I recently read an article where the Sioux City, IA Airport hates its name and has tried repeatedly without success to change it. Why, it just plain SUX. Yup, that’s the three-letter code for that airport; SUX.
I’ve always loved airport code naming as I think some are clever, some just make you say “really?” and some are oh well… It had to have one. It’s not that the authorities are being mean (or were they?), its just that some of these cities start with well, three letters that spell words and were not yet taken when the naming was being done.
The entire aviation system is built on these three-letter codes. It just makes it easier for the computers. One of the parts of being trained at an airline job; well select jobs is to learn the codes. And yes, there’s even a test which you must pass. Of course there is an easy cheat sheet in the computers and once you get on the job it gets easier.
Here are some fun ones to think about:
- Charlotte, NC (CLT)
- Corpus Christ, TX (CRP) – seems to be missing a letter 🙂
- Fresno, CA (FAT)
- Fukuoka, Japan (FUK)
- Funafuti, Tuvalu (FUN) – I love this one!
- Gaya, India (GAY)
- Guangzhou, People’s Republic of China (CAN)
- Helsinki, Finland (HEL)
- Hot Springs, AK (HOT)
- Pensacola, FL (PNS)
- Sioux City, IA (SUX)
- Singapore (SIN)
- Wenatchee, WA (EAT)
- Ely, NV (ELY)
- Fes, Morocco (FEZ); also spelt Fez, Morocco
- Yap (YAP)
And then others that are complex as they are named after the person who has their name associated with the airport or was a military base or the place where the airport stands:
- Chicago-O’Hare, IL (ORD) – Orchard Field
- New Orleans, LA (MSY) – Moisant Field
- Orlando, FL (MCO) – McCoy Field
What are your thoughts? Have you been to any of these exciting airports?