Lehigh Valley International Airport
Lehigh Valley International Airport (ABE) is located in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, about three miles from the city of Allentown. The ABE designation stands for Allentown, Bethlehem, and Easton, the three main municipal areas the airport services. However, the airport also likes to say that ABE stands for “Always a Better Experience.”
Over 800,000 passengers fly in and out of ABE each year, despite the fact that it can be difficult for ABE to compete with the larger Philadelphia and Newark international airports, both located less than 100 miles from ABE.
117 aircraft are based at the airport, which has two asphalt runways. The airport opened in 1929, with scheduled flights beginning in the 1930s. The original terminal was built in 1938 and was a project of the FDR-established Works Projects Administration (WPA).
Like many American airports, ABE saw much growth during World War II. The U.S. Navy used the airport for flight training during the war. A new runway was built in 1944 and a National Weather Bureau Station was built on the premises. In the aftermath of the war, the airport returned to civilian management under the newly created Lehigh Airport Authority. One of the Airport Authority’s first tasks was to build a new terminal, which it undertook right away, finishing the terminal in 1950.
The airport continued to grow during the 1950s and 1960s. One of its claims to fame was that both Nixon and Kennedy stopped there during the 1960 presidential campaign. The current terminal area was built in the mid 1970s.
Parking at Lehigh Valley Airport
It can be difficult for Lehigh Valley International Airport to compete with the lower fares offered by the larger airports in Philadelphia and Newark, but they try to provide superior quality service, and they emphasize the stress-free and less crowded atmosphere of their terminal wherever possible. For instance, the airport claims that their parking facilities are so conveniently located that passengers can spend between 80-90 percent less time traveling from parking to gate than at the larger airports, generally making it from parking to gate within 20 minutes. They have located both their main Long-Term and Short-Term Lots close enough to the terminal so that shuttle services are not necessary. They have also been working to keep their parking costs lower than larger facilities.
In addition to regular Short-Term and Long-Term Lots, they do provide Economy parking. It’s located a little further from the terminal, so shuttle service is provided for those who need it. All of their main parking options have hourly and daily rates, with Long-Term and Economy also offering weekly rates. 15 designated Cell Phone Waiting Areas are also located near the airport entrance for those drivers who are merely coming in to provide a quick-pick up of passengers. Passengers who are considered frequent customers, meaning that they have departed from the airport at least 15 times within the previous year, can sign up for the Preferred Parking plan. This will ensure that they have a designated space in either the Long-Term or Economy Lots.
The airport also provides assistance to passengers with disabilities who may need extra help in the terminal.