If you’ve never been through the Beijing Capital International Airport, or if you haven’t gone in over six years then you can expect a jaw-dropping experience when you do.


I had heard stories, but when I saw it for myself I had to admit that it was probably the largest place I had ever seen, yet navigating through the place was manageable for me, a guy who didn’t speak Mandarin or Cantonese.

Yes, It’s Huge!
China’s Beijing Capital International Airport has three terminals numbered 1, 2, and 3, with Terminal 3 being the one constructed for the 2008 Olympics. To call it huge would be an understatement! Once you deplane, you will need to go to customs where several lanes are available to process lots of travelers. After getting through customs, a train will take you to claim your luggage in the main section of the terminal. What’s great is that the airport provides free luggage carts, which can be very helpful, especially if you have bulky luggage. The mostly glass exterior of this very modern and clean terminal, is perfect for perusing the interesting painted designs on aircraft from around the world.

Yes, Somebody Speaks English!
Like all of the airports I have visited in China, Terminal 3 has easy-to-read signs posted in English. The information desk is easy to locate, which is also a plus for any first-time visitor; and even better, the information desk attendants speak English and are very helpful. They can give you directions to several places throughout the airport to exchange your dollars for yuán, if you need to and have time.

Yes, Getting Taxi Service is Easy!
If you want a taxi from Terminal 3, just follow the posted signs or the multi-colored arrows on the floor. The arrows are very large, so you won’t miss them. When you exit the airport from the lower level to the taxi stop, you will find that the passenger pickup is very well run. Several taxis will pull forward into loading spaces where they load passengers and luggage from and organized line. As they pull off with their passengers, the next few taxis are allowed to come forward to park and load the next passengers in line. These lines move very fast, so have your hotel card ready to hand the taxi driver.

I hope that these tips are helpful to you.

Enjoy your trip!