Tan Son Nhat International Airport

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Tân Sơn Nhất International Airport
Sân bay Quốc tế Tân Sơn Nhất
Tan Son Nhat International Airport.jpg
Airport type Public / Military
Owner Vietnamese government
Operator Airports Corporation of Vietnam
Serves Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam
Location Tan Binh District
Hub for
Elevation AMSL 10 m / 33 ft
Coordinates 10°49′08″N 106°39′07″E / 10.81889°N 106.65194°E / 10.81889; 106.65194Coordinates: 10°49′08″N 106°39′07″E / 10.81889°N 106.65194°E / 10.81889; 106.65194
Website www.hochiminhcityairport.com
SGN is located in Vietnam
Location of the airport in Vietnam
SGN is located in Southeast Asia
SGN (Southeast Asia)
Direction Length Surface
m ft
07L/25R 3,050 10,007 Concrete
07R/25L 3,800 12,467 Concrete
Statistics (2017)
Total passengers 35,900,000 Increase 10.5%
International passengers 13,600,000 Increase 31.9%
Source: ACV[1]

Tân Sơn Nhất International Airport (IATA: SGN, ICAO: VVTS) (Vietnamese: Sân bay quốc tế Tân Sơn Nhất, Vietnamese: Cảng hàng không quốc tế Tân Sơn Nhất) is the busiest airport in Vietnam with 32.5 million passengers in 2016,[2] serving Ho Chi Minh City as well as the rest of southeastern Vietnam. As of January 2017, it had a total capacity of only 25 million passengers,[3] which has caused constant congestion and sparked debate for expanding or building a new airport. The airport's IATA code, SGN, is derived from the city's former name of Saigon.


Tan Son Nhat International Airport has its origins in the early 1930s, when the French colonial government constructed a small airport with unpaved runways, known as Tân Sơn Nhất Airfield near the village of Tan Son Nhat. By mid-1956, with U.S. aid, a 7,200-foot (2,190 m) runway had been built and the airfield near Saigon became known as South Vietnam's principal international gateway. During the Vietnam War (or Second Indochina War), Tan Son Nhut Air Base (then using the alternative spelling Tân Sơn Nhứt) was an important facility for both the U.S. Air Force and the Republic of Vietnam Air Force. Between 1968 and 1974, Tan Son Nhut Airport was one of the busiest military airbases in the world. During the last days of South Vietnam, Pan Am schedules from 1973 showed Boeing 747 service was being operated four times a week to San Francisco via Guam and Manila.[4] Continental Airlines operated up to 30 Boeing 707 military charters per week to and from Tan Son Nhut Airport during the 1968–74 period.[5]

Board of welcoming at Tan Son Nhat International Airport,1967.

Post-war era[edit]

On 9 December 2004, United Airlines became the first U.S. airline to fly to Vietnam since Pan Am's last flight during the Fall of Saigon in April 1975. Flight UA 869, operated using a Boeing 747-400 landed at Ho Chi Minh City, the terminus of the flight that originated from San Francisco via Hong Kong. On 29 October 2006, this service was switched from San Francisco to Los Angeles with a stop in Hong Kong, operating as UA 867 (also using a Boeing 747-400). In 2009, the service UA 869 has resumed once again from San Francisco via Hong Kong International Airport.[6] United ceased the route to San Francisco via Hong Kong on 30 October 2011. The airline resumed the route from Ho Chi Minh City to Hong Kong after its merger with Continental Airlines. The flight no longer makes a stop at San Francisco and it was flown on a Boeing 777-200ER instead of Boeing 747-400.

In 2006, Tan Son Nhat International Airport served approximately 8.5 million passengers (compared with 7 million in 2005) with 64,000 aircraft movements.[7] It has recently accounted for nearly two-thirds of the arrivals and departures at Vietnam's international gateway airports.[8][9] Due to increasing demand (about 15–20% per annum), the airport has been continuously expanded by the Southern Airports Corporation.[9]

In 2010, Tan Son Nhat domestic terminal handled 8 million passengers which reached its maximum capacity. The airport reached its full capacity of 20 million passengers in 2013, two years earlier than predicted. Both domestic and international terminal are being expanded to meet the increasing demand. In December 2014, expansion for the domestic terminal was finished, boosting the terminal's capacity to 13 million passengers per annum.[10] In September 2017, People's Army of Vietnam ceded 21 hectare of military land in the vicinity of the airport to Airports Corporation of Vietnam for civil use. This gave way for the construction of 21 new aircraft parking spaces, expected to be completed by Tet holidays in 2018. Tan Son Nhat will then have 72 parking spaces for airplanes.[11]

International terminal[edit]

Passport check in the international terminal (August 2007)

A new international terminal funded by Japanese official development assistance and constructed by a consortium of four Japanese contractors (KTOM, abbreviation of four contractors' names: KajimaTaiseiObayashiMaeda), opened in September 2007 with an initially designed capacity of 10 million passengers a year.[12] In 2014, the terminal served over 9 million international passengers[13] and a demand of an expansion to the terminal was in sight. The first phase of an urgent expansion to the terminal was finished in December 2016 with an addition of 2 new jet bridges and other facilities.[14] Upon the completion of phase two, the terminal can handle 13 million passengers annually.[15]

Future terminal 3 and 4[edit]

Terminal 3 for ten million passengers by 2019 and Terminal 4 for 15 million passengers are currently being planned. This will increase the capacity of the airport to 53 million from 25 million (2017).


Following the opening of its new international terminal in September 2007, Tan Son Nhat has two major terminal buildings with separate sections for international and domestic flights.

The Prime Minister of Vietnam, by Decision 1646/TTg-NN, has approved the addition of 40 hectares (99 acres) of adjacent area to extend the apron and to build a cargo terminal to handle the rapid increase of passenger (expected to reach 17 million in 2010, compared to 7 million and 8.5 million in 2005 and 2006 respectively) and cargo volume at the airport.[8][16]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

Check-in desks at terminal 2, Tan Son Nhat International Airport
Level 3 of terminal 2, Tan Son Nhat International Airport
Business lounge of Tan Son Nhat International Airport
Vietnam Airlines Boeing 777-200ER taxiing at Tan Son Nhat International Airport
Vietnam Airlines A350-900 taking off at Tan Son Nhat International Airport


Airlines Destinations
Aeroflot Moscow–Sheremetyevo
Air Astana Almaty
Air China Beijing–Capital
Air France Paris–Charles de Gaulle
Air New Zealand Seasonal: Auckland
AirAsia Johor Bahru, Kuala Lumpur–International, Penang
All Nippon Airways
operated by Air Japan
Asiana Airlines Seoul–Incheon
Cambodia Angkor Air Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Sihanoukville
Cathay Pacific Hong Kong
Cebu Pacific Manila
China Airlines Taipei–Taoyuan
China Eastern Airlines Kunming, Shanghai–Pudong
China Southern Airlines Beijing–Capital, Guangzhou, Shanghai–Pudong, Shenzhen
Chongqing Airlines Chongqing[17]
Edelweiss Air Seasonal: Zürich (begins 15 November 2018)[18]
Emirates Dubai–International
Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi (ends 30 August 2018)[19]
EVA Air Taipei–Taoyuan
Finnair Seasonal: Helsinki
Hong Kong Airlines Hong Kong
Japan Airlines Tokyo–Haneda, Tokyo–Narita
Jeju Air Seoul–Incheon
Jetstar Airways Melbourne, Sydney
Jetstar Asia Airways Singapore
Jetstar Pacific Airlines Bangkok–Suvarnabhumi, Buon Ma Thuot, Chu Lai, Da Lat, Da Nang, Dong Hoi, Guangzhou, Hai Phong, Hanoi, Hong Kong, Nha Trang, Hue, Quy Nhon, Singapore, Thanh Hoa, Tuy Hoa, Vinh
Korean Air Seoul–Incheon
Lanmei Airlines Siem Reap
Lao Airlines Pakse
LOT Polish Airlines Seasonal charter: Warsaw–Chopin
Mahan Air Seasonal charter: Tehran-Imam Khomeini[20]
Malaysia Airlines Kuala Lumpur–International
Malindo Air Kuala Lumpur–International
Mandarin Airlines Taichung
Nok Air Bangkok–Don Mueang
Nordwind Airlines Moscow–Sheremetyevo
Philippine Airlines Manila
Philippines AirAsia Manila
Qatar Airways Doha, Phnom Penh
Royal Brunei Airlines Bandar Seri Begawan
Scoot Singapore
Sichuan Airlines Nanning
Singapore Airlines Singapore
Spring Airlines Shanghai–Pudong
Thai AirAsia Bangkok–Don Mueang
Thai Airways Bangkok–Suvarnabhumi
Thai Lion Air Bangkok–Don Mueang
Turkish Airlines Istanbul–Atatürk
T'way Airlines Seoul–Incheon
Vietjet Air Bangkok–Suvarnabhumi, Buon Ma Thuot, Chiang Mai, Chu Lai, Da Lat, Da Nang, Dong Hoi, Hai Phong, Hanoi, Hong Kong, Hue, Kaohsiung, Kuala Lumpur–International, Nha Trang, Phnom Penh, Phu Quoc, Pleiku, Qui Nhon, Phuket, Seoul–Incheon, Singapore, Taichung, Tainan, Taipei–Taoyuan, Thanh Hoa, Vinh
Vietnam Airlines Buon Ma Thuot, Bangkok–Suvarnabhumi, Da Lat, Da Nang, Dong Hoi, Chengdu, Busan, Frankfurt, Fukuoka, Guangzhou, Hai Phong, Hanoi, Hue, Hong Kong, Jakarta–Soekarno–Hatta, Kaohsiung, Kuala Lumpur–International, London–Heathrow, Melbourne, Nagoya–Centrair, Nanning, Nha Trang, Osaka–Kansai, Phu Quoc, Pleiku, Paris–Charles de Gaulle, Phnom Penh, Qui Nhon, Rach Gia, Seoul–Incheon, Shanghai–Pudong, Siem Reap, Singapore, Sydney, Taipei–Taoyuan, Tokyo–Narita, Thanh Hoa, Vinh, Yangon
Charter: Gaya
Vietnam Airlines
operated by VASCO
Ca Mau, Chu Lai, Con Dao, Tuy Hoa
XiamenAir Xiamen


Airlines Destinations
Cargolux Luxembourg
Cathay Pacific Jakarta–Soekarno–Hatta, Hong Kong
China Airlines Cargo Abu Dhabi, Bangkok–Suvarnabhumi, Luxembourg, Singapore, Taipei–Taoyuan
DHL Aviation
operated by Air Hong Kong
Hong Kong, Penang
FedEx Express Guangzhou, Hanoi, Jakarta–Soekarno–Hatta
Korean Air Cargo Jakarta–Soekarno–Hatta, Seoul–Incheon
MASkargo Kuala Lumpur–International, Labuan, Bangkok–Suvarnabhumi
Raya Airways Labuan


Ground transportation[edit]

Bus and shuttle[edit]

A bus station is situated in front of the international terminal and is served by Ho Chi Minh City Bus. It is connected to the city center by bus line 109 and 152 as well as shuttle bus line 49. Connecting the airport to Vung Tau and other cities in Mekong Delta are express minibus services as well as bus line 119 (via Mien Tay Bus Station).[22]


The airport is expected to be served by Ho Chi Minh City Metro Line 4B, connected to Line 4 and 5 with services to the southern and eastern area of the city. However, it is currently not known when the line will be constructed.[23]


Traditional taxi brands such as Vinasun and Mai Linh operates at the airport alongside with rideshare service Grab.[24]


Until 2016, the airport only had one main access route via Truong Son Street, which caused chronic congestion for traffic going in and out of the airport. As an effort to ease traffic bottleneck, in August 2016, Pham Van Dong Boulevard officially opened and connected the airport to National Route 1A in an intersection east of the airport.[25]

Future Plans[edit]

Long Thanh International Airport[edit]

Tan Son Nhat International Airport is located inside the crowded city of Ho Chi Minh City, making expansions difficult.

Following a recent decision by the Vietnamese Prime Minister, a new airport—Long Thanh International Airport—will replace Tan Son Nhat airport for international departure use. The master plan for the new airport was approved in April 2006. The new airport will be built in Long Thanh county, Dong Nai province, about 40 km (25 mi) east of Ho Chi Minh City and 65 km (40 mi) north of the petroleum-focused city of Vung Tau, near Highway 51A.

Long Thanh International Airport will be constructed on an area of 50 square kilometers (19 sq mi), and will have four runways (4,000 m x 60 m or 13,100 ft x 200 ft) and be capable of receiving the Airbus A380. The project will be divided in two stages. Stage One calls for the construction of two parallel runways and a terminal with a capacity of 20 million passengers per year, due to be completed in 2025. Stage Two is scheduled for completion in 2035, giving the airport with three passenger terminals and a cargo terminal designed to receive 5 million metric tons of cargo per year. The total invested capital of this project is an estimated US$8 billion.

Upon completion of Long Thanh International Airport, Tan Son Nhat Airport will serve domestic passengers only. Long Thanh International Airport is expected to be the leading airport on the Indochinese peninsula, and one of the busiest air transportation hubs in the southeast Asian region.


Because Long Thanh will not be ready for service until at least 2025, Tan Son Nhat must expand to meet the increasing demand. In January 2017, Airport Design and Construction Consultancy (ADCC) presented 3 proposals to expand the airport. Vietnam’s Deputy Prime Minister Trịnh Đình Dũng agreed to proceed a US$860 million upgrade proposal for final review before submitting to the government. Under the chosen proposal, there would be a new mixed-use Terminal 3 and a civil-use Terminal 4 (to be built on the south side of the airport), a parallel taxiway between the existing runways and technical hangars on the northeast. The estimated time to complete the upgrade would be 3 years and the airport would then have a capacity of 43-45 million passengers annually.[26] The decision was controversial due to the fact that the golf course immediately north of SGN would remain untouched despite the urgent need of airport expansion.[27] The Minister of Transport Trương Quang Nghĩa explained that the airport could not be expanded northward due to costs and environmental impact.[28] On June 12, 2017, Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc requested the Ministry of Transport to research the prospect of constructing a third runway at Tan Son Nhat International Airport. The French consulting company ADP Ingénierie (ADPi) was subsequently hired to provide a second opinion for the project.

In March 2018, ADPi presented their plan for the expansion. The firm advised against the construction of a third runway and supported a southward expansion plan. Without a new runway, Tan Son Nhat has a maximum capacity of 51 million passengers per year - a number ADPi predicted SGN to reach in 2025, in time for the opening of Long Thanh.[29] However, an independent consultancy of Ho Chi Minh City believed it could reach up to 80 million by the time Long Thanh was supposed to open, in accordance with reports by Boeing or the International Air Transport Association. As such, they proposed a three-phase northward expansion plan that would see a new runway and two new terminals to increase the airport's capacity to 70 million passengers per year.[30]

On March 28, 2018, Prime Minister Nguyễn Xuân Phúc ultimately selected the ADPi proposal as the basis for the expansion of the airport. This proposal includes a new Terminal 3 with a designed capacity of 20 million passengers per year south of Runway 07R/25L, additional facilities in the north area where a golf court currently occupies as well as improvements and constructions of access points for the airport.[31]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Cảng HKQT Tân Sơn Nhất: Top 10 sân bay với năng lực phục vụ 30-40 triệu khách/năm tốt nhất thế giới". Airports Corporation of Vietnam (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 24 March 2018. 
  2. ^ a b "ACV: Hội nghị tổng kết công tác năm 2016 và triển khai kế hoạch năm 2017". ACV. 20 January 2017. Retrieved 25 January 2017. 
  3. ^ "Mở rộng Tân Sơn Nhất: Tại sao không?" (in Vietnamese). 2017-01-20. Retrieved 2017-01-20. 
  4. ^ Pan Am System Timetable, April 29, 1973
  5. ^ Christian, J. Scott, former Continental employee and manager, Bring Songs to the Sky: Recollections of Continental Airlines, 1970–1986, Quadran Press, 1998.
  6. ^ United Airlines – Flight Timetables, Download to PC, PDA or Blackberry
  7. ^ Official number from Tan Son Nhat Airport Authority at its official website
  8. ^ a b Two more Hanoi<>Saigon flights per day for Pacific Airlines on "Vietnamnet.net, access date 11 November 2007, (in Vietnamese) [1]
  9. ^ a b News about Tan Son Nhat International Airport on Official Website of Ministry of Transport of Vietnam, 12 November 2007, Vietnamese Archived 12 November 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
  10. ^ "Sân bay Tân Sơn Nhất tăng năng lực phục vụ". nld.com.vn. Người Lao Động. Retrieved 7 January 2015.  |first1= missing |last1= in Authors list (help)
  11. ^ "Tân Sơn Nhất sắp có thêm 21 chỗ đậu máy bay". VNExpress. Retrieved 2 November 2017. 
  12. ^ Le, Nam. "Khánh thành nhà ga sân bay Tân Sơn Nhất". Tuoi Tre Online. Retrieved 2 November 2017. 
  13. ^ a b "2005 - 2014 Statistics of Tan Son Nhat Intl Airport". Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam. Archived from the original on 18 April 2015. Retrieved 2 November 2017. 
  14. ^ Dinh, Tuan. "Nhà ga quốc tế Tân Sơn Nhất mở rộng 8.780 m2". Vietnamnet. Retrieved 2 November 2017. 
  15. ^ "2.300 tỷ đồng mở rộng ga quốc tế sân bay Tân Sơn Nhất". VNExpress. Retrieved 2 November 2017. 
  16. ^ Two more Hanoi–Saigon flights per day for Pacific Airlines on "Vietnamnet.net, access date 11 November 2007, (in English) "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 16 December 2007. Retrieved 16 December 2007. 
  17. ^ "Chongqing Airlines launches Ho Chi Minh City service starting April". Retrieved 31 March 2018. 
  18. ^ [2]
  19. ^ https://www.routesonline.com/news/38/airlineroute/277936/etihad-ends-vietnam-service-in-late-august-2018/
  20. ^ https://twitter.com/aviationirancom/status/969210933473050625
  21. ^ Hồng Hà. "Hỡi nạn nhân của máy bay chậm chuyến, bạn có biết những con số này?". soha.vn (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 24 March 2018. 
  22. ^ "Mở mới tuyến xe buýt Sân bay Tân Sơn Nhất – Bến xe Miền Tây". http://buyttphcm.com.vn/. Trung tâm Quản lý giao thông công cộng Thành phố Hồ Chí Minh. Retrieved 7 March 2018.  External link in |website= (help)
  23. ^ "Metro Line 4B". Management Authority for Urban Railways. Retrieved 14 May 2018. 
  24. ^ Hồng Châu (14 Dec 2017). "'Trận chiến' sân bay của taxi truyền thống và Uber, Grab". VNExpress.net. Retrieved 7 March 2018. 
  25. ^ Quoc Hung. "Entire route of Pham Van Dong Street opens to traffic". SGGP English Edition. Retrieved 7 March 2018. 
  26. ^ "Vietnam puts $860-million upgrade plan at Saigon airport on the runway". VNExpress International. Retrieved 7 March 2018. 
  27. ^ Thanh, Bùi. "Từ chuyện sân bay - sân golf: Cái gì nặng hơn lòng dân?". Tuổi Trẻ Online (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 7 March 2018. 
  28. ^ Thu Hằng; Hồng Nhì. "Mở rộng Tân Sơn Nhất về phía bắc: Hoàn toàn không khả thi". Vietnamnet (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 7 March 2018. 
  29. ^ "Planning row engulfs expansion of Vietnam's largest airport". VNExpress International. Retrieved 7 March 2018. 
  30. ^ Mai Hà. "Mở rộng Tân Sơn Nhất: Tư vấn TP.HCM ngược chiều tư vấn Pháp". Thanh Niên (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 7 March 2018. 
  31. ^ Anh Duy; Hoàng Thuỳ; Hữu Công. "Thủ tướng quyết phương án mở rộng Tân Sơn Nhất về phía nam". VNExpress.net (in Vietnamese). Retrieved 14 May 2018. 

External links[edit]