This 3-runway airport is ranked as the 5th best in the world. With its state-of-the-art design, stunning architecture and ... More
Vancouver International Airport
This 3-runway airport is ranked as the 5th best in the world. With its state-of-the-art design, stunning architecture and impressive West Coast Aboriginal art, the airport is a pleasure to roam through on your way in or out of the city. Sixteen million people pass through here annually. Enjoy shopping, fine and fast food restaurants, and services like children's play areas, hotels and banking. It is located 20-minutes from downtown Vancouver and offers short and long term parking.
YVR is truly beautiful, and the architecture is superb. One of the most beautiful airport I have visited.
Some customs officers (I am sure some are really nice people, but unfortunately, I usually meet bad ones) are extremely rude and arrogant. The customs officers are treating people like criminals. I get really upset every time when I fly in to YVR because of these customs' arrogant attitude ,insensible questions, and hostile comments. I have traveled quite a lot, especially in Asia, Narita and Hong Kong airport is out of the question, but I have been in Chinese airports with Migs and Su-27 constantly flying over my head, and their border officers, wearing military uniforms with ranking badges, were polite and nice to me. Yet in YVR, I feel the officers are taking their great authority as granted and look down at passengers and treating everyone as potential criminals or terrorists. (FYI, I am a Canadian Citizen, clean record, in fact, I don't even have a speeding ticket in my life and well, they treat me if I was a criminal every time I enter my own country)
The security personnel lacks of proper training and manner. I once was carrying a lot of ISO 1600 films (High sensitivity films, and yes, quite expensive) and at first, that security lady in her 40~50s didn't want to hand check them and want to throw them into the X-ray machine. After I demanded for hand-check, she forced me to open all the packages,(they were in their original paper package, unopened) 20+ canisters of them, and they were using a clamp with a piece of cloth and wiping all the canisters and the film tail sticking out to check for explosive residue, in a very unprofessional way. I was pretty sure they did not really know how work the spectrometer. I would not mind if she told me to open 1 or 2 packages and check the canisters, but opening all of them, swiping all of them, is not smart and wasted a lot of time (not to mention I am carrying some of them for my friend, and now its opened, I can't give them as gifts anymore). In fact, these films went through Narita and Taipei airport security checks without any problem. The Japanese and Taiwanese securities let me go in 5 seconds. I don't understand why YVR didn't know what a roll of film look like. Furthermore, the same lady was COMMANDING me not to put my wallet/keys/cell phones into the basket to be ready for X-ray unless she direct me to do so. Excuse me, this is not my first time in an airport, I know what I am doing, but as for her... I have no idea.
There are a lot more horror stories about how some of the YVR staffs and authorities are rude, cold, unhelpful, arrogant, and sometimes ignorant. However, I think the recent incident of Polish immigrant, Robert Dzeikanski says it all, the 4 RCMP (the Canadian police) officers in YVR were clearly on a power trip, and killed the poor man who was clearly very upset being trapped in the airport for 10 hours because no one from YVR cared. They are remarkable indicators on the current state of YVR and sometimes I wonder if the YVR has turned into a gang of Gestapos.
With the 2010 Olympic coming soon, I am really concerned on how people will be treated in YVR. I would suggest anyone to avoid YVR if possible! Please don't get me wrong, I love Canada, I am proud to be a British Columbian, and people in Canada ARE really nice and friendly. However, this does not include YVR and I think YVR is a disgrace to all Canadians. YVR also owes every traveler a big apology.
Arriving in Vancouver is great - the lines at customs move and there is a nice vibe to the place.
HOWEVER - this is NOT the US. LEAVING IS INSANE. Lines just to get to customs is about 2 hours - due do Canadian Efficiency (I don't think being efficient ranks real high in that nation). If you ever tried to get a cab after getting off a cruise in Vancouver, well that will get you ready for what is waiting you at the airport.
I ran into a super guy working for Continental who put me in a wheelchair so I could cut the lines (otherwise I would of missed my flight - after all I only arrived an hour and forty five minutes before my flight). Also - VERY IMPORTANT TO GET A LUGGAGE CARRIAGE BECAUSE YOU CARRY YOUR OWN LUGGAGE PAST CUSTOMS, SO YOU WILL BE CARRYING YOUR LUGGAGE FOR 2 HOURS BEFORE THE AIRLINE TAKES THEM (AGAIN CANADA IN ACTION).
Vancouver is a great place - great city, great seafood, scenic - but the airport is almost as bad as JFK (perhaps - and I can't believe I'm saying this, may be worse).
If you go to Vancouver from a foreign land be prepared to walk quit a distance. The baggage can also come out damaged too. It drops off a conveyer belt about 5' unless they changed it.
I have been in many many airports and Vancouver's isn't my favorite place, but it's still nice.
We were in and out of the airport smoothe as silk. Unlike anything we expected because of the horrible stories of long waits through customs and what we heard about this airport. The other members of our party arrived several hours earlier than us and had a terrible time through customs. Apparently, we arrived late evening(after 8pm, Friday), and left early evening(6pm, Saturday)which must have made all the difference in the world. If long lines and chaos is the norm then fly later and travel on the weekends through this nice airport.
The good: YVR is one of the nicest airports I've ever been to.
The bad: I had an extra six hours to "enjoy" it since customs is painfully slow (causing us to miss our flight).
If you are leaving in the morning, be sure to arrive at least 2 hours in advance of your flight. While sitting in the secondary inspection room, with a host of other poor souls, I heard tale after tale of really, really bad YVR stories. According to those that frequently fly out of YVR - and consistent with my experience - the airport is always jammed in the morning and missed flights are the norm. I also overheard the following, "they must find the biggest jerks in all of Canada and move them to the border to work in customs"...
Contemporary motor hotel 4 miles east of airport 10 miles to downtown Vancouver 5 miles to Steveston Village and Water
Mania. Amenities:Air Conditioning (In Room). Newspaper (Free). Refrigerator. Iron. Telephone. Television (Cable/Satellite). Microwave Oven. Non Smoking Rooms. Television. DVD/VCR. ...
Many postcards of the city display images of this "five sailed" complex adorning the harbor shoreline. The centre, located downtown,
was Canada's Pavilion at the 1986 World Expo and is currently the home of the World Trade Centre and ...
The Hampton Inn by Hilton Vancouver Airport Hotel is situated in the tourist and commercial area of Richmond with business
communities, tourist destinations, shopping centers, and entertainment venues steps from the hotel door.Take advantage of the amenities and service ...