We California locals pretty much know our major airports, as we travel around the state often, and find flying can get you from Los Angeles to the Redwood Coast of Northern California in say, 2 hours via direct flight from LAX to McKinleyville’s Arcata/Eureka Airport (Horizon, Alaska Air). A drive with just the minimum stops for gas, bathroom use and food is no less than 12 hours, and the cost of wear & tear on your car, plus the price of gas make the trip a scenic, albeit long road to travel!
We want you to make the most of your very excellent trip, so be sure to check out some flights to get you around the state in speedy time.
For us beach people, the top 2 airports are Los Angeles International Airport and San Francisco Airport (LAX to SFO). Troubles and delays arise with fog sometimes, and many who need a sure bet will fly into Oakland or San Jose Airports some miles away from San Francisco Airport when they have an important business meeting or other function.
Orange County Airport sometimes matches prices on flights out of LAX but often charges more to get to the same destination. When using this convenient airport, you can weigh out the price difference between taking a shuttle from LAX to OC, versus the saving or added expense of a ticket and times a flight comes and goes. Living in Orange County at the beach, I personally try to fly out of Orange County (SNA), but on cross-country trips back east I’m often finding myself at LAX because of the schedules, airlines, etc.
Ontario International Airport serves the Inland Empire, and many cancelled flights into LA will attempt to redirect you to Ontario Airport. It’s an hour from anything such as a beach, and not your best bet for beach destination trips.
The coast has a string of great national airports to serve travelers, and for access to Lake Tahoe, even Nevada’s Reno Airport offers an airport bus to the casinos and hotels.
Burbank Airport is one of the favorites for Hollywood trips. Some consider it their hidden arsenal for getting to LA.
Long Beach Airport servers Jet Blue flights and offers an old-fashioned (historic) ambiance you must try sometime.
San Diego Airport connects folks with the nation, and for those traveling from say, Monterey, it’s ideal to fly into San Diego for a local conference or vacation.
Central Coast Airports include Santa Barbara, Santa Maria and Monterey, while Central Valley is served by Fresno and Sacramento (International), to name a few.
Northern California is accessed easily via Redding Airport, while Palm Desert will get you there via Palm Springs Airport, which a little distance out of town.
There are many more airports for your convenience. The first portion is the name of the airport and the second three letter set is the airport code for booking.
Arcata / Eureka ACV ACV KACV Arcata Airport
Bakersfield BFL BFL KBFL Meadows Field
Burbank BUR BUR KBUR Bob Hope Airport
Carlsbad CRQ CLD KCRQ McClellan-Palomar Airport
Chico CIC CIC KCIC Chico Municipal Airport
Crescent City CEC CEC KCEC Del Norte County Airport
Fresno FAT FAT KFAT Fresno Yosemite International Airport
Imperial IPL IPL KIPL Imperial County Airport
Inyokern IYK IYK KIYK Inyokern Airport
Long Beach LGB LGB KLGB Long Beach Airport
Los Angeles LAX LAX KLAX Los Angeles International Airport
Modesto MOD MOD KMOD Modesto City-County Airport
Monterey MRY MRY KMRY Monterey Peninsula Airport
Oakland OAK OAK KOAK Metropolitan Oakland International Airport
Ontario ONT ONT KONT Ontario International Airport
Oxnard OXR OXR KOXR Oxnard Airport
Palm Springs PSP PSP KPSP Palm Springs International Airport
Redding RDD RDD KRDD Redding Municipal Airport
Sacramento SMF SMF KSMF Sacramento International Airport
San Diego SAN SAN KSAN San Diego International Airport
San Francisco SFO SFO KSFO San Francisco International Airport
San Jose SJC SJC KSJC Norman Y. Mineta San José International Airport
San Luis Obispo SBP SBP KSBP San Luis Obispo County Regional Airport
Santa Ana SNA SNA KSNA John Wayne Airport - Orange County
Santa Barbara SBA SBA KSBA Santa Barbara Municipal Airport
Santa Maria SMX SMX KSMX Santa Maria Public Airport
Santa Rosa STS STS KSTS Charles M. Schulz - Sonoma County Airport
Stockton SCK SCK KSCK Stockton Metropolitan Airport