San Francisco International Airport (SFO)
History, Facts and Overview
(San Francisco, California - CA, USA)
Dating back as far as 1927, San Francisco's airport was originally just a simple airfield site of 150 acres / 60 hectares of nearby farmland. At this stage it was known as the Mills Field Municipal Airport, although it was soon renamed and became the San Francisco Municipal Airport. Passenger flights soon started, although only on a small scale, increasing greatly during World War II, due largely to the fact that the military were based at nearby Oakland Airport.
By the early fifties, both Pan Am and United Airlines were resident and at this stage, the next Central Passenger Terminal was unveiled. In 1955, the airport was named as the San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and has grown in stature ever since, with major expansions at the turn in the millennium, including the construction of the International Terminal, at the cost of around $1 billion.
Those who arrive early will find plenty to keep them fully occupied at San Francisco Airport, with around 50 different shops spread around the terminals. These include Aviator News, CNBC News, California Limited, DFS Duty Free Galleria and Satellite shops, Gucci, San Francisco Bay Traders, Swatch and Zoom Travel Stores. Eateries are also plentiful, with around 40 restaurants and cafes, such as Ebisu, Legends, Osho, Perry's, Sakaku and the locally run San Francisco Soup Company.
Passenger amenities at San Francisco Airport are varied to say the least. Onsite you can expect to find branches of Travelex America and also Bank of America, along with cashpoints operated by Union Bank and Wells Fargo. DVD rentals, luggage carts, self-service 'checkpoint' mailing facilities, family restrooms and showers are also available, along with a play area for children known as the SFO Kids' Sport and features interactive attractions for the Exploratorium of San Francisco. Families will also enjoy the Children's Art exhibitions and the many colorful fish in the education 'Under Water Planet' aquarium exhibits, which can be found next to pre-security in Terminal 1.