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Ottawa Airport YOW

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Ottawa Airport (YOW) Guide

Welcome to Ottawa Airport (YOW), the first Canadian airport to offer U.S. Customs pre-clearance, streamlining your journey to the U.S. Our concise guide equips you with everything needed for a smooth travel experience at Canada's capital city gateway. From flight updates to parking and dining options, we simplify your airport navigation. Dive deeper into airport insights with our Comprehensive Airport Guide on iFly.

Helpful Tips & Resources

Is Ottawa Airport (YOW) airport a bit unfamiliar to you? Look no further than for insightful tips and advice. Read on!

YOW has one terminal building with two levels. The terminal has two concourses, Concourse A and Concourse B. Concourse A has 14 gates and Concourse B has 12 gates. The terminal is used by major airlines such as Air Canada, WestJet, Porter Airlines, and Delta Airlines.

Passengers arriving at the airport can find baggage claim areas on the lower level of the terminal. The upper level of the terminal houses the check-in counters, security checkpoints, and departure gates. Concourse A is located on the left side of the terminal and Concourse B is located on the right side of the terminal.

For passengers with connecting flights, it is important to note that YOW Airport does not have a separate international terminal. All passengers, regardless of their destination, will arrive and depart from the same terminal building.

Use our interactive airport map to locate food, services, and airline departure gates.

Connecting Between Terminals

The airport has only one terminal building, making it easy for travelers to navigate. Once you arrive at the airport, you can easily find your way to the baggage claim area, ground transportation options, and the departure gates. The terminal building is designed to provide a smooth and hassle-free experience for all travelers.

If you need to move between the different areas of the terminal building, you can easily walk from one end to the other. The walking time is minimal, and there are no shuttle buses or trains required to move between the different areas of the terminal. The Ottawa Airport terminal building is compact and well-designed, making it easy for travelers to navigate and find their way to their destination.

Picking Up and Dropping Off Passengers

At YOW Airport, passengers can be picked up and dropped off at the curbside of the terminal building. However, there are restrictions on curbside parking, as vehicles cannot be left unattended. Drivers must remain in their vehicles at all times while waiting for passengers.

For those who need to wait for arriving passengers, there are cell-phone waiting areas available. These areas are located near the terminal building and provide a convenient place for drivers to wait until their passengers have arrived and are ready to be picked up. It is important to note that vehicles cannot be parked in these areas and drivers must remain in their vehicles at all times.

Parking Facilities & Options

If you're flying out of the airport, you have several parking options to choose from. The airport offers both covered and uncovered parking in various lots and garages. Short-term parking is available for those who are dropping off or picking up passengers, while long-term parking is available for those who will be away for an extended period.

In addition to the on-site parking options, Ottawa Airport also offers a cell phone waiting area for those who are picking up passengers. This area allows drivers to wait in their cars until their passengers are ready to be picked up, without having to pay for parking.

For those who require handicapped parking, designated spots are available in all parking areas. In addition, shuttle buses are equipped with wheelchair lifts to assist passengers with disabilities.

If you're looking for a more economical parking option, off-airport parking is available near Ottawa Airport. These lots offer shuttle service to and from the airport, and can often be reserved in advance.

Get details about YOW parking options and rates, along with more economical off-airport parking here.

Transportation Options

When arriving at YOW Airport, there are several transportation options available to get you to your destination.

If you prefer to rent a car, there are several car rental facilities located at the airport, including major providers such as Avis, Budget, Enterprise, and Hertz. You can find the car rental counters in the arrivals area of the terminal building.

Taxi services are also available at the airport, with designated drop-off areas located outside of the terminal building. The fare for a taxi ride from the airport to downtown Ottawa is approximately $35 CAD.

For those looking for a more affordable option, shared ride services such as Uber and Lyft are available for pickup at the designated rideshare pickup area outside of the terminal building. However, it is important to note that there may be restrictions on the number of passengers and amount of luggage allowed in shared ride vehicles.

Airport shuttles are another option for transportation, with several companies offering door-to-door service to various destinations in the Ottawa area. Pickup areas for airport shuttles are located outside of the terminal building, and fares vary depending on the destination.

Lastly, public transportation options are available for those looking to save money. The OC Transpo bus system operates several routes that connect the airport to various locations throughout Ottawa and the surrounding areas. The bus stop is located outside of the terminal building, and fares can be purchased using cash or the Presto card system.

Airport Hotels

Looking for a convenient place to stay near the airport? We've got you covered! Explore a range of options from top-notch establishments like the Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott and the Hilton Garden Inn to budget-friendly options like the Days Inn by Wyndham. Many of these hotels offer complimentary shuttle services, ensuring seamless transfers to and from the airport. Whether you're seeking a hotel with excellent soundproofing for a peaceful stay, a hotel with an indoor swimming pool for relaxation, or a hotel with barbecue facilities for outdoor cooking, you're sure to find an option that suits your needs. Discover the best YOW Hotels now!

Dining, Shopping & Enjoying the Airport

If you're looking for a bite to eat or some last-minute shopping before your flight, Ottawa Airport has plenty of options to choose from. For a quick meal, head to Tim Hortons or Starbucks, both located in the main terminal. If you have more time to spare, check out Bento Sushi for some delicious sushi rolls or Copper Branch for vegan options. Both restaurants are located in the pre-security area of the terminal.

For shopping, stop by Hudson's Bay Company for some Canadian souvenirs or pick up a good book at the Relay bookstore. If you need to grab some essentials, there's a Shoppers Drug Mart located in the main terminal. If you're looking for duty-free shopping, head to the DFS store in the international departures area.

The locations of all food, shops, and services at Ottawa Airport can be found using iFly's interactive map. For a complete list of restaurants, bars, shops, and news stands, plan your visit using this guide.

Passenger Services

The airport provides a range of passenger services to ensure a comfortable and stress-free travel experience.

For those needing to stay connected, free Wi-Fi is available throughout the airport. Lost and found services are also available for any misplaced items. If you're traveling with children, there are designated play areas to keep them entertained. Special-needs services are also provided, including wheelchair assistance and accessible restrooms.

For any banking needs, there are ATMs and currency exchange services located throughout the airport. Medical help is also available through the airport's medical clinic, which is open 24/7.

Flight Status Info

As an air traveler, it's important to stay informed about the status of your flight. Fortunately, there are several ways to get flight status updates at Ottawa Airport. One of the easiest ways is by using the in-airport flight displays (FIDS), which are located throughout the airport. These displays provide real-time information on flight departures, delays, and gate information.

In addition to the FIDS, passengers can also be alerted about departure delays, cancellations, or gate changes via the use of airline mobile phone apps. Many airlines offer mobile apps that allow passengers to receive notifications about their flight status directly on their mobile devices. Other methods of receiving updates include text, email, and push notifications.

Passengers can check the status of their flight departure at Ottawa Airport by visiting the flight departures page on, which provides real-time updates on flight departures, delays, and gate information.

Helpful Tips

When to Arrive

It is recommended that passengers arrive at YOW Airport at least 2 hours prior to their scheduled departure time for domestic flights and 3 hours for international flights. The busiest times to avoid are during the morning rush hour(6:30am-9:30am) and the evening rush hour(3:30pm-6:30pm). However, it is always best to check with your airline for their specific recommendations.

Getting to the Airport

The airport is located approximately 10 kilometers south of downtown Ottawa and is easily accessible by car, taxi, or public transportation. The airport offers a variety of parking options for those who wish to drive, including short-term, long-term, and covered parking. Taxis are readily available outside of the terminal building, and public transportation options include the OC Transpo bus system and the O-Train.

Getting Oriented

Upon arrival at Ottawa Airport, passengers can use's interactive airport maps to get oriented and find their way around the airport. The maps provide detailed information about the airport's terminals, gates, shops, restaurants, and other amenities. Additionally, the airport's information desks are staffed by friendly and knowledgeable personnel who are happy to assist passengers with any questions or concerns they may have.

Avoiding Delays

To avoid delays at Ottawa Airport, passengers should arrive early, check in online before arriving at the airport, and pack their carry-on bags according to the airport's guidelines. It is also recommended that passengers keep their travel documents and identification easily accessible and be prepared to remove their shoes, belts, and jackets during the security screening process. Finally, passengers should stay informed about their flight status and any potential delays or cancellations by checking with their airline or the airport's website or mobile app.

Airport Facts & Stats

YOW, with the airport code YOW, is located in Canada and serves the city of Ottawa and the surrounding areas. The airport has one terminal building, which is divided into two levels. The lower level is for arrivals and baggage claim, while the upper level is for departures and check-in.

The top airlines with the most daily flights at YOW Airport are Air Canada, WestJet, and Porter Airlines. On average, the airport handles around 15,000 passengers per day and has approximately 150 daily flights. The airport serves over 30 destinations, both domestic and international.

The top 5 destinations served by the airport are Toronto, Montreal, Calgary, Vancouver, and Halifax. Other popular destinations include New York, Chicago, and London. The airport is also a hub for Air Canada and serves as a focus city for WestJet.

Airport History

Ottawa Airport, also known as Macdonald-Cartier International Airport, has a rich history dating back to the early 20th century. Here are some significant events in the airport's history:

  • 1938 - The airport officially opens as Ottawa International Airport.
  • 1959 - The airport is renamed Macdonald-Cartier International Airport in honor of two of Canada's founding fathers, Sir John A. Macdonald and Sir George-Etienne Cartier.
  • 1960s - The airport undergoes major expansion, including the addition of a new terminal building and runway.
  • 1988 - The airport welcomes its first Airbus A320 aircraft.
  • 1997 - The airport completes a $310 million expansion project, which includes the addition of a new terminal building and parking garage.
  • 2003 - The airport introduces a new automated baggage system to improve efficiency and reduce wait times.
  • 2013 - The airport celebrates its 75th anniversary with a series of events and activities.
  • 2019 - The airport completes a $25 million renovation project, which includes upgrades to the terminal building and parking garage.

Today, Ottawa Airport is one of the busiest airports in Canada, serving millions of passengers each year. With its modern facilities and convenient location, it continues to be a popular choice for travelers from around the world.

Airport Contact Information

For more information about Ottawa International Airport, please refer to the following contact details:

  • IATA Code: YOW
  • Airport Website
  • Phone: +1 613-248-2000
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Mailing Address: Ottawa International Airport Authority, 1000 Airport Parkway Private, Ottawa, ON K1V 9B4, Canada

Note that the contact information provided here is subject to change by the airport operator(s).

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