In 2007, Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport was the airport in Mainland China in terms of passenger traffic, with 30,958,467 people handled. As for cargo traffic, the airport was the in China and the worldwide. Guangzhou airport is also the airport in terms of traffic movements in China.
The current airport in Huadu District opened on August 5, 2004, replacing the 72-year-old previous, identically named . The new airport, built at a cost of 19.8 billion , is 28 kilometers from downtown Guangzhou and nearly 5 times larger than its predecessor.
The opening of the New Guangzhou Baiyun International Airport had relieved most of the controversies of the older and deteriorated airport because of the limited space, overcrowding and lack of expansions. Its opening allowed it to overcome curfews and restrictions and begin a 24 hour operation. This meant that China Southern Airlines could highly utilize their intercontinental routes by flying overnight. Other airlines have this benefit too.
"Baiyun" means "white clouds" in , and refers to near the location of the former airport. The airport is also referred to as "New Baiyun" to distinguish it from the previous version, but this is not a part of the official name.
Emirates Airline and Qatar Airways have launched new flights to the airport in 2008 from Dubai and Doha respectively. Emirates Airlines now flies six times weekly on everyday except Fridays using an Airbus A330-200 aircraft. From 1st October the service will become daily and from 1st December, Emirates plans to serve the route with a Boeing 777-200 aircraft. Qatar Airways currently operates 5 flights a week on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays using an Airbus A330-200 aircraft.
Kenya Airways may introduce non-stop daily flights in 2010. The airline has enhanced its services since July 3, 2008 to 6 flights weekly to Nairobi via Bangkok and Dubai. United Airlines received authorization to serve Guangzhou from San Francisco after winning rights. However, the start date has been pushed back a year due to high fuel costs. Also Jet Airways and have expressed their interest in opening routes to the airport in the near future. FedEx is going to open a new super hub at the airport in December 2008, replacing their current Subic Bay International Airport in Philippines.
The Novotel Baiyun Airport Guangzhou is a five-star hotel managed by Accor, a French hotel management group. Located beside the airport terminal, the hotel offers 460 guestrooms including 45 suites and two Biz Floors with comprehensive facilities including high speed Internet access.
*Runways: 2 , room reserved for 5 runways
*Aircraft parking bays: 166
*Current passenger capacity: 25 million passengers per year
*Planned capacity in 2010: 45 million passengers per year
*Planned capacity in 2020: 75 million passengers per year
*Current cargo capacity: 1 million tonnes
*Planned cargo capacity in 2010: 2 million tonnes
*Planned cargo capacity in 2020: over 2.17 million tonnes
*Branch airports: Shantou, Meizhou, Zhanjiang
*Planned branch airports: Weizhou, Zhaoqing
Construction of the E3 and W3 corridors are due to be completed in June 2009, which will increase the airport's capacity to 45 million passengers a year. The Asia Pacific hub of FedEx Express and a neutral cargo terminal are nearly finished and will start operation at the end of 2008. A new metro station located under the existing airport terminal, named "Airport South Station", is already under construction. When completed in 2010, the metro station will be part of line 3 of the Guangzhou Metro system and reduce the travelling time between the airport and the city centre to about half an hour.
In August 2008, the airport's new expansion plan got approved by the National Development and Reform Commission of China. According to the expansion project, the airport will build a third runway located 400 metres east of the existing east runway. The new runway will be 3800 metres long and 60 metres wide. Other facilities to be built in the expansion plan include a 531,000-square-metre Terminal 2, a new indoor car park and an outdoor car park, a transportation centre and another metro station which will serve Terminal 2. The total cost of the project will be RMB 14.036 billion . Construction is estimated to start in 2009 and the new runway will be completed in June 2010 before the . When the whole project is completed in 2013 or 2014, the airport will be able to handle 75 million passengers and more than 2.17 million tonnes of cargo a year.
Airlines and destinations
International passenger flights
*All Nippon Airways
*China Southern Airlines
*Thai Airways International
Domestic passenger flights
*China Eastern Airlines
*China Southern Airlines
*East Star Airlines
*United Eagle Airlines
Former passenger flights
*Orient Thai Airlines
-Ceased operations due to low profitability or competition with China Southern Airlines.
*Pakistan International Airlines
*Air France Cargo
*China Postal Airlines
*Korean Air Cargo
*Malaysia Airlines Kargo
*Saudi Arabian Airlines Cargo
*United Parcel Service