Explore Denver International Airport (DEN): Your Comprehensive Travel Guide
December 27, 2022
Denver International Airport (DEN, known locally as “DIA”) is recognized by its peaked roof which resembles snow capped mountains, and evokes imagery of the indigenous American teepees that were once located across the Great Plains. An architectural wonder, the catenary steel cable system supports the iconic white fabric roof of the main terminal.
As the largest airport in North America, and the second largest in the world, DEN occupies 52.4 square miles, and is one and a half times the size of Manhattan. Denver chose the airport’s location for its distance from residential areas, ability to accommodate a runway layout that is not compromised by Colorado’s winter blizzards, and flexibility to allow for future expansions. With over 35,000 employees, DEN is the largest employer in Colorado. The airport is a major hub for Frontier Airlines and United Airlines, and is the main operating base for Southwest Airlines.
DIA is divided into three main concourses which are spaced far apart. Concourse A is accessible to the main terminal building via a pedestrian bridge, but Concourses B and C are only accessible to passengers by train.
Concourse A handles all international arrivals, as well as all departing flights from international airline carriers. For domestic flights, Frontier Airlines has the largest presence in Concourse A, though several other domestic airlines occupy its gates routinely. International and domestic carriers using Concourse A include Aeroméxico, Air Canada, Air Canada Express, Air France, Allegiant Air, American Airlines, American Eagle, Boutique Air, British Airways, Cayman Airways, Copa Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Delta Connection, Denver Air Connection, Edelweiss Air, Icelandair, JetBlue, Lufthansa, Southern Airways Express, Sun Country Airlines, Volaris, and Westjet.
Concourse B serves solely United Airlines.
Concourse C is primarily occupied by Southwest Airlines, but is also utilized by Alaska Airlines and Spirit Airlines. A 16-gate construction and expansion project is currently underway in Concourse C. It will include the addition of an outdoor terrace for passengers, and is projected to be complete by mid-2022.
Additionally, work is underway to expand Concourse A and B, allowing the airport to handle up to 90 million passengers per year. This is expected to be complete in 2025.
AIRPORT DINING AND AMENITIES
DEN features over 170 dining and shopping options that include both classic American fare and global must-haves. Find a full list of food and drink options here.
American Airlines and British Airways travelers can meet for tea and more at the shared Admirals Club/Executive Club Lounge in Concourse A. The lounge is shared with USO travelers.
United Airlines passengers can find two United Clubs serving its members on Concourse B.
WiFi is free throughout the airport.
Parking near DEN with The Parking Spot helps travelers find the best, most convenient, and most cost-effective parking option so their car-to-air transfer is as seamless as possible. On average, parking with The Parking Spot is approximately 40% less expensive than parking at the airport. Lots are located within minutes from DEN, and include complimentary door-to-door shuttle service to and from the airport.
- Access to the lowest rates via reservation and pre-pay on The Parking Spot app or TheParkingSpot.com.
- 24/7 on-call shuttle service
- Shuttle tracking through The Parking Spot app
- Luggage assistance
- Free bottled water
- Uncovered parking in a well-lit facility
- Open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year
- Express check-in and check-out through The Parking Spot app
HOTELS NEAR DEN
Planning an overnight trip near DEN? Check out these nearby hotel options:
- The Westin Denver International Airport
- 8300 Peña Blvd, Denver, CO 80249-6310
- Hyatt House Denver Airport
- 18741 E 71st Ave, Denver, CO 80249-7375
- Days Inn & Suites by Wyndham Denver International Airport
- 7030 Tower Rd, Denver, CO 80249-7311
DEN AIRPORT ATTRACTIONS
In March 2019, DEN unveiled an animated, talking gargoyle iin one of its concourses. The figure interacts with passengers, cracks jokes, and offers conspiracy theories about the airport.
The Open Windows art installation near Gate B51 is an 11-foot-tall tower of lights that reacts to human movement.
Take in the Rocky Mountain vista through the windows at Concourse C, between gates C23 and C24.
ATTRACTIONS NEAR DEN
Located 25 miles away from DEN, Denver’s main tourist attractions are clustered in their downtown area. Consider a visit to:
- Denver Mint (320 W. Colfax Ave., Denver) - The U.S. Mint at Denver is the largest manufacturer of currency, specifically coins, in the country. Visit this historic building and take a 45-minute tour of their production facility.
- Denver Art Museum (100 W. 14th Avenue Pkwy, Denver) - Take in both permanent collections and temporary exhibitions at this iconic museum showcasing over 70,000 works of art.
- Denver Botanic Gardens (1007 York Street, Denver) - Spend the day learning about conservation and plants’ natural habitat at this beautifully curated garden and plant preservation space.
- 16th Street Mall (Downtown Denver, between Wewatta St and Broadway) - This pedestrian street has got it all: brewpubs, outdoor cafes, shopping, and even a replica of the Campanile of St. Mark’s in Venice. At night, catch a ride on a pedicab or a horse-drawn carriage.
Q. How big is DEN?
A. DEN is spread over 33,500 acres. It is designed to accommodate the wintery climate of Colorado.
Q. What times does DEN open/close?
A. DEN is open 24/7. The north security checkpoint is open from approximately 4 a.m to 9 p.m. The south security checkpoint is open 24 hours.
Q. Does DEN have a USO?
A. There is a USO located at the north end of the A gates bridge from Jeppesen Terminal at DEN.
Q. What airlines fly into DEN?
A. Airlines flying in and out of DEN include Frontier Airlines, Aeroméxico, Air Canada, Air Canada Express, Air France, Alaska Airlines, Allegiant Air, American Airlines, American Eagle, Boutique Air, British Airways, Cayman Airways, Copa Airlines, Delta Air Lines, Delta Connection, Denver Air Connection, Edelweiss Air, Icelandair, JetBlue, Lufthansa, Southern Airways Express, Southwest Airlines, Spirit Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, United Airlines, United Express, Volaris, and WestJet.
Q. Where is DIA?
A. DEN is located in Denver, Colorado. It serves the metropolitan area of Denver and the Front Range Urban Corridor.
Q. Where is TSA Precheck located?
A. DEN has TSA Precheck lanes at both north and south security checkpoints.
Q. How busy is DEN?
A. DEN is the third busiest airport in the United States.
Q. Can my pet fly at DEN?
A. Pets can fly at DEN. They even have pet relief areas outside every terminal as well as a spa area for pets with a boarding facility.
Q. Is DEN an international airport?
A. DEN is an international airport serving the Denver metropolitan area.
Q. How early should I arrive for my flight at DEN?
A. DEN suggests that you arrive at the airport about two hours before your flight.
Q. What can’t I take through TSA?
A. Liquids over 3.4oz, ammunition, and sporting goods are not allowed through TSA.
Q. Can I vape at DEN?
A. DEN does not allow vaping inside the terminals or inside aircrafts. There are designated smoking areas outside the terminals.
Q. Where can I park at DEN?
A. There are many parking options at DEN. Parking near DEN with The Parking Spot helps travelers find the best, most convenient and most cost-effective parking option so their car-to-air transfer is as seamless as possible.