Hong Kong international airport
Hong Kong International Airport is the main airport in Hong Kong. It is colloquially known as Chek Lap Kok Airport, being built on the island of Chek Lap Kok by land reclamation, and also to distinguish it from its predecessor, the closed Kai Tak Airport.
The airport opened for commercial operations in 1998, replacing Kai Tak, and is an important regional trans-shipment centre, passenger hub and gateway for destinations in Mainland China (with over 40 destinations) and the rest of Asia.
HKIA also operates one of the world's largest passenger terminal buildings (the largest when opened in 1998) and operates 24 hours a day. The airport is operated by the Airport Authority Hong Kong and is the primary hub for Cathay Pacific, Dragonair, Hong Kong Airlines, Hong Kong Express Airways and Air Hong Kong (cargo). The airport is also one of the Asian-Pacific cargo hubs for UPS Airlines.
HKIA is an important contributor to the Hong Kong economy, employing approximately 60,000 people. About 90 airlines operate flights from the airport to over 150 cities across the globe. In 2011 HKIA handled 53,314,213 passengers, making it the 10th busiest airport worldwide by passenger traffic.It also surpassed Memphis International Airport to become the world's busiest airport by cargo traffic.
I was stunned to see Hong Kong airport, its so very huge and neatly maintained, everywhere you can find a sign board written in English with clear instruction also you can information center at every 50 meters, people were very helpful and they ensure you reach your destination safely.
Airport located in a scenic location, one side of the airport will be full of mountains and other side of the airport will be sea, not sure how the pilots are able to land and take off safely as sea wind will be very high as its in proximity distance and more over wind get hit in the mountains and will form a reverse effect.
Airport is equipped with walkators and elevators every where so that you don't feel a pain of going through the huge airport. Airport walls are made of glass and the view is outstanding, roof is made of a translucent material so that it passes on enough natural light to the airport, I notices there were no lighting in the main terminal, only the shops and signboards had lighting.
Arrivals are handled in the ground floor and departures are from the first floor and there are more than 100 gates in the air port. It has a huge customer waiting lounge next to every gate with a restroom and a smoking lounge . After seeing more and more smoking lounges I got a big craving for a smoke, so went to a duty shop to buy a pack for Marlboro, however I was told only carton will be old and not a single pack, it din't make any sense for me to buy a carton of cigarette just to smoke one and moreover price was on the higher side so my smoking craving got extinguished
There are more than 50 restaurants in each corner and you get all variety of foods there and almost everything is open 24 hours, it also houses many duty free shops and couple of other expensive brands. Most of the shops accept USD and HKD and you will find a forex near every shop.
Most of the ground vans are either Nissan or Toyota and I spotted couple of Hyundai and Mitsubishi. Majority of the vans used by the ground staff were Nissan. There were also couple Nissan Leaf operating in the ground. Other than this I saw some Kia and Hyundai vehicles. Trucks were MAN and Isuzu, there was too many advertisement about Infinity inside the airport I guess this has got something to do with the recent movement of Infinity head quarters to Hong Kong. There were also battery operated cars inside the terminals which would shuttle passengers from one gate to another, not sure whether its complementary or a charged one.
Airport security is upto the brim and they check each and everything, if the spot something in the x-ray scanning then they open the baggage and check it thoroughly.
Hong Kong airport also provides a complimentary wi-fi service and its super fast.
There were too many Japanese, Chinese, Korean restaurant serving some weird food following their culture, I did not spot any Indian restaurant though. There was Mcdonalds in there which serves very good burgers which are unavailable in India. I spotted 2 folks from Bangalore who are on their way to China, we were having chat for more than an hour. Those 2 poor souls are vegetarians and they din't have anything to eat even in McD, McD doesn't has any vegetarian burger in their menu, poor chaps were eating corn. I don't know how they are going to survive in China
Every 45 seconds a flight lands in the airport and all ground staffs were busy most of the time.