At the northwestern corner of Washington state and just 23 miles from the Canadian border, Bellingham International Airport attracts passengers traveling between the United States and British Columbia as well as those looking to enjoy the Bellingham area’s natural beauty on the Salish Sea and near Mount Baker.
From the airport, downtown Bellingham is 5 miles to the southeast. Going north, the drive to the border crossing at Peace Arch usually takes less than 30 minutes and to the heart of downtown Vancouver is another 40-45 minutes. To the south, downtown Seattle is about 95 miles, a drive that takes about 1 hour and 45 minutes.
Bellingham Airport’s terminal is at 4255 Mitchell Way. It is small and efficient with all services contained in one building on one level. There is one TSA checkpoint leading to a waiting area with five airline gates, lettered A-E. In the terminal there is a gift shop and small café in the pre-security lobby and a larger gift shop and separate restaurant and lounge at the gate waiting area. The airport has two bag claim belts.
Ground transportation options at the airport consist of car rental companies, shuttles, taxis and car services including app-based rides. Quick Shuttle bus service operates from Bellingham Airport to Vancouver (requires minimum 24 hours advance reservation). The bus includes a stop at Surrey, B.C., where connections can be made to/from buses for the Vancouver Cruise Ship Terminals. Quick Shuttle’s scheduled travel time between Bellingham Airport and downtown Vancouver is 2 hours, 10 minutes.
Allegiant Air flights arrive and depart at gates D and E. All passengers leave the TSA secure area upon arrival. As at all airports, Allegiant begins passenger check-in at the airport 2 hours ahead of flight time and closes check-in 45 minutes before departure.
From the Salish Sea, a 130-mile intricate network of coastal waterways, to Mount Baker, a 10,781-foot slumbering volcano that holds the record for most snowfall and longest ski season in the U.S., the area surrounding Bellingham, Washington, offers a wide range of outdoor adventures that change with the seasons.
Bellingham Whatcom County Tourism has visitor information here.
Vancouver is a densely populated city like New York and San Francisco with about 2.5 million people living in its metro area, making it the third largest in Canada behind Toronto and Montréal. Vancouver consistently ranks high for quality of life and livability. It is home to North America’s second most active Pacific Ocean seaport behind the Port of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Vancouver’s coastal location also gives it the most temperate climate of any city in Canada. In a typical year it usually has fewer than five days of freezing or below-freezing temperatures with average winter highs ranging from 44 degrees (Fahrenheit) in December and January to summer highs of 72 degrees in July and August.
The Metro Vancouver Convention and Visitors Bureau has traveler information here.
U.S. citizens crossing the border into Canada by land or sea must show one of the following and show them to U.S. officials when returning:
Adults, 16 and older, a current and valid:
Children, 15 and younger:
Legal permanent U.S. residents must carry a Green Card.
Non U.S. citizens must show a valid passport and/or visa.
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