Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen International Airport (IATA: SAW, ICAO: LTFJ) is the second airport of Istanbul, built within the borders of Pendik district. The airport was named after Sabiha Gökçen, the world’s first female fighter pilot and Turkey’s first female pilot. The foundation of the airport was laid in February 1998, and the airport was completed in January 2003, costing a total of 550 million dollars.
Owner: Airport Management and Aviation Industries Inc. (HEAŞ) is operated by Malaysia Airports Holdings Berhad (MAHB). Ground services, operations, cargo and security operations are carried out by Istanbul Sabiha Gökçen International Airport Yatırım Yapım ve İşletme A.Ş., abbreviated as ISG.
It’s the main base of the Turkish low-cost carrier Pegasus Airlines.
Sabiha Gökçen Airport, which hosted 31,385,841 passengers, 219,656 aircraft and 50,868 tons of cargo traffic in 2017, is the second busiest airport in the country after Istanbul airport (IST).
It was selected as the 29th best airport in the world by Airhelp.com, with a score of 7.93 out of 10, obtained in the survey in which more than 40 thousand passengers from more than 40 countries participated within the scope of AirHelp Score 2019.
The airport’s second runway is planned to be opened in 2024. After the second runway is opened, the first runway is planned to be maintained. The airport will begin operations with two runways in 2024.
The new terminal building with a 25 million annual passenger capacity conducts domestic and international flights under one roof. The features and services of the new terminal and its outlying buildings include a four-storey car park with a capacity of about 4,718 vehicles + 72 bus (3.836 indoors and 882 + 72 bus outdoors), a four-storey hotel with 128 rooms, adjacent to the terminal and with separate entrances at air and ground sides, 112 check-in, 24 online check-in counters as well as a VIP building & apron viewing CIP halls with business lounges.
There is also a Multi Aircraft Ramp System (MARS), allowing simultaneous service to 8 aircraft with large fuselages (IATA code E) or 16 middle-sized fuselage aircraft (IATA code C) installed. The terminal additionally features a 400 m2 (4,300 sq ft) conference center, 5,000 m2 (54,000 sq ft) food court, for cafés and restaurants and a duty-free shopping area, with a ground of 4,500 square-meters. At the international departures area, on the airside, an hourly hotel and lounge became operational in January 2020 as well. The airport’s cargo terminal has a capacity of 90,000 tons per year and is equipped with 18 cold storage depots.
How to get to?
Sabiha Gökçen International Airport is connected to the city of Istanbul and the city’s wider metropolitan area through a number of transport options.
The airport is located 14 km from the Pendik railway station and sea-taxi stations. M10 (Istanbul Metro) M10, a metro connection to Marmaray and High Speed Train (YHT) Yüksek Hızlı Tren via the Pendik station is currently being built.
The Line M4 M4 metro line has been extended to the airport.
Shuttlebuses and coaches
Shuttlebus companies such as Havaist along with express public buses E10 and E11 operated by İETT serve Taksim and Kadıköy and there are coaches to nearby towns and cities.
Car and taxi
The airport is reachable by car from the E80 European motorway which passes through the Istanbul Metropolitan Area.