I believe that a country’s international airports should be beautiful. They should be a reflection of a country’s pride. They are the first impression a traveler gets of a nation. In this day and age, when millions and millions of people are traveling internationally each year, international airports should be welcoming, modern, functional, well appointed.
America needs to improve it’s international airports.
I can’t believe how totally craptastick JFK and O’Hare are. They are an embarrassment. When flying to and from Italy I always try to use Charlotte airport, (which is small, efficient and friendly) and flat out refuse to use Chicago. More frequently than not I end up having to use JFK or Philadelphia. After 10 hours in the air you really want to arrive somewhere friendly, modern and clean, with some good dining options. These two airports are none of these things.
The Tom Bradley international terminal at Los Angeles LAX airport is magnificent. It is modern and beautiful and leaves you thinking you are in Dubai. And everyone smiles and is friendly. The JFK folks need to do a field trip to LAX to check it out.
The following is an article from The Wayfarer, all about the very best international airports in the world.
And, Once Again, the World’s Best Airport Is…
Singapore’s Changi Airport named best in the world—for the fifth time
Perhaps it’s time to consider Singapore’sChangi Airport the “New York Yankees of air travel.” How else could one spin the news that Lion City’s largest airport has been named best in the world for the fifth consecutive year?
The designation came down earlier this month from Skytrax World Airport Awards, an independent annual evaluation that bases the final rankings on the results of millions of international passenger surveys. This year was the sixth annual Skytrax awards; Changi has five first-place victories and one second-place win (back in 2012).
It’s not hard to see why fliers could consider the three-terminal airport to be the air travel equivalent of the winningest sports franchise of all time. In addition to being one of the busiest hubs in Asia, Changi boasts two 24-hour movie theaters that show current releases for free, a rooftop swimming pool (complete with locker rooms for changing), and a butterfly garden teeming with butterflies.
The airport is also putting the finishing touches on a fourth terminal, which, according to the Straits Times, a Singaporean newspaper, is slated to open later this year.
There were other highly lauded airports in the running, too: Tokyo Haneda International Airport, Incheon International Airport in Seoul, Munich International Airport and Hong Kong International Airport rounded out the Top Five. (Haneda also won an award for the world’s cleanest airport, and Hong Kong was hailed has having the best and most varied dining options.)
Sadly—embarrassingly, really—not a single North American airport cracked the Top 10. In fact, the highest-ranked airport on our continent is Vancouver International Airport in Canada, at No. 13.
The United States isn’t represented on the Skytrax list until No. 26, an honor that goes to the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. (The dark horse win seems like a great piece of trivia to whip out at your next soirée.) Denver International Airport was tabbed as No. 28.
It’s hard not to read the Skytrax list of winners and dream about what U.S. airports could be. The takeaways: We need more free movie theaters. Or at least a few butterfly gardens.
Matt Villano is a freelance writer and editor based in Healdsburg, California. In nearly 20 years as a full-time freelancer, he has covered travel for publications including TIME, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, Sunset, Backpacker, Entrepreneur, and more. He contributes to the Expedia Viewfinder blog and writes a monthly food column for Islands magazine. Villano also serves on the board of the Family Travel Association and blogs about family travel at Wandering Pod. Learn more about him at Whalehead.com.