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San Francisco, San Francisco International Airport (SFO), USA

Surrounding area

Airport map and general info

Facilities & infrastructure

Getting around San Francisco


Visa & Immigration

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Facilities & infrastructure


ATMs are available in all terminals, including the departure areas. There is a full service bank before the security area of Terminal 3. Bureaux de change and automated currency exchange machines are located throughout the International Terminal, with an additional kiosk in Terminal 3 in the departure area.


Free wireless internet is available in all public spaces. Telephones with data ports can be found throughout the terminals. Mobile telephones can be hired. Post boxes are located immediately outside the terminals.


There are numerous bars, cafés and restaurants in each terminal. These include American-style restaurants in Terminals 1 and 2, Mexican and Japanese eateries in Terminal 2 and the International Terminal, and a pub serving speciality beer in Terminal 3.


A good selection of duty-free shops can be found in the International Terminal, while an additional duty-free kiosk is located in Terminal 1, boarding area B. Other shops include gift shops, newsagents, bookshops, clothing and accessories stores, sweet shops, toy retailers and cosmetic outlets.


There is a lost property office in the baggage reclaim area of Terminal 1 (tel: (650) 821 7014). Trolleys are available for a fee throughout the terminals. Left-luggage services are provided at the Airport Travel Agency in the International Terminal.


Other facilities at San Francisco International Airport include a medical centre (International Terminal), nurseries, showers, hair salon, shoeshine services and spas. Those looking to fill time before flights can visit the aquarium in Terminal 1 and exhibitions at various points within the terminals. Special children’s play areas are located in the departure lounges of Terminals 2 and 3. San Francisco Airport has also introduced a new service titled, ‘wag brigade’, where trained dogs are brought into the terminal to make passengers journeys more enjoyable.

Conference & Business

The Airport Travel Agency in the International Terminal provides fax and photocopying services. Basic business services and mobile phone rental is offered at TripTel in the main concourse of the International Terminal. There are also workstations where laptops can be charged. Meeting and conference facilities are available at the nearby South San Francisco Conference Centre (tel: (650) 877 8787;, and at a number of local hotels, notably the Holiday Inn San Francisco Airport (tel: (650) 873 3550;

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Surrounding area San Francisco International Airport

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    San Francisco International Airport is fully accessible to disabled passengers – passengers requiring wheelchairs should contact their airline prior to travel. There are TDD/TTY phones throughout the airport for hearing-impaired travellers. Disabled car parking (tel: (650) 821 7111) is available for all car parks. The shuttle bus from the long-term car park is equipped with a lift, while taxis, SamTrans buses and Caltrain shuttles are wheelchair accessible.

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    General information

    Airportcode: SFO

    Number of Terminals: 4


    Airport information booths are located in the arrival areas of all terminals. Computerised information kiosks are available at the desks, 24 hours a day. Travelers Aid kiosks are located in the departure areas of all terminals – these are open daily, from 0800 to 2000.

    Transfer between Terminals

    The 24-hour AirTrain light rail service links the terminals, parking garages, BART station and car hire centre.

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    Visa & Immigration

    IATA Travel Centre

    The IATA Travel Centre delivers accurate passport, visa and health requirement information at a glance. It is a trusted, centralized source for the latest international travel requirements. The IATA Travel Centre is the most accurate source available because it is based on a comprehensive database used by virtually every airline, and information is gathered from official sources worldwide, such as immigration and police authorities.

    IATA Travel CentreIATA Travel Centre

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    Getting around

    Public Transport

    Known locally as Muni, the San Francisco Municipal Transport Agency (tel: (415) 701 2311; runs a citywide network of metro trains, buses, streetcars (trams) and the famous San Francisco cable car – actually a kind of tram hauled on underground cables. Tickets can be bought on board (exact change required) or from Muni Metro stations. Suburban trains to the outer suburbs and the airport are run by Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART; tel: (415) 989 2278; Explore the city at your leisure with a rechargeable magnetic Clipper Card, or buy a one- to seven-day Muni Visitor Passport.


    Taxis can be flagged down in the street and charge metered rates to anywhere in the city, including to the airport. A 10% tip will be expected. Reliable radio-cab companies include Yellow Cab (tel: (415) 333 3333; and De Soto Cab (tel: (415) 970 1300;


    Hotels in San Francisco


    San Francisco gave the world some of its first boutique hotels, and some of the city’s most comfortable bedrooms have serious designer credentials.

    Hotels range from cute, family-friendly places in Victorian houses to lavish five-star chains.

    Mandarin Oriental San Francisco

    222 Sansome Street
    CA 94104 San Francisco
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    Category: Expensive

    Five-star and fabulous, the Mandarin Oriental offers every conceivable mod-con, and swoon-inducing views over the Financial District.


    495 Jefferson Street
    CA 94109 San Francisco
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    Category: Expensive

    Right in the thick of things on Fisherman’s Wharf, the Argonaut is a tribute to San Francisco’s seafaring past, down to the astrolabes and ships’ wheels on the walls.

    Hotel Monaco

    501 Geary Street
    CA 94102 San Francisco
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    Category: Moderate

    Lavish stripes and art deco light fittings set the scene in this achingly stylish design hotel, with a handy downtown location.