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Anchorage Airport

East Leroy, Michigan
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26 posts
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Anchorage Airport

We would like to know how big the Anchorage Airport is, say in comparison to Detroit or Tampa, etc. What we really want to know is how long on a Sunday night will it take us to return our car, get through security and get to our gate? We weren't sure if the gates were spread out or how efficient the car return process is. We want to enjoy every last minute of our Alaska vacation doing something other than sitting in the airport so we don't want to be too early or be too rushed either. Thanks.

Bristol, Connecticut
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for Alaska
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1. Re: Anchorage Airport

It is not a very large airport but I would give yourself two hours. Security can sometimes be very backed up at ANC. There is a nice area above the C gates to hang around if you have time.

Alaska
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2. Re: Anchorage Airport

You might want to eat a decent meal before heading to the airport because the choices are limited at our airport. It is kind of sad for the size town we are that Chili's, Norton Sound restaurant (nice but expensive!), Cinnabon's, Humpy's, McDonalds, Starbucks, Quizno's and Upper One are your only choices. There is also Hudson Newsstands that sell snacks and a cafe for coffees and sandwiches. Very high-priced which is the norm for airport shops and restaurants everywhere.

I work at the airport several days a week and our visitors often wish they had taken the time to eat before heading to the airport. Getting through security is a breeze compared to other cities. It will be quick....but still show up two hours ahead of your departure because missing your plane can be a costly mistake in our busy summer season! I sometimes go through security five to six times in a day....no sweat. Enjoy your vacation in our awesome state! Deb

Cadiz, Kentucky
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3. Re: Anchorage Airport

Compared to Detroit or Tampa, I'd say it's a piece of cake! They actually just recommended 90 minutes for us, rather than the standard 2 hours I've seen at other airports. And I give a BIG hats off to the TSA and other employees there who were all soo very cheerful at 4:30 am!!

New York
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4. Re: Anchorage Airport

I find a two hour window is necessary at the Anchorage airport, especially if you have to check bags and/or it's a cruise ship day. You can really get bogged down behind an endless line of people weighing and shipping all kinds of stuff. :)

This airport is also quite a nice "museum", and well worth the extra time to see. :)

Bristol, Connecticut
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for Alaska
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5. Re: Anchorage Airport

I second what BQ says, I once missed a flight after arriving 90 minutes early because 3 cruise tour buses dropped passengers at the same time. I was only going to Kodiak so I got on the next flight. I have also arrived 90 minutes early and it has taken me 10 minutes to check bags and get through security but I would rather be safe than sorry.

Alaska
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6. Re: Anchorage Airport

If you miss a flight in Alaska because you weren't at the airport in time....your choice of flights could be slim and the replacement flight expensive. I am at the airport several days out of the week and listen to countless overhead announcements for people needing to get on the plane. Better safe than sorry....especially in the busy summertime! Deb

OK
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219 posts
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7. Re: Anchorage Airport

I certainly understand your thought that you would rather be 'doing something' than hanging out in the airport.

However, I think you can tell from the previous posts... It's not the size of the airport but the length of the security and checkin lines that might be a problem. We arrived in what we thought would be plenty of time at the Anchorage airport and were feeling a little nervous before we were finally settled. The lines can be quite long and move pretty slowly. Not that the folks working there are moving slowly but I think there might be a larger than normal (normal for other airports) number of people checking extra bags (coolers with fish) and the like. Plus, the possiblility of being in line with several buses of cruise folks.

I would have to go with the 'better safe than sorry' plan and get there early.

Los Angeles...
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8. Re: Anchorage Airport

Somewhat related to this question, if I am taking the train back from Denali to Anchorage, which arrives at 8pm, and have a 12:45am flight, do we have enough time (and is it worthwhile) to get something to eat a restaurant around the train station and then go to the airport, or just go to the airport straight from the station and try to find something to eat there?

Also if we did go somewhere else to eat, how easy would it be to get a taxi to the airport from a random restaurant?

Alaska
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9. Re: Anchorage Airport

Hi Scott.....I don't know how much luggage you have (would it be a hassle to walk 10-20 min.?) or if they have taxis at the train station.....but there are lots of wonderful places to eat downtown. My choice would be Simon & Seaforts. Awesome view and fantastic seafood. Not cheap but worth the money. I would make reservations.

Many of the hotels are just up the hill from the station and would have restaurants. No problem having a taxi called before the end of your meal. It will only take twenty minutes or so from downtown Anchorage to get to the airport. Lots of flights in Anchorage are red-eye so you want to be at the airport by 10:45 but you should have plenty of time to eat a decent meal. It will help if you do not have to walk from the station.....Enjoy Alaska! Deb

Lake Tahoe...
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10. Re: Anchorage Airport

Scott - if it were me and without my car I would go directly ro the airport. Are you allowing enough time to eat. You have the problem with your luggage too. Hanging out at the Anchorage Airport isn't all that bad, although not like that at DFW where there is a lot to do. We fly out of ANC at 2.30 a.m. in November a very long time between the closing of the restaurants and flight time (nothing new for us)