Sea-Tac Airport | KUOW News and Information

Sea-Tac Airport

KUOW Photo/Carolyn Adolph

Seattle’s boom has made Sea-Tac a busier place, particularly at the south terminal where international passengers arrive after long flights. But that terminal was built in the 1970s.

The Port of Seattle is starting a nearly $800 million project to replace it.

Irfan Fazl, center, a dual citizen of the UK and Kenya, reunites with friends at Sea-Tac Airport after his flight from London. He's Muslim and his friends worried the travel ban might cause problems.
KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

Part of President Donald Trump’s travel ban is now reinstated at U.S. borders. It places new visa restrictions six Muslim countries and refugees — except for people with a close connection to the U.S. KUOW was at Sea-Tac airport Thursday night as the ban started and the first international flight came through.

 

KUOW Photo/Liz Jones

A portion of President Trump’s travel ban on six majority Muslim nations is set to be reinstated on Thursday. Much has changed since the initial ban rolled out in late January, leading to a weekend of chaos and protest at Sea-Tac Airport. This time around is likely to be more subdued.


2017 is the first full summer the Sea-Tac airport is using displays that show the wait time for each security checkpoint.
KUOW Photo/John Ryan

The Port of Seattle is cutting down on passenger wait times at security screening checkpoints.

File photo of Paine Field from August 2009.
Wikipedia Photo/Jelson25 (Public Domain)

Seattle area travelers will have two airport options starting next year. Alaska Airlines says it's bringing commercial flights to Paine Field, bordering Everett and Mukilteo, by fall of 2018. It's the first airline to do so.

Updated at 2:55 p.m. ET

Airline passengers coming to the U.S. and Britain on direct flights from a number of majority-Muslim nations must now place most electronic devices, including laptops, tablets and cameras, in checked baggage under stepped-up security measures, the Trump administration and the British government said.

Passengers can still carry smartphones into the plane's cabin, but nothing larger, officials from the two countries added.

The big three U.S. airlines — American, Delta and United — are all taking on the discount carriers by offering no-frills, discounted fares, called "basic economy." Some critics call it "misery class" because you'll board last, sit in a middle seat near the back of the plane, and on United and American, you can't bring a carry-on bag.

Now there is evidence that this lower class of fare is not any lower priced, but instead is a way to raise standard economy fares.

The Federal Aviation Administration says reports of unsafe flying by civilian drones "have increased dramatically" over the past two years.

Pro-immigrant protesters forced off light rail walk the last 2 miles to their destination, Sea-Tac Airport, on Saturday.
Courtesy of Adam Dodge

Hundreds of protesters of President Donald Trump's executive order on immigration were stymied in their efforts to get to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport Saturday night.

Six light rail trains skipped the airport stop entirely after Port of Seattle police tried to curtail the rising numbers of protesters there, a civil rights infringement that transit officials say won't happen again.

From left, Haider Kadhem, Sarmd Hady, Wafaa Fakhri and Mustafa Kadhem. Fakhri had gone to visit her sister, who is ill, in Iraq. She worried she wouldn't be allowed back in to the U.S., even though she is a green card holder.
KUOW Photo/Kate Walters

Nervous families gathered at Sea-Tac airport on Monday morning, three days after the president's executive order banning travelers from seven majority Muslim countries.

Muwafag Gasim, of Sudan and Seattle, was detained for five hours upon return from a family visit. Gasim is a construction engineer in Seattle.
KUOW Photo/Kate Walters

Muwafag Gasim, a construction engineer in Seattle, touched down at Sea-Tac International Airport at 6:30 a.m. on Sunday.

He lined up with his fellow passengers to present his passport and visa to U.S. Customs and Border Protection – a step required of passengers flying in from abroad.

Bill Radke speaks with Port of Seattle spokesman Brian DeRoy about planned improvements to the walkway between Sound Transit's Airport Station and Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. Among the improvements to the approximately quarter-mile walk: wind screens, heat lamps and golf carts.

People bring flowers and candles to mourn for the victims at Place de la Bourse in the center of Brussels, Tuesday, March 22, 2016.
AP Photo/Martin Meissner

The deadly attacks in Belgium's capital have heightened security efforts in Seattle and throughout the U.S.

A jet takes off from Sea-Tac airport.
Flickr Photo/Alan Turkus (CC BY 2.0)

Airport workers filed 14 class action lawsuits Wednesday, claiming wage theft against their employers.

They say they aren't being paid the $15 dollar minimum wage in SeaTac, which went into effect in 2014.

Their lawyers estimate the workers are owed, on average, $20,000 in back-pay and penalties.

Duncan Turner is the lead counsel on the lawsuits, filed in King County Superior Court.

He says that many of the plaintiffs are immigrants, and they work as baggage handlers, rental car staff, janitors, and plane refuelers at Sea-Tac Aiport.

Mark Kopczak from Spirit Airlines shakes hands with Port of Seattle CEO Ted Fick during the announcement Thursday of Spirit's service to Sea-Tac Airport.
KUOW photo/Kate Walters

A seat: That's all you get when you buy a ticket with low-cost carrier Spirit Airlines. If you want more than that, you pay for it.

Spirit is bringing its bare-bones business model to the Seattle Tacoma International Airport, beginning service there in March.

A jet takes off from Sea-Tac airport.
Flickr Photo/Alan Turkus (CC BY 2.0)

It’s another sign of booming times at Sea-Tac Airport: The Port of Seattle commissioners have approved paying almost $14 million to Delta Airlines to build a new lounge.

The new lounge would be about double the size of Delta's current one. And it'll be centrally located, between the two main airport concourses.

John and Linda Beatty of Seattle watch Foss Maritime tugs pull the Polar Pioneer oil rig south past Discovery Park toward the Port of Seattle's Terminal 5 on May 14, 2015.
KUOW Photo/Gil Aegerter

The Shell oil rig that occupied a terminal at the Port of Seattle is gone now.

But its legacy lives on, as candidates for the Port of Seattle Commission square off about the port’s future. An all-candidates meeting was held Monday night. 

A jet takes off from Sea-Tac airport.
Flickr Photo/Alan Turkus (CC BY 2.0)

International travel from Sea-Tac Airport is expected to grow by a quarter over the next five years. So the Port of Seattle is getting serious about expanding facilities for international passengers.

You’d think airlines would be happy about that, but many of them went to the Port Commission meeting Tuesday to protest. 

KUOW Photo/John Ryan

A labor dispute with dock workers has led to slowdowns and backups at West Coast ports. One part of the Port of Seattle's cargo business is booming. KUOW's John Ryan reports.

Delta Air Lines CEO Richard Anderson said his company wants to nearly double its footprint at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

KUOW Photo/Ruby de Luna

At the Alaska Airlines ticket counter at Sea-Tac Airport, parents Ron and Christine Vega wait for their boarding passes.

Their son, Gibson, 5, carries a blue backpack that has essentials for a mock airplane trip: snacks, things to keep him preoccupied and a white cloth towel that helps him deal with stress.

Can two airlines be partners and rivals at the same time? Seattle-based Alaska Airlines and Delta Air Lines are long-term contractual allies. But now the relationship is being tested.

The Washington Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Washington employers must “reasonably” accommodate the religious practices of their employees.

The parent company of Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air announced strong earnings for the first quarter of the year on Friday.

Flickr Photo/The All-Nite Images

Marcie Sillman talks with Jack Temple, a National Employment Law Project policy analyst, about the movement to raise the minimum wage and why states are starting to take action.

$15 Minimum Wage Proponents To Appeal Court Decision

Dec 30, 2013
A view from inside Sea-Tac airport.
Flickr Photo/Nancy White (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Steve Scher talks with Heather Weiner, Yes! for SeaTac campaign spokeswoman, about the next steps after a King County Superior Court Judge ruled the minimum wage law would not apply to employees who work inside the Sea-Tac airport.

Flickr Photo/Alan Turkus

Three weeks after Election Day, supporters of a measure to increase the minimum hourly wage to $15 in SeaTac celebrated their victory. With the last batch of votes counted, King County declared the proposition had passed with more than 1 percent of the vote.

Flickr Photo/Alan Turkus

Suwanee Pringle, a worker at a shop at Sea-Tac International Airport, lights up at the mention of Proposition 1, which would raise her wage to $15 an hour.

"I’m really going to be happy, " Pringle said. "So I can afford to pay all my bills. Now I cannot afford to eat. I eat a cup of noodles even though I work so hard."

Flickr Photo/Tom Collines

For federal employees, Tuesday is payday. But because of the partial government shutdown thousands of federal employees are getting a reduced paycheck.

An initiative to raise the minimum wage in the City of SeaTac will appear on the November ballot. A ruling Friday from a state appeals court cleared the path for the measure to move forward.

SeaTac’s Prop 1 initiative aims to set a minimum wage at $15 an hour for many workers at and around the airport, like baggage handlers and hotel staff.

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