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United, Alaska among airlines moving terminals in Phoenix

Jan. 30, 2020
6 min read
United, Alaska among airlines moving terminals in Phoenix
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Travelers flying through Phoenix Sky Harbor next week best take note of what terminal their flight departs from as the airport relocates five airlines to Terminal 3 ahead of the closing of Terminal 2.

Air Canada, Alaska Airlines, Boutique Air, Contour Airlines and United Airlines will relocate to Terminal 3 between Monday, Feb. 3, and Thursday, Feb. 6, according to the Phoenix airport (PHX). Boutique moves on Monday, United on Tuesday, Alaska and Contour on Wednesday, and Air Canada on Thursday.

All but one of the carriers, plus Hawaiian Airlines, will operate from the rebuilt North Concourse, which has 10 gates. Boutique will operate from the South Concourse that opened a year ago.

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John McCain Terminal 3 in Phoenix reopened in 2019. (Image courtesy of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport)
John McCain Terminal 3 in Phoenix reopened in 2019. (Image courtesy of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport)
Air CanadaAirlines move into the rebuilt Phoenix Sky Harbor opens the rebuilt North Concourse in Terminal 3 next week. (Image by Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport)
Air Canada, Alaska, Contour, Hawaiian Airlines and United will operate from the rebuilt North Concourse in Terminal 3 at Phoenix Sky Harbor airport from next week. (Image by Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport)

One notable change for United travelers: the airline will not have a lounge in Terminal 3, at least not initially. Its United Club in Terminal 2 will close when it moves, with a new 5,400 square-foot lounge in Terminal 3 not due to open for several months, United spokesman Jonathan Guerin told TPG.

The American Express Centurion Lounge that opened at Sky Harbor earlier this month is in Terminal 4 and not accessible inside security to passengers on flights departing Terminal 3.

The interior of the rebuilt Terminal 3 North Concourse at Phoenix Sky Harbor airport. (Image courtesy of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport)
The interior of the rebuilt Terminal 3 North Concourse at Phoenix Sky Harbor airport. (Image courtesy of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport)

Phoenix handled a record 46.3 million passengers in 2019, a 3% year-over-year increase, according to airport data. The airport is a hub for American Airlines, and a large base for Southwest Airlines -- both of which operate from Terminal 4 at Sky Harbor.

Phoenix was the 13th-busiest airport in the U.S. by passenger boardings in 2018, according to Department of Transportation rankings.

Related: Amex’s Phoenix Centurion Lounge is now open

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Terminal 2 will close when the relocations to Terminal 3 are complete, and is expected to be demolished. Terminal 2 — the oldest among the airport's three passenger terminals — opened in 1962 with a mid-century modern aesthetic.

Terminal 2 has been home to numerous carriers of the years. Past tenants include American and Trans World Airlines (TWA) in the 1970s, and former Republic Airlines' short-lived Phoenix hub in the 1980s.

American Airlines and TWA both operated from Terminal 2 at Phoenix Sky Harbor airport in the 1970s. (Image courtesy of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport)
American Airlines and TWA both operated from Terminal 2 at Phoenix Sky Harbor airport in the 1970s. (Image courtesy of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport)

Terminal 3 opened in 1979. It was home to America West Airlines' hub, the forerunner to American's hub today, until Terminal 4 opened in 1990.

Updated with comment from United on plans for a new United Club in Terminal 3.

Featured image by John McCain Terminal 3 in Phoenix reopened in 2019. (Image courtesy of Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport)

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  • The $395 annual fee might be expensive for some, but this card’s benefits provide much more value than that.
  • If you don’t travel frequently, this might not be the best card for you.
  • Earn 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening, equal to $750 in travel
  • Receive up to $300 back annually as statement credits for bookings through Capital One Travel, where you'll get Capital One's best prices on thousands of options
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  • Earn unlimited 10X miles on hotels and rental cars booked through Capital One Travel and 5X miles on flights booked through Capital One Travel
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  • Unlimited complimentary access for you and two guests to 1,400+ lounges, including Capital One Lounges and our Partner Lounge Network
  • Receive up to a $100 credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck®
  • Use your Venture X miles to easily cover travel expenses, including flights, hotels, rental cars and more—you can even transfer your miles to your choice of 15+ travel loyalty programs
  • Named editors' choice for "Best New Credit Card of 2021" by The Points Guy
  • Earn 10 miles per dollar when you book on Turo, the world's largest car sharing marketplace, through May 16, 2023