Air travelers flying through Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport will observe a number of new services during the Thanksgiving holiday period.
Since the 2012 holiday season, BWI Marshall has added a number of amenities for travelers, including: a new security checkpoint, an expanded Transportation Security Administration (TSA) PreCheck program, and new food and retail options. An estimated 750,000 passengers are expected to fly through BWI Marshall between Friday, November 22 and Monday, December 2.
"BWI Marshall Airport joins our airline, security, and concessions partners in working to provide an efficient, pleasant travel experience during the holiday season," said Paul J. Wiedefeld, Chief Executive Officer of BWI Marshall. "We advise our customers to plan ahead, arrive early, and enjoy the many amenities the Airport has to offer."
During the busy holiday season, local residents headed to BWI Marshall to meet arriving passengers should consider altering routine pick-up locations. To help avoid traffic on the lower level terminal roadway, motorists can meet passengers at the curbside on the upper level terminal roadway. Local drivers may also want to avoid possible congestion by parking in the hourly garage in order to meet passengers inside the Airport terminal. Another location for motorists to wait away from the terminal roadway until contact is made with arriving passengers is the BWI Marshall Cell Phone Lot.
To help ensure the safety and security of BWI Marshall travelers, drivers are reminded that parking along the terminal roadway is prohibited.
In April, BWI Marshall opened a new security checkpoint and a secure connector between concourses B and C. The new checkpoint is the largest at BWI Marshall, offering 9-lanes for the TSA to inspect passengers and carry-on items. The checkpoint serves concourses C, B, and A. Passengers on American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Spirit Airlines, and AirTran Airways can access their gates through the new checkpoint.
The B/C Connector links Concourse C with concourses A and B. It provides convenient and direct access between all airline gates and concessions on the three concourses.
Improvements to the Airport's acclaimed Observation Gallery were part of the B/C Connector program. Observation Gallery enhancements include new charging stations for electronics, new children's play equipment, and improved exhibits related to aviation and air travel.
This month, the TSA added two new PreCheck lanes at BWI Marshall, one at the new C checkpoint and one at the A checkpoint. PreCheck is a trusted traveler program that enhances aviation security and provides a better, more efficient travel experience for passengers. During screening, PreCheck travelers do not have to remove shoes, light outerwear, belts, or laptops from bags. Eligible passengers on several airlines may enjoy PreCheck benefits, including: Southwest Airlines, American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, United Airlines, US Airways, and JetBlue Airways.
U.S. Armed Forces service members with a Common Access Card are also eligible to utilize the PreCheck program. Military service members from Ft. Meade, Aberdeen Proving Ground, the U.S. Naval Academy, and throughout the National Capital and Baltimore region would benefit from the initiative.
The TSA first introduced PreCheck at BWI Marshall last year. There are now three PreCheck lanes at the Airport at checkpoints A, C, and D. Further PreCheck information is available from the TSA at www.TSA.gov.
A number of new dining and shopping concessions have opened at BWI Marshall in recent months. This month, BWI Marshall was rated the fourth best U.S. airport for healthful options by the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. The PCRM's 13th annual Airport Food Review found that 80 percent of BWI Marshall restaurants serve at least one healthy option for travelers.
Sky Azure is a new cocktail lounge that features small plates, hand-crafted cocktails, local craft beers, international wines, and outstanding airfield views from the Observation Gallery.
Several luxury shopping destinations recently opened on the new B/C Connector. Kiehl's offers travelers a selection of premium skin, hair, and body care products. Tumi is a leading provider of high-quality travel, business, and lifestyle accessories. Duty Free America has a wide selection of premium merchandise for leisure and business travelers.
Several recent additions to Concourse A/B have been very popular with BWI Marshall passengers. Renovations and an expansion to the Silver Diner are now complete, making it one of the largest airport restaurants in the U.S. Pandora, which opened just as the Thanksgiving travel period started, offers hand-finished and modern jewelry. LeAnn Chin is a new fresh Asian eatery. The Chipotle on A/B continues to draw crowds, including for breakfast; BWI Marshall is one of the only Chipotle locations in the U.S. that offers a breakfast menu.
Recently opened on Concourse B is Tasti D-Lite, which offers great-tasting, lower-calorie frozen treats to BWI Marshall passengers.
BWI Marshall offers almost 30,000 parking spaces in several different lots: Hourly Garage, Daily Garage, Express Parking, and Long Term Parking. About 11,000 of the spaces are in the close, covered, and convenient Hourly or Daily garages, which offer quick access to the BWI Marshall terminal.
As thousands of passengers prepare to fly for the holidays, travelers are reminded of the many convenient, affordable transit alternatives offered at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport. BWI Marshall provides among the best transit access of any major U.S. airport. BWI Marshall is one of the only U.S. airports to have an on-airport rail station. Easy and efficient rail access is available to Washington, Baltimore, and beyond. MARC and Amtrak provide convenient rail service to Washington and Baltimore. Light Rail offers access to Baltimore and the surrounding suburbs.
Beyond rail access, express and commuter bus options are available and especially popular during the holidays. The B30 BWI Express Metrobus route is a direct link from the Washington Metro system to BWI Marshall. This service runs between the Airport and the Metro's Greenbelt station on the Green Line.
The Maryland Transit Administration provides the route 201 Commuter Bus service along the Intercounty Connector (ICC), which offers excellent access to BWI Marshall for residents and businesses in Montgomery County. The route 201 ICC Commuter Bus provides comfortable, frequent service between Gaithersburg, the Shady Grove Metro station, as well as other Montgomery County stops and BWI Marshall.