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Golden Gate Xpress

The Student News Site of San Francisco State University

Golden Gate Xpress

Xplainer: Oakland International Airport

A guide to flying from OAK

San Francisco Bay Oakland International Airport, also known as OAK, offers round-trip flights as cheap as $39 to Los Angeles (LAX), $46 to Las Vegas (LAS), and $50 to San Diego (SAN) in June. The airport has flights to 51 destinations with 12 airlines out of 28 gates. It’s also the most centrally-located airport in the Bay Area.

Why is it called OAK?

The International Air Transport Association (IATA) creates the three-letter designations for baggage tags so luggage heads to the correct airport. OAK is the IATA designation for Oakland’s airport.

How can students get there by public transit from SFSU?

First, head to Coliseum BART station.

During the fall and spring semesters, with your OneCard discount, it’s cheapest to head to Daly City BART station on an SFSU shuttle or 28 or 28R Muni bus. From there, take a green or blue line BART train all the way to Coliseum station. The BART fare will be $2.75 and the shuttles and buses are free.

Outside of those semesters or without your OneCard discount, take the M Oceanview to Embarcadero station and take BART to Coliseum station from there. The Muni Metro fare is $2.50 if you’re paying by Clipper card or $3 if paying by cash. BART fare is $4.95. That’s a total of $7.45 or $7.95.

At Coliseum station, you have two options: Walk to platform three for BART’s Oakland Airport Connector, which costs $7.10, or walk outside the station and take AC Transit’s 73 bus, which costs $2.25 if paying by Clipper card or $2.50 if paying by cash.

Depending on when and how you pay, the total ranges from $5 to $15.05. Add the cost of heading to Coliseum station plus the cost of getting to the airport from there for your total.

What parking options are available?

A Southwest Airlines plane connected to a jetway on May 11, 2024. (Neal Wong)

OAK offers parking onsite. Parking bookings must be made at least two hours in advance at this website. The airport has four paid parking lots: Premier, Hourly, Daily, and Economy. They can all be used for long-term or hourly parking.

The free Park & Call lot is for people picking up others and has a time limit of 30 minutes.

How can people get around the airport?

You can walk from any gate to any other gate within 15 minutes. The terminals are connected before and after security. The airport has a shuttle between the terminals and the economy parking lot.

All Southwest flights are in Terminal 2. All non-Southwest flights are in Terminal 1.

Which gates are at each terminal?

Terminal 1: Gates 1-17

Terminal 2: Gates 20-32

When are security checkpoints open?

There are two checkpoints, one in each terminal. There are no set times, but they open 90 minutes before the departure time of the first flight of the day. The first flight of the day can be found at this website.

When are businesses open?

The earliest opening time for businesses in the airport is 4 a.m. and all businesses close by 12:30 a.m.


The prices listed at the top of this article were accurate at the time of publication.

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About the Contributor
Neal Wong
Neal Wong, Co-Copy Editor
Neal Wong (he/him) is a third-year journalism student and minoring in urban studies and planning. He was born and raised in San Francisco and attended Washington High School. He has photographed and written for Golden Gate Xpress first as a contributor, then as a photographer, and now as a copy editor. His photos have also been published by the San Francisco Bay ViewSan Francisco Public Press, Mission Local, and Xpress Magazine. Neal has also created and taught four SFSU Experimental College courses. His hobbies include traveling, cooking, and reading.

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