FRA, code for Frankfurt Airport, is located in Frankfurt am Main, Germany. The airport is approximately 12km or 8 miles to the south-west of the city, from central Frankfurt. Over 250 destinations are served by the large collection of airlines departing, one of the most important being the German Airline Deutsche Lufthansa. It welcomed its billionth passenger in July 2007 at Terminal 1.
In 2008, it was recorded that more than 53 million passengers passed through the airport, currently ranking it as the eighth-busiest in the world. Within Germany, this airport is accountable for 32% of all German passengers. It is also most significant with regards to airfreight traffic and is responsible for 63% of Germany’s airfreight movements. With so many destinations available, Frankfurt is highly attractive for business travellers, non-transfer and transfer passengers. The airport employs the highest number of people in any one location within Germany – more than 70 000.
Frankfurt is historically significant in regards to the 2nd World War. During the 2nd World War it was the second-largest airport operating in Germany. Female prisoners from the nearby concentration camp Walldorf were also forced to work at the airport from August to November in 1944. A second runway was built, as the main one was damaged from it being so heavily used. Thereafter, Lufthansa re-established their flights from Frankfurt in 1955. In 1972, the existing Terminal 1 was opened and the airport gained its status as a major international hub. In 1990, Terminal 2 began construction and was completed in 1994.
Frankfurt Airport has plans to construct a new runway, a third terminal and a new A380 maintenance base. This expansion is essential to maintain its present significance and to increase air traffic. Concerns for the environment are always an issue when an airport requires such major expansion and construction. Frankfurt Airport’s environmental management system is approved by the highly stringent standards of the EMAS, or Eco-Management and Audit Scheme. Much effort will be placed on protecting the environment, managing noise and air pollution, and conservation of natural land during the airport’s expansion.
The new runway will be situated partly in the Kelsterbach Forest and is planned to be about 2800 meters long. The new runway will be built at a distance from the existing North runway, thus allowing for simultaneous landing operations. With the construction of the new runway, Frankfurt Airport will achieve its goal of 120 movements per hour. Along with the runway, a new taxiway will also be built.
The new passenger Terminal 3 will be built on the southern side of Frankfurt Airport, the new terminal is expected to increase the current capacity of the airport by about 25 million.
A new wide body aircraft will be operated by Lufthansa and other airlines. This new addition is the reason for the construction of the new A380 maintenance hanger. It will also be built on the south side of the airport. The new A380 aircraft will have a maximum of 840 seats and is designed to be much quieter with an automatic noise optimization function. It will emit fewer pollutants as well.
Frankfurt Airport currently consists of two terminals, both featuring every facility a person would desire and more. hroughout the airport there are restaurants, fast-food outlets and 24-hour snack bars. The outdoor Beer Garden in Terminal 1, Level 3, is very popular, or perhaps the rooftop beer garden (Biergarten) in the summer. Terminal 1 is also well equipped with the Laden Galerie shopping mall, two hair salons and pay showers.
A unique feature of the airport is the Forum, which is designed to inform the public of the history. 10 comfortable ‘Bubble’ chairs sway gently over the airport’s floor map! Enjoy the Galleries in both terminals or spend a little quiet time in Terminal 1’s chapel or one of the three prayer rooms in Terminal 2. A casino is available for adult enjoyment and for the children there are many free play areas. Children will also enjoy the Visitor’s Terrace with miniature aircraft and a good view of the airplanes. For the Visitor’s Terrace, an admission fee is applicable.
It is one of the busiest hubs in Europe and with expansion will service over 80 Million passengers per year travelling to large number of destinations including:
Within the airport, some of the airlines offer business lounges for their club members. If you are not a member, then a day pass for either of the two Europe City Club lounges will cost you about 15 US dollars. The airport Centre (FAC) offers passengers a Communication Centre with rental phones and internet access, and a Conference Centre for meetings and renting of office equipment. The FAC is accessed from Terminal 1 via an enclosed pedestrian walkway.
Considering all its unique and wonderful features, Frankfurt Airport is an ideal location for anybody, even if one is not due for departure!
Hertz Frankfurt Airport have an excellent range of vehicles if you have time to explore the city by car. It may be wise if this is your first time to also take the Sat Nav Neverlost system offered by Hertz to take the stress out of driving.