Home travel Uncovering the Mystery: Airports with Missing Terminal Numbers

Uncovering the Mystery: Airports with Missing Terminal Numbers


Embarking on a journey through the world’s airports, we often encounter the familiar sight of terminals labeled with numbers or letters. However, there are some airports that deviate from this norm, leaving travelers puzzled by the absence of certain terminal numbers. Let’s dive into the intriguing world of missing terminal numbers and unravel the reasons behind this phenomenon.

Missing Terminal Numbers
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John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK)

At JFK, the terminals are numbered from 1 to 8, but 2, 3, and 6 are conspicuously missing. The reason for this can be traced back to extensive renovations and redevelopment plans. Terminal 2, the oldest on the airport grounds, was closed and will soon be demolished to make way for the New Terminal One project, scheduled to open in 2026. Similarly, Terminal 3 made room for the New Terminal One as part of a comprehensive $18 billion redevelopment initiative. Terminal 6, which was once slated for demolition, is now undergoing construction to become a new terminal, encompassing the site of the former Terminal 6 and the soon-to-be-demolished Terminal 7.

Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD)

Chicago O’Hare‘s terminal numbering follows a sequence of 1, 2, 3, and 5, leaving out Terminal 4. The absence of Terminal 4 can be traced back to the airport’s early history. From its opening in 1944 until 1985, O’Hare operated with just three terminals. Terminal 4 was a temporary facility constructed to accommodate international flights during the construction of a more extensive terminal. The new international terminal, known as Terminal 5, was named as such to avoid confusion with the temporary Terminal 4. Despite Terminal 4 eventually closing, passengers had already embraced the name “Terminal 5,” leading to the decision not to renumber the facility.

Boston Logan International Airport (BOS)

Boston Logan Airport presents another case of missing terminal numbers. The airport features terminals labeled A, B, C, and E, but there is no Terminal D. Terminal D’s gates were incorporated into Terminals C and E during a reconfiguration project in 2006. This adjustment was prompted by the acquisition of Air Tran Airways by Southwest Airlines, leading to the gates’ renumbering and integration into existing terminals. Although renaming Terminal E to D was considered, the cost of new signage deterred authorities from pursuing this option.

Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU)

RDU Airport’s terminal numbering took an unconventional turn in its evolution. The airport began as a single-terminal facility, but in the 1980s, a replacement terminal named “Terminal A” was introduced. Terminals B and C followed suit, with Terminal B closing its doors in 2014. This left only Terminals A and C, causing an anomaly in the labeling system. To rectify this irregularity, the Airport Authority undertook renovations in the 2010s, renaming the two remaining terminals as “1” and “2.”

Also Read : San Francisco Airport Terminal Guide

In conclusion, the absence of terminal numbers in certain airports adds an intriguing twist to the typical numbering system we encounter during our travels. These unique circumstances arise from a variety of factors, including extensive renovations, reconfigurations, and the need to accommodate changing airline operations. So, the next time you find yourself navigating one of these airports missing terminal numbers, embrace the mystery and appreciate the stories behind their unconventional terminal labeling.

Do you also get confused between airport terminal numbers? What are your opinions about missing terminal numbers at these airports? Comment below and let us know. 

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