Skytrax has published its latest annual World Airport Awards and for the fifth consecutive year, Singapore’s Changi International Airport took home the crown as the world’s best airport. The facility serves as one of Southeast Asia’s largest transit hubs and is a major cog in the city-state’s bustling economy. The Skytrax annual rankings are based on the impressions of nearly 14 million flyers from 105 countries. More than 550 airports were included in the survey, which covers 39 service and performance parameters, including facility comfort, location of bathrooms, and the language skills of the airport staff. Below are how the first 10 best rank-
- Changi Airport, Singapore
Yearly passengers: 55.4 million
Previous rank: 1
Why it’s awesome: For the fifth year in a row, Changi takes the crown as the world’s best airport. Changi serves as home to Singapore Airlines, Silkair, and Tigerair and is the 16th busiest airport in the world.
The Singaporean airport has received praise from flyers for its beautiful architecture, efficient operation, luxurious amenities, and its broad offering of dining and shopping options.
Flyers passing through are treated to movie theaters, a multimedia entertainment deck, spas, and a wild corkscrew slide.
2. Tokyo Haneda International Airport
Yearly passengers: 75.6 million
Previous rank: 4
Why it’s awesome: Haneda is one of two major international airports that serve the Tokyo area. Located a few miles away from the heart of the Japanese capital, Haneda has proved to be a popular port of entry for business travelers and tourists.
The world’s fifth-busiest airport, Haneda is known for its service efficiency, cleanliness, and shopping.
3. Incheon International Airport (ICN)
Previous rank: 2
Why it’s awesome: This year, Incheon maintains its place as once of the world’s elite airports with a third place finish. Located on an island just outside of the South Korean capital, Incheon is home base to Korean Air and is the 24th-busiest airport in the world. It opened in 2001.
Incheon’s highly regarded facilities feature an array of shopping and dining options, in addition to a bevy of cultural performances. The airport even has a Korean culture museum.
Previous rank: 3
Why it’s awesome: Located northeast of downtown Munich, MUC is one of the busiest airports in Europe and the second-busiest in Germany, after Frankfurt.
Munich serves as a major hub for Air Berlin, Lufthansa, and Condor and it features airy glass-heavy architecture. A nearby visitors park features minigolf and a display of historic aircraft.
Previous rank: 5
Why it’s awesome: Built on an artificial island off the coast of Hong Kong, HKG has become one of the most popular facilities in the world since it opened in 1998.
One of the busiest airports in Asia, Hong Kong International serves as the home to Cathay Pacific, Hong Kong Airlines, and Dragonair.
Be sure to play around at the SkyCity Nine Eagles golf course near Terminal 2.
Yearly passengers: 30 million
Previous rank: 10
Why it’s awesome: Hamad International opened for business in 2014 and is now home to Qatar Airways.
The airport and its two terminals sit on 5,400 acres of land and cost $16 billion to construct. Skytrax describes the facility as the “the most architecturally significant terminal complex in the world, as well as being the most luxurious.”
Previous rank: 6
Why it’s awesome: Built on an artificial island in the middle of Ise Bay near the city of Nagoya, Central Japan International — also known as Centrair — serves as a focus city for Japan Airlines and ANA.
Centrair holds the distinction as the best regional airport in the world.
It has a 1,000-foot-long sky deck where passengers can watch ships sail into Nagoya Port. There’s also a traditional Japanese bathhouse where you can have a relaxing soak while watching the sunset over the bay.
Previous rank: 7
Why it’s awesome: Just eight miles from the heart of Zurich, the airport serves as the home for Swiss International Air Lines and as a hub linking Switzerland’s largest city with the rest of the country.
For passengers with an extended layover, Zurich Airport offers bicycle and inline-skate rentals and excursions to the Swiss Museum of Transport Lucerne.
Previous rank: 8
Why it’s awesome: Heathrow is the world’s third-busiest airport and the largest of the five primary airports serving London.
Heathrow is in the midst of a major renovation with the addition of a brand new Terminal 2 building. It’s eight-year-old Terminal 5 building was named the best airport terminal in the world by Skytrax.
Heathrow serves as the main hub for British Airways and Virgin Atlantic.
Yearly passengers: 61.0 million
Previous rank: 12
Why it’s awesome: Frankfurt Airport is the fourth-busiest airport in Europe and one of the most important transit hubs in the world. FRA is home base to Lufthansa’s fleet of more than 270 jets.
Skytrax reviewers praised the airport for the ease of transit between terminals and the abundant shopping and dining options. Some, however, have complained of the lengthy immigration lines.