Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen International Airport
Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen International Airport
İstanbul Sabiha Gökçen Uluslararası Havalimanı
|Owner||HEAŞ (Airport Management & Aeronautical Industries Inc)|
|Elevation AMSL||312 ft / 95 m|
Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen International Airport (IATA: SAW, ICAO: LTFJ) (Turkish: İstanbul Sabiha Gökçen Uluslararası Havalimanı) is one of three international airports serving Istanbul, the largest city in Turkey. Located 32 km (20 mi) southeast of the city center, Sabiha Gökçen Airport is in the Asian part of the bi-continental Istanbul and serves as the hub for AnadoluJet and Pegasus Airlines as well as a secondary base for Turkish Airlines. The facility is named after Sabiha Gökçen, adoptive daughter of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk and the first female fighter pilot in the world. Although Istanbul Airport, located 63 km (39 mi) away on the European side of Istanbul, is larger, Sabiha Gökçen is still one of the largest airports in the country.
The airport was built because Atatürk International Airport (located on the European side) was not large enough to meet the booming passenger demands (both domestic and international). The airport opened on 8 January 2001. In June 2007, Turkish conglomerate Limak Holding, India's GMR Group and Malaysia Airport Holding Berhad (MAHB) consortium gained the contract for upgrading and maintaining the airport. In mid-2008, ground was broken to upgrade the international terminal to handle 25 million passengers annually. The new terminal was inaugurated on 31 October 2009.
SAW's international terminal capacity originally was 3 million passengers per year and the domestic terminal capacity was 0.5 million passengers per year. In 2010, Sabiha Gökçen airport handled 11,129,472 passengers, a 71% increase compared to 2009. The airport was planning (in 2011) to host 25 million passengers by 2023, but had already handled more than 31 million passengers by 2017.
In September 2010, the airport was voted the World's Best Airport at the World Low Cost Airlines Congress in London and received the award. The other awards received by the airport in 2010 were: Turkey's Most Successful Tourism Investment 2010, the highly commended award from Routes Europe, and the Airport Traffic Growth Award by Airline News & Network Analysis web site anna.aero.
With 28,285,578 passengers and 206,180 aircraft movements in 2015, Sabiha Gökçen International Airport is the third busiest single-runway airport in the world, after Mumbai and London Gatwick. However, both Mumbai and Gatwick actually have two runways and are only considered "single-runway" because they can only operate the second runway if the main one is out of use. This makes Sabiha Gökçen the world's busiest true single-runway airport.
A second runway is currently being built and is expected to be operational in June 2019. The second runway will increase the hourly capacity from 40 to 80 movements. After the second runway is built, San Diego will be the busiest true single runway airport in the world.
The new terminal building with a 25 million annual passenger capacity conducts domestic and international flights under one roof. The features and services of the new terminal and its outlying buildings include a four-storey car park with a capacity of about 4,718 vehicles + 72 bus (3.836 indoors and 882 + 72 bus outdoors), a four-storey hotel with 128 rooms, adjacent to the terminal and with separate entrances at air and ground sides, 112 check-in, 24 online check-in counters as well as a VIP building & apron viewing CIP halls with business lounges. There is also an Multi Aircraft Ramp System (MARS), allowing simultaneous service to 8 aircraft with large fuselages (IATA code E) or 16 middle-sized fuselage aircraft (IATA code C) installed. The terminal additionally features a 400 m² conference center, 5,000 m² food court, for cafés and restaurants and a duty-free shopping area, with a ground of 4,500 square-meters. At the international departures area, on the airside, an hourly hotel and lounge became operational in January 2020 as well. The airport's cargo terminal has a capacity of 90,000 tons per year and is equipped with 18 cold storage depots.
Airlines and destinations
The following airlines operate regular scheduled and charter flights to and from Sabiha Gökçen International Airport:
|Ethiopian Cargo||Addis Ababa|
|MNG Airlines||Leipzig/Halle, Paris–Charles de Gaulle|
|Year||Domestic||% change||International||% change||Total||% change|
Sabiha Gökçen International Airport is connected to the city of Istanbul and the city's wider metropolitan area through a number of transport options.
The M4 metro line is being extended towards the airport. The current terminus at Tavşantepe is about 10 km from the airport and reachable by taxi or bus E9.
Shuttlebuses and coaches
Car and taxi
The airport is reachable by car from the E80 (Trans-European Motorway) which passes through the Istanbul Metropolitan Area.
Accidents and incidents
- On 23 December 2015 at approximately 2:00 AM, explosions were reported to have occurred in a parked Pegasus Airlines aircraft, killing one cleaner and wounding another inside the plane. Five nearby planes were reported to be damaged as well. The operations were reported to continue normally soon after, however with heightened security measured in place. Three days later, it was reported that PKK-affiliated terrorist group Kurdistan Freedom Falcons had organized the attack.
- On 7 January 2020, a plane operated as Pegasus Airlines Flight 747 was off the track, leaving no fatalities or injuries.
- On 5 February 2020, a Boeing 737-800, registration TC-IZK, operated as Pegasus Airlines Flight 2193, skidded off the end of Runway 06, leading to an airport shutdown. There were 177 passengers and 6 crew on board. Three people were killed, another 179 were injured.
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- "Pegasus announces new international destination from SAW". Routesonline. Retrieved 28 February 2021.
- "Pegasus schedules Ras al Khaimah launch in late-Oct 2019". routesonline.com. 23 July 2019.
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- Liu, Jim (17 September 2019). "Pobeda re-schedules Krasnodar – Istanbul launch to late-Oct 2019". Retrieved 18 September 2019.
- Pobeda adds Moscow – Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen service from late-Sep 2018 Routesonline. 16 September 2018.
- "Salam Air outlines further network expansion in S19". Routesonline. Retrieved 7 February 2020.
- "Uzbekistan Airways adds Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen charters in W19". Airlineroute. Retrieved 24 October 2019.
- cargolux.com - Network & Offices retrieved 28 March 2020
- cargoethiopianairlines.com - Cargo Network retrieved 28 March 2020
- mngairlines.com - Scheduled Cargo retrieved 28 March 2020
- DHMİ Genel Müdürlüğü. "Devlet Hava Meydanları İşletmesi Genel Müdürlüğü". dhmi.gov.tr. Retrieved 1 June 2015.
- Daren Butler (23 December 2015). "Suspected bomb kills one at Istanbul airport, investigation launched". Reuters UK.
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- "Sabiha Gökçen Havalimanı'nda uçuşlar 06.00'ya ertelendi". www.ntv.com.tr (in Turkish). Retrieved 4 November 2020.
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^ 40. Hradecky, Simon. "Incident: Pegasus B738 at Istanbul on Jan 7th 2020, runway excursion on landing". Aviation Herald. Retrieved 7 January 2020.
Media related to Sabiha Gökçen International Airport at Wikimedia Commons