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Beijing Airport Guide

beijing airport guide

In this section you will find traveller airport reviews as well as our Beijing Airport Guide with info on WiFi, lounges, facilities and services....and yes, even the names of some airport hotels in case you decide that sleeping in the airport is not for you!

no matter where I tried to get some shut-eye, even if I was sleeping sat upright, a member of airport staff would shake me and declare 'no sleeping! - Clipsham

Airport Overview

beijing capital airport
photo credit: Zhanyanguange / Wikimedia

To help you plan your layover, here is a quick run-down of what travellers have reported to us during their time at Beijing Airport.

What to Expect

  • This is a huge, modern airport with plenty of amenities and lots of travellers all night long.
  • There are three terminals, and signs make it easy to navigate. T1 is small and houses some domestic flights. T2 is new, and houses a mix of domestic and international flights. T3 is the largest and newest terminal, opening in 2008, with one main concourse area, T3C, and two satellite ones, T3D and T3E.
  • Shuttle buses connect all three main terminals Landside.
  • Even though it’s a huge international hub, many travellers report a major language barrier with airport staff and security. However, overhead announcements are made in both Chinese and English.
  • Security checkpoints can be very slow and busy, so arrive at the airport with more than enough time to get to your gate!
  • Several eateries and bars are open 24-hours. See Food / Drinks in the airport guide below.
  • Free WiFi is available. See WiFi in the airport guide below.

Where to Sleep

  • Airport staff are generally tolerant of overnight sleepers.
  • T3 is the most comfortable terminal to catch some sleep overnight. Plenty of seating, though the benches are often wooden, and only chairs with armrests are padded. Get creative.
  • Many travellers suggest the Burger King in the mezzanine level of T3 - its couches are comfortable and they are tolerant of sleepers.
  • Landside, there are a lot of benches that have no armrests, so head to the A/B counters and the L/K counters. It’s crowded, so grab a seat when you can! (Traveller, November 2011).
  • As a busy airport, come prepared for noise and light - bring earplugs and eye masks.
  • For uninterrupted sleep, several hotels are located inside and near the airport. See Airport Hotels in the airport guide below.

Good to Know

  • Economy class travelers can buy a pass and relax in many airport lounges; showers are available in some. See Airport Lounges in the airport guide below for locations and rates.

For more information about the services and facilities available, scroll down to continue exploring our Beijing Airport Guide. Send us your airport tips to help us keep this information up to date.


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Beijing Airport Information

In this guide we may refer to locations as "landside" and "airside". Landside is the public area of the terminal located in the non-secure zone, before security. Airside is the secure area of the terminal that you must reach by going through security.

Airport Lounges

If you are an economy class traveller, you can enter these lounges at Beijing airport either by purchasing a lounge pass or through a membership program. Visit the individual lounge page for more details (ie. facilities, hours, pass and membership information):

  • Air China Business Class Lounge - Location: Terminal 2, Airside. Showers are available. Hours: 6:00AM - 10:00PM (Daily).
  • BGS Premier Lounge - Location: Terminal 2, Airside, near Gate 11. Hours: 5:30AM - last scheduled flight. Lounge Access: Book Online (£23 - up to 3 hours or £25 up to 5 hours - minimum 24 hour advance purchase is required)
  • Air China First and Business Class Lounge - Location: Terminal 3C Domestic, Airside. Showers are available. Hours: 6:00AM - 10:00PM (Daily).
  • Air China First and Business Class Lounge - Location: Terminal 3D Domestic, Airside, Gate D10. Showers are available. Hours: 6:00AM - 8:00PM (Daily).
  • Air China Business Class Lounge - Location: Terminal 3E International, Airside. Showers are available. Hours: 6:00AM - 10:00PM (Daily).
  • BGS Premier Lounge - Location: Terminal 3E, Airside, near Gate E19. Showers are available. Hours: open 24 hours (Mon - Wed, Sat - Sun) • 5:00AM - 1:00AM (Thurs - Fri). Lounge Access: Book Online (£23 - up to 3 hours or £25 up to 5 hours - minimum 24 hour advance purchase is required)
  • Air China First Class Lounge - Location: Terminal 3E International, Airside. Showers are available. Hours: 6:00AM - 10:00PM (Daily).
  • Business Traveler's Lounge - Location: Terminal 3E International, Airside, across from Gate E10. Showers are available. Hours: open 24 hours.

» Buy a Lounge Pass

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Airport WiFi / Internet

Free WiFi is available at Beijing Airport. Connect to the “AIRPORT-FREE-WiFi” network. You will need a Chinese mobile phone number in order to receive your User ID and password via SMS, or you can scan your passport information at any information desk in order to receive your User ID and password. Boingo account holders should be able to automatically access Boingo hotspots in the airport.

Workstations with internet access are available at the Business Center in Terminal 3, Airside.

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Airport Hotels

If sleeping in Beijing Airport does not appeal to you, there are many hotels near the airport:

  • Hourly Hotel - Inside the terminal, there are "hourly lounges" which feature standard rooms with bathrooms. Locations: Terminal 1, Airside, 3F, West Side of Gate 8 • Terminal 2, Domestic Arrivals, B1, between Gate D5 and D6 • Terminal 2, International Arrivals, B1, between Gate D2 and D3 • Terminal 3, Landside, 2F, West Side of Arrivals Hall - T3E. Rates range from 80RMB (1 hour - single room) to 300RMB (overnight - single room). Showers are 50RMB per person.
  • Hilton Beijing Capital Airport Hotel - (1 minutes from the airport) Free 24-hour shuttle bus runs 6:00AM to 12:59AM from Terminal 3/Gate 5 (every 20 min) and Terminal 2/Gate 3 (every 30 min). Contact hotel in advance for pick up from 1:00AM to 6:00AM.
  • Capital Airport Hotel - (1km from the airport) Free airport shuttle
  • Days Hotel Beijing New Exhibition Center - (2.1km from airport) Free airport shuttle departs on a schedule.
  • Ibis Beijing Capital Airport Hotel - (Less than 1.5 miles from the airport) Free airport shuttle from 5:00AM to midnight. Must contact hotel in advance to arrange pick up.
  • Langham Place - (1 minutes from the airport) Free airport shuttle runs 24 hours a day: Terminal 3, go to 2nd lane of Gate No. 5, ground floor, runs every 20 mins. Terminals 1 & 2 go to Gate No. 3, ground floor of T2, runs every 30 mins.

To see more options there is a list of hotels near Beijing Airport on Tripadvisor that can be sorted by price, distance, traveller rating and popularity.

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More Services, Facilities & Things To Do On A Layover At The Airport

  • Art in the Airport - Art, breathtaking themes, interactive displays, and live entertainment acts are on display throughout the airport. Airplane-shaped bench seating, lush garden areas, water features, a “Starry Night”-themed corridor, and more make Beijing Airport a fun and interesting place to explore! Check out a performance of the Staff Art Troupe, live at T3-E Fountain daily from 10:00AM - 2:00PM, or feed the beautiful fish at two indoor gardens (Suzhou Garden and Royal Garden) at T3-E, daily from 9:00AM - 3:00PM. Fish food provided free of charge at the gardens.
  • ATMs / Cash Machines - Yes. Available through the landside and airside sections of the terminals.
  • Baggage Carts - Available throughout the airport for use, free of charge.
  • Banking - Bank of China, China Construction Bank, and Agricultural Bank operate full-service branches on the 2nd and 4th floors of Terminal 3. Hours: 9:00AM - 5:00PM.
  • Business Center - Printing, faxing, computers with internet access, mobile charging and more are available in the airport’s business centers. There are three locations: T1, airside, Floor 2, near Gate 2 (Hours: 7:00AM - 9:30PM) • T2, airside, Floor 2, near Gate 14 (Hours: 6:30AM - 9:30PM) • T3, landside, Floor 4, Check-in Area (Hours: 6:00AM - 9:00PM).
  • Car Rentals - Yes, see our Airport Transportation section below.
  • Children's Play Area - Several areas have been set up for children to burn off some stea, before their flights:
    • T1: A forest and jungle-themed playground is available in the Eastern Gallery.
    • T2: Comfy sofas and a large toy are available at kid-friendly mini lounges available throughout T2. You can find them in these locations: International Departures Gate 13 • Domestic Gates 21, 24, 26, and 34.
    • T3: Colorful climbing toys are available at a car and turtle-themed playground located near Gate C09, and at a panda-themed playground near Gate E21. Young children will enjoy the digital interactive zone at Gate C04, while a digital interactive zone for all ages is available at Gate C08.
  • Currency Exchange - Currency exchange agencies are located throughout all three terminals, with most locations open 24 hours.
  • Duty Free & Shopping - Duty-free shopping is available in the International waiting areas of Terminals 2 and 3. A wide variety of retails shops selling souvenirs, local specialties, teas and more are available in all three terminals.
  • Dressing Rooms - The Luggage Claim Lobby has six dressing rooms equipped with mirrors, tables, chairs and additional amenities to make changing clothes quick and easy. Three locations: T1, 1st Floor, west of the Luggage Claim Hall in the Quarantine Area • T2, Luggage Claim Hall, east of Carousel 14 • T2, International Luggage Claim Hall, near Carousel 4 • T3-C, south of East Luggage Claim Hall • T3-C, south of West Luggage Claim Hall • T3-C, south of International Luggage Claim Hall.
  • Food & Drinks - Food concessions throughout the airport operate with varying schedules. These options are open 24 hours:
    • Terminal 1: Comfort Garden (landside, 3rd floor)
    • Terminal 2: Baskin-Robbins (Intl waiting area, airside, Gate B12) • C straits cafe (landside, 3rd floor) • Comfort Garden (landside, 3rd floor) • Ishijah Coffee (Intl waiting area, airside, Gate B9) • KFC (landside, Arrivals Hall exit) • The Lucky Shamrock (landside, south area of 3rd floor) • Yoshinoya (landside, B1)
    • Terminal 3: Acting Hong Kong Restaurant ( West Food Island, landside, 5th floor) • Cafe Sambal (north side of Intl waiting area, airside, 3rd floor) • Comfort Garden (West Food Island, landside, 5th floor) • Kiss N Bake (Intl waiting area, airside, 2nd floor near Gate E31) • McDonald’s (landside, 2nd floor) • Phrik Thai (East Food Island, landside, 5th floor) • Real Kungfu Restaurant (West Food Island, landside, 5th floor) • Starbucks (east side of landside, 4th floor) • The Lucky Shamrock (north side of intl waiting area, 2nd floor) • UBC Coffee (west side of landside, 4th floor)
    • Vending machines are also available throughout the airport.
  • Gardens - There are two gardens with ponds. The staff will hand out fish food for travellers to feed the fish. Location: Terminal 3, E Suzhou Garden and Royal Garden. Feeding time: 9:00AM - 3:00PM
  • Luggage Storage & Lockers - Left luggage storage is available at a rate of RMB20 - 50 per 24-hour period, per piece of luggage (rate depends on size). Three locations: T1, corridor between T1 and T2 • T2, Arrival Hall, 1st Floor, Gate 9 • T2, Departures Hall, 2nd Floor, Gates 8 and 10 • T3-C, landside, east side of Arrival Hall, 2nd Floor • T3-C, landside, west side of Arrival Hall, 2nd Floor. Hours: Open 24 hours.
  • Luggage Wrapping - Available for RMB30 per piece of luggage. Location and hours: unknown.
  • Massage - Le SPA offers Chinese foot massage. Location: T3, Domestic Departures, Gate 28 Hours: 7:00AM - 11:30PM
  • Mobile Charging Stations - There are free power outlets located throughout the terminals and lockable charging spots where you can insert your device and come back later when the device is charged. Location: Terminal 3, Domestic Departures, Boarding Gates C8 and C30.
  • Post Office - China Post offers postal services, along with newspapers and books for purchase. Two locations: T2, Departure Hall, 1st Floor, Gate 2 • T3, east of the Arrivals Hall, 1st Floor. Hours: 7:00AM - 8:00PM.
  • Rest Zones - Several areas have been set up for travellers to relax in between flights.
    • T2 “Window Lounge”: Relax among the china doll trees in one of six comfy lounge chairs, as you watch planes take off and land through a panoramic 10 meter window. This cozy, carpeted area is located in T2, airside, between Gates 36 - 39.
    • T2 “Brilliant Colors Lounge”: Take a rest on comfy seating amidst the colorful grid art of Piet Mondrian. Location: T2, airside, Gate 23 (Domestic).
    • T2 “Oasis Lounge”: Mobile-charging, comfy couches, and TVs are available in this carpeted, green-toned waiting lounge. Location: T2, airside, Transfer Hall on F1.
    • T3 “Digital Forest Lounge”: This eco-themed lounge has comfy leather chairs, power sockets with USB ports, interactive photography equipment, e-book devices, and more. Location: Airside at Domestic Gate C10.
    • T3 “Tulip Lounge”: A whimsical tulip-themed lounge with four functional zones, where you can relax in a cozy lounge chair, charge your devices, chat with friends in eggshell-shaped chairs, or buy snacks, juices, and WiFi access. Location: Airside at Domestic Gate C30.
  • Showers - Showers are located in the hourly lounges. [ see Airport Hotels above ]. In July 2016, a reviewer told us that shower-only service is available in Terminal 2, Domestic Arrivals, B1, between Gate D5 and D6. The rate is 50RMB.
  • Swimming Pool - While not on airport grounds, a free 24-hour shuttle bus will take you to the Hilton Beijing Airport, where you can use the fitness center, spa and indoor heated swimming pool. Shuttles depart every 15 minutes to go to T3 (Gate 5 on ground floor), and every 30 minutes to go to T1 and T2, stopping to pick up passengers at T2 (Gate 7 on ground floor). Shuttle service between 11:30PM - 7:00AM must be requested in advance.

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Airport Hours

The airport is open 24 hours.

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Airport Transportation: Getting To/From The Airport

Bus

Numerous local city buses and interprovincial coaches are available to passengers needing rides to and from the airport. Tickets and Beijing Transportation Smart Cards can be purchased at ticket offices located at Terminal 1 (Gate 7, inside of F1), Terminal 2 (Gate 11, outside of F1) and Terminal 3 (Gates 7 or 9 outside of F1). For bus routes and schedules, visit the Airport Shuttle section of the BCIA official website.

Passengers traveling between the airport and Shunyi district can take an Airport Community Bus. A single-trip ticket costs ¥4, and can be purchased from ticket offices located at Terminal 2 (1st floor, outside of Gates 1 - 3) and Terminal 3 (1st floor, outside of Gate 1). Purchase the Beijing Transportation Smart Card if you plan to do a bit of traveling by bus and/or metro. Bus lines departing from T2 go to Cherry Garden, Dongdaqiao Roundabout, Kuliushu Roundabout, Xingangzhuangyuan, Jinhanlvgang and Beishicao. Buses departing from T3 go to Zhaoquanying, Longwantun, Wuxiongsi and Cherry Garden. Bus lines 2, 3, 5, 6 and 8 connect to Subway Line 15. For further information, go to the Airport Bus section of the BCIA official website.

Inter-Terminal Transportation

Passengers can travel between the terminals via free terminal shuttle bus service. Terminal shuttle buses travel between Terminal 3 (Gate 5 F1), Terminal 2 Departures, Terminal 1 Departures, Terminal 2 Arrivals (Gate 7), Terminal 1 Arrivals (Gate 7) and Terminal 3 Departures every 10 minutes from 6:00AM - 11:00PM. Buses run every 15 minutes after hours and every 30 minutes between the hours of 1:00AM - 5:00AM.

Taxi

Taxi ranks are located at Terminal 1 (Gate 1, outside on F1), Terminal 2 (Gates 5 - 9 on F1) and Terminal 3 (follow signs). Taxis are metered and charge ¥13 for the first 3km, ¥2.3 per additional km. Additional surcharges apply for late night trips and trips over 15km distance or under 2km distance.

Train

The Airport Express railway runs between Terminals 2 and 3, and Dongzhimen and Sanyuanqiao Metro stations in 10 - 12 minute intervals daily from 6:00AM - 11:00PM. There are Airport Express stations located in Terminal 2 (B2 of Parking Garage 2) and Terminal 3 (F2 of Parking Garage 3). A one-way ticket is ¥25.

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Last Updated: 13 March 2017

The information in this Airport Guide is based on information collected and/or received from the airports and their web sites. The information above is subject to change without notice. Use it for informational purposes only to help you during your stay. To report errors, or to add/change any items mentioned in the guide, please email us at guides@sleepinginairports.com.

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