Where to Park, Shop and Dine at Hobby Airport

December 29, 2022
William P. Hobby Airport (HOU) is Houston's oldest commercial airport. It was also the metro area’s primary commercial airport until Houston Intercontinental Airport, now known as George Bush Intercontinental Airport, opened. Houston Municipal Airport (HOU’s original name) opened in 1927 as a private landing field in a 600-acre pasture known as W.T. Carter Field. In 1967, the airport’s name was changed to honor William P. Hobby, a former Texas governor.

The first three Women Airforce Service Pilots training classes were held at the Houston Municipal Airport in 1943. The first airline to deliver passenger flights at the airport was Houston Metro Airlines, a commuter air carrier operating "cross town" shuttle service between Hobby and IAH in 1970.

Today, the airport covers 1,304 acres and has four runways, one of which is permanently closed as of February 2020. HOU handles domestic/international service for five commercial airlines and serves as an international point of entry for general aviation activity between Texas and Mexico. The airport opened its international terminal with five gates in October 2015, with Southwest Airlines as the sole carrier in the terminal.

In addition to Southwest Airlines, carriers serving HOU passengers include Allegiant Air, American Eagle, Delta Air Lines, and JSX.

Whether you are looking for a quick bite or a full meal, HOU offers an assortment of food and drink options to satisfy your cravings and quench your thirst.

If you like to shop, then visit the plethora of newsstands, boutiques, and bookstores at HOU.

Service animals are very welcome at HOU. Animal relief areas are ADA accessible, and are located at Level 1, near Ground Transportation Zone 4 and the Red Garage, and near Level 2 near Gate 20.

HOU is a smoke-free facility, but designated smoking areas are outside Levels 1 and 2, at least 25 feet from exit doors.

HOU also has two chapels. Find one pre-security near the Level 1 Baggage Claim and one post-security through the Central Concourse, near Gate 44.

Find more service-oriented amenities available at HOU here.

Parking near Hobby airport 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 70% less expensive than parking at the airport. Lots are located within minutes from HOU, 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
  • Short and long-term parking options
  • Open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year
  • Express check-in and check-out through The Parking Spot app
  • Extra wide parking option at The Parking Spot Monroe

Need to book an overnight stay in Houston? There are ample hotels in close proximity to HOU:

1940 Air Terminal Museum (8325 Travelair Street, Houston, Texas 77061) - Houston’s aviation history comes alive in this air travel museum located on-site at Houston Hobby Airport! (Located on the west side of HOU)

The Houston airport system has one of the largest collections of public art in the state of Texas. Artworks by predominantly Texas-based artists are placed throughout the airport’s terminals and grounds. You can view a full listing of art at William P. Hobby here.
Looking to enjoy some world-class entertainment before your flight? The Harmony in the Air performing arts program helps to create an enjoyable and stress-free experience for passengers through live musical performances. Harmony in the Air performances take place every weekday from noon to 3:00pm in the Central Concourse Rotunda with performances rotating every other day of the week. See the weekly schedule and learn more about the musical artists here.

The Houston Museum of Natural Science (5555 Hermann Park Dr, Houston, TX 77030) - Explore the best of the Jurassic era and beyond through this collection of exhibits about the natural world. (11.8 miles from HOU)
NRG Stadium (NRG Pkwy, Houston, TX 77054) - Visit the home of the NFL’s Houston Texans! The multi-purpose stadium hosts exhibits, concerts, and professional and amateur sporting events of all kinds. (11.5 miles from HOU)
Houston Zoo (200 Hermann Park Drive, Houston, Texas 77030) - Kids of all ages will enjoy this zoological park’s 55 acres, 6,000 animals and 900 species. (13.6 miles from HOU)
Space Center Houston (1601 NASA Pkwy, Houston TX 77058) - Looking for an out-of-this-world experience? Space Center Houston is one of the leading science and space exploration learning centers. It’s the area’s number one attraction for international visitors, and features over 400 space artifacts. (17 miles from HOU)

Q. Is vaping allowed inside HOU?
A. Vaping is not allowed indoors at HOU. There is a designated smoking area 25 feet away from the entrance of the terminal.

Q. Are there smoking lounges inside HOU?
A. Smoking areas are offered outside of Levels 1 and 2 more than 25 feet from the doors. There are no smoking lounges inside HOU

Q. Is there a kid-friendly area at HOU?
A. While there is no specific kid-friendly area at HOU, children are encouraged to visit the airport’s little library.

Q. Are pets allowed to fly out of HOU?
A. Only service animals are allowed to fly out of HOU.

Q. Is HOU an international airport?
A. Hobby (HOU) is an international airport that serves the greater Houston area for both domestic and global flights.

Q. How many runways are used at HOU?
A. HOU has a single runway just over a mile long (2,317 meters) that runs parallel to the terminal building. The runway is designated 15L/33R.

Q. How far is downtown Houston from HOU?
A. HOU is about 10 miles away from downtown Houston.

Q. Does HOU have free wifi?
A. Yes. Look for "Hobby Airport Free WiFi" from the list of available networks, and follow the connection instructions.

Q. Is there a nursing area at HOU?
A. A private nursing room is located in each terminal, and a Mamava pod is available outside of security.

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