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How To Get Between Terminals at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

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Amar Hussain

Amar Hussain

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Amar is an avid traveler and tester of products. He has spent the last 13 years traveling all 7 continents and has put the products to the test on each of them. He has contributed to publications incl...
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Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is currently undergoing a major 15-year modernization project, with a primary focus on improving accessibility between terminals and public transport links.

The renovation should ease congestion on the loop road that serves all terminals since passengers can utilize more efficient methods of transport — such as an automated people mover. This service will connect the central terminal area of the airport to the Economy Parking Lot, an “Intermodal Transportation Facility” for public transport, and the central car rental facility. Updates are being worked on in phased projects, with full completion expected in 2027.

Improvements have already been made to some of the terminals to upgrade security checkpoints, baggage screening, technical systems, and baggage recheck facilities for flight connections — all functional aspects that should speed up the overall passenger experience.

If you’re headed to LAX soon, here’s what you’ll need to know to get around.

LAX Airport Layout

Los Angeles International Airport map. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

LAX has a U-shaped layout — parking lots and ground transportation are inside the U, and 8 terminals are on the outside. Terminals 1 and 3 on are the north side, Terminals 4 through 8 are on the south, and Terminal B (Tom Bradley International) is on the west side.

All areas inside the U are landside access (pre-security), so passengers and non-passengers are permitted here. However, besides small coffee shops, there aren’t many restaurants or cafes landside in the terminals. If you arrive early and can’t check in for your flight, head to International Terminal B for a bigger selection of landside restaurants.

Each terminal has its own security checkpoint (except Terminals 7 and 8, which share 1), and any passenger with a valid boarding pass for that day can go through security at any terminal.

Once you’re airside (past security), each terminal has its own shops, bars, and restaurants, and some have airline lounges.

LAX Ground Transportation Pre-Security (Landside)

Landside transportation is centered around the double-level looped road that runs inside the U-shaped layout. The upper level is for departures, and the lower level is for arrivals, which corresponds with the terminal’s check-in and baggage claim levels.

Terminal Shuttle Bus

If you need to travel between terminals at LAX, hop on the terminal shuttle that runs in a counter-clockwise loop stopping at each terminal.

You can pick up the shuttle from outside each terminal on the lower level under the blue signs “LAX Shuttle & Airline Connections” with a picture of a bus. Buses depart approximately every 10 minutes, and it takes a couple of minutes to travel between terminals (depending on traffic). You can check when the next shuttle is due to arrive with the live shuttle tracker.

Walkways

If you don’t want to take the bus or traffic is heavy, then you can also walk the same route on the public sidewalks on either level. This is the recommended option, especially as LAX continues to be under construction and roadways are congested. 

To walk from the northern terminals to the southern terminals, you can cut through the parking garages located in the center. Each garage is connected to a terminal via a bridge from departures level 3.

LAX Ground Transportation Post-Security (Airside)

Los Angeles International Airport southern terminal connections. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Walking

Terminals B, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 are linked with airside walkways, allowing quicker and easier flight connections. Terminals 4, 5, and 6 use underground tunnels, and 6, 7, and 8 are connected via above-ground tunnels.

International Terminal B is linked to Terminal 4 with an above-ground connector tunnel that has moving walkways. It takes around 5 to 8 minutes to walk between each terminal.

With the completion of Terminal 3’s new Delta Sky Way, the terminal is now connected to the Tom Bradley International Terminal via an airside walkway.

Passengers who don’t need to collect any luggage between flights may remain inside the secure area for easier flight connections. This means that it’s now possible to walk from Terminal 1 right through to Terminal 8 (if you need to) while remaining inside the secure area.

Airline Connector Shuttle Bus

For flight connections, passengers can hop on the airside shuttle bus that runs between Terminals 1, 3, and the International Terminal. Buses operate every 10 minutes, 24/7 from:

  • Terminal 1: from the bus gate in the connector between gates 12B and 21A
  • Terminal 3: near gate 21A on level 2
  • TBIT West Gates: at the south end of the concourse on the lower level

Layout of LAX Terminals

LAX Terminal 1

Terminal 1 is connected to Terminal 3 inside and outside the secure area, so if you’re walking between these terminals, you won’t need to re-clear security on the other end (unless you need to collect checked luggage in between connections.)

Several airlines are based in Terminal 1, including Southwest, Viva Aerobus, and Cayman Airways.

Level 1 – Baggage Claim

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 1 baggage claim. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Terminal 1 baggage claim is on level 1, with a pet relief area also available next to the main restrooms. Ground transportation services are located outside, and there are ground-level walkways to the P1 parking garage.

Level 2 – Check-In

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 1 check-in. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

The check-in desks for several airlines, including Southwest and Sun Country, are located on level 2. Once checked in, passengers can make their way to the security checkpoint at the east end of the terminal.

Alternatively, passengers can take the escalators at the west end of the terminal to level 3 to clear security at a separate checkpoint.

Level 3 – Departures

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 1 departures. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Terminal 1 has 12 gates numbered 9, 11A, 11B, 12B, 13 to 16, 17A, 17B, 18A, and 18B. Shops, restaurants, and cafes are located on the same level as the departure gates, and there’s a pet relief area near gate 13.

Terminal 1 has a second security checkpoint located on level 3 that provides quick access to the terminal bus gate. Passengers can ride the bus and remain inside the secure area for connections to the west gates at International Terminal B.

When walking inside the secure area for flight connections, take the corridor past the bus gate, and you can walk all the way along to the connector with International Terminal B.

When connecting outside the secure area from Terminal 1, exit the terminal on the lower level from baggage claim through doors L1-06 or L1-07, cross over the road to the shuttle pick-up lane, and ride the terminal shuttle bus.

LAX Terminal 3

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 3 departures. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Terminal 2 gates have been consolidated into the newly renovated and extended Terminal 3. You’ll now find 23 gates split across 2 concourses in Terminal 3, with Delta Air Lines occupying most of the space.

Level 1 – Baggage Claim

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 3 level 1 baggage claim. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Baggage claim is located on level 1, with ground transportation located outside and walkways to the P2 parking garages.

Level 2 – Check-In

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 3 level 2 ticketing. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Aeromexico and WestJet also operate flights from Terminal 3, with WestJet passengers able to check in at the old Terminal 2 check-in area (on the east side). Delta passengers and Aeromexico passengers must check in on the west side of the terminal.

Level 3 – Departures

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 3 level 3 departures. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

After checking in, passengers must take the escalator/elevator up to level 3 where the security checkpoint is located. After clearing the security checkpoint, passengers may continue into the departure concourses or up to level 4 to visit the LAX Delta Sky Club.

Level 3 – Gates 30 to 38

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 3 gates 30 to 38. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

After clearing security, gates 30 to 38 are to the left. There are 14 gates in this concourse, numbered 30A-B, 31A-B, 32A-B, 33, 34A-B, 35, 36, 37A-B, and 38, and a small selection of shops and restaurants. A pet relief area is opposite gate 30B.

Level 3 – Gates 21 to 28

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 3 gates 21 to 28. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Gates 21 to 28 are located to the right after you have cleared security. Walk down the long corridor (past the pet relief area), and you’ll come to the entrance of the concourse. Gates 21 and 21A are at the bottom end of the concourse, and gates 22, 23A, 23B, 24, 25B, 26B, 27, and 28 are at the furthest end.

There’s a good selection of shops and restaurants in the concourse, and passengers can walk between all gate areas of Terminal 3 to utilize the facilities.

Passengers who are not required to collect luggage between connections can ride the airside shuttle bus from near gate 21A to the West Gates at International Terminal B or can choose to walk through the new connector via moving walkways.

LAX Terminal 4

Terminal 4 is connected to Terminal 5 by an underground airside walkway, and each subsequent terminal connects to the next in the same manner (so you won’t need to re-clear security).

In addition, Terminal 4 is connected to International Terminal B via an airside connector bridge with moving sidewalks on level 5, which has its own security checkpoint for passengers entering Terminal 4 from International Terminal B.

If you’re entering International Terminal B from Terminal 4, you won’t need to re-clear security again.

Level 1 – Baggage Claim

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 4 baggage claim. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Baggage claim is located on level 1, with ground transportation located outside the terminal and the P4 parking garage. Passengers coming through the security checkpoint from International Terminal B will arrive on this level.

Level 2 – Check-In

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 4 check-in. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Passengers can only check in for American flights in Terminal 4 with the check-in desks located on level 2.

Level 3 – Departures

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 4. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

After checking in, passengers must take the escalator/elevator up to level 3 to clear the security checkpoint. Terminal 4 has 11 gates numbered 41, 42A, 42B, 43, 42B, 43, 45, 46A, 47A, and 47B. Shops and restaurants are located on level 3, and an Admirals Club and Flagship Lounge are available on level 4.

LAX Terminal 5

Terminal 5 is connected to Terminals 4 and 6 via underground airside walkways. Both of these terminals are also connected onward to another terminal with airside walkways, so you won’t need to go through security again unless you need to collect checked luggage on arrival.

Level 1 – Baggage Claim

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 5 baggage claim. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Baggage claim is on level 1, along with ground transportation and walkways to the P5 and P6 parking garages.

Level 2 – Check-In

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 5 check-in. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Passengers may check in on level 2 for flights with American, JetBlue, or Spirit.

Level 3 – Departures

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 5 departures. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

In Terminal 5, you’ll find 15 gates numbered 50, 51A, 51B, 53A, 53B, 54A, 54B, 55A, 56A-D, 57, 58, and 59. Shops, bars, and restaurants are on level 3 with departures, as well as access to the Admirals Club Lounge that extends over 2 floors onto level 4.

Hot Tip:

If you’re flying with American Eagle, you’ll need to catch the Terminal 5 airside shuttle bus to the regional terminal. Buses operate from near gate 54A. An Admirals Club is located inside the regional terminal.

LAX Terminal 6

Terminal 6 connects with Terminal 7 via an above-ground airside walkway and Terminal 5 via an underground airside walkway. From these terminals, you can continue airside to Terminals 8, 5, 4, and B without having to re-clear security. From Terminal B, you can also continue on to Terminals 1 and 3.

Level 1 – Baggage Claim

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 6 baggage claim. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Baggage claim is located on level 1. Passengers can walk to the P6 parking garage from this level.

Level 2 – Check-In

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 6 check-in. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Check-in for several airlines, including Air Canada and Southwest, is available on level 2.

Level 3 – Departures

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal 6 Departures. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

There are 10 gates in Terminal 6 numbered 60, 62, 63A, 63B, 64A-64C, 66, 68A, and 68B. Shops, bars, and restaurants are on level 3 departures, along with an Alaska Airlines Lounge.

If you’re connecting from Terminal 6, you can use the airside walkways to any of the south terminals or connect through Terminal B to the northern terminals. To reach Terminals 1 or 3 outside the secure area, exit after the baggage claim through door L1-05, where the shuttle bus stop is located just across the road.

LAX Terminals 7 and 8

Though Terminals 7 and 8 share the same security checkpoint, they’re considered separate terminals, with gate numbers in the 70s for Terminal 7 and 80s for Terminal 8.

There’s an above-ground airside walkway connecting Terminal 7 with Terminal 8 and Terminal 6, and you have access to gates 5, 4, and International Terminal B without having to re-clear security.

Level 1 – Arrivals

Los Angeles International Airport Terminals 7 and 8 arrivals. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Baggage claim is shared between Terminals 7 and 8 and is located on level 1. Transportation such as taxis and shuttles are available outside the terminal, and ground-level walkways lead to the P7 parking garage.

Level 2 – Check-In

Los Angeles International Airport Terminals 7 and 8 check-in. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Terminals 7 and 8 also share a check-in area on level 2 and a security checkpoint beyond that. Once you clear security, you need to take the escalators/elevators up 1 floor to departures.

Level 3 – Departures

Los Angeles International Airport Terminals 7 and 8 departures. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Terminal 7 has 13 gates numbered 70A, 70B, 71A, 71B, 72A, 72B, 73, 74, 75A, 75B, 76A, 76B, and 77. The concourse is directly ahead of you as you come up the escalators from security. There are United Club and United Polaris lounges on level 3 departures, along with an array of shops, bars, and restaurants.

Terminal 8 has 8 gates numbered 80 to 85 and 86A/B. There are a few shops, bars, cafes, and restaurants on level 3 departures.

Thomas Bradley International Terminal B

Los Angeles International Airport International Terminal B. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

International Terminal B is located on the western side of the airport and receives the majority of international flight arrivals, although flights do depart from other terminals.

It’s the largest terminal at LAX and is connected to Terminal 4 and Terminal 3 via connector bridges. Within the Terminal 4 connector bridge, there’s a dedicated security checkpoint for passengers arriving on international flights who are connecting to Terminals 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8.

Level 1 – Baggage Claim

Tom Bradley International Terminal B baggage claim. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

Passengers can collect their luggage from baggage claim on level 1 before clearing Customs on the same level. The arrivals hall has a café, visitor information, and access to ground transportation, including the P3 and P4 parking garages.

Level 3 – Check-In

Tom Bradley International Terminal B check-in. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

The ticketing desks are on level 3 for many international airlines, including British Airways, Emirates, and Lufthansa. Once checked in, passengers need to take the escalator/elevator to level 4 to pass through security. Passport control is also located on level 3 (inside the secure area) for international arrivals.

Level 4 – Departures

Tom Bradley International Terminal B departures. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

If you’re arriving from the main security checkpoint, you’ll enter the Great Hall on level 4 where most of the shops, bars, and restaurants are located. From here, the south concourse is to the left with 2 moving walkways, and the north concourse is to the right with 1 moving walkway. There’s also an Amex Centurion Lounge at the south end of the Great Hall.

The south concourse has 9 gates numbered 148, 150 to 157, and 159, and more concessions. The north concourse has 15 gates numbered 130 to 146, and a small selection of shops and restaurants along the concourse.

Gates 136, 138, 140, 142, 144, and 146 are at the end of the north concourse on the lower level.

Level 5 – Lounges

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal B level 5 lounges. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

The Oneworld, Qantas, and SkyTeam lounges are on level 5. Passengers can take the escalator/elevator to level 5 from the center of the Great Hall.

Level 6 – Lounges

Los Angeles International Airport Terminal B level 6 lounges. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

The Emirates, Etihad, and Star Alliance lounges can be found on level 6.

Hot Tip:

For more information on the lounges at LAX, check out our detailed guide.

West Gates

Tom Bradley International Terminal B west gates. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

International Terminal B’s west gates sit parallel to the main departure concourse and are accessible through the long walkway from the Great Hall. The concourse has 13 gates numbered 201A, 201B, 202 to 208, 209A, 209B, 210A, 210B, 221, and 225. Passengers can ride the inter-terminal shuttle bus from the lower level of the west gates to Terminals B, 1, or 3.

Estimated Walking Times Between Terminals

In many situations, it may be quicker and easier to walk to your next terminal than to catch the shuttle bus. These are estimated walking times between different areas of LAX:

  • 5 minutes for each portion of this route: Terminal 1 – Terminal 3 – International Terminal B – Terminal 4
  • 5 to 8 minutes for each portion of this route: Terminal 4 – Terminal 5 – Terminal 6 – Terminal 7 – Terminal 8
  • 5 minutes from the north terminals (1 and 3) to the south terminals (4 to 6), crossing directly through the parking area

Flight Connections at LAX

Los Angeles International Airport International Terminal B. Image Credit: Los Angeles International Airport

If you’re arriving on an international flight, you will need to clear immigration at your arrival terminal. You will then need to collect your bag and clear customs — if the bag has been tagged with a final destination, you can drop it off at the transfers service desk after customs.

You can then make your way to your connecting terminal. Passengers connecting from a domestic flight won’t need to clear immigration or customs, and any checked baggage will be transported to their onward flight (provided it has been tagged to their final destination).

Hot Tip:

If you booked your flights separately instead of as a single ticket with connections, you’ll need to pick up your luggage in the baggage claim area, re-check your bag, and re-clear security.

Those traveling with carry-on luggage only can proceed directly to the terminal of their connecting flight and remain airside.

Accessibility

All terminals at LAX are accessible to passengers with disabilities, mobility concerns, and wheelchair users. When connecting between terminals, the shuttle bus is equipped with a lift for wheelchair users, and there are elevators in every terminal for accessing the underground and above-ground walkways.

Final Thoughts

Although the current renovations are causing some disruption to normal operations, passengers are already praising the improvements so far — such as the ability to now walk airside between all terminals. The automated people mover will be a game-changer for accessing LAX from the rest of Los Angeles. However, it won’t eliminate the need to re-clear security at a connecting terminal as it will run between terminals landside.

If you’re connecting to another flight at LAX, be sure to check out the map on the location of your next terminal since each one will require a different amount of time to transfer. Once you do your research and leave time to re-clear security (if necessary), you’ll have no problems at all!

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you get between terminals at LAX?

You can get between LAX terminals by riding the free landside terminal shuttle bus that runs in a clockwise loop, or by walking on the sidewalks (outside the secure area) or via the terminal connectors (inside the secure area).

Are Terminal 5 and 6 connected at LAX?

Terminals 5 and 6 are connected airside via an underground tunnel, so it’s not necessary to re-clear security again unless you have arrived on an international flight. They are also connected landside, but this would require re-clearing security for all passengers if they exit the terminal and leave the secure area.

Are Terminals 1 and 3 connected at LAX?

Terminals 1 and 3 are connected inside and outside the secure area via walkways, so you would not need to exit and re-clear security unless you must collect checked luggage between flights.

Is there a shuttle between terminals at LAX?

There is a shuttle bus between terminals at LAX that runs in a clockwise route stopping at all terminals. You can ride the shuttle from outside each terminal on the arrivals level, from under the blue signs “LAX Shuttle & Airline Connections.” It takes a couple of minutes to travel between terminals with buses departing every 10 minutes.

Can you walk between terminals at LAX?

You can walk between all terminals at LAX. Terminals 4 to 8 have airside underground and above-ground walkways, with Terminal 4 also walkable to International Terminal B via a connector bridge. Terminal B also has an airside connector to Terminal 3, leading onwards to Terminal 1.

You can also walk outside of the secure area between terminals using the sidewalks on both levels of the ring road, or cut-through parking garages between the north and south terminals.

About Amar Hussain

Amar is an avid traveler and tester of products. He has spent the last 13 years traveling all 7 continents and has put the products to the test on each of them. He has contributed to publications including Forbes, the Huffington Post, and more.

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