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Thousands of people from around the world will pass through the international terminal daily, and most of them will fit into one of six passenger categories.

Categories are based primarily on where passengers are coming from and where they are going. If passengers know their category, they can determine where to go for customs and immigration inspection, baggage claim, connecting flights, concessions and other services.

Passenger categories

1. Atlanta-bound: These are passengers whose international travel begins and ends in Atlanta.

    Departing passengers:
  • Check in at the international terminal.
  • Pass through the international security checkpoint.
  • Follow the signs to the gate, or use The Plane Train if the departure gate is on Concourse E.
    Arriving passengers:
  • Process through immigration and customs at the Concourse F Federal Inspection Station (FIS).
  • Pick up checked luggage at the international terminal baggage claim.
  • Get ground transportation — taxis; hotel shuttles; and shuttles to the domestic terminal, rental car center and MARTA train to downtown — at the center outside the international terminal.

2. International inbound connecting at Hartsfield-Jackson for U.S. domestic travel: These passengers are arriving in Atlanta from a city outside the United States to connect on a domestic flight for travel within the United States.

  • Passengers arriving at gates on Concourse F will process through immigration and customs at the Concourse F Federal Inspection Station (FIS). Passengers arriving at gates on Concourse E will process through immigration and customs at the Concourse E FIS.
  • After the immigration inspection, passengers pick up their checked baggage.
  • After the customs inspection, passengers’ checked baggage is rechecked and transferred to domestic connecting flights.
  • Passengers are required to pass through a security checkpoint.
  • To reach a connecting flight, passengers will follow signs to the Airport’s people mover system, The Plane Train, which connects the international concourses (E and F) to all other concourses and the domestic terminal.

3. International inbound connecting at Hartsfield-Jackson for International travel: These passengers are arriving in Atlanta from a city outside the United States to connect on an international flight for travel outside the United States.

  • Passengers arriving at gates on Concourse F will process through immigration and customs at the Concourse F Federal Inspection Station (FIS).
  • Passengers arriving at gates on Concourse E will process through immigration and customs at the Concourse E FIS.
  • After the immigration inspection, passengers pick up their checked baggage.
  • After the customs inspection, passengers’ checked baggage is rechecked and transferred to international connecting flights.
  • Passengers are required to pass through a security checkpoint.
  • To reach a connecting flight, passengers will follow signs to the Airport’s people mover system, The Plane Train, which connects the international concourses (E and F) to all other concourses and the domestic terminal.

4. Connecting in Hartsfield-Jackson for travel outside the United States: These passengers are arriving in Atlanta from another U.S. city to connect with an outbound international flight.

  • Passengers traveling outside the United States on single tickets already will have checked in internationally at their originating domestic airports. They do not need to go through a security checkpoint reinspection.
    • To reach connecting international flights, passengers follow signs to the Airport’s people mover system, The Plane Train, which connects to the international concourses (E and F).
    • Airlines will transfer checked baggage to connecting international flights.
  • Passengers not traveling on single tickets may need to collect their checked luggage at the domestic terminal baggage claim.
    • After passengers retrieve their luggage, they will need to board the terminal connector shuttle at the ground transportation center for a 15-minute ride to the international terminal.
    • These passengers will check in at the international terminal, check their luggage and pass through a security checkpoint.

5. Originating in Atlanta and flying to another U.S. city to connect for travel outside the United States: These passengers are flying from Atlanta to another U.S. city to connect with an international flight.

  • These passengers will need to check in at the domestic terminal. Passengers should ask their airlines about specific check-in requirements.
  • After they have checked in, passengers will follow signs to the security checkpoints.
  • After passengers go through the security checkpoints, they will follow overhead signs to their departure gates.

6. Precleared: These passengers are arriving from or traveling to countries that participate in the U.S. precleared travel program.

  • Precleared passengers staying in Atlanta will pick up checked luggage at the international baggage carousel at the international terminal.
  • For more information about preclearance locations, click here.

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