Arriving early for check-in and security at San Francisco International Airport (SFO) just may elicit a sigh of contentment. The airport’s “jetiquette” makes traveling welcoming, interesting, fun, and -- dare we say – relaxing. There are enough activities and sites to warrant placing the airport itself on a traveler’s itinerary.

SFO is a gateway to many San Francisco attractions.  It previews the best of San Francisco in terms of restaurants, retail, art and culture. Visitors may discover the wonders of the Steinhart Aquarium and the California Academy of Sciences, learn about the history of aviation, or enjoy the renowned cultural art exhibits included throughout the airport.

Nearly all of the airport eateries are branches of local San Francisco restaurants, bars and cafés, providing travelers with an authentic taste of San Francisco.  And if shopping is a pleasure, SFO features an eclectic mix of bookstores, gift shops, travel outfitters, designer brands and luxury boutiques, including the SFMOMA Museum Store.

Passenger Services

SFO provides airport services that go far beyond the ordinary. Because time is valuable, SFO makes special efforts to ensure the airport experience is one of the highlights of the trip. Everything needed for travel is here, including currency exchange offices, banking services, and free wireless Internet access. To keep looking and feeling at best, SFO features a hair salon, spa and medical clinic. Visit the full-service travel agency for last-minute bookings, tickets and tours. Travelers can even rent a DVD player with the latest movies to keep family entertained along the way. And to feed the imagination, SFO’s museum galleries, aquarium exhibit and reflection room will help spirits take flight. For a detailed list of services, visit http://www.flysfo.com/web/page/atsfo/passenger-serv/list/

SFO also features an on-site medical clinic and pharmacy. For more information, please visit the SFO Web site at:

 

http://www.flysfo.com/web/page/about/news/pressres/  

 

http://www.flysfo.com/web/page/about/news/pressrel/  

 

http://www.flysfo.com/web/page/atsfo/passenger-serv/med-serv/

 

A highlight of the exhibits at SFO that are sure to melt away time before a flight, or make unwinding after a flight easier include:

Aquarium

An aquarium featuring representatives from three distinct aquatic communities is located pre-security in Terminal 1, on the Departures/Ticketing Level near the entrance to Gates 40 through 48. Presented in conjunction with the Steinhart Aquarium and California Academy of Sciences.

Aviation Library and Museum

A library and museum dedicated to the history of flight. Special emphasis is placed on the history of aviation in the Pacific as it relates to SFO. For more information on the library and museum, please visit www.sfoarts.org

Location: International Terminal, Main Hall, pre-security

Hours: Sunday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; closed Saturdays and holidays

Phone: 650.821.9900

Berman Reflection Room

The Berman Reflection Room provides a center for quiet self-reflection and meditation.

Location: International Terminal, Main Hall, pre-security

Hours: daily, 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Christian Science Reading Room

The Christian Science Reading Room is a quiet place to read, meditate or relax in a peaceful environment.

Location: Terminal 1, near entrance to Gates 40 through 48, pre-security

Hours: daily, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Phone: 650-877-0105

Kids’ Spot

The SFO Kids’ Spot is an interactive children’s exploration area featuring weather related exhibits from the Exploratorium of San Francisco, as well as a crawling apparatus.

Location: Terminal 3, Boarding Area F near Gate 87A, post-security

SFO Museum

SFO Museum features galleries throughout the terminals displaying a rotating schedule of art, science, historical and cultural exhibitions. For more information on the San Francisco Airport Museums program, please visit www.sfoarts.org

San Francisco Arts Commission

More than 60 works of art including paintings, sculptures and architectural pieces are permanently on display throughout the terminals. These pieces were commissioned or purchased for the Airport by the San Francisco Arts Commission. The program, which began in 1977, is now one of the largest and most comprehensive of its kind. Works by noted local, national and international artists are represented.

Self-guided Tours:

In addition to being a world-class transportation hub, SFO offers educational opportunities for children of all ages.  SFO has created several itineraries that combine a terminal tour.  All tour stops are pre-security; locations are accessible to children traveling and those wishing to visit the airport.  Each itinerary concludes at an Information Desk where children taking the tour will receive a small prize (prizes available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily). Itineraries for families:  http://www.flysfo.com/web/page/atsfo/passenger-serv/fam-serv/ITTour.html.

SFO is a distinctive, welcoming airport experience for visitors from more than 100 destinations, as well as travelers leaving San Francisco behind.

San Francisco International Airport (SFO) offers non-stop links with more than 30 international points on five continents with 29 international carriers. The Bay Area's largest airport connects non-stop with more than 65 cities in the U.S. on 20 domestic airlines.  For up-to-the-minute departure and arrival information, airport maps and details on shopping, dining, cultural exhibitions, ground transportation and more, visit www.flysfo.com.   

For general information on hotel packages and reservations; events; activities and transportation in San Francisco, visit www.sanfrancisco.travel. For lodging reservations, call 800-637-5196 within North America or 415-391-2000 or 415-392-0328 (TTY/TTD) elsewhere.

The San Francisco Visitors Planning Guide is available at the Visitor Information Center, 900 Market St., at the corner of Powell and Market streets, lower level, Hallidie Plaza.  A virtual edition of the guide is also available online: http://guides.weaver-group.com/sf/ovg2/2010/ A visitor's kit may also be ordered online at www.sanfrancisco.travel, by phone at 415-391-2000 or 415-392-0328 (TTY/TTD), by written request to the San Francisco Visitor Information Center, 900 Market St., San Francisco, CA 94102, or via email to vic1@sanfrancisco.travel.  Domestic and international shipping charges apply.

San Francisco International Airport (SFO) offers non-stop links with more than 30 international points on five continents with 29 international carriers. The Bay Area's largest airport connects non-stop with more than 65 cities in the U.S. on 20 domestic airlines.  For up-to-the-minute departure and arrival information, airport maps and details on shopping, dining, cultural exhibitions, ground transportation and more, visit www.flysfo.com.   

American Express® is the official credit card partner for the San Francisco Travel Association.

 

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