Spokane International Airport
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Frequently asked Questions

 

Does the airport ever close?

Spokane International Airport is staffed 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. Even in the event of inclement weather conditions a combination of administrative, operations, police, fire, parking, building and field maintenance employees are on duty. Airlines and other tenants each have their own schedules but typically are not present 24 hours per day. Very infrequently, the runways are closed for maintenance or snow clearing; however, every effort is made to avoid disrupting aviation operations. The Spokane Airport Board has made considerable investments in time and money purchasing and installing sophisticated Instrument Landing and Lighting Systems, as well as snow removal equipment and facilities to enhance the safety and on-time performance of our air carriers. However, decisions to take off or land in questionable weather conditions are largely determined by the individual airlines.

What is the street or physical address of Spokane International Airport?

The street address for the Terminal Building is 9000 West Airport Drive, Spokane, WA 99224

Why is Spokane’s designator "GEG"

In 1941, the Department of the Defense purchased the area then known as "Sunset Field" from Spokane County for a World War II B-17 and C-47 training facility. Following the acquisition, they renamed the facility Geiger (GEG) Field in honor of Major Harold C. Geiger, a pioneer in Army aviation and ballooning. In 1946, a portion of the airfield was designated a municipal airport, and commercial airline operations were moved from Felts Field to Geiger Field. In 1960, the facility was renamed Spokane International Airport.

Do I need reservations for the airport parking areas and are they safe?

Parking in our four different facilities is on a "first come first served basis" and offer varying price structures. All of our parking facilities are fenced, illuminated and regularly patrolled by airport police and parking employees. The Parking department also offers complimentary battery jumping, car locator, and tire inflation services for our customers. By using the aid phones located throughout each of our parking facilities, travelers can access these services.

Parking Rate and Information

 

Can 747’s and other large planes land at Spokane International Airport?

Yes! Normally, the critical aircraft operation is take-off, and the runway length required is based on: (1) weight of the aircraft, (2) temperature, and (3) elevation. Since the runway length and elevation are constant, the remaining variable factors - weight of the aircraft and air temperature – are used to determine the take off distance and how far the aircraft can fly nonstop. Each airline (aircraft operator) has different criteria regarding operating under conditions present at the time of flight.

Are there plans to build a third runway?

Yes! Our Airport Layout Plan (ALP) shows a third runway situated southwest and parallel to the existing primary runway, 3/21. At this time, our aviation operations (take-offs and landings) do not necessitate the addition of a third runway.

Why is Spokane an "International" Airport?


We are an international airport because the US Customs and Border Services maintains an on-site "Federal Inspection Services" facility that routinely clear international general aviation, corporate, and charter flights.

How many airplanes land and take off each day at Spokane International Airport?

The Airport currently averages over 180 daily aviation operations. An operation can be either a take-off or a landing. This includes passenger and cargo carriers, general aviation, charter flights and military aircraft.

Does the airport offer any special assistance, such as escorts?

Spokane International Airport police will escort travelers to their vehicles when requested.

Does the airport oversee the checkpoint security area where the metal detectors are located?

The Passenger Security Checkpoints are the responsibility of the Transportation Security Administration a federal agency that is part of the Department of Homeland Security.

Who is responsible for the operation of the airport?

The City and County of Spokane jointly own Spokane International Airport, Felts Field Airport, and the Airport Business Park (Spokane Airports). The operating authority of Spokane Airports is the Spokane Airport Board, consisting of seven appointees from the two governmental bodies. All three facilities are financially self-sufficient from revenues generated from fees, leases and concession agreements. None of the three entities receive, nor are operated with, appropriated tax dollars. With regards to Spokane International Airport, the following is additional information concerning its sources of revenue:

Financing:

Spokane International Airport maintains a residual budget agreement with the airlines serving this market. Under this agreement, the airport deducts from its total annual budget all revenue from non-airline sources. The airlines then are responsible for payment of the remainder (residual) amount, and the rates are set accordingly. The commercial operators and tenants pay rental fees, landing fees, and concession fees (a percentage of gross revenues).

Capital Improvements:

The sale of revenue bonds funded the construction of the airport's two parking structures built in 1979 and 2001. The bond payments are generated from parking revenue. This is the same financial mechanism used to construct Concourse C in 2000. Those bonds were repaid through funds generated by the $4.50 Passenger Facility Charge in a time period of less than 10 years. In 2007, bonds were sold to construct the consolidated rental car facility. The bonds are paid through "Customer Facility Charges" assessed to each car rental transaction. The original terminal building that opened in 1965 was partially financed through bonds

Passenger Facility Charge is a $4.50 fee collected on each departing passenger and those making connections through the airport. Congress established the PFC program in 1990 to allow airports to fund development of facilities to increase capacity, improve safety and security, and reduce noise. The FAA must approve each individual construction project.


Airport Improvement Program is an 7.5% ticket fee collected on each airline ticket. These funds are held in the Aviation Trust Fund and dispensed by the FAA through grants appropriated by Congress.

General Revenues collected from airport-generated activities such as concession programs, lease agreements and parking fees.
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