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Raleigh-Durham Airport RDU

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Raleigh-Durham Airport (RDU) Guide

Welcome to Raleigh Airport, the gateway to North Carolina's vibrant Research Triangle region. Whether you're traveling for business or pleasure, RDU offers a range of amenities and services to make your journey as smooth as possible. From award-winning dining options to convenient parking and transportation, our guide has everything you need to know to get from your door to your gate with ease.

Planning a trip from RDU Airport ? Our extensive guide is here to help. We've compiled all the information you need to navigate the airport, including up-to-date flight status and tracking, airline departure terminals and gate locations, parking options, terminal maps, and directories of food and shopping options. With our insider tips and helpful advice, you'll be ready to take off in no time.

Helpful Tips

When to Arrive

It is recommended that passengers arrive at the airport at least two hours prior to their scheduled departure time for domestic flights and three hours prior for international flights. The busiest times at RDU are typically early morning and late afternoon, so it is best to avoid these times if possible to reduce wait times and stress.

Getting to the Airport

RDU is located approximately 10 miles southeast of downtown Raleigh and 15 miles northwest of downtown Durham. The airport is easily accessible by car, taxi, or rideshare service. If driving, there are several parking options available including hourly, daily, and economy parking. For those who prefer public transportation, the GoTriangle bus system provides service to the airport from various locations in the Triangle area.

Getting Oriented

Upon arrival at RDU, passengers can use's interactive airport maps to easily navigate the airport and find their way to their gate, baggage claim, or other amenities. The maps provide detailed information on each terminal, including the location of restaurants, shops, and restrooms. Additionally, RDU offers a variety of services to assist passengers with disabilities or special needs, such as wheelchair assistance and service animal relief areas.

Avoiding Delays

To avoid delays at RDU, passengers should arrive early, check in online before arriving at the airport, and pack their carry-on bags appropriately to ensure they comply with TSA regulations. It is also important to keep an eye on flight status updates and be prepared for potential delays or cancellations due to inclement weather or other unforeseen circumstances. RDU offers a variety of dining and shopping options to help pass the time while waiting for a flight.

Security Wait Times

At Raleigh RDU, TSA Security wait times can vary depending on the time of day and day of the week. During peak travel times, such as holidays and weekends, wait times can be longer than usual. However, the airport strives to keep wait times as short as possible by providing multiple security checkpoints and utilizing technology to expedite the screening process. You can check TSA Wait Times now, so you can budget how much time you need to get to the airport.

Maps, Airlines & Amenities

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RDU Overview Map
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RDU Overview Map

Raleigh-Durham Airport (RDU) Terminals

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RDU - Morrisville, NC - Raleigh-Durham Airport
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Airport Restaurants, Stores & Amenities

Navigating RDU's Terminals

Raleigh-Durham International Airport has two terminals, Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. Terminal 1 has 19 gates and is used by Southwest Airlines, while Terminal 2 has 36 gates and is used by all other airlines, including American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and United Airlines.

To navigate the airport terminals, passengers can follow the signs and information screens located throughout the airport. The terminals are connected by a walkway, and there is also a shuttle bus that runs between the terminals for passengers who need assistance or have a tight connection.

Both terminals offer a variety of food and beverage options, including fast food, coffee shops, and sit-down restaurants. There are also several shops and stores selling souvenirs, books, and travel essentials. Passengers can find airline departure gates by checking the information screens or asking for assistance from airport staff.

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

Connecting Between Terminals

Raleigh-Durham Airport has two terminals, Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. The terminals are connected by a covered walkway that takes approximately 10 minutes to walk between the two. If you have limited mobility or heavy luggage, there is a shuttle bus available to transport passengers between the terminals. The shuttle bus runs every 10 minutes and is free of charge.

Dining, Shopping & Enjoying the Airport

If you're traveling through Raleigh-Durham International Airport (RDU), you'll have plenty of options for dining and shopping. Popular restaurants include Salsarita's, Starbucks, and Gordon Biersch Brewery Restaurant, while Marshall Rousso, Duty Free, and PGA Tour Shop are just a few of the top stores. For more detailed information about these and other great options at RDU, check out iFly's comprehensive list.

The locations of all food, shops, and services at Raleigh-Durham International Airport can be found using iFly's interactive map. For a complete list of restaurants, bars, shops, and news stands, view the comprehensive list here.

Picking Up and Dropping Off Passengers

At Raleigh Airport, picking up and dropping off passengers can be done at the curbside of the terminals. However, there are restrictions on curbside parking, so it is recommended to use the cell-phone waiting areas instead. These areas are located near each terminal and provide a convenient place to wait for arriving passengers without having to circle the airport or park illegally.

Terminal 1 has a cell-phone waiting area located on the left side of the entrance road, just before the terminal. Terminal 2 has a cell-phone waiting area located on the right side of the entrance road, just after the terminal. Once your arriving passenger has collected their baggage and is ready to be picked up, they can call or text you to let you know they are on their way to the curbside. This will allow you to pull up to the terminal and quickly pick them up without causing any traffic congestion or violating parking regulations.

Parking Facilities & Options

When it comes to parking at RDU, travelers have several options to choose from. The airport offers both on-site parking and off-site parking options to cater to the needs of all travelers.

For those who prefer on-site parking, RDU offers several parking lots and garages located near both Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. The parking facilities are equipped with 24/7 security and surveillance to ensure the safety of parked vehicles.

If you are picking up someone from the airport, RDU also offers a cell phone waiting area where you can wait for your loved ones to arrive without having to pay for parking. The cell phone waiting area is located near the airport entrance and is equipped with free Wi-Fi.

RDU also provides handicapped parking facilities for travelers with disabilities. The parking spaces are located near the terminal entrances for easy access.

For travelers looking for a more economical parking option, off-airport parking facilities are available near RDU. These facilities offer shuttle services to and from the airport and are generally cheaper than on-site parking options.

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

Transportation Options

Travelers to RDU Airport (RDU) have several ground transportation options to choose from.

Car rental facilities are available at the airport, with major providers such as Alamo, Avis, Budget, Enterprise, Hertz, and National offering their services. The rental car facility is located adjacent to the airport and can be accessed via a shuttle service.

Taxi services are also available at RDU, with designated pick-up areas located outside of each terminal. The fares are metered and vary based on the destination.

Shared ride services such as Uber and Lyft are available at RDU, with designated pick-up areas located outside of each terminal. However, there are certain restrictions for these services, such as the requirement to have a smartphone and a valid credit card.

Airport shuttles are available for travelers who prefer a more convenient and hassle-free option. The shuttle service operates 24/7 and can be booked in advance or on the spot. The pick-up areas are located outside of each terminal, and fares vary based on the destination.

For budget-conscious travelers, public transportation options such as buses and trains are available. The GoTriangle bus service provides direct access to downtown Raleigh and Durham, while the Amtrak train service offers connections to major cities such as Charlotte and Washington D.C.

Passenger Services

The airport (RDU) is committed to providing passengers with a comfortable and convenient travel experience. Here are some of the services available at the airport:

Wifi Access: Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the airport. Passengers can connect to the network by selecting the "RDU Free WiFi" option.

Lost and Found: The airport's Lost and Found office is located in Terminal 1 on the baggage claim level. Passengers who have lost an item can file a report online or in person.

Children's Areas: The airport has several play areas for children located in both Terminal 1 and Terminal 2. These areas are designed to keep children entertained and provide a safe space for them to play.

Special-Needs Services: RDU offers a range of services for passengers with disabilities or special needs. These include wheelchair assistance, accessible restrooms, and TTY phones for the hearing impaired.

Banking: There are several ATMs located throughout the airport, as well as a Travelex currency exchange kiosk in Terminal 2.

Medical Help: The airport has a medical clinic located in Terminal 2 near the baggage claim area. The clinic provides basic medical services, including first aid and flu shots.

Flight Status Info

As an air traveler, it's important to stay up-to-date with the status of your flight. At Raleigh RDU, there are several ways to check your flight status.

One of the easiest ways is to use the in-airport flight displays (FIDS) located throughout the terminals. These displays provide real-time updates on flight departures, delays, and gate information. Simply find your flight on the display and check the status.

Another convenient way to stay informed is by using your airline's mobile phone app. Most airlines offer apps that allow you to track your flight status, receive alerts about departure delays, cancelations, or gate changes, and even check in for your flight. You can also sign up to receive notifications via text, email, or push notifications.

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

Airport Facts & Stats

Raleigh Airport is located in North Carolina, United States. It serves the Research Triangle Region, which includes Raleigh, Durham, and Chapel Hill. RDU has two terminals: Terminal 1 and Terminal 2.

The airport is served by various airlines, but the top airlines with the most daily flights are American Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and Southwest Airlines. On average, RDU handles around 30,000 passengers daily and has approximately 400 daily flights.

RDU serves over 60 destinations, including domestic and international locations. The top five destinations served by RDU are Atlanta, Charlotte, Chicago, Washington D.C., and New York.

Several air carriers use RDU as a hub, including Delta Air Lines and American Airlines. These airlines offer connecting flights to various destinations across the United States and around the world.

Airport History

RDU, also known as RDU, is located in Morrisville, North Carolina, United States. The airport first opened in 1943 as a training facility for World War II pilots. Since then, it has grown to become one of the busiest airports in the Southeastern United States.

Here are some significant events in the history of RDU Airport:

  • 1943 - the airport opens as a training facility for World War II pilots.
  • 1950s - The airport begins commercial passenger service.
  • 1960s - The airport undergoes major renovations and expansions to accommodate increasing passenger traffic.
  • 1970s - The airport becomes a hub for American Airlines.
  • 1980s - The airport expands its international service, with flights to London and Frankfurt.
  • 1990s - The airport undergoes another major expansion, adding a new terminal and parking garage.
  • 2000s - The airport adds more international destinations, including Paris and Cancun.
  • 2010s - The airport continues to grow, with new airlines and destinations added regularly.

Today, Raleigh RDU serves millions of passengers each year and is an important gateway to the Southeastern United States.

Airport Contact Info

For more information about Raleigh-Durham Airport, please use the following contact information:

Traveler Help

Questions about RDU? Find answers here.
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Newest Questions

Where is my luggage?

Asked by Linda Graebel - Mon, 10 October

You will need to contact your airline directly with any questions regarding lost luggage. 

How do I connect to Delta baggage claim?

Asked by Henry - Thu, 29 September

You can contact Delta at 800-221-1212 with any baggage claim questions. 

Where are the American Airlines gates?

Asked by Elliot IRA Langman - Tue, 20 September

American Airlines is located at Terminal 2 and uses Gates C-11, C15-18, C21-23, and C-25.

What phone number can I call for the currency exchange desk?

Asked by Michelle R Herbst - Thu, 1 September

Travelex America is usually located in Terminal 2 and can be contacted at  (516) 300-1622, however, it is currently listed as temporarily closed. 

How long does it take to get to check in at American Airlines?

Asked by Martin - Wed, 24 August

It is recommended to arrive 2 hours before your scheduled flight for check-in. 

Are there handicap van rentals are RDU?

Asked by Kim - Tue, 16 August

There are multiple rental options available at this airport. Please see details here

What is the number for lost baggage claim office at airport?

Asked by Mary - Tue, 9 August

You will need to contact your airlines directly with any lost baggage claims. 

How do I contact Lost and found?

Asked by Vanyel Kratz - Thu, 28 July

The phone number for Lost and Found at RDU is (919) 840-7553. They also can be contacted by email at [email protected].

I heard that Economy Parking Lot 4 was closed. Please confirm that Lot 4 is open and the rate is $7 per day.

Asked by Anne - Wed, 27 July

Parking Lot 4 is still currently closed. 

What is the phone number for baggage claim at Raleigh airport?

Asked by Jennifer DeAntoni-Damiani - Tue, 28 June

If you have a baggage claim please contact your airline directly. 

How do I book express parking?

Asked by Chuck - Tue, 3 May

Unfortunately, Express Parking is currently closed. Airport guests may park at Premier, Central or Economy 3 instead. 

Is there a chick-Fil-a here?

Asked by Brenda - Tue, 26 April

There is no Chick-fil-A at this airport. 

Can I meet the passenger at baggage pick-up?

Asked by Beth Tucker - Fri, 8 April

Yes, you are able to meet a passenger at baggage claim after parking your car. 

What time does RDU long term parking open?

Asked by Thomas - Thu, 7 April

All parking options at this airport are open 24 hours. 

What time does the baggage claim close?

Asked by Sandra Johnson - Wed, 23 March

The airport is open 24 hours, 7 days a week. By extension, so is the Baggage Claim area. 

Where should passengers wait to be picked up from the cell phone lot?

Asked by Marcena C Ver Ploeg - Tue, 15 March

For the Cell Phone Parking lot, follow the signs from I-40 to the Cell Lot. There, you can wait with your call and have your passenger call you after they have claimed their bags. Then, you can proceed to the arrivals level of the terminal. 

What terminal does United fly into and what terminal does American fly into?

Asked by richard Barnes - Fri, 4 March

Both United and American operate out of Terminal 2 at this airport. 

Does the airport have a smoking area?

Asked by Marie - Sat, 26 February

Including all the restaurants and bars, smoking is prohibited in all public areas as the airport is a smoke-free facility. Hence before lighting up the smokers must be at least 50 feet away from airport buildings or inside designated smoking areas. 

American Airlines sent my bags to RDU not Fayetteville NC. Can you help me find my bag?

Asked by joy horsley - Fri, 25 February

Please contact American Airlines for help finding your bag. 

Is there a Cellphone Lot?

Asked by Francis - Thu, 24 February

Yes this airport offers a complimentary cell phone lot located just a short distance from the terminals. It is across from Advantage Rent-a-Car.

We have clients booked to travel business class on Icelandair this coming August. Is there a VIP lounge?

Asked by INGO - Wed, 23 February

There is an American Airlines Admirals Club, a Delta Air Sky Club, and a United Club. They are all located in Terminal 2. 

Which Terminal does Alaska Ailrines use?

Asked by herry - Fri, 18 February

Alaska Airlines uses Terminal 2.

What are the rates for hourly parking?

Asked by John - Mon, 14 February

There are 4 types of parking available, including Premier Parking, Central Parking, Express parking, and Economy parking charging different rates for hourly parking. You can visit the RDU Parking page to know about the rates in detail. 

Raleigh-Durham Airport Q&A

Yes. while the official name is Raleigh Durham International Airport, it is also known as RDU.
Raleigh Durham Airport serves nine domestic airlines including Delta, Alaska, American, Jetblue and United.
Located in Wake County, the RDU Airport is around 4.4 miles from Morrisville.
Passengers are permitted to sleep in the airport. It remains open 24 hours a day and visitors can stay inside overnight. We also recommend these awesome RDU layover ideas.
Being one of the busiest airports, you can fly to many cities from Raleigh Airport. Check out our direct flights page to see where you can fly from the airport.