The World's Best Airports

March 25, 2017
VMD Staff

Air travel can be taxing, to say the least, in part because of the airports you enter along your route. Depending on where your travels take you, however, you might be more than pleasantly surprised by your airport experience. Here we list some of the world’s best.

Traveling by air can be exhausting and overwhelming. Time spent in crowded, run-down, boring airports is often the lowlight of most trips. And let’s not even talk about the security line.

But departing from, or having a layover in, a top-ranked airport can make the journey a whole lot better—especially for international travelers and those of us more accustomed to sitting in the back of the plane than the front.

At the 2017 Passenger Terminal Conference (yes, there is an annual conference dedicated to airport terminals), the air transport rating organization Skytrax announced the winners of its World Airport Awards. Often dubbed the “Oscars of the Aviation Industry” and the “Passenger Choice Awards,” the World Airport Awards serve as a global benchmark for airport excellence.

For the 2017 ratings, Skytrax analyzed nearly 14 million questionnaires completed by airline customers representing 105 nationalities. The survey covered 550 airports around the world and included analyses of check-in, arrivals, transfers, shopping, security, and immigration through to gate departure.

For the fifth year in a row, Airport of the Year honors went to Singapore Changi Airport. The other top winners in each category were (drumroll, please):

  • Most Improved Airport: Soekarno-Hatta International Airport
  • Best Airport Dining: Hong Kong International Airport
  • Best Airport Terminal: Munich Airport T2
  • #1 for Security Clearance: Copenhagen Airport
  • World’s Cleanest Airport: Tokyo International Haneda Airport
  • Best Airport Shopping: Heathrow Airport

Continue reading to find out how other airports ranked, including the world’s top 10 airports, which U.S. airports made the top 100, and the best regional airports in North America.

Top 10 Airports in the World

Terminal waiting area in Singapore Changi Airport

1. Singapore Changi Airport

2. Tokyo International Haneda Airport

3. Incheon International Airport

4. Munich Airport

5. Hong Kong International Airport

6. Hamad International Airport

7. Chubu Centrair Nagoya Airport

8. Zurich Airport

9. Heathrow Airport

10. Frankfurt Airport

U.S. Airports on the Top 100 List

John A Roebling Suspension Bridge between Cincinnati, Ohio and Covington, Kentucky

  • 26th: Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport
  • 28th: Denver International Airport
  • 39th: San Francisco International Airport
  • 46th: Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport
  • 54th: Houston International Airport
  • 58th: Seattle-Tacoma International Airport
  • 72nd: Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport
  • 86th: Los Angeles International Airport
  • 88th: Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport
  • 89th: Boston Logan International Airport
  • 94th: Detroit Metropolitan Airport

Top 10 Regional Airports in North America

John A Roebling Suspension Bridge between Cincinnati, Ohio and Covington, Kentucky

1. Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport

2. Denver International Airport

3. Seattle-Tacoma International Airport

4. Halifax Stanfield International Airport

5. Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport

6. Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport

7. Detroit Metropolitan Airport

8. Raleigh-Durham International Airport

9. Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport

10. Philadelphia International Airport