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Beijing Airport Information

The Beijing Capital International Airport terminal officially opened on October 1, 1999, marking the 50th anniversary of Chinese Communist rule. This new, bright and airy terminal, built at a cost of $1.1 billion, is a welcome replacement for the former facility, which started operating in the 1950s, and has become increasingly cramped and dingy with the rise in the number of passengers visiting China.

The new four-storey terminal (including basement level) covers an area of 336,000 square meters--three times the size of the former terminal--and puts much more emphasis on passenger comfort. The complex also includes a large-scale public parking building and a cargo station.

Laser scan technology is used for luggage inspections; computer-aided aircraft guiding systems, security equipment, and information display boards are all first-rate. Electronic display boards are installed throughout the airport, providing arrival and departure information in both Chinese and English. The Unisys Airport Passenger Processing System (APPS) is used at the airport. APPS puts intuitive Windows-type graphical screens at the fingertips of airport personnel, enabling them to check in passengers and baggage and complete reservations and departure control processes more quickly and efficiently. When this state-of-the-art terminal goes into full operation, it will be able to handle 190,000 flights, 35 million passengers, and 780,000 tons of cargo a year. The building has 51 elevators, 63 escalators, and 26 moving sidewalks to make maneuvering around the airport easy.

Beijing is served by international carriers such as Northwest, United, Canadian Airlines, Lufthansa, SAS, Dragon Air, Japan Airlines, ANA, British Airways, Malaysian Air, Austrian Airlines, Air France, Alitalia, Korean Air, Pakistan Airlines, Singapore Airlines, Thai International, Air China, China Southern, and China Northern.

Travelers will be able to stay in touch with the world via multimedia payphones conveniently located throughout the terminal. A phone card, available at airport counters, is required to make calls.

There are no English-language travel books or maps available at the airport, but tourist information and maps can be found at the front desks of most hotels.

Free baggage carts are available on the concourse outside the departure hall. There are no porters at the airport. The airport offers Smarte Locke lockers for passengers to store their baggage. The lockers are located on the second level. Bags may be stored for anywhere from an hour to seven days.

Banks & ATMs

There are 12 ATMs and four auto cash exchange machines conveniently located throughout the terminal and they accept the following cards:

Cirrus
American Express
Visa
Visa Interlink
MasterCard
The following banks have windows set up at the airport for foreign currency exchange: Bank of China, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the Agricultural Bank of China, and the Construction Bank of China. Some of these banks can also provide cash advances with a Visa card. The ATM machines are available 24 hours a day while the bank windows are open during normal flight and arrival departure hours. The Bank of China in the international separating area on the second floor also provides foreign currency exchange for passengers.

Travel Tax

Travelers departing Beijing on an international flight must pay a RMB90 airport construction tax. Those flying to domestic destinations must pay RMB50. Payment must be made at counters in the departure area prior to checking-in for your flight. Keep your receipt.

Airport Transportation

The airport is 26 kilometers, or 40 minutes, from the center of Beijing.

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