San Francisco, the crown jewel of Northern California, has plenty of attractions to pull in millions of visitors a year. Rolling hills, museums, beaches, entertainment, and recreation, you name it… San Francisco has it all. Besides, the city is a business hub with cutting-edge tech advancements and strong economic growth. So, San Francisco is a worthwhile vacation + international business trip destination. If you want to maximize relaxation on your travel, no transport mode will deliver you a more enhanced travel experience than air travel. Put convenience first by booking San Francisco flights with world-class airlines.
Travelers flying to/from San Francisco Bay Area have three different airport options i.e. San Francisco Airport (SFO), San Jose Airport (SJC), and Oakland Airport (OAK). San Francisco International Airport has the most respectable scores across the board in terms of ease of access, route connectivity, passenger infrastructures, etc. As the largest airport in the region, it handles the majority of the Bay Area’s passenger traffic. Its proximity to San Francisco (13 miles south of the city) makes SFO the most convenient facility for air travelers.
In this guide, we’ll delve into details of San Francisco flights that take place at SFO Airport.
Flights to San Francisco (SFO)
SFO Airport is a world-class gateway into the bustling San Francisco City in California. It brings you closer to the world with non-stop flights to over 130 international and domestic destinations. Close to 50 US-based and foreign airlines serve SFO and operate San Francisco flights. The majority of carriers present are foreign, so visitors can enjoy direct access to SFO from several overseas cities. On the other hand, although the number of domestic airlines is comparatively small, they control the majority of the market share in San Francisco.
The airport enjoys direct connections to major cities throughout North America and further afield in Europe, Asia, and Oceania. Let’s explore San Francisco flights operated by different airlines from various parts of the world.
1. Domestic flights to San Francisco
A total of 10 US airlines operate domestic flights to San Francisco (SFO). They are Alaska Airlines, American Airlines, Breeze Airways, Delta, Frontier Airlines, Hawaiian Airlines, JetBlue, Southwest Airlines, Sun Country Airlines, and United.
Chicago-based United Airlines handles about 44% of passenger traffic at SFO, making it the largest tenant/operator at the airport. San Francisco Airport functions as United’s primary hub for the West Coast and flight routes in the Asian and Australasian regions. United operates the highest number of San Francisco flights and connects the ‘Golden Gate City’ directly to around 30 domestic cities. Its most popular domestic routes from San Francisco include Newark, Denver, Los Angeles, Chicago, Las Vegas, Seattle/Tacoma, etc.
Likewise, Alaska Airlines, which also maintains a hub at SFO, offers regular domestic flights to 20+ cities. It is the third largest operator that carries over 3 million passengers annually through SFO.
Another key operator at SFO is Delta Air Lines. 9 of its 10 hubs have direct regular services to Frisco City. The Atlanta-based carrier accounts for nearly 10% of air traffic flying in and out of San Francisco Airport.
Like Delta, American Airlines also serves the Golden City directly from 9 of its 10 hubs (except LaGuardia). Customers from different parts of the country can book connections to San Francisco via these hubs.
Then there’s Hawaiian Airlines which scoots travelers between the tropical paradise Honolulu and San Francisco.
Domestic customers seeking affordable San Francisco flights can benefit from low fares offered by the following carriers on given routes:
- Breeze Airways: Cincinnati, Louisville, Provo, Richmond, San Bernardino
- Frontier Airlines: Atlanta, Dallas/Fort Worth, Denver, Las Vegas, Ontario, Phoenix Sky Harbor
- JetBlue: Boston, Fort Lauderdale Los Angeles, and New York JFK
- Southwest Airlines: Burbank, Chicago-Midway, Denver, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, San Diego, and Phoenix Sky Harbor
- Sun County Airlines: Minneapolis/ St. Paul
The presence of low-cost competitors has brought in growth and low fares for flyers at SFO Airport. The above-mentioned carriers compete effectively on price to make air travel accessible to all. Furthermore, they give passengers control over their expenses and flexibility to pay for what they value.
2. San Francisco flights from North America (excluding the US)
The state-of-art San Francisco Airport hosts airline services from the following North-American cities:
- Toronto Pearson and Vancouver (served by Air Canada and United Airlines)
- Montreal-Trudeau (served by Air Canada, Air Transat, and WestJet)
- Panama City-Tocumen (served by Copa Airlines)
- Guadalajara, Mexico City (served by Aeromexico and United Airlines)
3. Flights to San Francisco from Asia
Asian residents can now easily tap into West Coast living vibes, thanks to direct flight connectivity between San Francisco and Asia. Airlines operating San Francisco flights from different cities in Asia are listed below:
United Airlines: Since SFO is a transpacific gateway for UA, customers can book tickets with United on the following Asian routes:-
Hong Kong, Osaka-Kansai, Seoul-Incheon, Shanghai-Pudong, Taipei-Taoyuan, Tokyo-Haneda, Tokyo-Narita
Air India: The flag carrier of India, Air India (AI) serves San Francisco directly from Mumbai and Bengaluru. It deploys Boeing 777-200LR aircraft to operate 3 x weekly service on the Bengaluru-SFO route and Mumbai-SFO route. The newly-inducted Boeing 777 covers the 13,999 km distance from Bengaluru and San Francisco in 16 hours and 10 minutes; the longest flight operated by AI.
Similarly, AI’s ultra-long-haul service from BOM to SFO has a travel duration of 15 hours and 48 minutes.
All Nippon Airways: This Japanese airline operates non-stop SFO flights from Tokyo-Haneda and Tokyo-Narita.
Asiana Airlines: Seoul-based Asiana Airlines provides international passenger flights between Seoul-Incheon and San Francisco.
Here are some more Asia-based airlines serving Silicon Valley:-
- Cathay Pacific: Hong Kong
- China Airlines: Taipei-Taoyuan
- Japan Airlines: Tokyo-Haneda and Tokyo-Narita
- Philippine Airlines: Manila
- Zipair Tokyo: Tokyo-Narita (service will commence on June 2, 2023)
4. Flights to San Francisco from Europe
San Francisco has a unique draw for European visitors who want to explore the city in historic, cultural, and modern fashion. Direct San Francisco flights are available from key European airports. Here are the airlines that cash in on travelers’ unquenched thirst for transatlantic flying between Silicon Valley and Europe:
Air France-The flag carrier of France offers non-stop services between Paris, the ‘City of Light’, and San Francisco with Boeing 777-300.
Aer Lingus-The flag carrier of Ireland, Aer Lingus conveys visitors from Dublin to SFO using Airbus A330-300.
British Airways-The British flagship airline operates a nonstop 11 hour 5 minutes-long flight from London Heathrow to SFO with Boeing 777 aircraft.
Lufthansa-Passengers flying with Lufthansa can connect to the Golden City from Frankfurt and Munich.
TAP Air Portugal-This Portuguese flag carrier operates two weekly services between Lisbon and San Francisco (on Thursdays and Sundays).
Turkish Airlines-Visitors can fly directly from Istanbul (IST) all the way to SFO onboard Turkish Airlines’ Airbus A350 jet. It takes 13 hours and 25 minutes to reach the Golden City from the Turkish capital.
KLM Royal Dutch-Customers from the Netherlands can explore the Bay Area by booking KLM’s direct Amsterdam-San Francisco flights.
Virgin Atlantic- Crawley-headquartered Virgin Atlantic competes with BA on the London Heathrow-San Francisco route. It uses a fuel-efficient Boeing 787-9 airliner to perform 11 hr-long flight from LHR to SFO.
United Airlines-UA extends its SFO network beyond North America to European destinations including London Heathrow, Paris CDG, Munich, and Rome.
5. Flights from the Middle East to San Francisco
SFO Airport, a thriving passenger hub in California, US, welcomes visitors from the Middle East. Some mega Gulf carriers have a foothold at this airport which helps to strengthen connectivity between the US and the Middle East.
Emirates, one of the two flag carriers of the UAE, offers premium services to high-end clientele on the SFO-DXB (Dubai) route. It delivers state-of-the-art passenger comfort above clouds in Airbus A380-800 ‘Giant of the Skies’ aircraft. The behemoth A380 jet completes the non-stop journey from Dubai to San Francisco in 15 hours and 50 minutes.
Another mega Gulf carrier Qatar Airways operates direct San Francisco flights from Doha. Silicon Valley has a crucial position in Qatar Airways’ ever-increasing US network. The Qatari flag carrier utilizes an Airbus A350-1000 wide-body jet to ferry visitors from Doha to SFO in 15 hours and 40 minutes.
6. Discovering San Francisco with Oceania-based carriers
Even airlines from Oceania region conduct regularly scheduled passenger operations at SFO Airport. These include Qantas (the flag carrier of Australia), Air New Zealand (the flag carrier of New Zealand), Fiji Airways (the flagship airline of Fiji), etc.
Australian travelers can purchase Qantas’ direct flights from Sydney to San Francisco. They will sweep the skies in Boeing 787-9 Dreamliner with a one-of-a-kind flight experience. Qantas’ 787-9 undertakes the non-stop journey from Sydney to SFO in 13 hours and 20 minutes. The national carrier of Australia restarted its Sydney-San Francisco operations after a three-year hiatus on May 22.
Fiji Airways offers a relaxing trip from Nadi to San Francisco onboard Airbus A330-200 aircraft. It takes 10 hours and 30 minutes to fly directly from Nadi, the third-largest conurbation in Fiji, to San Francisco.