Airport Terminals

Tampa Int’l Airport Turning 50

Tampa International Airport (TPA) turns 50 on Thursday, April 15, and is celebrating with giveaways, a sweepstakes drawing, and special surprises for travelers passing through the terminal that day. 

The airport is hosting a sweepstake with a first prize of a $1,000 gift card for redemption at TPA’s shops and restaurants. The winner will also get a TPA swag basket and an exclusive airfield tour. There will be smaller prizes for second and third place. The contest is open until April 15 at 10 a.m. and winners will be announced later that day. Enter TPA’s sweepstakes here.

If you happen to be at Tampa International Airport on April 15, you’ll also be able to enjoy:

  • Giveaways for every 50th passenger going down the escalator, exiting the shuttles and at other key touchpoints.
  • 50th-anniversary décor around the Main Terminal 
  • A TPA branded photo station 
  • Special anniversary videos playing throughout the Main Terminal and on social media
  • Snacks and treats 

Fresh Art at TPA

Just in time for its 50th anniversary, Tampa International Airport also has some fresh new artwork to its collection. Both “Cove” by Jason Hackenwerth and “Untitled” by Soo Sunny Park are in the newly completed SkyCenter Atrium.

Travel Tidbits from SAT and SEA Airports

Fresh Art for San Antonio International Airport

San Antonio International Airport (SAT) has a new, hard to miss, piece of public art.

“Star of Texas (La Estrella de Texas),” by the renowned Mexican artist Sebastián, now sits on the south side of the SAT airport entrance, on Airport Boulevard.

The work is 17-feet tall and is painted in the artist’s signature fiery red.

“Public Art is a significant part of who we are, representing where we’ve been, where we are, and where we hope to go as a community,” said San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg in a statement. “The ‘Star of Texas’ speaks to the long-lasting impression San Antonio leaves on visitors and residents alike. Whether visiting San Antonio for the first time or the 100th, or a resident leaving the airport for a vacation, we all know the feeling that keeps us longing for a fast return to this great city.”

Sensory Room + Interfaith Prayer and Meditation Room at SEA Airport

Airports in Pittsburgh, Miami, Atlanta, and elsewhere now have sensory rooms designed to reduce the stress for travelers with neurological or developmental disabilities. The latest airport to offer this feature to travelers is Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA). The new sensory room at SEA room offers a seated bench area, an orange squeeze chair, a rocking chair, dimmable lighting, a starry night ceiling, wool rock pillows, and other features.

Along with the sensory room, SEA also recently unveiled the Interfaith Prayer and Meditation Room. Features here include dimmable lighting, three alcoves of seating, a kneeling prayer bench, Qibla pointer, and luggage/shoe storage.

Both the Sensory Room and the Interfaith Prayer and Meditation Room at SEA airport are located h the train level of the A Gates Satellite Transit Station (STS) in the long hallway near the elevators.

Airports celebrate mittens, Peeps, new terminals, and the Super Bowl match-up

We spent the weekend gathering up as many social media postings we could find that featured airport-themed images of Bernie Sanders and his mittens.

If you missed that, or want to see what we can up with, find the Stuck at the Airport #BernieMittens meme archive here.

You may have also missed our Airport Amenity of the Week. Some weeks we have a lot of airport amenities in the running. Last week, this table full of free Peeps at Lehigh Valley International Airport (ABE) in Allentown, PA was hands down the winner.

If you have a cool new airport amenity to nominate during this week, let us know.

We were also heartened to see some airports posting previews of future terminals. Thank-you Portland International Airport (PDX) and Nashville International Airport (BNA) for giving us some new spaces to look forward to.

And Tampa International Airport (TPA) and Kansas City International Airport (KCI) are very excited about the teams that will be playing in the Super Bowl this year.

Why is AUS airport messing with runway numbers?

We admit it. We’ve always been mystified by the numbers on the signs along airport runways.

The signs seem even more perplexing when an airport reports that the numbers must be changed because of something going on with magnetic changes in the earth.

So we paid extra attention to this Twitter thread from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS). Now we want to find out more.

See how airports embrace the ‘How it Started’ meme

We know we haven’t found them all. Yet.

But we are enjoying the way airports around the country are using the ‘How it Started vs. How it’s going’ meme to show off their lovely modern terminals.

Feel free to send us others you find. We will add them to the list over the weekend.

**Update: we’ve got a second list of How it started vs. How it’s going.

This one is especially impressive.

If you spot other airports posting their “How it started” photos, please let us know. We may break this up into two posts. Or lean how to make an album.