Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport

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Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport
Terminal Aeropuerto Pudahuel.jpg
Summary
Airport type Public and Military
Operator Nuevo Pudahuel
Serves Santiago
Location Pudahuel, Santiago Metropolitan Region, Chile
Hub for
Elevation AMSL 1,555 ft / 474 m
Coordinates 33°23′34″S 70°47′08″W / 33.39278°S 70.78556°W / -33.39278; -70.78556Coordinates: 33°23′34″S 70°47′08″W / 33.39278°S 70.78556°W / -33.39278; -70.78556
Website Nuevo Pudahuel
Map
SCL is located in Chile
SCL
SCL
Location of airport in Chile
Runways
Direction Length Surface
m ft
17R/35L 3,800 12,467 Asphalt
17L/35R 3,748 12,297 Asphalt
Statistics (2017)
Passenger Numbers 21,426,871
ILS Category/Runway CAT II & IIIb / 17L[1]
Passenger Statistics from Junta de Aeronautica Civil de Chile[citation needed]

Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport (Spanish: Aeropuerto Internacional Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez) (IATA: SCL, ICAO: SCEL), also known as Santiago International Airport and Nuevo Pudahuel Airport, located in Pudahuel, 15 km (9.3 mi) north-west of downtown Santiago, is Chile's largest aviation facility and the busiest international airport in the country.

Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport has domestic and international services to destinations in Europe, Oceania and the Americas. In 2011 it was the ninth busiest airport in Latin America and the sixth busiest in South America by passenger traffic. It was the seventh busiest airport in Latin America by aircraft movements, serving 124,799 operations.[2] Its location in Chile's most populated area, as well as in the central part of the country makes of it an ideal main hub and maintenance center for most local airlines such as LATAM and Sky Airline. LATAM Airlines accounts for approximately 82% of the airport's total commercial operations.[3]

The airport is owned by the Chilean government and has been operated since October 2015 by Nuevo Pudahuel, a consortium of companies formed by Aéroports de Paris (France), Vinci (France) and Astaldi (Italy). Air traffic control is handled by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (Chile).

Its ICAO category is 4E. The airport functions as a joint civil-military facility. It is the headquarters of the Chilean Air Force 2nd Air Brigade and where its 10th Aviation Group is based.

Santiago International is the longest non-stop destination for most European carriers including Iberia, Air France, Alitalia and British Airways from their respective hubs in Madrid-Barajas Airport, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Rome-Leonardo da Vinci–Fiumicino Airport and London-Heathrow Airport. In addition, LATAM Chile flies to Frankfurta via Madrid.

The airport is also South America's main gateway to Oceania, with scheduled flights to Sydney, Auckland, Easter Island, Papeete and Melbourne. The Santiago - Melbourne non-stop flight operated by LATAM Chile is the longest flight to ever fly out of this airport.

History[edit]

Early years[edit]

The demands of the growing metropolitan area of Santiago and the need for modern, jet-era airport facilities, which could safely accommodate both domestic and intercontinental flights, drove the need to relocate the Chilean capital's principal airport from Los Cerrillos Airport (ICAO: SCTI; IATA: ULC) in the denser southwest metropolitan region of Santiago to the more rural northwest metropolitan area.

Construction of the original terminal building, the eastern runway (17L/35R), control tower, east apron and cargo facilities commenced in 1961. On February 2, 1967, the airport was commissioned Aeropuerto Internacional de Pudahuel, due to its location in the municipality of Pudahuel. On March 19, 1980, the airport was rechristened Air Commodore Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport in honour of the founder of the Chilean Air Force and Chilean carrier LATAM Chile.

1994 expansion[edit]

The facility was expanded in 1994 with a new international terminal that covered 90,000 square meters, inspired by the architecture of Marseille Provence Airport in France. The building is located between the two parallel runways. This expansion added a new control tower, jetways, a duty-free zone, hotel, and greater parking area. The old terminal was used for domestic flights until 2001, when all passenger operations were merged into the same building.

In 2000, Lan Chile joined Oneworld, making of Arturo Merino Benitez Airport a main hub for the alliance, its first one in Latin America and its second in the Southern Hemisphere (after Qantas' Sydney Kingsford Smith International Airport in Australia). As of April 2014, 71% of international and 75% of domestic passengers were carried by Oneworld member airlines.

During the 2010 Chile earthquake, the passenger terminal building suffered internal damages and the collapse of a pedestrian bridge between the vehicle ramp and the departures area. Nevertheless, both runways and control tower were unharmed, allowing the realization of a massive humanitarian air-bridge held by the Chilean Air Force to Concepción, Chile (Carriel Sur International Airport), close to the most damaged area by this earthquake and subsequent tsunami. The airport authority had closed off all commercial flight operations after around 1200 UTC on February 27, resuming full operations on March 3, 2010.[4][5]

In 2011, IATA recognized the DGAC (Chile’s provider of air navigation services) and SCL (Santiago Airport) with the Exceptional Recognition Award to the cooperative efforts of SCL and DGAC Chile that facilitated a quick recovery from the devastation that followed the Chilean earthquake on 27 February 2010. "Both airport and air navigation services were restored quickly with no impact on rates or charges for passengers or airlines. DGAC Chile and SCL are widely regarded as leaders in Latin America for efficiency, quality, and customer focus.[6]

In June 2011, Santiago International Airport received the Air Cargo Excellence Award, as the best Latin American Cargo Airport.[7]

Second runway[edit]

Construction on Runway 17R/35L began in 2004 and opened to traffic in September 2005. However, within months defects were discovered and the runway required repairing, completed in January 2006. Unfortunately further study of the problem discovered that the initial repairs were insufficient, needing additional work. Finally, 17R/35L reopened for traffic in March 2007.

2020 Master plan and expansion[edit]

In 2008, the airport terminal reached its maximum design capacity of 9.5 million annual passengers, two years earlier than forecast, and with the repairs needed after the 2010 Chile earthquake, the Ministry of Public Works announced in 2012 that it would call for proposals for the expansion and administration of the airport, two years prior to the end of the contract with the current operator.

The ministry decided to investigate a new airport master plan instead of an expansion of the single passenger terminal building, as initially proposed by the current operator. The feasibility studies for this master plan cost 4,560 million Chilean Pesos (USD 9.4 million) considered in the 2011 Fiscal Budget. For this new master plan, the Government hired the consultancy services of Aéroports de Paris Ingeniérie (ADP-I), the architecture, engineering and technical branch of the French airport corporation.[8]

The master plan took into account a capacity growth to 14 million annual passengers by 2014, 34 million by year 2034 and 50 million passengers by 2045. New detached passenger terminal buildings for international and domestic flights, additional commercial areas and the construction of a light railway connecting the airport with the Santiago Metro network were considered.[9]

In June 2013, the Chilean Ministry of Public Works started Phase 1 of the airport expansion.[10]

On February 4, 2015, the consortium "Nuevo Pudahuel", formed by French companies Aéroports de Paris (45%), Vinci Airports (40%) and Italian infrastructure company Astaldi (15%) won the bidding process to manage and develop the airport for 20 years since October 1, 2015. The main missions of the new administration will be "the renovation of existing installations with the redesign and extension of the current terminal; the funding, design and construction of a new 175,000 sq m terminal which will increase the airport's capacity to 30 million passengers, with potential for expansion beyond 45 million; the operation and commercial development for the duration of the concession (20 years) of the main infrastructures: existing terminal and new terminals, car parks and future property developments. Building works will be executed by Astaldi (50% of conception-construction pool) and Vinci Construction Grands Projets (50%)".[11]

Passenger terminal[edit]

View of the Domestic Terminal

The terminal building has four levels:

  • Ground floor: Arrivals, duty-free shop, baggage claim, customs and border control, transport services, parking areas, hotel access.
  • First floor: Administrative offices, VIP lounges (access through the second floor).
  • Second floor: Departures, check-in areas, border control police, duty-free shops, restaurants, boarding halls and gates.
  • Third floor: Restaurants and VIP check-in areas (LATAM).

The terminal building hosts the following services: bank office, Chilean Automobile Club, telecommunication companies (Claro, Movistar and Entel PCS), pharmacy, travel agencies, insurance offices and a police station (Carabineros de Chile).

Shopping[edit]

The airport has four tax-free shops. They are handled by the Spanish duty-free operator Aldeasa. One of them is located just after the police border control at departures, while another one is located before the baggage claim area.[12]

Souvenirs, jewellery, Chilean handcrafts and wine shops, music and accessories among others, are available in more than 70 stores.[citation needed]

Restaurants[edit]

The airport has 21 restaurants, coffee shops and bars, located in the public area and in the national and international departing lounges.[citation needed]

Airline lounges[edit]

In the international terminal, the operators are:

  • LATAM Airlines Lounge: Located on 4th & 5th floor. Access after passport control. Access for LATAM's Premium Business Class travellers, LATAM Pass or LATAM Fidelidade Platinum, Black and Black Signature frequent flyers, as well as Oneworld Sapphire and Emerald tier status members.
  • American Airlines Admirals Club: Located next to boarding gate 19. O Access for Admirals Club members, AAdvantage Platinum & Executive Platinum elite frequent flyers, AA International Premium Class, Oneworld First and Business Class passengers, as well as Oneworld Sapphire and Emerald tier status members.
  • Delta Air Lines Sky Club: Located next to boarding gate 17. Access for Delta Sky Club Members, Delta's passengers travelling in the Delta One cabin or on SkyTeam alliance Premium cabin and SkyTeam Elite Plus tier status members.
  • Avianca Sala VIP: Located by gate 12B (one floor below departures level). Access for Avianca's International Business Class passengers, Lifemiles Elite Members (Silver, Gold & Diamond Levels), as well as Star Alliance Silver & Gold tier status frequent flyers.
  • Pacific Club (Priority Pass)

Hotels[edit]

  • Holiday Inn Hotels finished the construction of a five-floor building in July 2007, internally connected to both terminals (international and domestic). The hotel has 112 rooms, restaurants, bars, room-service, a conference hall for 170 people, gym, covered swimming pool, spa and wi-fi internet access.
  • Hotel Diego de Almagro is located 2 km outside the airport area.
  • The Hilton Garden Inn Santiago Airport Hotel is located 2.8 km from the Santiago International Airport within the ENEA, one of the largest business complex in Santiago de Chile which hosts offices, industry and entertainment. The hotel has 144 rooms, a fitness center, indoor swimming pool, sauna, seven meeting spaces including a ballroom and business center.
  • The LQ Hotel Santiago Airport (La Quinta Inns & Suites) is under construction and will be the newest hotel near the airport and the first LQ Hotel in Chile. The hotel is located 2.8 km from Santiago International Airport. The hotel will have a restaurant, indoor swimming pool, fitness center, wifi, business center and meeting space. [3]

Military functions[edit]

The airport is the headquarters of the Chilean Air Force II Air Brigade and hosts the 10th Aviation Group facilities. The 10th Aviation Group is in charge of Strategic Air Transportation, the Airborne Early Warning & Control Squadron, medical air transport emergencies and the air transportation of the President of Chile. Some of its units are C-130 Hercules, Boeing 767-300, Boeing 737 Classic, Gulfstream IV, CASA C-212 Aviocar, F-16 Fighting Falcon, AEW&C Condor. The FIDAE, Latin America's most important air show takes place in the 10th Aviation Group facilities.

Airlines and destinations[edit]

Passenger[edit]

Airlines Destinations
Aerolíneas Argentinas Buenos Aires–Aeroparque, Buenos Aires–Ezeiza, Córdoba
Aeroméxico Mexico City
Air Canada Toronto–Pearson
Air France Paris–Charles de Gaulle
Alitalia Rome–Fiumicino
Amaszonas Paraguay Asunción
American Airlines Dallas/Fort Worth, Miami
Avianca Bogotá
Avianca Brazil São Paulo–Guarulhos
Avianca Costa Rica Lima
British Airways London–Heathrow
Copa Airlines Panama City–Tocumen
Delta Air Lines Atlanta
Emirates Dubai–International, São Paulo–Guarulhos (both begin 5 July 2018)[13]
Gol Transportes Aéreos Rio de Janeiro–Galeão, São Paulo–Guarulhos
Seasonal: Salvador da Bahia
Iberia Madrid
JetSmart Antofagasta, Calama, Concepción, Copiapó, Iquique, La Serena, Puerto Montt, Punta Arenas, Temuco, Valdivia, Lima
KLM Amsterdam, Buenos Aires–Ezeiza
LATAM Argentina Buenos Aires–Aeroparque, Neuquen
LATAM Brasil Rio de Janeiro–Galeão, Rosario, São Paulo–Guarulhos
LATAM Chile Antofagasta, Arica, Auckland, Bogotá, Buenos Aires–Aeroparque, Buenos Aires–Ezeiza, Calama, Cancún, Castro, Concepción, Copiapó, Córdoba, Coyhaique, Easter Island, Frankfurt,a Guayaquil, Iquique, La Paz, La Serena, Lima, Los Angeles, Madrid, Melbourne, Mendoza, Mexico City, Miami, Montevideo, New York–JFK, Osorno, Papeete, Puerto Montt, Punta Arenas, Punta Cana, Rio de Janeiro–Galeão, Rosario, Santa Cruz de la Sierra–Viru Viru, São Paulo–Guarulhos, Stanley–Mount Pleasant, Sydney, Tel Aviv–Ben Gurion (begins 12 December 2018),[14] Temuco, Tucumán, Valdivia
Seasonal: Bariloche, Florianópolis, Orlando, Puerto Natales, Punta del Este, Salta
LATAM Ecuador Guayaquil
LATAM Paraguay Asunción
LATAM Perú Lima, Cusco (begins 15 August 2018)[15]
Qantas Sydney
Sky Airline Antofagasta, Arica, Balmaceda, Buenos Aires–Ezeiza, Calama, Concepción, Copiapó, Córdoba, Coyhaique, Iquique, La Serena, Lima, Mendoza, Montevideo, Osorno, Puerto Montt, Punta Arenas, Rosario, Temuco, Valdivia
Seasonal: Florianópolis, Punta del Este, Rio de Janeiro–Galeão
United Airlines Houston–Intercontinental
Notes

^a The LATAM Chile flight to Frankfurt has a stop in Madrid, where passengers are allowed to deplane and/or board the aircraft. The same aircraft used until Madrid then continues to Frankfurt under the same flight number.The same occurs on the return flight.

Cargo[edit]

Airlines Destinations
Atlas Air Miami
Avianca Cargo Bogotá
Cargolux Aguadilla, Luxembourg
Centurion Air Cargo Miami
China Cargo Airlines Los Angeles
Korean Air Cargo Seoul–Incheon
LATAM Cargo Chile Buenos Aires–Ezeiza, Campinas, Miami
Lufthansa Cargo Frankfurt
Martinair Aguadilla, Amsterdam, Bogotá, Guayaquil, Miami, Quito
UPS Airlines Buenos Aires–Ezeiza, Campinas

Statistics[edit]

Santiago domestic nonstop routes (as of July 2015).
Santiago international nonstop routes (as of June 2017).
Busiest international routes January–December (2017)[16]
Rank City Passengers % Change Airlines
1 Argentina Buenos Aires, Argentina (Ezeiza and Aeroparque) 1.883.486 Increase 12,4% Aerolíneas Argentinas, Air Canada, LATAM, Sky Airline, KLM
2 Peru Lima, Peru 1.462.868 Increase 16,1% Avianca Perú, JetSmart, LATAM, LAW, Sky Airline
3 Brazil São Paulo–Guarulhos, Brazil 1.268.962 Increase 11,1% LATAM, GOL Linhas Aereas Inteligentes, Avianca Brazil
4 Colombia Bogotá, Colombia 586.806 Increase 2,5% Avianca, LATAM
5 United States Miami, FL, USA 505.177 Decrease 3,5% American Airlines, LATAM
6 Panama Panama City, Panama 501.488 Increase 8,0% Copa Airlines
7 Spain Madrid, Spain 471.261 Increase 9,8% Iberia, LATAM, Plus Ultra
8 Brazil Rio de Janeiro–Galeão, Brazil 437.470 Increase 15,6% LATAM, GOL Linhas Aereas Inteligentes, Sky Airline
9 Argentina Mendoza, Argentina 417.409 Increase 90,2% LATAM, Sky Airline, LAW
10 Argentina Cordoba, Argentina 319.321 Increase 72,1% LATAM, Sky Airline, Aerolineas Argentinas
11 Uruguay Montevideo, Uruguay 303.084 Increase 23,8% LATAM, Sky Airline
12 Mexico Mexico City, Mexico 296.559 Increase 24,7% Aeroméxico, LATAM
13 France Paris–Charles de Gaulle, France 239.024 Increase 4,4% Air France
14 Australia Sydney, Australia 236.116 Increase 5,0% Qantas, LATAM
15 United States New York–JFK, NY, USA 198.777 Decrease 4,2% LATAM
16 United States Dallas/Fort Worth, TX, USA 126.954 Increase 0,7% American Airlines
17 United States Atlanta, GA, USA 122.383 Increase 2,2% Delta Air Lines
18 Italy Rome–Fiumicino, Italy 117.256 Increase 58,7% Alitalia
19 United States Houston–Intercontinental, TX, USA 109.857 Decrease 10,8% United Airlines
20 New Zealand Auckland, New Zealand 109.763 Increase 6,7% LATAM
21 Canada Toronto–Pearson, Canada 105.153 Increase 34,8% Air Canada
22 Ecuador Guayaquil, Ecuador 99.138 Increase 1,9% LATAM
23 United States Los Angeles, CA, USA 92.782 Increase 34,0% LATAM
24 United Kingdom London–Heathrow, United Kingdom 69.793 Steady New British Airways
25 Paraguay Asuncion, Paraguay 59.548 Increase 23,6% LATAM
26 Bolivia La Paz, Bolivia 56.561 Increase 3,8% LATAM
27 Haiti Port-au-Prince, Haiti 46.577 Steady New LAW
28 Netherlands Amsterdam, Netherlands 45.754 Increase 0,2% KLM
29 Brazil Florianópolis, Brazil 42.033 Increase 59,0% LATAM, Sky Airline
30 Dominican Republic Punta Cana, Dominican Republic 40.342 Increase 42,2% LATAM, LAW
31 Argentina Rosario, Argentina 37.608 Steady New LATAM, Sky Airline
32 Bolivia Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia 35.215 Increase 40,7% LATAM
33 Mexico Cancún, Mexico 31.990 Increase 1,8% LATAM
34 United States Orlando, FL, USA 27.792 Increase 1726,0% LATAM
35 Germany Frankfurt, Germany 18.208 Decrease 29,1% LATAM
36 Australia Melbourne, Australia 17.921 Steady New LATAM
37 French Polynesia Papeete, French Polynesia 10.299 Decrease 15,6% LATAM
38 Argentina San Miguel de Tucumán, Argentina 9.322 Steady New LATAM
39 Argentina Neuquén, Argentina 9.086 Steady New LATAM
40 Argentina San Juan, Argentina 8.839 Steady New LATAM
Busiest domestic routes January–December [2017][16]
Rank City Passengers % Change Airlines
1 Antofagasta, Chile Antofagasta 1.590.062 Decrease 5,7% LATAM, Sky Airline, Jetsmart
2 Antofagasta, Chile Calama 1.516.606 Increase 7,3% LATAM, Sky Airline, Jetsmart
3 Tarapaca, Chile Iquique 1.154.530 Increase 5,8% LATAM, Sky Airline, Jetsmart
4 Los Lagos, Chile Puerto Montt 1.146.643 Increase 11,7% LATAM, Sky Airline, Jetsmart
5 Biobío, Chile Concepción 1.045.150 Increase 8,3% LATAM, Sky Airline, Jetsmart
6 Magallanes, Chile Punta Arenas 774.293 Increase 10,3% LATAM, Sky Airline, Jetsmart
7 Araucanía, Chile Temuco 753.523 Increase 11,7% LATAM, Sky Airline, Jetsmart
8 Arica, Chile Arica 742.792 Increase 8,9% LATAM, Sky Airline
9 Coquimbo, Chile La Serena 658.585 Increase 10,5% LATAM, Sky Airline, Jetsmart
10 Atacama, Chile Copiapó 504.145 Increase 6,9% LATAM, Sky Airline, Jetsmart
11 Aisén, Chile Balmaceda 335.544 Increase 14,9% LATAM, Sky Airline
12 Valparaíso, Chile Easter Island 237.940 Increase 10,4% LATAM
13 Los Ríos, Chile Valdivia 200.271 Increase 36,9% LATAM, Sky Airline, Jetsmart
14 Los Lagos, Chile Osorno 71.557 Increase 45,3% LATAM, Sky Airline
15 Los Lagos, Chile Castro 67.573 Increase 14,7% LATAM
16 Magallanes, Chile Puerto Natales 21.616 Steady LATAM

Ground transportation[edit]

Roads[edit]

Costanera Norte Expressway

Arturo Merino Benitez is about 17 kilometres (11 mi) by car from Santiago's city center. The airport is well served by the 6-lane expressway Costanera Norte (Exit # 31), which crosses through the city from West to East bordering the Mapocho river, while it is also well connected to the West, North and North-East of Santiago by the Vespucio Norte Express Ring motorway (Exit # 18).

Taxi and shuttle services[edit]

There are 2 official airport taxi services: Taxi Oficial and Taxi Vip. TransVip shuttle services reach most of Santiago's hotels, business and residential districts.

Bus[edit]

Buses at the Departures Level

Centropuerto buses connect the airport with Los Héroes station of Santiago Metro. Their frequency is every 10 minutes during weekdays and 15 minutes during weekends. Turbus offers a similar service to its Alameda terminal. Both these services stop at the Pajaritos metro station/bus terminal on the way.

Rental services[edit]

Car rental services are available from the airport.[17]

Accidents and incidents[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2016-06-01. Retrieved 2016-04-29. 
  2. ^ Dirección General de Aeronáutica Civil. DGAC (2013-07-15). Retrieved on 2013-08-09.
  3. ^ AEROPUERTO INTERNACIONAL DE SANTIAGO - SCL Aeropuerto de Santiago de Chile Archived 2013-01-20 at the Wayback Machine.. Aeropuertosantiago.cl. Retrieved on 2013-08-09.
  4. ^ "Reuters earthquake report". Reuters. February 27, 2010. Retrieved February 27, 2010. 
  5. ^ (in French) Business Travel, "Aéroport de Santiago au Chili: retour à la normale mercredi", 2 March 2010 (accessed 3 March 2010)
  6. ^ Announces Eagle Awards. IATA. Retrieved on 2013-08-09.
  7. ^ Air Cargo Excellence / Home Archived 2011-05-18 at the Wayback Machine.. Air Cargo World. Retrieved on 2013-08-09.
  8. ^ Portal de Registro y Autentificación El Mercurio. Diario.elmercurio.cl. Retrieved on 2013-08-09.
  9. ^ Portal de Registro y Autentificación El Mercurio. Diario.elmercurio.cl. Retrieved on 2013-08-09.
  10. ^ [1]. Retrieved on 2013-11-18.
  11. ^ "VINCI : Aeroports de Paris, VINCI Airports and Astaldi presented the best offer for the Santiago de Chile International Airport concession". Retrieved 4 June 2015. 
  12. ^ "Shopping and services". Aeropuerto de Santiago. Archived from the original on 30 September 2011. Retrieved 4 November 2010. 
  13. ^ 2018. "Emirates to launch services to Santiago de Chile via Sao Paulo". Emirates. Retrieved January 31, 2018. 
  14. ^ https://www.routesonline.com/news/38/airlineroute/277994/latam-airlines-chile-plans-tel-aviv-launch-in-december-2018/
  15. ^ http://aviacionchile.blogspot.cl/2018/04/latam-airlines-anuncia-ruta-cusco.html. Retrieved April 26, 2018.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  16. ^ a b [2] Archived September 17, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.
  17. ^ "LetsGoChile >  » Car Rental in Chile". Retrieved 4 June 2015. 

External links[edit]

Media related to Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez International Airport at Wikimedia Commons