In general, the instructions below will give you an idea of where to meet the veterans in the terminal. FOR THOSE INDIVIDUALS WHO HAVE SIGNED UP TO GREET A FLIGHT, SPECIFIC INSTRUCTIONS WILL BE SENT IN AN EMAIL 36-24 HOURS BEFORE THE FLIGHT ARRIVES. Occasionally, we have flights that necessitate that we greet the veterans or see them off at different locations in the airport.
REMEMBER — nothing works unless you go to our signup page and register for each flight (arrival and/or departure) with which you intend to volunteer! Gate passes (when available) and parking instructions only materialize when you register/signup in advance.
Arrival of the Veterans
On the day of the flight, plan on arriving in the terminal at least 30 minutes before the scheduled arrival time for the flight. This will allow time to time to check in with the ground crew and receive instructions. Occasionally, flights do arrive ahead of their scheduled time.
Walking in from the parking lot to the terminal will take 10 to 15 minutes depending on your pace. You will be entering the east end of the terminal on the lowest level where the taxis and shuttle buses arrive/depart. After going up the ramp, you will be on the Arrival level. Continue to your right and go up the escalators/stairs to the Departure Level. Proceed to the right towards the West Security Checkpoint Entrance on the other end of the rear part of the terminal. Our gathering point is across from the Emirates Airline counter. You should see our banner and some folks in the bright yellow shirts, and hopefully lots of greeters.
Departure of the Veterans
Coming to greet the Veterans after their day in Washington D.C. can be as rewarding, if not MORE rewarding, than greeting them when they arrive. Most times, our volunteers get to spend more time with the veterans talking with them about their day, their service, their families, or how much they loved their Honor Flight experience.
Please make sure you sign up for a departure greeting so you can get the instructions about when to return to greet the veterans at the airport and where to gather. The buses carrying the veterans typically return on the Arrivals (lower) level though occasionally they return on the Departure (upper) level
Plan to be at the airport 30 minutes before the scheduled time that the buses are due back. We’ve had many cases when the buses return way before their scheduled time. Greeters meet at the Oversize Luggage / Baggage Claim #8 area on the Arrivals Level (lower level) of the main terminal opposite Door #4.
When the buses arrive, we form a receiving line that stretches from Door #5 to the special TSA check-in area set up near the Baggage Claim #8. Our job is to make sure that the veterans get safely from their buses to the restrooms, and onward to the TSA check-in area without wandering off the wrong way.
If the buses return on the Departure (upper) level, we meet outside the District Chophouse restaurant.
REMEMBER, if you signed up to greet a flight, you will get an email with specific directions 36-24 hours before the flight.