What are your favorite/least favorite airports?

CreditMunich's picture
Rank: Orangutan | 316

I'll start us off, LaGuardia is the worst airport in the US. To those who've had the luxury of never setting foot in LaGuardia, allow me to provide an overview of the amenities:

  • Highest rate of flight cancellations and delays in the US
  • No convenient way to get to the airport through mass transit
  • Scuffed floors, stained carpets
  • Many bathroom stalls don't even have working locks

LaGuardia is so bad that during a 2015 speech about infrastructure, then-Vice President Joe Biden told a Philadelphia audience:

"If I blindfolded you and took you to LaGuardia Airport in New York, you must think, I must be in some Third World country." People laughed. "I'm not joking," Biden said. People laughed some more.

LaGuardia has one redeeming factor though, according to Brian Kelly, founder of the Points Guy website:

"LaGuardia gets me to my gate incredibly fast, I can get to the airport 41 minutes before my flight and be fine. That's impossible at most big-city airports,"

What are your favorite/least favorite airports to fly out of, and what makes them so great/terrible for you? Are you more concerned about efficiency of travel, or general aesthetic/cleanliness?

Link to article: [/embed] Why You Should Love America's Worst Airport

Comments (93)

Mar 7, 2017

Always hated flying out of o hare, feels like I have to walk a half marathon to get anywhere.

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Mar 7, 2017

The only time I've been to O'Hare I was actually really sick and had to get pushed around in a wheelchair. That worked well to shorten the walk lol

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Mar 7, 2017

I actually like flying out of LGA, but not into LGA because of the whole construction situation and how long it takes to get a taxi. Favorite airport would probably be SFO or MSP.

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Best Response
Mar 7, 2017

Not a big fan of LGA, But I agree with you on MSP. I cant think of a time where I had a bad experience there and I've flown in and out of there since I was a kid. I like LHR. TBH though, I don't fly often enough to comment on things like through time to the gate. When I go to an airport I'm more affected by infrastructure quality and minor amenities. That's why I like LHR and MSP.

But I really think MIA and LGA are two of the crappiest airports I've been in. They are just run down, dilapidated, and dirty. Last time I was in MIA (about 2 months ago) in one of the terminals, they had constructed improvised funnels on the roof and fastened plastic tubing to them in order to divert leaking water from dripping on the the travelers. They literally had one plastic tube running down into a large planter with a tree in it. The dirt had become so saturated that the water had leaked out of the drain holes in the bottom of the planter and stained the carpet in approximately a 3 or 4 foot radius. It was so pathetic.

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Mar 9, 2017

Depending on the terminal, MIA is absolute garbage. The AA terminal is decent, but if you fly in on an ex-US Airways Route from for ex. CLT or PHL, you will end up in what seems to be hell. Horrible fucking setup

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Mar 7, 2017

Favorite: CLT
Least favorite: BTR

Mar 8, 2017

Baton Rouge really isnt bad... It's just Tiny....

Mar 7, 2017

SXM/Princess Juliana Airport

When you arrive, you arrive to paradise. It doesn't hurt you get to see all the idiots who get thrown into the water from the airplane.

JFK -is the worst Airport in NYC. Having to deal with belt or van wyck traffic is a nightmare. LGA takes about 20 minutes, 30 in traffic. EWR has a bad wrap, but really easy to get to by public transportation.

Mar 7, 2017

I feel like every flight in the history of EWR gets delayed for some reason

Mar 7, 2017

SFO by far. The delta skylounge there is some big pimpin material too

Mar 7, 2017

JFK, ORD, and LAX can all burn to the fucking ground

Mar 9, 2017

LAX is my least favorite airport in the world, I think.

It's a fucking nightmare logistically and a shit hole.

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Mar 8, 2017

I hate Honolulu airport

Mar 8, 2017

Better than LGA.

It does feel like you flew into a shitty 80's Hawaiian movie when you land however.

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Mar 8, 2017

It really does - Throwback to the Brady Bunch tv special in Hawaii

Mar 8, 2017

Not a fan of of Ohare. Then probably Detroit with i it's lsd inspired tunnel.

Mar 8, 2017

Pittsburgh airport is stupid big for nothing. TSA line at the Cleveland airport blows.

IMO, the airports I hate are the smaller ones. Limited flights and service. Ohare blows because it's so far away. I can literally get there and to my gate in 20 minutes and there are a ton of admirals clubs.

Mar 8, 2017

LGA is the worst.

How the fuck am I supposed to get there without having a cab drive me without stupid amounts of traffic? It's fucking terrible. And it does feel like a third world country.

I'd rather fly into LAX.

DIA, LAX, SNA, Honolulu, BTR, ONT are better.

Fuck even the Bangkok airport is better than LGA. Jesus Christ.

Mar 9, 2017

Yeah Bangkok airport is actually pretty nice. I don't think anyone would consider that a true third world country airport though

Mar 9, 2017

I'm just surprised an Airport that is right next to the largest, and perhaps the most important economic hub in the US if not world, has an airport that shitty.

Mar 8, 2017

Favorite might be SeaTac just because I've spent so much time there and like the layout of the foodcourt/ like Bigfoot BBQ and riding trains to baggage claim is pretty fun.

Least favorite would be a tie between Portland and Denver. Got stuck in Portland one time because the plane we were supposed to be on froze and it took them a while to warm it up. (Small Plane). Hate Denver's airport simply because it's so far from the city it's basically in Kansas.

westcoastrepresent

Mar 8, 2017

people used to HATE Seatac, but they've done a lot to improve it over the last 5-10 years

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Mar 8, 2017

Now Denver has that rail line it's better. It's basically an hour Uber drive which is bullshit.

Cannot believe how far out some of these airports are to small cities. It's absurd.

Mar 8, 2017

Denver's airport is literally so far from town that it has its own hotel.

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Mar 8, 2017

Favorite international airport: Shanghai Pudong, but it's been awhile
domestic.... i honestly can't tell most of them apart. never had a great nor horrible experience

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Mar 9, 2017

Beijing's is pretty nice as well. Definitely the best subway I've ever ridden on.

Mar 8, 2017

The private airfield where I fly out of.

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Life is hard, it's even harder when you're stupid - John Wayne

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Mar 8, 2017

humblebrag

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Mar 8, 2017

Nothing humble about it.

Follow the shit your fellow monkeys say @shitWSOsays

Life is hard, it's even harder when you're stupid - John Wayne

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Mar 9, 2017

FBOs are trashy as fuck. Private Jets make it worth it but their terminals are absolute ass compared to the hospitality at first class lounges.

Mar 9, 2017

Who the fuck spends any more time at private airfield than necessary? You drive to the hangar, park your vehicle inside of it, get out of your vehicle, walk maybe a hundred yards, walk up a few steps to get in the plane, sit down and drink. That sure as fuck beats any first class lounge.

Follow the shit your fellow monkeys say @shitWSOsays

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Mar 8, 2017

Zurich

Apr 10, 2017

Yep. 20 min train to gate and it's all nice and clean.

Mar 8, 2017

DFW reminds me of the need for population control every time i use it

Mar 12, 2017

The international terminal at DFW is super nice though imo. When doing the $2B renovation to all the domestic terminals, I wish they would have opened up the concourses a bit for more room. It's Texas after all...you don't really get that "big" feel you're supposed to.

Aug 29, 2019

Love Field is far superior to DFW.

Mar 9, 2017

SFO because that's where I grew up and being an avgeek makes your home airport extremely special. The international terminal is set up extremely cleanly and takes no longer than 5 minutes to get from the first gate to the end.

Mar 9, 2017

Anytime you're connecting domestically at ORD, chances are you fly United, and chances are you may be going from a smaller to bigger plane, meaning concourse D,E,F,G to B,C....which is a hike, sometimes under time pressure. No good.

For smaller airports I love SAV. I go down there often for leisure and it's no-nonsense. Ubers are waiting right outside baggage claim and the town square-esque common area always gives me a smile.

For Larger airports - DEN or MSP. Both are sizable for their market, yet the airports are well maintained and control passenger flow well.

FWIW - no one has mentioned ATL on here as a bad airport....do we all just not fly through there?

Mar 9, 2017

Is ATL pretty bad? Its one of my connections in a couple weeks. As long as they have a good food selection I'll be happy

Mar 9, 2017

@2trickpony and @CreditMunich, ATL is actually very good. It's the busiest in the world, but they really have everything down pat. I've only flown out of there three to five times, but every time has been quick, even if there are 100+ people in security before me (this was before I got TSA Pre-Check).

Apr 10, 2017
CreditMunich:

Is ATL pretty bad? Its one of my connections in a couple weeks. As long as they have a good food selection I'll be happy

While busy as hell ATL is one of my favorites by far.

JFK, LAX, and LaGuardia and all burn in hell.

Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.

Mar 9, 2017

Gotta love DCA. 15 minutes by Uber from downtown DC (just across the Potomac), and security has never taken me more than 10 minutes. Just wish they offered more flights / routes - they're running pretty close to capacity.

Mar 9, 2017

Agree wit DCA, I guess i'm biased since i live 5 minutes away. Also thought the airport in Amsterdam was pretty sweet, super clean and well kept.

Mar 9, 2017

Worst: PHL, LGA, MSP, PDX
Best: DTW (yes, Detroit has the nicest airport in the US that I've been to), DCA and ANC

When flying in and out of Anchorage (ANC) with my TSA pre-check I can get be from parking lot to my gate in 20 min.

Apr 8, 2017

How long is the overall process to get approved for pre-check?

Apr 8, 2017

I use my military ID and DoD ID number for TSA pre-check so I never had to apply. I think it takes a couple of months for civilians though.

Mar 9, 2017

Logan is pretty decent - not too far from downtown and has decent dining options.

O'Hare sucks the big one.

"Anything less than the best is a felony"

Mar 9, 2017

Paris-CDG is the worst. They've lost my luggage more than once on connections. Just can't seem to figure out their shit.

Mar 9, 2017

Favourite Airport: SIN
Least Favourite Airport: YYZ

Mar 9, 2017

Not sure if I've ever been in an airport that I wonder consider the worst, but LAS (McCarran) looks outdated and has terrible signage. Plus, if you want to take Uber, you have to walk completely across the airport to a little section of the parking garage that is very easy to miss.

My personal favorite is FRA (Frankfurt). It is always clean, security is always a breeze, and the signage makes finding everything easy.

Apr 10, 2017

Yep. Finding the uber pickup at LAS sucks. Also food selection is dogshit at LAS

Mar 9, 2017

Tampa, FL Airport is beautiful!

Aug 29, 2019

Agreed, its also super easy to get in and out of. Plus, the new food area with Ulele is awesome.

Mar 10, 2017

Anywhere that has an American Express lounge. Best airport lounges.

Mar 10, 2017

Favorite: Mexico City Airport

Least favorite: LAX & Heathrow

Mar 12, 2017

Just flew into EWR tonight from San Juan. Typical Newark where we landed about 45 minutes late and then the baggage carousel broke.

SJU is garbage, can't handle the big vacation rush at all.

Singapore airport is exceptional (only been there once). Also, was very pleased with Hong Kong. Auckland, Wellington and Queenstown airports are all good as well.

Mar 12, 2017

thankfully haven't ever flown in/out of LaGuardia yet. Although one time my insane taxi driver drove me there instead of JFK (wonderful experience) so i did get a glimpse of just how horrible it is.

SFO is amazing, even given the occasional delays from fog or the fact that there's only two runways.

Apr 8, 2017

Haven't flown out of O'Hare in a long time, Midway terminals are pretty trash. The parts of LAX that I've been in were poor. I remember San Diego, Las Vegas, and San Jose being ok.

Apr 8, 2017

Favourites: Singapore Changi, Heathrow and JFK.

Recently, as I walked out of the plane in JFK, the first thing I saw was a huuuge gigantic poster saying: The place where human ambition is fulfilled - or something along those lines.

Although it was an ad from a tier 3 IB, I felt that it was befitting for NYC.

Lease favourite: I fear the monkey shits so will keep that to myself.

Apr 10, 2017

I got a new one for you guys: RDU (Raleigh-Durham). Very accessible to anywhere in the Triangle, new, clean, and security is always a breeze. NC has been staying a step ahead of growth, infrastructure-wise, so everything is a little better than it needs to be.

I love Seattle, but SeaTac blows. It was designed for a pre-9/11 Seattle, both in security and size. Once you get past security it's fine, but I've lost weeks of my life waiting in line there.

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Apr 10, 2017
CreditMunich:

LaGuardia has one redeeming factor though, according to Brian Kelly, founder of the Points Guy website: "LaGuardia gets me to my gate incredibly fast, I can get to the airport 41 minutes before my flight and be fine. That's impossible at most big-city airports,"

So true. Took me 15-20 minutes once to go from the subway station to the terminal at LaGuardia. But the airport is a total dump. Add Abu Dhabi airport (and also Etihad for flying out of the US) to the s*ite list.
LAX is time draining. Need to reach at least 3 hours before flight at peak times. The traffic surrounding the air port is a mess.

I think the Indianapolis airport is the best in terms of getting in and out, on time flights and cleanliness. I guess the only positive part of living in Indiana.

Apr 11, 2017

This isn't really true anymore with the construction going on. I've driven by LGA on my way to JFK at 5am on a weekday and the taxis are backed up onto the highway trying to get into the terminals. It's a huge wildcard so I avoid LGA until the construction is done. Plus its just a dump in general, although the new Delta terminal is nice. But anytime a flight is boarding it clogs up the whole terminal. And I've never walked past a women's bathroom that doesn't have a line out the door. Some of the terminals don't even have a bar. It also is the quickest of the 3 airports to get delays since the runways are so small. Seriously, its the worst. I can see LGA from my apartment and I avoid it at all costs.

JFK can easily take an hour to get to from/to the city, the VanWyck is a disaster.

My favorite goes to Newark. Once you get off Manhattan, its pretty quick to the airport. The United terminal is pretty nice, and it has large gate areas and big restaurants and bars.

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Apr 10, 2017

Favorite: Zurich, Singapore, LHR, Munich's new terminal (and lounge) is nice, too
Least favorite: LGA, LAX (even worse than Sacramento), had really bad experiences at AMS and CDG

Apr 10, 2017

LHR is among my favorites. Nothing is worse than STN tbh

Apr 10, 2017

Ohare is fine if you aren't connecting through it
Midway has no decent food options, but that is about to change with the introduction of high end local restaurants
Detroit is the nicest airport I've seen in the U.S.
Salt Lake has irrationally long lines, even for TSA Pre and looks like it hasn't been updated since the early 80s
Cincinnati has a clean and efficient airport but it's always empty
St Louis looks like it was bombed in WWII and never repaired
Denver is bigger than it needs to be and an hour from the city
Kansas City might be further from its downtown than Denver
LGA and JFK are just as bad as people claim

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Apr 11, 2017

I like OHare, if you have TSAPre. The regular security lines can be insanely long (45 minutes).

Apr 11, 2017

I blow through pre in like 10 minutes. Plenty of AA clubs and no problems other than traffic getting there.

Apr 10, 2017

Out of the US: FRA, Zurich. I actually like LHR too.

In the US: I really like DFW especially if I'm flying out of D. The new upgrades to the other terminals are good too.

Not a fan of DIA because a) it's 45 minutes from downtown and b) even with the tram you still typically have to walk like a mile.

Also not a fan of OHR or MIA. LGA is a dump/there's not a lot of food but the proximity to the city is pretty ideal. Last time I was there, it took an hour from the time we touched down to when I walked into my hotel room.

Apr 11, 2017

George Bush is nice--just have to drive there. Miami has to be one of my favorite. And Philly has to be one of the quickest and easiest.

Apr 21, 2017

ICN in my favourite airport. Koreans really know efficiency and the airport is very clean.

Apr 21, 2017

Favorite: Narita. Ridiculously clean bathrooms and decent restaurants.

Least: O'Hare

Apr 21, 2017

Internationally, Singapore hands down.

In the US, Denver or Charlotte.

Apr 21, 2017

Favourites: FRA, LHR; I also like LCY because you can get to the gate in no time and they have loads of plugs / usb connectors where you can charge your phone etc.

Least favourite: Addis Ababa airport....just awful. No shops or anything once you get past security, you just sit there, uncomfortably, in a large hall. Security's also a joke, I accidentally left a pocket knife in my hand luggage and got through without a problem.

Aug 29, 2019

Worst:
-Charlotte
-Las Vegas
-Hartford

Best:
-Tampa
-Love Field (Dallas)
-Denver

Aug 29, 2019

Like Hartsfield Jackson (Atlanta) and Dallas Fort Worth

Dislike Boston Logan and Chicago Midway

Aug 30, 2019

Probably Frankfurt

Aug 30, 2019
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Sep 10, 2019