This past week I had the wonderful experience of picking my sister of at Los Angeles International Airport. Although I’ve been to international airports before Los Angeles is certainly the largest I have been to. As I was trying to get to my sister’s gate while avoiding buses and crashing into pedestrians I found myself increasingly annoyed as the huge amount of people there. Los Angeles International Airport is the second largest airport in the country and the fifth largest in the world. The massive amounts of people that travel through LAX cause horrible traffic and navigation. Just when I though it couldn’t get any worse I traveled through the international terminal which was easily the biggest terminal in the airport. It’s easy to see why this terminal would be so big simply by remembering the fact the LAX is a huge international destination
The most obvious reason for Los Angeles being an international destination is tourist. Los Angeles appeals to tourists on multiple different levels. The sunny skies and nearby beaches are a constant reminder the LA is a prime vacation spot any time of the year. There are major tourists spots, like Disneyland and Hollywood, that everyone in the world knows about. Lastly, Los Angeles is filled with shopping, art, museums, and great sights. When you remember how Los Angeles is marketed to the world it’s easy to understand why it is a prime destination for tourism
Another factor in why Los Angeles is a major international city lies in its record with immigration. It is no secret that Los Angeles is home to a massive amount of immigrant, documented and undocumented. Immigration itself might not play a huge role in the amount of people traveling through LAX since many find different methods of transportation into the city. When you factor in both overseas immigrants who have traveled to the country by plane and anyone visiting family that has immigrated here then it is easier to see how this can factor into the situation.
The last major factor in the crowds surrounding the international terminal is most certainly international business. Los Angles plays host to multiple foreign businesses every day. The city business industry is booming thanks in a major part to the great technology trends. Los Angeles is home to starter companies, major technology companies, manufacturing companies, and any thing you can think of that would be needed to support them. Multiple other businesses call LA home, including Healthcare, banking, automotive, and aerospace companies. Overall it is a huge international business hub.
In case you’re wondering, this is exactly what I was thinking as I was traveling at a speed of 5 MPH, avoiding getting hit by buses, and trying desperately not to hit pedestrians. Even when I rationalized why the huge crowds should be there I still absolutely hated every minute of it.