Getting around in any airport can be a daunting task. Even our local Minneapolis–Saint Paul International Airport has grown so large and complex that few are familiar with all the services and options available. Here are four hints that may ease your stress in getting around MSP.
Know Your Destination Terminal
Commercial passenger service is divided between two Minneapolis terminals: Terminal 1, Lindbergh, and Terminal 2, Humphrey. Be sure to determine your destination terminal in advance because you will have to choose the proper lane well in advance of your exit, regardless of which way you are approaching the airport. Your terminal is determined by your carrier.
Terminal 1, Lindbergh, houses ten passenger airlines. They are Air Canada, Air France, Alaska, American, Delta, Frontier, Great Lakes, Spirit, United and US Airways.
Terminal 2, Humphrey, is home to Condor, Icelandair, Southwest and Sun Country.
Choose The Best Parking Option
The airport offers a wide variety of parking options depending on the purpose of your visit. Valet parking starts at $10 the first hour up to $40 per day. Short-term parking is intended for up to seven hours and allows you to help your passenger in or out of the terminal. It can cost $5 the first hour up to $36 per day. Some like to park in the Humphrey Terminal ramp for $16 per day and take the light rail to Lindberg or park in a remote lot for $14 daily and take a shuttle to Lindberg. See all these PARKmsp options here.
Get more favorable long-term rates at independent lots just off the airport premises at Shepard Road Airport Parking on the east side, Park ‘N Fly south of Humphrey or E-Z Air Park on Lexington Avenue in Eagan. Rates start at $9 to $12 per day or $77 per week.
Be Aware Of Airport Services
MSP provides complimentary semi-private workstations with access to telephones, data ports, FedEx service and ATMs in Humphrey and each concourse in Lindberg. You can exchange currency, transfer money, buy travelers checks or get a photocopy, fax or phone cards at the USBank and the Travelex offices located in the ticketing lobby. Try the US Postal Service on Glumack Drive for late hour service, 7:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. on Monday through Saturday, and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. Be aware, the last collection hours are 7:00 p.m. on Monday through Friday and 4:00 p.m. on Saturday.
Things To Do On A Four-Hour Layover
MSP offers places to eat, be entertained and rest. You can eat, drink and pass the time at more than two-dozen full-service restaurants throughout the airport. If you are seeking a more secluded area to rest, read, meditate or pray, go to Chili’s Too and the Delta Sky Club and take the stairs or elevator up one level to the mezzanine level overlooking the airport mall.
Families with small children can use a family center in Lindbergh near the entrance to Concourse E providing comfortable seating, a family restroom, a rocking chair and a crib. Kids will enjoy play areas with a mock air traffic control tower and airplane with a slide. Look for the large Snoopy statue at the entrance of the Lindbergh play area in Concourse C. Humphrey’s play area is just inside security. Kids may like to look for books, toys and games at the Red Balloon Bookshop in Lindberg. Teens can pass the time at an arcade offered in each terminal.
Robin Johnson was born in Annandale, Minn. and graduated from Richfield High School and then the University of Minnesota where he studied Political Science, Business and Industrial Relations. A writer for Examiner.com, he also consults with a variety of organizations and individuals helping them develop and grow. His work can be found at Examiner.com.