Montana Airports: Start Your Journey Right

With Montana’s vast open spaces and stunning natural beauty, it’s no wonder that travelers are drawn to this breathtaking state.

But how do you get there? In this comprehensive guide, we’ll walk you through the state’s international and other major airports.

These airports provide access to all corners of the state, making it easy for visitors to explore everything Montana has to offer. This covers information about the airlines operating in Montana, amenities available, entry points to the state, and passenger traffic.

From Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport to Glacier Park International Airport, we’ll provide a rundown of the flight entryways to the state’s most sought-after destinations.

Whether you’re a first-time visitor or a seasoned Montanan, you’ll find something new and exciting in the world of Big Sky airports

7 Key Takeaways for Airports in Montana

  1. Montana airports serve as entry points to the state’s iconic national parks like Yellowstone and Glacier.
  2. Though lacking direct international flights, they connect to major U.S. hubs like New York and Seattle.
  3. The availability of rental services for cars and shuttles ensures swift and convenient travel within the state.
  4. Airlines such as Alaska, Delta, and United cater to diverse traveler preferences and destinations within Montana.
  5. Regional airports like Helena and Yellowstone offer localized access beyond the major hubs.
  6. Planning ahead secures accommodations and flights during peak seasons like the holiday season or summer season.
  7. The strategic locations of these airports bridge easy access not only to iconic national parks but also to various other attractions and towns across the state.

International Airports in Montana

A plane is parked on the tarmac at a Montana airport.

When it comes to traveling to and from Montana, the state offers a handful of international airports that can make your journey smoother and more convenient.

These airports not only connect you to major U.S. cities but also offer direct flights to international destinations.

Now, let’s take a closer look at the primary international airports in Big Sky Country and what they have to offer.

1. Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (BZN)

Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport

Nestled in the town of Belgrade, Montana, Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (BZN) stands as the state’s busiest airport.

Its location serves as the primary access point to two entrances of Yellowstone National Park throughout the year – West Yellowstone and Gardiner.

Why is BZN the top choice for Yellowstone-bound travelers? Well, it’s all about location.

Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (BZN) serves as the gateway to the southwest region of Montana, which includes the iconic Yellowstone National Park.

The airport also plays a crucial role in offering extensive airline connections, with fifteen airline hubs nationwide, and ground transportation options.

And let’s not forget its proximity to Bozeman, Montana, making it easily accessible for travelers.

Major rental car brands and various local ground transportation services such as buses, shuttles, taxis, and limos are available right at the terminal for added convenience. There are also ride-sharing options in Montana like Lyft and Uber.

With non-stop flights to over 20 U.S. cities and connections globally, Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport is not just a hub but a gateway to incredible adventures.

So, if you’re headed to Yellowstone or the broader southwest region of Montana, BZN should be on your radar.

With its prime location, extensive flight options, and a bevy of ground transportation choices, it’s the perfect launchpad for your Big Sky State adventure.

2. Glacier Park International Airport (FCA)

Glacier Park International Airport

Nestled in Flathead County, Montana, just 6 miles northeast of Kalispell.

Glacier Park International Airport (FCA) is the doorway to the iconic Glacier National Park and the entire northwest part of the state.

Daily flights from major hubs like Seattle and Denver, as well as seasonal direct flights from cities like Atlanta, New York, and Portland, make it a convenient and accessible travel hub.

With a range of lodging options just a short drive away, FCA is the closest airport to Glacier National Park, making it a perfect base for exploring the natural wonders of the area.

Once you arrive, you’ll find major rental car companies, plenty of parking, and convenient ground transportation options at your disposal, along with a charming gift shop and a bistro to satisfy any pre- or post-flight cravings.

Whether you’re coming for the breathtaking scenery or just passing through, FCA offers all the services and accessibility you need for a smooth and enjoyable travel experience.

Just remember, during peak seasons, it’s always a good idea to book your flights and accommodations well in advance to secure your spot in Montana’s slice of paradise.

3. Billings Logan International Airport (BIL)

Billings Logan International Airport

Tucked in Yellowstone County, Montana, just a stone’s throw away from downtown Billings, lies Billings Logan International Airport (BIL).

BILIt is the third-largest airport in the state and it serves as the gateway to the southeastern part of Montana.

It is owned by the City of Billings and operated by the Billings Department of Aviation & Transit.

Throughout the year, BIL offers a mix of year-round and seasonal flights to a variety of hubs such as Denver, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City, Seattle, and Las Vegas.

But it’s not just about getting you from point A to B. BIL offers a host of services to make your journey seamless and enjoyable.

Here are some of its highlights:

  • Rental Car Options: Need wheels to explore Montana’s vast landscapes? BIL has you covered with multiple rental car agencies.
  • Parking Facilities: Whether you’re a frequent flyer or just passing through, BIL offers both short-term and long-term parking options.
  • Ground Transportation Choices: From shuttles to taxis, you have plenty of ways to get to your final destination.
  • Gift Shops: Forgot to grab a souvenir? BIL’s gift shops have you covered with Montana-made goodies.

So, the next time you’re planning a trip to Montana, consider flying into BIL. It’s not just a means to an end; it’s the beginning of your southeastern Montana adventure.

4. Great Falls International Airport (GTF)

Great Falls International Airport

When you’re en route to the heart of Big Sky Country, Great Falls International Airport (GTF) is your ticket to central Montana.

Situated a mere 3 miles southwest of downtown Great Falls, this public and military airport has been a local fixture for years.

GTF is also conveniently positioned midway between Glacier National Park and Yellowstone National Park, making it a prime gateway for travelers looking to explore these renowned destinations.

Owned by the Great Falls International Airport Authority, it’s come a long way since its days as the Great Falls Municipal Airport.

Overview of what GTF offers:

  • Airlines: Alaska, Allegiant, Delta, Frontier, and United. You’ve got options when it comes to carriers.
  • Modern Amenities: From sleek lounges to local eateries, GTF offers the comforts and conveniences you’d expect from a major airport.

GTF’s range of services and its strategic location make it a smart choice. And hey, if you’ve got a layover, take a moment to appreciate the stunning Montana views from the terminal.

5. Missoula International Airport (MSO)

Missoula International Airport

Nestled in the heart of Missoula, Montana, the Missoula International Airport (MSO) provides a gateway to outdoor adventures amidst the breathtaking Rocky Mountains.

Owned by the Missoula County Airport Authority, this bustling airport operates around the clock, serving as the primary entry point to the western region of the state.

Missoula International Airport (MSO) offers nonstop and convenient flights to 14 major U.S. states. However, as of now, there are no direct international flights departing from this airport.

The airport’s single terminal building houses two vendors, Kettlehouse Bar & Grill and Coldsmoke Tavern in both pre and post-security

They offer a range of dining options and traditional seating, as well as an outdoor deck for a breath of fresh mountain air.

With free Wi-Fi available throughout the terminal and numerous power outlets for charging devices, travelers can stay connected and powered up while on the go.

Airport Ambassadors are also on hand to provide assistance and ensure a seamless travel experience for all passengers.

With its proximity to downtown Missoula and its stunning natural surroundings, MSO is a convenient and inviting starting point for any journey.

Other Major Montana Airports

Two airplanes parked on the tarmac at a Montana airport at dusk.

When it comes to flying into Montana, there are more airports than just the obvious choices. 

These airports play a crucial role in connecting smaller communities and providing access to the state’s stunning landscapes and outdoor recreation opportunities.

Let’s explore a few other major airports in the state that might offer you a more convenient or cost-effective way to reach your destination.

1. Helena Regional Airport (HLN)

Helena Regional Airport

Located just a couple of miles northeast of Helena in Lewis and Clark County, Helena Regional Airport (HLN) is a public airport that is a convenient gateway to the state and offers domestic flights.

HLN is well-connected to major U.S. destinations through three major airlines: Alaska Airlines, Delta Air Lines, and United Airlines.

Whether you’re coming from the West Coast, the Midwest, or the East Coast, you’ll find a flight that suits your needs.

One thing I appreciate about HLN is that it’s more than just a place to catch a flight.

Before you take off, you can grab a bite or do some last-minute shopping. The airport features a café where you can savor a cup of local coffee or grab a quick snack.

And if you’re in the mood for some retail therapy, a few stores are offering local crafts and Montana-themed souvenirs.

So, if you’re traveling to Helena or planning to explore the beauty of Montana, keep HLN in mind as your entry point. 

2. Bert Mooney Airport (BTM)

Bert Mooney Airport

Located 3 miles southeast of Butte, Montana, in Silver Bow County, Bert Mooney Airport (BTM) is a small public airport that primarily serves the city of Butte and the surrounding areas.

Despite its limited airline options, the BTM’s facilities and services make it a convenient entry point for travelers visiting the southwestern region of the state.

For those driving in, the airport offers free parking, and for those relying on public transportation in Montana, taxis and car rentals are readily available.

Travelers can also enjoy the convenience of free Wi-Fi and grab a bite to eat at the on-site restaurant.

Whether you’re just passing through or making Butte your final destination, Bert Mooney Airport has everything you need to start your trip off on the right foot.

3. Yellowstone Airport (WYS)

Yellowstone Airport

Located in Gallatin County, Montana, Yellowstone Airport (WYS) is a state-owned public-use airport conveniently positioned just one mile north of West Yellowstone’s central business district.

It is adjacent to highways US-287 and US-191, WYS serves as a key gateway to the renowned Yellowstone National Park and the surrounding region.

However, it’s important to note that this airport does not facilitate international flights.

While Yellowstone Airport is a crucial hub for domestic travel, offering flights to various destinations within the United States, it’s essential to plan accordingly for international travel needs.

So, if you’re itching to see Old Faithful or hike the Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone Airport (WYS) is your express ticket.

Airlines Flying into Montana

A white airplane flying in the clear blue sky.

Montana’s vast landscapes and growing tourism have attracted a range of airlines, making it easier than ever to reach your Big Sky destination.

Here’s a breakdown of the major players in Montana’s aviation scene:

  1. Alaska Airlines – Alaska Airlines offers flights to several cities with airports including Billings, Bozeman, Great Falls, Helena, Kalispell (Glacier International), Missoula, Butte (Bert Mooney), and West Yellowstone.
  2. Allegiant Air – Allegiant Air operates flights to various smaller destinations. They maintain lower costs while ensuring quality, flying limited days per week, particularly into Montana airports. It operates flights at Billings, Bozeman, Great Falls, Kalispell, and Missoula airports in Montana.
  3. United Airlines – United Airlines mainly operates in cities namely Bozeman, Great Falls, Helena, and Kalispell airports all have United Airlines flights into Montana.
  4. American Airlines – American Airlines, is a major air travel service to Montana and offers flights to Billings, Bozeman, Kalispell (Glacier Park), and Missoula within the state.
  5. Cape Air – Cape Air operates in Billings as a significant Montana airport, in addition to serving smaller regional Montana airports like Glasgow, Glendive, Havre, and Wolf Pointe (essentially smaller Eastern Montana airports).
  6. Delta Air Lines – Delta serves all the major airports in Montana: Billings, Bozeman, Butte, Great Falls, Kalispell, Helena, and Missoula.
  7. Frontier Air – Currently, Frontier Air operates flights in Montana at two airports: Kalispell (Glacier Park International) and Missoula.

However take note that things constantly change, though, hopefully with more Montana flights!

Montana Airports Final Thoughts

A montana airport waiting room with a view of mountains.

Montana’s international airports, like Bozeman Yellowstone International and Glacier Park International in Kalispell, are not just your typical hubs; they’re gateways to some of the most iconic destinations in the state.

Think Yellowstone National Park and Glacier National Park—these natural wonders are just a stone’s throw away from these airports.

Beyond the international airports of Montana, you have other major players like Helena Regional Airport (HLN), Bert Mooney Airport (BTM), and Yellowstone Airport (WYS), all connecting you to different parts of the state.

When it comes to airlines, you have a range of options. Alaska Airlines, Allegiant Air, American Airlines, Cape Air, Delta Air Lines, Frontier Air, and United Airlines all have a presence in Montana.

Montana airports offer more than just a means to an end. They’re full-service hubs that cater to your travel needs, whether it’s a quick bite at a local eatery, a last-minute souvenir, or even car rental services.

The airports are designed to make your journey seamless and enjoyable. So by the time you plan a trip to Big Sky Country, don’t just think of the destination; think of the journey and the airports that make it all possible.

Montana Airports FAQs

1. Which Montana Airports Had the Most Traffic in 2022?

Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (BZN) retained its position as Montana’s busiest airport, with more than 1.1 million passengers flying on commercial airlines in 2022.

Missoula International Airport (MSO) held the second-highest position, with over 425,000 passengers boarding flights in 2022.

Glacier Park International Airport (FCA) in Kalispell climbed to the third position, while Billings Logan International Airport (BIL) dropped to fourth place, registering fewer than 385,000 enplanements.

2. What Are the Major Airports in Montana?

Major Airports in Montana include:

  • Bozeman Yellowstone International Airport (BZN)
  • Glacier Park International Airport (FCA)
  • Billings Logan International Airport (BIL)
  • Great Falls International Airport (GTF)
  • Missoula International Airport (MSO)

3. What Is the Biggest City in Montana?

The largest city in Montana is Billings, with a population estimated at 119,960 as of 2022. It is the most populous city in the state and serves as the trade and distribution center for much of Montana east of the Continental Divide.

4. What Month Is It Cheapest to Fly to Montana?

January is considered the most economical period to visit Montana due to reduced travel demand following the festive season. February also typically presents reasonably priced flight options to the state.

Flight costs to Montana surge during the holiday season but notably decrease once the season ends. Consequently, January becomes an attractive time for budget-conscious travelers seeking affordable flights as demand diminishes, offering more cost-effective choices.

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Written by:

Elizabeth Hawley
Hey, fellow travelers! I'm Elizabeth Hawley, stepping into the world in the hues of fall. For me, Montana is more than just a state; it's a muse. The golden aspen trees and russet landscapes in the fall have always fueled my creativity. Co-founding was a no-brainer, blending my love for art, photography, and Montana's ever-changing palette.

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