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PHL Airport Dilemma -- Is there a solution?

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A friend is coming from Hawaii and has a three-hour layover at PHL on Monday, March 1st. While that's ample time to a good meal in South Philly and get back to the airport, she's travelling with her dog and doesn't want to leave the airport.

Unless I'm misremembering, the only restaurants at the airport are past security. I would not have access to them as I'm not flying that day.

Please enlighten me if there is an alternative place to eat. (Or something I'm missing...)

Thanks!

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  1. There are no restaurants IN the airport outside of security. Closest is the restaurant in the Airport Marriott which is directly connected to the airport via pedestrian walkways. I have eaten there before and it is standard innocuous hotel restaurant food with an asian influence.

    Allow 30 minutes to get through security especially with a dog, and remember they board 30 minutes prior to departure. So you really only have max 2 hours. And thats assuming the flight is on time.

    1. Maybe get some delicious takeout and bring it to your friend at the airport, along with something for the dog?

      4 Replies
      1. re: Karen K

        She could be a good friend and bring you some kahlua pork, lau lau, malasadas, and all of the other thing we just dream of around here.

        Seriously though, three hours is not much time to exit the airport for a meal, assuming the second flight is on time (and that's a big if around here...)

        1. re: bluehensfan

          Yeah, given my experience I would never plan a trip out from the PHL airport unless I had at LEAST a six-hour layover...especially with a pet involved but still...

          1. re: sockii

            Thanks, everyone. Seems as if the logical alternative is to buy a cheap airline ticket which would make this one expensive airport meal. ,

            1. re: Seeker19104

              Yeah... that, or find a way to get a "Security Pass" or "Gate Pass" -- which is like a boarding pass in that it gets you through security, but unlike a boarding pass in that it doesn't get you a seat on a plane. If you belong to one of the airline "clubs," they may be behind the security gates, and you might be able to get a gate pass to get you through.

      2. i'm probably too late, but there's a riverside place in ridley park that was not great but passable... i forget its name, but it focused on seafood. darn!

        inside the airport, it's not gourmet but i still make a point to get to king of pizza. i believe it's in D terminal.

        2 Replies
        1. re: rabidog

          Ha I used to fly out of Terminal D somewhat frequently and I loved King of Pizza. One of the better pizza shops in Philly, for better or worse.

          1. re: barryg

            me too. breakfast pizza? sign me up. that pizza was so good, i once continued to eat it even after i realized there was a leak in the ceiling dripping right onto my slice. oh, PHL...

        2. Why don't you just pick up food and bring it to the airport.

          Also, you used to be able to get a pass to get you through security even if you are not flying.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Den

            Post 9-11 you will not be able to get a gate pass to go through security to meet someone who has a layover. Gate passes are given to people that are accompanying minors to the gate who are elderly,disabled, military personnel or people with oxygen canisters.

            The best solution would be to buy a one way refundable ticket print out the ticket, clear security and meet the person. Southwest Airlines would probably be the cheapest airline.

          2. Thanks, everyone, as it turned out she arrived Wednesday rather than Tuesday, and I was unable to be at the airport that day regardless of the security issue.

            Hope this thread is helpful to someone in the future. It's good to know there are options.

            1. On a related note, I was recently in the airport and stumbled across a new place called Vino Vollo. They have great wine flights and tasty tapas. What a pleasant surprise! The atmosphere is kind of sidewalk cafe, with tables & umbrellas. It really took the stress out of my travel day. If you happen to be there, i recommend it.

              2 Replies
              1. re: truffles2

                +1 on Vino Vollo. They are where the old brew pub used to be.. and they have another location down on terminal B. I think they may be opening one in Terminal F as well if my memory serves me.

                1. re: truffles2

                  Yes! I got stuck in the airport with a friend one day, and that was a lifesaver. Light, actually somewhat good snacks and wine. Definitely not what I expected at PHL.

                2. Legal Seafood has a place there which is very OK.

                  Chickies and Pete's is good for cheesesteaks etc.

                  There is an Italian sit down place that's decent too. Can't remember the name.