I usually have a fairly standard format for an airport review, but I am not even going to go through the pointlessness of stating transit and WiFi options. I will merely attempt to rant long enough about the place to reach 300 words and thus appease the SEO Gods.
Guilin previously had one international airport terminal. This was back when Yangshuo and Guilin were quite good, and not linked by fast train. Now that they are both linked by fast train (and in touristic decline) they’ve decided to build a huge terminal 2, and are in the process of doing a third terminal – one assumes in the hope the locals very quickly become more welcoming.
Guilin Airport – or rather Liangjiang International Airport Terminal 2, to give its full nomenclature – is very typical of Chinese constructions. From the outside it looks like a well-built metropolis, but once you get inside you discover the place is, well, pretty much devoid of anything.
I’ll start with the VIP lounge. OK, so this is a street food blog and I’m the Street Food Guy, but through my credit card I get lounge access. Lounges in internal Chinese airports tend to be bad as a matter of course – I’m fine with that – but at Guilin T2 it massively flatters to deceive. It’s one of the biggest I have seen in China, but on a basic level it’s nothing more than squatter toilets, biscuits and milk.
One of the major advantages of the Lounge Pass and how it saves you money is that in theory, you don’t need to buy food. Obviously, that did not work here. As for anything else decent to eat, you’re pretty much shit out of luck. At Guilin airports and train stations they’ve managed to keep out McDonalds and Burger King because whoever owns the local burger slop mafia won’t give up his monopoly. Horribly overpriced and disgusting.
There’s also not really a restaurant area.
There’s no big brand shops – not even a Victoria’s Secret to perv at undercrackers. The shops are quite shit.
I accept that the only reason one might arrive here is if they need a flight and we don’t really get to choose our airports, but this does not change the fact that Liangjiang Airport is total shit.
Update 26/11/19 – Google likes an update, and I’m back at Guilin Airport T2. Has anything changed over the last year? To cut along story short, a bit, but not much.
Airport security (like) most of China are really over the top, but at Guilin they take it to new levels. My bag was essentially ripped apart because a lighter had somehow managed to be in there, but at least I made them help me repack.
And now to the Guilin Airport first class lounge. I didn’t think it could get worse, but today’s culinary offering was tomatoes and baby apples. There is no beer.
Although they do now display flags for the country, and the CPC, which is nice.
Oh and one last beach. They have signs for a smoking room, but you can’t smoke at Guilin Airport. Cruel and unusual torture.
Im not a fan of Guilin Airport T2!