I can't relax about LAX!! Help with Terminal 7.
April 4, 2008 3:05 PM   Subscribe

What would be the best place to pick up a group arriving at the United Terminal (Terminal 7) at LAX?

A handful of people on different United flights are arriving at LAX's Terminal 7. One other person will be picking them all up. She needs to tell them:

a) where to meet up with each other,

b) where to go to meet her van.

Does anyone with more familiarity with LAX than I do have any suggestions for A and B?

We've searched online for maps of Terminal 7 but it is difficult to find specifics around baggage claim and such (like "meet under the sign that says Such and Such and then meet the van at the door closest to Traveler's Aid").
posted by jeanmari to Travel & Transportation around Los Angeles, LA (5 answers total)
It's tough to describe. Terminal 7 is designed to get you out of the secure areas as quickly as possible and into the baggage claim area, which is crowded and tiny. From there, it dumps directly out on the curb, and there's no going back.

I would pick a gate number inside the terminal and have them all meet there. There is no good, describable place to meet inside the baggage claim area, and waiting out in the pickup zone would be a royal pain in the ass.
posted by SpecialK at 3:09 PM on April 4, 2008

I was there the other night and it looked like, despite the restoration work, Encounter restaurant in the Theme Building (the flying saucer directly in the center of the airport) might be open. That's always been my favorite meeting spot. Even if Encounter is shut, it's a nice, central place that anyone could find, and easier to drive up to, or park close to, than the curb. Alternately, folks could hop a shuttle (free, I think) to a nearby hotel or parking lot, or for $4 take a Flyaway bus to Westwood, Van Nuys or Union Station.
posted by Scram at 3:16 PM on April 4, 2008

I was going to send you a google maps "street view" link for the outside of Terminal 7 so your travelers would know what to expect, but for some reason the street view car drove by Terminal 1,2, & 3 but not the other side where 7 is located.
posted by sharkfu at 3:19 PM on April 4, 2008

Best answer: I live right next door to LAX and pick my folks up from there all the time (they fly in to visit quite regularly, and always on United). The best approach we've come up with is to meet on the departures level (that's the top floor, and there are escalators that will take you up from the arrivals level after you get your baggage). Once you are on the departures level face the street and turn right. You'll be able to see a big overhead walkway that leads to the parking lot opposite the terminal. From here there are several options:

1) Park your vehicle on the top level of the parking structure that services Terminal 7 (I don't recall the number, but it's clearly marked for United), then have your travelers meet there by using the overhead bridge. The pickup vehicle can park there indefinitely, though you're paying for it.

2) Have them wait under or near the overhead bridge and pick them up on the departures level. I do this all the time, but unless your group is all together at once you may have to do several laps around the airport if the security folks give you a hard time. This has never personally happened to me, though once I have the 'rents in sight I pull over, get them and their luggage in the car, then zip out of there in 5 minutes or less.

3) A combination of the two; park the pickup vehicle on the upper floor of the parking garage, then have the driver meet everyone at the terminal (probably still best to use the departure level, as it's usually much less crowded) and escort them back to the vehicle.

Hope that helps!
posted by Pachycerianthus at 5:43 PM on April 4, 2008

Terminal 7 is tiny, hard to miss anyone there. There's only two places passengers can possibly come out, and you can see both from a point in the middle. There's a digital sign inside that shows which baggage carousel they'll be gathering at...

The problem is that UA often changes their mind and routes planes to other terminals (they also use 2, 3, 5, 6.... hell, probably more than that) at the last minute. The sign will update to tell you this, but it's not nice, since that's a loooong walk down the single straight street between.

But if they all actually arrive at #7, it'll be easy. If you must have a meeting point, there is an information booth just before the doors to the street... it's on the extreme left hand side for passengers coming in, the far right for pedestrians walking in.

Just stand in the middle and hold a sign?
posted by rokusan at 7:10 PM on April 4, 2008 [1 favorite]

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