We’re probably not telling you anything you don’t already know when we say “going to the airport” isn’t exactly on everyone’s bucket list. But just like every destination is different, so is every airport. And just as navigating a new city is challenging in and of itself, so is navigating a new airport. Should I go for Ivar’s chowder or Beecher’s mac & cheese at SeaTac? Do I have time to do yoga at SFO’s Terminal 2? How long will it take to get to ATL’s Concourse E for a cocktail at One Flew South?
If you’re anything like us, then these are the types of questions you have. But never fear, because we have answers to your airport questions with our series of guides to America’s airports. Today, we bring you the TripIt airport guide to Seattle–Tacoma International Airport (SEA).
Seattle–Tacoma International Airport, commonly referred to as Sea-Tac, is located 12 miles south of Seattle. It ranks as one of the top-15 busiest airports in America. It’s a hub for Alaska Airlines and its regional subsidiary, Horizon, and a hub and international gateway for Delta. Sea-Tac has one central terminal building with four concourses and two satellite terminals that are connected by an underground people mover. Though 12 miles from Seattle, the city’s light rail system travels from downtown to the airport. Sea-Tac Rental Car Facility is just beyond the airport, with shuttles that run between the airport and facility. Complimentary Wi-Fi is offered throughout the airport—without any time limits. CLEAR members will also be pleased to hear that they’ll be able to speed through security here, as the airport is equipped with CLEAR lanes.
With one central terminal where most of the airport’s restaurants are, it’s easy to navigate to Sea-Tac’s best dining options. Central Terminal’s food court features a lot of fast food options, but also has some Seattle restaurants, such as Ivar’s Fish Bar—get the chowder! The central food court also features Anthony’s Restaurant and Fish Bar which features a long list of seafood options—this is the Pacific Northwest after all. One of the latest additions is Beecher’s (Concourse C), an award-winning cheese shop and restaurant known for its mac ‘n cheese and grilled cheese. Other spots include Dish D’Lish for a good salad and sandwich spot, Maki of Japan and Africa Lounge (Concourse A), which is your traditional pub fare. Unique to Sea-Tac is its accessibility to nearby restaurants such as 13 Coins, a 24-hour diner that’s just a short walk from the airport.
Bellying up for a drink at Sea-Tac begins in Central Terminal at some of the restaurants listed above, such as Anthony’s Restaurant and Fish Bar which has a full menu of beer, wine and cocktails. Go for their signature Bloody Mary which comes topped with large shrimp. Africa Lounge caters to beer lovers with their craft beer selection, some of which are local microbrews. Additionally, Seattle Taproom (Concourse A) also features a long list of Washington beers, many of which are from Seattle. In Central Terminal there’s Vino Volo which offers flights, glasses and bottles of wine, as well as a small selection of food including mac ‘n cheese from Beecher’s. Other standard airport bars include Sports Page Pub (Concourse D) and Mountain Room Bar (Concourse A).
Like many international airports, Sea-Tac has an art collection that can be seen in permanent and temporary exhibits. What’s unique about it is that travelers can download the STQRY mobile app for free to take their own self-guided art walk throughout the airport to learn more. Perhaps the most interesting feature at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport is its Experience the City of Music Program, which features live music seven days a week throughout the terminals.
Even if you have just 30 minutes before your flight boards, you can stop into Massage Bar (Concourse C), which offers foot and seated char massages for 15 minutes or more. As you’d expect, Sea-Tac has a lot in the way of shops, many of which are local, such as Seattle Hats and Seattle Chocolates (Concourse C.)
Several airlines have lounges at Sea-Tac, most notably Alaska Airlines Board Room in Concourse D, but others that include Delta Sky Club (South Satellite) and United Club (Concourse A). Additionally, The Club has lounge locations in Concourse A and South Satellite, with day passes that can be purchased for $35. TripIt users can easily access information and whereabouts of Sea-Tac’s airport lounges thanks to the new LoungeBuddy feature in the TripIt app.
Note: TripIt Pro’s LoungeBuddy perk will end on April 15, 2019. If you have redeemed your $25 credit, you will need to use it through the LoungeBuddy app. For information about when the credit expires and how to use it, please contact LoungeBuddy customer support.
Spencer is a seasoned food, drink, and travel writer who has written for publications from Outside Magazine to Travel + Leisure and Los Angeles Times. When he’s not traveling, he’s perfecting his favorite cocktails in his home bar. He chronicles his adventures (and cocktails) on his travel site, Whiskey Tango Globetrot.