Austin-Bergstrom International Airport

Tune in to these airport podcasts

Courtesy Library of Congress

Airport podcasts

If you like airports and podcasts, then you should probably be listening to airport podcasts.

We’re not sure we have them all, but we’re starting to put a list together. Let us know what we’re missing,

Here’s what we have so far.

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) is hosting a new podcast called the Austin Approach. They kicked it off just in time to dig into some unusual weather issues, such as snow.

Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport (GSP) hosts Carolina Traveler. Season one episodes highlight attractions and activities in Greenville and Spartanburg Counties, as well as GSP’s economic impact on the Upstate.

At Philadelphia International Airport (PHL), airport CEO Chellie Cameron has been sharing news about the airport in Chellie’s Podcasts.

The podcast from Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU) is called The Fly Angle. Episodes so far have covered how the airport attracts new air service, shopping at the airport, aircraft noise, and where to find great craft beer at the airport.

Stuck at the Airport: SEA shares music. AUS presents podcasts.

Music Wall at SEA Airport

In a ‘normal’ year, we’d be going to airports all the time. And in many of those airports, there would be local musicians playing for us while we wait for our flights.

The pandemic means that in most airports, live music isn’t happening. And it also means the musicians who would have been playing at airports have lost those gigs. And the income from those gigs.

Pre-pandemic, for example, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA) was programming live music 7 days a week in multiple places in the terminal. In 2020 and 2021, the schedule was being expanded, with more stages and more music.

While we wait for that programming to come back, SEA is doing what it can for the musicians. And for passengers who miss the music.

The airport has just installed a new 12X7-foot, high-resolution digital LED music wall on Concourse C that is showing a two-hour program highlighting more than 30 musicians who played at the airport before the pandemic.

Enjoy it here or in the airport. And tip the musicians if you can.

Podcasts from Austin-Bergstrom International Airport

Fans of Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) will want to start downloading and listening to the airport’s podcast series, The Austin Approach, which gives listeners “a look into all things AUS.”

Episodes will drop twice a month and feature interviews with airport staff, news and updates from around the airport, and insider stories about airport life.  The episodes are on the AUS website and available to stream on Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle Podcasts and PodBean.

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.

AUS: 5 Things We Love About Austin-Bergstrom International Airport

Our “5 Things We Love About...” series celebrating features and amenities at airports around the country and the world makes an overdue landing at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS).

The airport’s main terminal is named for Barbara Jordan (pictured above on the airport’s trading card. Jordan was the first Black woman elected to the Texas state senate and the first Black Texan in Congress.

If we miss something you love at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS), please leave a note in the comments section below. And keep in mind that some of the amenities we mention may currently be unavailable due to health concerns. We’re confident they’ll be back.

And be sure to take a look at the other airports we’ve featured so far in the “5 Things We Love About...” series.

5 Things We Love About Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS)

1. The Live Music at AUS Airport

Austin is known as the “Live Music Capital of the World” and that includes live music at the airport.

AUS’s Live Music in the Air series presents 31 (yes 31!) live music events a week in 7 airport venues.

During the annual SXSW festival there are bonus concerts at the airport. Once a year, there’s a Kid Band Week. There’s overhead music running all the time, courtesy of listener-support radio station KUTX (give a listen). And there’s an AUS Spotify playlist you can listen to as well.

The Live Music in the Air series is abbreviated for now, but we’re told when the full series comes back it will offer even more live music than before.

The only downside of all that live music at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS)? You might have so much fun you’ll miss your plane.

2. The Art at AUS airport

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) offers travelers the opportunity to view a both permanent public art and changing exhibitions.

Austin Downtown Cruiser (Night) by Young-Min Kang

We love all the art we’ve seen at AUS airport. But we especially enjoy Jill Bedgood’s “big hair” etchings found in some women’s restrooms at AUS. In some men’s rooms, you’ll find etchings of a variety of big hats.

Feel free to try them on. Everyone does.

3. Coffee Robots at AUS Airport

There are lots of places to get really great coffee at AUS airport.

But even before social-distancing was a thing, Austin-Bergstrom International Airport understood that sometimes it’s just fine if a robot, not a live person, hands you your coffee. In fact, it can be more fun.

Austin-based Briggo specialty coffee company has two robotic Coffee Haus units at AUS Airport, by Gate 12 and Gate 17.

Order on the app or at the machine and pick up your drink after you get a text from the coffee-making robot. The robots are on duty 24/7.

4. Great stuff to eat at AUS airport

Last year travelers ate 1,603,602 tacos at AUS airport.

The airport does a brisk business in brisket sandwiches and ice-cream as well.

Where to eat?

Some options at AUS include Amy’s Ice-Creams, Hut’s Hamburgers, Berry Austin, ippies and Hops, Earl Campbell’s Taco Truck, Salt Lick Barbecue and Tacodeli.

Brisket sandwich available at Austin-Bergstrom Int’l Airport

5. Outdoor patios at AUS

Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) has outdoor patios at both the Barbara Jordan and South Terminals.

The 5,770-square-foot patio in the Barbara Jordan Terminal is on the mezzanine level between Gates 1-2 and, as a nice bonus, there’s an air-conditioned area.

Did we miss one of your favorite amenities at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport?

If so, leave a note in the comments section below and we’ll try to add it.

And be sure to take a look at some of the airports we’ve already featured in our “5 Things We Love About...” series. We’re adding more all the time.

Airports are being challenged, but there are bright spots

Despite this recent NYT article documenting how truly awful conditions are right now for airports and the operators of airport concessions, there are some bits of hopeful news.

New shops at MKE Airport

At Milwaukee Mitchell Airport (MKE), which will be getting new daily nonstop flights to both Tampa and Fort Meyers on United Airlines in December, there’s a Leinie Lodge pop-up on Concourse D.

In addition to snacks and beverages, passengers can build their own souvenir variety 12-pack of Wisconsin-made Leinenkugel’s beer.

MKE also recently celebrated the opening the Bronzeville Crossing retail shop on Concourse C. The shop carries locally crafted goods from the city’s Bronzeville neighborhood.

SFO Airport reopening a concourse

During this pandemic, airlines have cut back schedules and parked airplanes. As a result, airports around the country have closed concourses due to flight inactivity.

But here’s some good news.

Enough flights have come back on the schedule at San Francisco International that the airport will be reopening a concourse in the International Terminal which has been closed since April 1st.

Boarding Area A, which houses Gates A1 – A15, will reopen on September 1, 2020. The Airport has been operating all international flights on a single concourse since the closure.

13 airports: 1 big virtual music festival

13 airports around the country have put their hearts and efforts together to host a free online music festival Wednesday evening, August 19, starting at 5 p.m. CST.

The show starts at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport (AUS) and then work its way around the country with short sets by stellar local musicians chosen by the participating airports.

Each airport will be running the event on their respective Facebook Live page.

The rundown is below. Note that Kenny Loggins (remember him from Loggins and Messina?) will be capping off the event for the Santa Barbara Airport (SBA)