Oakland’s airport officially changes name to San Francisco Bay Oakland International Airport

It’s official: Oakland, California’s airport has changed its name.

The Oakland Board of Port Commissioners, which oversees Oakland International Airport (OAK), voted unanimously Thursday to change the airport’s name to San Francisco Bay Oakland International Airport in an effort to better reflect the airport’s location as part of an effort to attract more passengers and to prompt airlines to add more routes.

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The vote comes despite opposition from San Francisco officials, including a lawsuit filed by the city in April, shortly after Oakland first announced the proposed new name, arguing that it infringes on San Francisco International Airport’s (SFO) trademarked name. Oakland filed a counterclaim this week.

“Our Board came to these discussions with a shared love of Oakland and a desire to see our city and airport thrive,” Port Commission President Barbara Leslie said in a statement. “Since our initial vote, the Port has met with dozens of community leaders and stakeholders and heard their concerns. We are moving forward with a commitment to honoring our past while building a stronger, more inclusive future.”

Although the airport may be changing its name, it plans to keep its code — OAK — intact, along with other branding.

OAK sits squarely on the east side of San Francisco Bay, and is less than a half-hour drive from downtown San Francisco — not to mention just a few minutes from the city of Oakland.

While it may be dwarfed by San Francisco International Airport (SFO) just across the bay, OAK officials think that part of the reason that it gets significantly less traffic is that inbound travelers simply don’t realize where the airport is or that it presents a potentially more attractive option for people flying to the Bay Area.

Between July 2008 and March 2024, the OAK added 54 new routes, airport officials said. Of those, 39 were discontinued, along with six older established routes.

Airlines offer 46 destinations from OAK as of this June, according to data from aviation data firm Cirium. The airport’s largest airline is Southwest Airlines by a significant margin, followed by Alaska Airlines and Spirit Airlines. It also has regular service from Hawaiian Airlines, Mexican carrier Volaris, Allegiant Air and Delta Air Lines.

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Still, Oakland officials said last month that there’s room for that route map and carrier list to expand, citing geographic awareness as a major hindrance. Market research carried out by the airport authority found that local travelers are eager for more domestic and international destinations from the airport, while inbound travelers confirmed that they did not realize how close the airport was to San Francisco.

By Friday midday, OAK’s website had been updated with the new name.

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