Feb 01, 2006 3:37 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 12:28 pm

I think the reason for this is that whilst Departures level includes things such as shops, cafes, seats and so in the the departure lounge, Arrivals only needs a passageway to get you to the area where you go through passport control and collect your luggage. So the cheapest way to provide this is just to have a narrow mezzanine walkway suspended above the departures level. It's easy enough to provide an escalator just before passport control to "swap" over the passenger flows. Modern airports tend to do this more, because the gate area is large relative to the size of the building.
 
airbazar
Posts: 10115
Joined: Wed Sep 10, 2003 11:12 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 2:21 pm

ProfH wrote:
United1 wrote:
tullamarine wrote:
Until 9/11 there wasn't a requirement to separate departing and arriving interntional passengers. Maybe when the requirement came in, it wasn't practical to add an arrivals concourse below the main departures concourse which has all the retail etc so it was easier to add a level above.


At least in the US, and I believe Canada as well, you have never been able to mix arriving and departing international passengers. With one or two notable exceptions the US never has allowed transit without customs clearance...that has been in place even before 9/11. The only exceptions being a couple of sterile transit lounges NZs AKL-LAX-LHR had a lounge at LAX being the example that comes to mind.


I wonder what the efficiency that could be gained by doing that for those connecting in the US is. It could help US airlines if connections from, say, Europe to Latin America, were not such a grueling and unpredictable experience... Any thoughts?


Pre-9/11, intl-to-intl connections did not have to clear immigration. Arriving passengers were allowed to mingle with departing passengers but not all airports did this. Airports that I can think of that allowed arriving passengers to mingle with departing ones were ANC, HNL, LAX, MIA. Iberia even had a hub at Miami until 9/11 that offered connections between Spain and various Latin America cities.
https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/fl-xp ... story.html
 
User avatar
Polot
Posts: 10517
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:01 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 2:29 pm

airbazar wrote:
ProfH wrote:
United1 wrote:

At least in the US, and I believe Canada as well, you have never been able to mix arriving and departing international passengers. With one or two notable exceptions the US never has allowed transit without customs clearance...that has been in place even before 9/11. The only exceptions being a couple of sterile transit lounges NZs AKL-LAX-LHR had a lounge at LAX being the example that comes to mind.


I wonder what the efficiency that could be gained by doing that for those connecting in the US is. It could help US airlines if connections from, say, Europe to Latin America, were not such a grueling and unpredictable experience... Any thoughts?


Pre-9/11, intl-to-intl connections did not have to clear immigration. Arriving passengers were allowed to mingle with departing passengers but not all airports did this. Airports that I can think of that allowed arriving passengers to mingle with departing ones were ANC, HNL, LAX, MIA. Iberia even had a hub at Miami until 9/11 that offered connections between Spain and various Latin America cities.
https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/fl-xp ... story.html

It should be noted that mingling was between international connecting passengers only. In places like LAX and MIA you had transit lounges where people on international connections had to stay before boarding their flight. Those lounges and the people in them were segregated from the general departure/arrival crowd who arrived at the airport or connected from a domestic flight (or connecting to domestic). The lounges only led directly to the gates or FIS.

General mingling would resort in people bypassing customs/immigration since US does not have passport controls on departure. You can easily walk out of the terminal from the departure area at most airports without ever being stopped.
 
USAirALB
Posts: 2268
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:46 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 2:51 pm

Polot wrote:
airbazar wrote:
ProfH wrote:

I wonder what the efficiency that could be gained by doing that for those connecting in the US is. It could help US airlines if connections from, say, Europe to Latin America, were not such a grueling and unpredictable experience... Any thoughts?


Pre-9/11, intl-to-intl connections did not have to clear immigration. Arriving passengers were allowed to mingle with departing passengers but not all airports did this. Airports that I can think of that allowed arriving passengers to mingle with departing ones were ANC, HNL, LAX, MIA. Iberia even had a hub at Miami until 9/11 that offered connections between Spain and various Latin America cities.
https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/fl-xp ... story.html

It should be noted that mingling was between international connecting passengers only. In places like LAX and MIA you had transit lounges where people on international connections had to stay before boarding their flight. Those lounges and the people in them were segregated from the general departure/arrival crowd who arrived at the airport or connected from a domestic flight (or connecting to domestic). The lounges only led directly to the gates or FIS.

General mingling would resort in people bypassing customs/immigration since US does not have passport controls on departure. You can easily walk out of the terminal from the departure area at most airports without ever being stopped.

I would note as well that these "transit lounges" were essentially windowless rooms with few amenities. IIRC, the LAX transit lounge may have had a small coffee kiosk or shop, but that's it. Looking back now, they were quite embarrassing and frankly I wouldn't want to have to transfer via the US if it meant I had to be locked in the lounge.
RJ85, F70, E135, E140, E145, E70, E75, E90, CR2, CR7, CR9, 717, 732, 733, 734, 735, 73G, 738, 739, 744ER, 752, 753, 762, 772, 77E, 77W, 789, 319, 320, 321, 332, 333, 343, 359, 388
 
Exeiowa
Posts: 327
Joined: Fri Jul 06, 2018 4:49 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 3:25 pm

I always thought the long routes around was because the experience of arriving travelers did not matter that much to the operators of airports and will make you go which ever way works for them.
 
United1
Posts: 4155
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu Apr 30, 2020 10:57 pm

airbazar wrote:
ProfH wrote:
United1 wrote:

At least in the US, and I believe Canada as well, you have never been able to mix arriving and departing international passengers. With one or two notable exceptions the US never has allowed transit without customs clearance...that has been in place even before 9/11. The only exceptions being a couple of sterile transit lounges NZs AKL-LAX-LHR had a lounge at LAX being the example that comes to mind.


I wonder what the efficiency that could be gained by doing that for those connecting in the US is. It could help US airlines if connections from, say, Europe to Latin America, were not such a grueling and unpredictable experience... Any thoughts?


Pre-9/11, intl-to-intl connections did not have to clear immigration. Arriving passengers were allowed to mingle with departing passengers but not all airports did this. Airports that I can think of that allowed arriving passengers to mingle with departing ones were ANC, HNL, LAX, MIA. Iberia even had a hub at Miami until 9/11 that offered connections between Spain and various Latin America cities.
https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/fl-xp ... story.html


All of those airports you mentioned had sterile lounges specifically for those flights. I did mention there were exceptions. HNL and LAX had a “room” for international flights that continued onto another international destination. ANC had part of a concourse set up for international flights. It was generally used when aircraft had to make a tech stop. MIA had the end of E ( I think it was E...the one with those god awful trams out to the end.) Yes you could transit from IB flights to other IB flights. They would fly passengers to MIA on a 747 then you would transfer to a smaller aircraft down to central America. The vast majority of passengers making international connections in the US had to clear US customs even pre 9/11.
I know the voices in my head aren't real but sometimes their ideas are just awesome!!!
 
airbazar
Posts: 10115
Joined: Wed Sep 10, 2003 11:12 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 12:55 am

United1 wrote:
airbazar wrote:
ProfH wrote:

I wonder what the efficiency that could be gained by doing that for those connecting in the US is. It could help US airlines if connections from, say, Europe to Latin America, were not such a grueling and unpredictable experience... Any thoughts?


Pre-9/11, intl-to-intl connections did not have to clear immigration. Arriving passengers were allowed to mingle with departing passengers but not all airports did this. Airports that I can think of that allowed arriving passengers to mingle with departing ones were ANC, HNL, LAX, MIA. Iberia even had a hub at Miami until 9/11 that offered connections between Spain and various Latin America cities.
https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/fl-xp ... story.html


All of those airports you mentioned had sterile lounges specifically for those flights. I did mention there were exceptions. HNL and LAX had a “room” for international flights that continued onto another international destination. ANC had part of a concourse set up for international flights. It was generally used when aircraft had to make a tech stop. MIA had the end of E ( I think it was E...the one with those god awful trams out to the end.) Yes you could transit from IB flights to other IB flights. They would fly passengers to MIA on a 747 then you would transfer to a smaller aircraft down to central America. The vast majority of passengers making international connections in the US had to clear US customs even pre 9/11.


My point was that pre-9/11 passengers did not have to clear immigration as mandated by Federal law. If airports chose to provide the facilities that was ok. But as you pointed out, ANC and HNL were really just refueling stops where they allowed passengers to get out and get in. Most others were same aircraft continuation routes such as Varig's NRT-LAX-GRU. IB had a real hub at MIA and AF had a mini hub operation also at MIA. But now I'm curious whether the likes of PanAm and TWA had any intl-2-intl connections at a U.S. hub :)
 
DTWLAX
Posts: 1073
Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2009 4:19 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 3:01 am

theasianguy wrote:
In Western Europe, there is a preference for above corridors at LHR, CDG, AMS, FRA.

AMS does not have arrival corridors. You leave the plane and enter directly into the terminal and mix with departing passengers.
 
BearatoneSEA
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2016 7:35 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 3:51 am

Personally, I love getting out of the airplane after a long international flight and entering into LIGHT and AIR and lots of ROOM. After 11+ hours flying SCL-LAX, it was a pleasure to go up the escalator into that corridor through the TBIT and then down the long escalator to passport control (and by the way, zero checks for temperature or collecting the health surveys).

Contrast that with my hometown of Seattle, where you descend into the bowels of the South Satellite. I'm happy that the Port of Seattle is rectifying that by moving the International Arrivals facility to the expanded A-gate portion of the airport. And if you're arriving at the South Satellite, you'll ascend a long escalator up to the bridge over the ramp area and then descend again into the new facility. Yes, it's longer, but it will be a much better arrival experience. It will also eliminate the nonsense of re-checking your cleared bag, taking the subway to the Main Terminal, and then waiting around for a second time to collect it.
 
pdp
Posts: 245
Joined: Thu Dec 14, 2017 7:14 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 6:50 am

WAW has this system for flights that use the jet bridges. You go up and up to what effectively amounts to a catwalk to go through the border, then all the way down to below departures for baggage claim.

If you're on a remote stand (Wizz, Enter Air etc) then you get bussed into a hall below departures, go through the border and then you're straight into baggage claim.
 
chonetsao
Posts: 595
Joined: Sun Nov 06, 2005 3:55 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 9:31 am

I am going to throw in the example of LHR Terminal 2.

The arrivals for Terminal 2 MAIN terminal (A gates) is below the departures floor. However, the arrivals in Terminal 2 Satellite (B gates) are above the departures floor...
 
VSMUT
Posts: 4239
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2016 11:40 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 10:22 am

DTWLAX wrote:
theasianguy wrote:
In Western Europe, there is a preference for above corridors at LHR, CDG, AMS, FRA.

AMS does not have arrival corridors. You leave the plane and enter directly into the terminal and mix with departing passengers.


They do actually. If you arrive from a non-security sterile airport, they lead you upstairs in some corridors to the nearest security checkpoint or exit to the passport control. I'm not entirely certain, but I had one in what must have been concourse G when coming in on an Emirates flight connecting to KLM. I had other connections arriving at the same concourse where they let us mix immediately.


Copenhagen also allows passengers on non-schengen flights mix, although the new A380 gate leads passengers upstairs first.

Paris CDG is a mess, in some areas you are led down, in some you are led up.

Zürich lets non-schengen passengers mix.
 
FlyingHonu001
Posts: 136
Joined: Thu Jan 30, 2020 2:33 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 10:24 am

DTWLAX wrote:
theasianguy wrote:
In Western Europe, there is a preference for above corridors at LHR, CDG, AMS, FRA.

AMS does not have arrival corridors. You leave the plane and enter directly into the terminal and mix with departing passengers.


AMS does have a seperate upper level arrival corridor on Concourses D through G that leads to a securityfilter. I believe it's used only for certain specific international arrivals that requires an additional security filter.

These corridors and gates are accessible through reconfigurable access doors to properly guide the correct passenger flow to the proper exit channel for each arrival. Once deboarding is completed, the access doors are fully locked again and ready to receive the next flight.
 
Turnhouse1
Posts: 194
Joined: Tue Jun 16, 2015 5:57 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 10:41 am

VSMUT wrote:
DTWLAX wrote:
theasianguy wrote:
In Western Europe, there is a preference for above corridors at LHR, CDG, AMS, FRA.

AMS does not have arrival corridors. You leave the plane and enter directly into the terminal and mix with departing passengers.


They do actually. If you arrive from a non-security sterile airport, they lead you upstairs in some corridors to the nearest security checkpoint or exit to the passport control. I'm not entirely certain, but I had one in what must have been concourse G when coming in on an Emirates flight connecting to KLM. I had other connections arriving at the same concourse where they let us mix immediately.


Copenhagen also allows passengers on non-schengen flights mix, although the new A380 gate leads passengers upstairs first.

Paris CDG is a mess, in some areas you are led down, in some you are led up.

Zürich lets non-schengen passengers mix.


Most UK airports tend to have arrivals downstairs, Heathrow, Manchester (well some are on the same level, but that's just poor design), Edinburgh (domestic arrivals go into departure lounge), Gatwick.

I always assumed this was as it allowed the departure lounge to have a nice view making the shopping and eating environment slightly nicer. Arrivals are just queuing for immigration and baggage reclaim so less need for a nice view.
 
DTWLAX
Posts: 1073
Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2009 4:19 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 6:59 pm

VSMUT wrote:

Paris CDG is a mess, in some areas you are led down, in some you are led up.


CDG Terminal 2E, at least the L and M concourses leads you upstairs on arrival. Not sure about Concourse K.
 
USAirALB
Posts: 2268
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:46 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 7:59 pm

Last month I started a topic about how Canada handles international departures given the lack of exit control there (viewtopic.php?t=1443011). Without going through the entire thread, it seems that major Canadian airports have a separate concourse specifically for international flights. You can only access the concourse if you have an international flight, and if you are connecting from a domestic flight, a boarding pass check is completed as once you enter this area, you cannot leave except by way of clearing CBSA. Those making international to international transfers go through what AC calls a "cursory Canada Customs check", and those who need an eTA or a Visa to enter Canada are still required to apply for said documentation if they are transiting through Canada (https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-re ... ansit.html).

With that in mind, if an airline or airport (say AA at MIA ) were to build a purpose-built international concourse where it was physically impossible to exit without going through the CBP Clearance process, and those making connections had proper documentation (Visa or ESTA), would the US government allow some type of waiver and allow sterile transit without passing through CBP? I seem to recall that the original plan for the SFO International terminal may have been that, IIRC when the terminal first opened (until it started handling domestic flights) you weren't allowed through the terminal's security checkpoints without a passport.
RJ85, F70, E135, E140, E145, E70, E75, E90, CR2, CR7, CR9, 717, 732, 733, 734, 735, 73G, 738, 739, 744ER, 752, 753, 762, 772, 77E, 77W, 789, 319, 320, 321, 332, 333, 343, 359, 388
 
Bhoy
Posts: 538
Joined: Tue Apr 18, 2006 1:50 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 8:29 pm

DTWLAX wrote:
theasianguy wrote:
In Western Europe, there is a preference for above corridors at LHR, CDG, AMS, FRA.

AMS does not have arrival corridors. You leave the plane and enter directly into the terminal and mix with departing passengers.

If you're arriving on an LCC in the G Concourse, you can't mingle with departing passengers (which are cobranded for LCC departures as H Concourse with it's own seperate departure lounge, separated from the rest of G by a glass wall)
 
n92r03
Posts: 525
Joined: Sun Jan 10, 2010 10:46 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 8:56 pm

If memory serves, arriving into HKG one is directed to a lower level at the gate, then down a corridor with washrooms available then you have to go up a level or two to get to the tram/people mover which takes you to the processing area (Arrivals Hall A or B). I *think* the same people mover/tram is used for departing passengers as well, just going the opposite way, from the terminal to the gate area. This seems like an efficient use of space.

Arriving EWR is a whole other beauty, either in B concourse which is an awesome experience in itself or C concourse where one is directed up to the "catwalk" to Customs.
 
User avatar
CaptSkibi
Posts: 124
Joined: Sat May 01, 2004 7:15 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 9:08 pm

Keep in mind that the departures level is typically that of the aircraft deck level, approximately 1 storey above ground. Ground level would typically be the below wing services and other ground services, mostly baggage handling, but there could be some catering and such. In order to go below this or not impede these services, you would need to be below ground. Many places do not have a ground water level that supports digging down further. Homes in the region very commonly will not have basements.

The McNamara terminal at DTW (for DL & SkyTeam) has an international arrivals area that is below ground. It feels like a long escalator ride down when arriving at DTW. Building up is simply easier and allows a high ceiling for the main level departures area, assuming the int'l arrivals area is simply a long hallway to the Immigrations & Customs, which is nice. OSL comes to mind for having int'l arrivals above the departures.
Private Pilot, Airplane Single Engine Land / former frequent flyer with 9 straight years being elite on NW/DL
 
fessor
Posts: 161
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2014 1:26 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Fri May 01, 2020 10:55 pm

VSMUT wrote:
DTWLAX wrote:
theasianguy wrote:
In Western Europe, there is a preference for above corridors at LHR, CDG, AMS, FRA.

AMS does not have arrival corridors. You leave the plane and enter directly into the terminal and mix with departing passengers.


They do actually. If you arrive from a non-security sterile airport, they lead you upstairs in some corridors to the nearest security checkpoint or exit to the passport control. I'm not entirely certain, but I had one in what must have been concourse G when coming in on an Emirates flight connecting to KLM. I had other connections arriving at the same concourse where they let us mix immediately.


Copenhagen also allows passengers on non-schengen flights mix, although the new A380 gate leads passengers upstairs first.

Paris CDG is a mess, in some areas you are led down, in some you are led up.

Zürich lets non-schengen passengers mix.


Most if not all Non-schengen gates in CPH are connected to the hallway above departures but for some reason some goes up and some don't i have tried to be send up on an arrival on QR but also tried to just to be send out on departure level same with arrival on TG never been send upstairs when arriving on SQ
 
USAirALB
Posts: 2268
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:46 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Sat May 02, 2020 12:48 am

fessor wrote:
VSMUT wrote:
DTWLAX wrote:
AMS does not have arrival corridors. You leave the plane and enter directly into the terminal and mix with departing passengers.


They do actually. If you arrive from a non-security sterile airport, they lead you upstairs in some corridors to the nearest security checkpoint or exit to the passport control. I'm not entirely certain, but I had one in what must have been concourse G when coming in on an Emirates flight connecting to KLM. I had other connections arriving at the same concourse where they let us mix immediately.


Copenhagen also allows passengers on non-schengen flights mix, although the new A380 gate leads passengers upstairs first.

Paris CDG is a mess, in some areas you are led down, in some you are led up.

Zürich lets non-schengen passengers mix.


Most if not all Non-schengen gates in CPH are connected to the hallway above departures but for some reason some goes up and some don't i have tried to be send up on an arrival on QR but also tried to just to be send out on departure level same with arrival on TG never been send upstairs when arriving on SQ

It likely has to do with the country of origin.

AMS allows those arriving from a state where the screening process is acceptable by the EU (US, UK, Canada, and probably SIN/JPN, maybe HKG and others) to deplane immediately into the non-schengen departure area, while those arriving from a state where the screening process isn't accepted by the EU go immediately to Passport control or a security checkpoint (if in transit).
RJ85, F70, E135, E140, E145, E70, E75, E90, CR2, CR7, CR9, 717, 732, 733, 734, 735, 73G, 738, 739, 744ER, 752, 753, 762, 772, 77E, 77W, 789, 319, 320, 321, 332, 333, 343, 359, 388
 
OB1504
Posts: 3933
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2004 5:10 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Sat May 02, 2020 1:48 am

acavpics wrote:
I have noticed that many international airports such as YYZ, EWR, MIA and many others have a set up in their CBP equipped terminals in which arriving passengers disembark and then take escalators to corridors above the departures lounge in order to get to the arrivals facility. As we know, arrivals facilities (customs/immigration, baggage claim) are located on the ground floor. Therefore, wouldn't it make more sense to build the arrivals floor (corridors included) entirely below the departures level, as is the case in BOS (Terminal E), JFK, BOM (Terminal 2)?

I though that would be far more efficient than to send passengers up a level then multiple levels down. What are the advantages of having arrivals corridors above the main level?


It's interesting that you mention MIA because the International Satellite Terminal is a notable exception to this trend. The departure level is on the third floor and international arriving passengers use the second floor. When it was built in the 1970s, it may have even been the first terminal at MIA put international arriving passengers on a completely separate level. When B, D, E, and F were rebuilt in the 1980s, the airport opted to put international arriving passengers on the third level.

Passport control at all 3 federal inspection stations at MIA is conducted on the third level. Only baggage claim takes place on the ground level at the D and E FIS facilities. At J FIS (and the former B FIS) arriving international passengers stay on the third level the entire time so there's no need to change floors once they're off the airplane.

Up until only a few years ago, FLL had one international terminal with 6 international capable gates and arriving international passengers stayed on the same level as departing passengers, separated by corridors that wrapped around the outer edge of the building. If an international flight had arrived at H8, for example, you couldn't start boarding any flight out of H6 until disembarkation was complete because the corridor blocked access.

United1 wrote:
airbazar wrote:
ProfH wrote:

I wonder what the efficiency that could be gained by doing that for those connecting in the US is. It could help US airlines if connections from, say, Europe to Latin America, were not such a grueling and unpredictable experience... Any thoughts?


Pre-9/11, intl-to-intl connections did not have to clear immigration. Arriving passengers were allowed to mingle with departing passengers but not all airports did this. Airports that I can think of that allowed arriving passengers to mingle with departing ones were ANC, HNL, LAX, MIA. Iberia even had a hub at Miami until 9/11 that offered connections between Spain and various Latin America cities.
https://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/fl-xp ... story.html


All of those airports you mentioned had sterile lounges specifically for those flights. I did mention there were exceptions. HNL and LAX had a “room” for international flights that continued onto another international destination. ANC had part of a concourse set up for international flights. It was generally used when aircraft had to make a tech stop. MIA had the end of E ( I think it was E...the one with those god awful trams out to the end.) Yes you could transit from IB flights to other IB flights. They would fly passengers to MIA on a 747 then you would transfer to a smaller aircraft down to central America. The vast majority of passengers making international connections in the US had to clear US customs even pre 9/11.


MIA still has abandoned ITI lounges in the former concourse A, the E satellite, and concourse F. I've only ever been in the one at A and it didn't seem to have anything else beyond chairs, restrooms, and vending machines.

airbazar wrote:
My point was that pre-9/11 passengers did not have to clear immigration as mandated by Federal law. If airports chose to provide the facilities that was ok. But as you pointed out, ANC and HNL were really just refueling stops where they allowed passengers to get out and get in. Most others were same aircraft continuation routes such as Varig's NRT-LAX-GRU. IB had a real hub at MIA and AF had a mini hub operation also at MIA. But now I'm curious whether the likes of PanAm and TWA had any intl-2-intl connections at a U.S. hub :)


I don't believe AF ever had a mini hub at MIA. AF at the time was the 747 to Paris and the 737 milk run to the Caribbean, but they've never been timed to connect with each other.

I recall reading here that VARIG briefly used one of the ITI facilities at MIA. There was a GRU-MIA flight and a GIG-MIA flight. One of the airplanes could continue on to MCO and passengers from the other would connect to it at MIA, but all of the passengers would clear customs at MCO.

USAirALB wrote:
With that in mind, if an airline or airport (say AA at MIA ) were to build a purpose-built international concourse where it was physically impossible to exit without going through the CBP Clearance process, and those making connections had proper documentation (Visa or ESTA), would the US government allow some type of waiver and allow sterile transit without passing through CBP? I seem to recall that the original plan for the SFO International terminal may have been that, IIRC when the terminal first opened (until it started handling domestic flights) you weren't allowed through the terminal's security checkpoints without a passport.


Not worth the loss of operational flexibility. Especially with the directional banked hub at MIA, a lot of airplanes that arrive on domestic flights immediately turn around to Latin America and the Caribbean, or vice versa.
 
acavpics
Topic Author
Posts: 364
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2018 2:54 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Sat May 02, 2020 2:09 am

Wingtips56 wrote:
Prior to 9/11, and perhaps ending before 9/11 for other reasons, some U.S. airports did have transit lounges, where one could transfer between international flights without having to go out through Customs/Immigration. I've done it at MIA and SJU back then, and DFW had some minimal transit lounge options. Not any more.


Wow! I never new that "transit lounges" were a thing. Do you happen to have any pictures of them? I'd just really like to see what they looked like.
OB1504 wrote:

Up until only a few years ago, FLL had one international terminal with 6 international capable gates and arriving international passengers stayed on the same level as departing passengers, separated by corridors that wrapped around the outer edge of the building. If an international flight had arrived at H8, for example, you couldn't start boarding any flight out of H6 until disembarkation was complete because the corridor blocked access.


Ughh I HATE terminals that have such a set up. Not only do the occupied corridors block access to the gates, but they also make it really hard to plane spot from inside the terminal, especially at night. I remember that the old Terminal 2 at BOM was set up like this. Unfortunately, I'd always be there at night, as that was when most international flights departed. The light inside the arrivals corridors and the reflection against the partition glass made it nearly impossible to see your aircraft from inside the terminal when it is dark outside. We could only get a glimpse of our plane as we passed through the jetway.
 
OB1504
Posts: 3933
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2004 5:10 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Sat May 02, 2020 2:30 am

acavpics wrote:
Wingtips56 wrote:
Prior to 9/11, and perhaps ending before 9/11 for other reasons, some U.S. airports did have transit lounges, where one could transfer between international flights without having to go out through Customs/Immigration. I've done it at MIA and SJU back then, and DFW had some minimal transit lounge options. Not any more.


Wow! I never new that "transit lounges" were a thing. Do you happen to have any pictures of them? I'd just really like to see what they looked like.
OB1504 wrote:

Up until only a few years ago, FLL had one international terminal with 6 international capable gates and arriving international passengers stayed on the same level as departing passengers, separated by corridors that wrapped around the outer edge of the building. If an international flight had arrived at H8, for example, you couldn't start boarding any flight out of H6 until disembarkation was complete because the corridor blocked access.


Ughh I HATE terminals that have such a set up. Not only do the occupied corridors block access to the gates, but they also make it really hard to plane spot from inside the terminal, especially at night. I remember that the old Terminal 2 at BOM was set up like this. Unfortunately, I'd always be there at night, as that was when most international flights departed. The light inside the arrivals corridors and the reflection against the partition glass made it nearly impossible to see your aircraft from inside the terminal when it is dark outside. We could only get a glimpse of our plane as we passed through the jetway.


I might have a photo of the abandoned one at MIA Concourse A from a decade ago. Basically picture a waiting room at any government office and that's pretty much what it was.

Fortunately, FLL demolished the original Terminal 4 and has replaced it with a much more modern facility that affords better sights.
 
USAirALB
Posts: 2268
Joined: Tue Sep 11, 2007 4:46 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Sat May 02, 2020 2:31 am

acavpics wrote:
Wow! I never new that "transit lounges" were a thing. Do you happen to have any pictures of them? I'd just really like to see what they looked like.


There used to be one of the LAX one floating on the web somewhere but I couldn't find it. DFW/MIA had one as well.

The LAX one was a depressing small room without windows with posters on the wall and standard 1980s airport seating.
RJ85, F70, E135, E140, E145, E70, E75, E90, CR2, CR7, CR9, 717, 732, 733, 734, 735, 73G, 738, 739, 744ER, 752, 753, 762, 772, 77E, 77W, 789, 319, 320, 321, 332, 333, 343, 359, 388
 
OB1504
Posts: 3933
Joined: Tue Jul 27, 2004 5:10 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Sat May 02, 2020 4:20 am

I do have a photo of the ITI lounge at MIA Concourse A but I'm hesitant to post it because it's technically within the customs zone and that part of the terminal still exists as it did in 2009.

It's a rectangular room just off of the corridor with a glass wall facing out toward the corridor (allowing natural light to come in from the window on the other end of the corridor) but with plain white walls on the other three sides. There was a set of doors in the middle of the glass wall to get in or out and some old CRT flight information screens. If you arrive on an international flight at gates D9 or D11, you'll see it on your left as you go up the escalator, assuming they haven't covered up the glass by now.
 
VSMUT
Posts: 4239
Joined: Mon Aug 08, 2016 11:40 am

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Sat May 02, 2020 6:48 am

USAirALB wrote:
fessor wrote:
VSMUT wrote:

They do actually. If you arrive from a non-security sterile airport, they lead you upstairs in some corridors to the nearest security checkpoint or exit to the passport control. I'm not entirely certain, but I had one in what must have been concourse G when coming in on an Emirates flight connecting to KLM. I had other connections arriving at the same concourse where they let us mix immediately.


Copenhagen also allows passengers on non-schengen flights mix, although the new A380 gate leads passengers upstairs first.

Paris CDG is a mess, in some areas you are led down, in some you are led up.

Zürich lets non-schengen passengers mix.


Most if not all Non-schengen gates in CPH are connected to the hallway above departures but for some reason some goes up and some don't i have tried to be send up on an arrival on QR but also tried to just to be send out on departure level same with arrival on TG never been send upstairs when arriving on SQ

It likely has to do with the country of origin.


From my experience, not really. It seems pretty random if you get sent up into the corridor or straight into the concourse. Even if you are sent upstairs, there's a staircase leading right down into the concourse just before the passport control. I think it is more for crowd control, since the concourse is old and narrow.

And as Fessor wrote, he got sent upstairs on a Singapore flight. Singapore is one of the airports that have a satisfactory security apparatus in place, so you almost never get checked after arriving in Europe.
 
User avatar
william
Posts: 3331
Joined: Thu Jun 10, 1999 1:31 pm

Re: Why do so many international terminals have arrivals corridors above the departures level?

Thu May 07, 2020 1:53 pm

1. When I arrived at Heathrow on AA we went through a long sterile corridor above the normal corridor till we got to the transfer bus area to T5. How does one connect to a leaving from the same concourse there? Backtrack? And why did I have to go through security again at T5, wasn't I in a sterile environment from T2?

2. When departing from the T5 satellite, I was looking down at my A319 BA flight (3rd level). Again, how would BA pax transfer to another flight in the same terminal complex if on different levels?

3. When connecting through CDG, LHR,FRA etc. from far flung countries how do pax connect if going through sterile halls?

I have heard of horror stories going through ATL where you have claim your luggage and recheck it and go through security again.

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos