Aviation rankings organization Skytrax released its best airports of 2023, with Singapore Changi Airport topping the list for the 12th time.
“This recognition is great encouragement to our airport community, who stood firmly together to battle the challenges of COVID-19 over the past two years,” Lee Seow Hiang, CEO of Changi Airport Group said in a statement. “To our passengers, we are deeply grateful for your vote of confidence. … We look forward to welcoming everyone to Changi Airport as we rediscover the magic of travel again.”
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The best airports were largely concentrated in Asia, Europe and the Middle East, with Seattle-Tacoma International and Vancouver International Airports being the only two North American airfields on the list.
“I can’t say I’m surprised. I just find some of these foreign airports to be a little better in terms of layout, they offer more in terms of amenities to people,” Rich Henderson, a flight attendant at a major airline and one of the co-founders of the Two Guys On A Plane blog, told USA TODAY. “I feel like it says a lot about American culture that our airports aren’t designed as much for spending leisure time in the airports.”
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Henderson said that there were some surprises on the list, including Charles de Gaulle Airport in Paris – frequently lambasted by travelers for being crowded and confusing to navigate – ranking as the best in Europe.
“These airport lists that come out, I feel like they’re so subjective in terms of what they’re actually ranking,” he said. “Every traveler, every crewmember, is different in terms of what they’re looking for.”
Best airports of 2023
According to Skytrax, these are the 20 best airports to travel through this year:
- Singapore Changi Airport
- Hamad International Airport
- Tokyo International Airport (Haneda)
- Incheon International Airport
- Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport
- Istanbul Airport
- Munich Airport
- Zurich Airport
- Narita International Airport
- Madrid-Barajas Airport
- Vienna International Airport
- Helsinki-Vantaa Airport
- Rome Fiumicino Airport
- Copenhagen Airport
- Kansai International Airport
- Chubu Centrair International Airport
- Dubai International Airport
- Seattle-Tacoma International Airport
- Melbourne Airport
- Vancouver International Airport
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LaGuardia Terminal B is the best new terminal in the world
Aside from the main airport rankings, New York LaGuardia International Airport’s recently-overhauled Terminal B was named the best new airport terminal in the world for 2023, according to Skytrax.
Then-vice president Joe Biden said that LaGuardia was like a “third world” airport in 2014, and since then, the much-despised facility has had a real glow up.
“Our goal at the Port Authority was to completely transform the customer experience at LaGuardia, from curb to gate, by building a brand-new, world-class airport,” Rick Cotton, executive director of the Port Authority, which operates the major New York-area airports, said in a statement. “Winning this prestigious award and becoming the first North American airport terminal to receive a 5-star rating from Skytrax proves that we have accomplished what many once said was impossible: elevate LaGuardia from worst to best.”
Zach Wichter is a travel reporter for USA TODAY based in New York. You can reach him at email@example.com
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