Cheapest time to fly to Beijing Capital International Airport (PEK)
Beijing Capital Airport flights peak in spring and autumn when the climate is at its most temperate and the trees and flowers give a dazzling injection of colour to the city. Flights to Beijing Airport also increase around Chinese New Year which falls in February. In the height of summer and winter, there are plenty of deals to be found on return flights to Beijing, this is also when hotels will be less crowded and more affordable in 2021.
Flying to Beijing Capital Airport
The Chinese government built an entire new terminal for the Beijing Olympics in 2008, which became known as Terminal 3. For a time, Capital was the busiest airport in Asia in terms of passenger traffic and is still one of the world's most prominent international hubs. Air China and British Airways offer direct flights between London Heathrow and Beijing. China Eastern, Emirates, Lufthansa and Turkish Airlines are just a few of the options for flights to Beijing Capital Airport which require a stopover.
On arrival and getting around PEK
Most international Beijing Capital flights arrive at the new Terminal 3, with airlines who are members of SkyTeam and OneWorld using Terminal 2. Terminals 1 and 2 are connected by a public walkway and all three are serviced by free shuttle buses to ferry passengers to the correct arrival and departure points. Those using Terminal 3 for last-minute flights in 2021 will get to experience the 'global kitchen', as there are over 70 restaurants serving food from around the world.
Getting to the city from the airport
The airport is served by a special express line of the Beijing Subway system. The train stops at Terminals 2 and 3 before continuing the journey directly to Sanyuanqiao and Dongzhimen. The 18-mile trip takes a little under 20 minutes and is reliable and cheap. If direct flights arrive outside the train's operational hours, buses run to several downtown locations. Taxis are an option but always insist on using the meter and never agree a set price – it will always be too much.
Don't forget before you fly
British passport holders taking cheap flights to Beijing Capital Airport must have a visa before travelling. The process for a tourist visa is normally straight forward, but make sure you leave enough time to arrange everything before you travel. The local currency is the Chinese Yuan Renminbi.