Which Airport in Charleston SC?

Discussion in 'Cool Places to Fly' started by Groundpounder, Jul 25, 2020.

  1. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Pattern Altitude

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    Planning a vacation trip for September, with a stop in Charleston. We're staying downtown, which airport should I choose, CHS, JZI or LRO? Not getting a rental car, planning on taking Uber from the airport to the hotel.
     
  2. Fearless Tower

    Fearless Tower Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Of the 3 listed, I would recommend LRO. I have been to both CHS and LRO. Never went to JZI because fuel prices there are typically on par with CHS. If our clients were going to pay that much, they'd rather go to the big airport.

    When I was flying corporate, we used to fly to CHS a ton. It's not a bad airport, but if you get your timing off and happen to be wanting to depart at the same time 2 C-17s are in the pattern doing touch and goes and there are airlines in the que as well...you could easily be sitting for 15 minutes waiting to get out. It's still fairly warm down there in September, so unless you have AC, that can be kind of miserable.

    LRO on the other hand is a very easy in and out and decent small field FBO. Fuel is also the cheapest of the 3. Only downside of LRO is if you are staying downtown, it is the longest drive of the 3.
     
  3. Groundpounder

    Groundpounder Pattern Altitude

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    Google maps shows 25 min to downtown. That isn't too bad, assuming no further gotcha's beyond just drive time.
     
  4. MtPJimB

    MtPJimB Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Did my PP and IR training out of LRO. Have flown in and out of all 3. LRO will have your longest ride to downtown, avoid rush hour times. But LRO is the most GA friendly of the three. JZI would be 2nd and CHS last.
     
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  5. wayne

    wayne Pattern Altitude

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    I’ve been to LRO a couple of times and CHS a few as well. A short stop in Charleston with no car, I would go to CHS. A longer stay with a car, I’d go to LRO. The main thing to change that for me would be if I needed to buy a lot of fuel. Hmmm, at almost $2/gal maybe a decent amount of fuel.

    Last time we went to LRO because our daughter was staying with friends in Mt Pleasant, very near LRO.
     
  6. kyleb

    kyleb Final Approach

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    I've made that trip into JZI a couple of times. I was always satisfied. Can't tell you if the others are better or worse.
     
  7. Brad Z

    Brad Z Final Approach PoA Supporter

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    I've always used CHS. When all costs were considered, I didn't find it significantly more expensive than the other options. Air traffic waits have never been a problem either but I think I've always been lucky enough to come and go VFR, though I doubt IFR would take much longer.
     
  8. Unkljohn

    Unkljohn Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I flew into JZI earlier this month. Nice facility, nice people, WAY over priced fuel.
     
  9. Arnold

    Arnold Line Up and Wait

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    So it seems all are nice enough. So it is avgas cost v. difference in Uber cost. The unknown is ground time. Owner in a small piston aircraft - no big deal except comfort. Renter of almost anything - potentially costly even at $2.00 per minute rental fee.
     
  10. Thumper

    Thumper Pre-takeoff checklist

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    I am based at KLRO and visit with transients frequently who have used all three of the Charleston airports. They routinely remark that KLRO is by far the most GA friendly. 100LL is cheaper and service is better. The Uber to downtown is only 10 minutes longer than either JZI or CHS. JZI caters more to the bizjet customer and is closer to Kiawah Island. CHS is a longer taxi from the GA ramp when you arrive and leave and 100LL is Class C priced. Whatever you pick will be fine, but if you like to avoid added stress, pick LRO.