Flying to and From Shanghai

Shanghai Hongqiao International Airport  (上海虹桥国际机场)

Until Pudong Airport was opened in 1999, Hongqiao was Shanghai’s major airport. The opening of a second terminal in 2010 has again brought it up to speed and the airport services a huge number of domestic routes. However, the only international destinations serviced from Hongqiao are Seoul, Tokyo and Taipei. International flights, plus flights to Hong Kong, Macau and all flights on Spring Airlines leave from Terminal 1. All other flights come and go from the new Terminal 2. Only 18km from the center of Shanghai, it’s a much quicker trip to Hongqiao Airport than it is to Pudong, so you’re generally better off arriving here if possible. There are also very convenient rail connections to Suzhou, Hangzhou and Nanjing from the nearby Hongqiao Railway Station.

Hongqiao Airport Website: www.shairport.com

Getting to and from Shanghai Hongqiao Airport

By Subway: Line 2 of the Shanghai Subway runs from Hongqiao Airport Terminal 2 through the center of Shanghai (stopping at central stations including People’s Square, Nanjing Rd East and Lujiazui) and continues on all the way to Pudong Airport. Line 10 is also connected to Hongqiao Airport with stations at both Terminal 2 and Terminal 1. Central stops on Line 10 include Shaanxi Rd South, Xintiandi and Nanjing Rd East.

By Bus: The buses from Hongqiao Airport are more like public buses and there is little room for luggage. A taxi is the better option if the queue is manageable. The following buses are available:

Airport Line 1 links Hongqiao Airport with Pudong Airport and departs every 15-25 minutes between 6am and 9:30pm (fare: ¥30).

Airport Special Line runs from Hongqiao Airport Terminal 1 to Jingan Temple every 15-25 minutes from 7:50am to the last flight arrival (fare: ¥4).

See the airport website for schedules and a map of where the buses leave from. Buses also leave from Hongqiao Airport to Suzhou (see here), as well as Hangzhou, Nanjing and several other destinations in Jiangsu and Zhejiang provinces.

By Taxi: There’s a taxi rank where queues are usually well-ordered right outside the arrivals hall. You might get approached by a tout or two while waiting – don’t accept their offers. Although, queues can be horrendously long in the late evening, at which point the offers of the touts might seem like a good idea. On the meter, a taxi to the city center will cost only ¥60 or so outside of peak times.

By Maglev?: There have been plans for some time to connect Hongqiao Airport with Pudong Aiport by Maglev, which could potentially cut the travel time to a mere 15 minutes. However, this plan appears to be currently stalled.