George Bush Intercontinental/Houston Airport
|Continent: North America||Country: United States||Region: Texas|
|George Bush Intercontinental/Houston Airport|
|Overview map||Google Maps|
|Approach||120.05 EAST 124.35(WEST) 316.15(WEST) 379.1(N AND E)|
|Departure||119.7(NORTH) 123.8(WEST) 133.6(EAST) 257.2(EAST) 257.7(WEST) 281.4(NORTH)|
|Plane Spotting Hotels guide|
George Bush Intercontinental Airport (KIAH/IAH) is located approximately 23 miles north of downtown Houston off of U.S. Highway 59 near Beltway 8 (Sam Houston Tollway). IAH is the largest of 3 municipal airports that are operated and maintained by the City of Houston's Department of Aviation. The Houston Airport System (HAS) functions as an enterprise fund and does not burden the local tax base for airport operations, maintenance or capital improvements.
IAH rests on more than 10,000 acres that includes 5 passenger terminals that are all linked by train, and annually serve more than 40 million passengers that account for the almost 800 daily departures! IAH is the 9th busiest airport in the U.S. for total passengers, 7th largest international passenger gateway in the nation, and is the 6th busiest airport in the world for total aircraft movements.
Official Spotting Locations
Lee Road, just south of Will Clayton Parkway, is situated at the end of runway 27. Photograhers can get some nice approach pictures, although 26L and 26R are frequently used as well.
Other Spotting Locations
The top floor of the parking garages are prime vantage points for spotters and photographers. Houston Airport System's security desk prefers a phone call prior to spotters/photographers parking to advise them what location one is spotting from.
Terminal A/B Garage- Great for spotting domestic carriers excluding Continental, also great for takeoffs from any runway except 9/27. Terminal A garage, level 7 is a favourite amongst the IAH Spotters Club.
Terminal C Garage- See a ton of Continental aircraft here.
Terminal D/E Garage- This is a fun terminal between 3:20 and 5:00 (PM) to see arriving heavies, and cargo, as well as departing heavies (Continental 777-200, Air France 777-300, British Airways 777-200, KLM 747-400). It offers a great place to see arrivals on 26L; beware severe Heat Distortion between March through September.
DB Schenker (Previously BAX) Parking Facility
Just take a right pulling out of Lee Rd. Spotting area then head back towards the terminal, and take the first right. The DB Schenker Facility is clearly marked. NOTE park about halfway down as to not raise too much concern. Note that many people from the IAH Spotters Group have been hassled by Homeland Security, BAX Security, and HAS Security.
Shopping Center at Greens Road and Stephenson Road
Previously known as the Aviators Pub spotting area (Aviators Pub now a grassy field), this area offers great views of departures off of 15L, and 15R. Not officially official, so it's recommended you stay in your car with a scanner till the aircraft are cleared for takeoff. For 15R departures, drive to the western half of the shopping center's parking lot.
Locations to Avoid
All flights daily unless noted.
American (737, MD-80)
American Eagle ( CRJ-700)
Air Canada Express/Jazz (CRJ)
Delta (CRJ-200, CRJ-700, MD-88)
US Airways (737, A320, CRJ-700, E170)
United Express (ERJ, CRJ)
Terminal C & E
United (737, A320, 757-200, 757-300, 767-200, 767-300, 767-400, 777-200)
Aeromexico Connect (E190)
Air France (777-200/300) - AF636/639
British Airways (777-300ER, 777-200) 2x Daily BA26E/194 BA197/196
Emirates Airlines (777-300ER) 1x Daily EK211/212
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines (747-400M) 1X Daily KL23/24
Lufthansa (A380-800) 1X Daily LH440/441
Qatar Airways (777-200LR) - 1x Daily QR77/78
Singapore Airlines (777-300ER) - SQ62/61
TACA (A320, E190)
Atlas Air (Scheduled Charter for SonAir) (744)
British Airways World Cargo (747-8F) - BA3301 Operates every Sunday
Cathay Pacific Cargo (747-8F) - CX71 Sometimes skips IAH entirely in favor of LAX, or direct to ANC
ATI (DC-8, 767-200)
Air France Cargo (747-400F, 777-200F)
Qatar Airways Cargo (777-200F)
Lufthansa Cargo (MD-11F)