Beijing Airport
(Beijing Capital International Airport)

Beijing Airport Information

Beijing Airport was opened on October 1, 1999. It replaced the one that started operating in 1952. This was due to the continuous rise in passengers visiting China.

2008 Beijing Capital International Airport Terminal 3 Opening Notification - It takes 30 minutes from leaving the plane to greeting the immigraton officer. Be patient.

Beijing Airport is located northeast of Beijing city, 25 km from the Tiananmen Square, centre of Beijing city. It lies in the boundary of Chaoyang District and Shunyi District and is linked to the city by Airport Expressway and Subway. Journey to the city is roughly 40 to 60 minutes.

  • Free luggage cart.

  • NO free porter service. Porters are over willing to help. Please only allow them to help if you really need the service. There are two types of service levels and receipts could be provided.

  • ¥10 per porter - moving luggage from the departure hall on the second floor to the checking counter till passengers finish their checking procedures.

  • ¥50 per service - helping passengers move luggage and go through checking procedures and guiding passengers through security inspection and helping them fill in the transit forms and go through customs, and finally sending passengers to scheduled boarding gate.

    Beijing Airport - money changer

  • Pay phones – need to purchase a phone card from airport counters in order to make calls.

  • Phone cards – You can purchase international SIM cards. You will have a local mobile number to receive and make phone calls at economic rates. ¥100 per card. Replace a new one when used up.

  • Foreign currency exchange services - Bank of China, the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, the Agricultural Bank of China and the Construction Bank of China. ATM machines are conveniently located inside the terminals.

  • Passengers' changing room is near the No.4 turnplate of international picking-up hall of luggage. This adds extra convenience to passengers arriving from a place of huge temperature difference.
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Beijing Airport

Arriving Beijing

Upon arrival at the Beijing Capital International Airport, you would need to go through these formalities:

Health Check: present your visa and passport and a Health Declaration Form. Forms are usually distributed by air hostesses or your tour guide in advance.

Immigration Check: present your passport, visa, quarantine certificate (if any) and Entry Registration Card.

Customs/Luggage Check: No need to make customs declaration if you carry only one camera, video camera or portable computer etc., necessary for your journey. You would need to declare if you carry more than one each. You can bring in and out cash up to a limit of US$5,000 without declaration. Customs officers have the right to open your suite case to inspect.

Waiting time depends. It can be painfully long if you arrive at peak hours.

English tourist information is available at the Beijing Airport. Please be sure to pick up a BEIJING Tourism Guide upon arrival. It includes Beijing subway map, points of interest and useful phone numbers. You will find it very useful whilst travelling in Beijing.

From Airport to city
Whenever possible, try to arrange your own transfer. For example, check with your hotel and see if they operate their own shuttle service. If your budget allows, might consider hiring a private transfer from the hotel or through your travel agent.

From Terminal 3 and Terminal 2, you can take subway to Dongzhimen Station in the city. And from there you are connected to the subway network.

This is obviously the best choice of transportation from airport to city. Taxi line is long, but please bear with it. Go line up and wait for one. Watch out for people who cut the line.

The cost to midtown Beijing is normally around ¥80, plus ¥15 for the highway toll.

Taxi fare is ¥10 for the initial 30 km and ¥2 per additional km.

These notes are IMPORTANT while getting on a Beijing taxi:

  • Please ONLY get on to taxis operated by normal companies at the designated taxi stand.

  • Get on to taxis with meters and make sure flags are down to avoid unnecessary argument.

  • Make sure a license is displayed on the front passenger side.

  • DO NOT respond to drivers who approach you inside or outside the terminal. They usually don’t charge on meters and ask for ridiculous rates like ¥800 to downtown.

  • No need to tip taxi drivers unless you really appreciate their services.

  • Beijing taxi drivers don’t speak much English. It is important to write your destination address in Chinese or mark the place on a map. Beijing is a very large city, taxi driver won't know everywhere. Best is to have the telephone number of the destination hotel, restaurant or wherever, so that the driver can talk to local people and guide him there.

Airport Buses
Again, only get on to Airport Buses operated by normal companies. Make sure you see a license displayed at the front window. DO NOT ride on airport buses unless you have clear instructions from your local partner of which stop to get off. Otherwise, you might end up in nowhere.

There are several bus routes. The one to Xidan is most popular.

To central Beijing: Capital Airport - Xidan (Civil Aviation Building) Stops:1.Sanyuan Overpass 2.Dongzhimen 3. Dongsishitiao Overpass
Operate 08:00 – 22:30. Every 30 minutes.
To western Beijing: Capital Airport – Gongzhufen (Xinxing Hotel)
Stops: 1.International Exhibition Center 2.Xibahe 3.Anzhen overpass 4.Madian Overpass 5.Beitaipinghuang 6.Jimen Overpass 7.Friendship Hotel 8.Beijing TV Station 9.Zizhu overpass 10.Hangtian overpass
Operate 08:00 – 23:00. Every 30 minutes.
To Beijing Station: Capital Airport – Beijing Station
Stops:1.Yuyang Hotel 2.Dongda Overpass 3. Chaoyangmen 4. Yabaolu Road
Operate 08:00 – 22:30. Every 30 minutes.
Inquiry: (86 10) 6459 4375/4376

Departing Beijing

  • Beijing Airport tax - ¥90 for international; ¥50 for domestic. Children under 12 exempt.

  • In 2005, Beijing Airport abandoned the process of purchasing tax coupon. Tax is now charged to air ticket.

Facilities at the Beijing Capital International Airport

Eating at the Beijing Airport
There are many restaurants at the Beijing Airport, however food is quite expensive. Bottled drinks are sold at US$1 per Coke and US$3 per Evian. Starbucks minimum expense is ¥15, without refill. There is no McDonald’s or internet café.

Shopping at the Beijing Airport
The Beijing Airport gathers Chinese traditional selections like Chinese tea, Chinese wine and handicrafts. Prestigious branded products including cosmetics, leather goods, watches and jewelries are also available. Window shopping at the Beijing Airport is likely to have more fun than actual purchasing. Frankly, things are expensive.

Shops generally open between 06:30 and 19:00. Don’t expect to buy if you come or leave on a late-night flight.

Relaxing at the Beijing Airport
Not interested in shopping and sick of boring waiting? Try to explore the Entertainment Center. It is located at the middle section, third floor of Terminal 2. Here you could find beauty saloons, hairdressers, foot care houses and so on. Open 07:00 – 22:00 daily.

You can also enjoy a Chinese tea ceremony in a Chinese styled room with high palm trees, green bamboo and under the light of red lanterns.

There is a time-meter hotel in the first underground floor, providing quiet and comfortable bedrooms. It is an ideal place to take a nap before boarding.

You can also go to the cinema hall to enjoy the latest films or go to take a Chinese massage.

Working at the Beijing Airport
Need to work while on the road? The Beijing Airport is equipped with three Commercial Centers:

  • Opposite of No.14 gate of the leaving hall at the second floor.

  • At the side of No.34 boarding gate in the domestic lounge region.

  • No.10 and the No.11 boarding gates of the international lounge region.

  • Services include: fax transmission, photo copying, mobile phone, internet and personal workstation for those with PCs.

  • Some commercial centers provide document binding and selling of IC phone cards. Please ask the clerks for details.

Plaza Premium Lounge

- Open daily 0600 - 2400
One stop shopping for
• All Day Food & Beverages
• Mini Golf Putting
• Internet Access
• Newspapers & Magazines
• TV Channel
• Flight Information
• Free Local Calls

More About Beijing Airport Terminal 3

The newly opened Terminal 3 is very large. It takes 30 minutes to immigration, inclusive of walking, auto corridor and no-driver train. Check this step-by-step pictorial guide.

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