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The Best and Worst Airports in North America

If you fly often enough, you have at least one airport on your list of places to avoid at all costs. A good airport can make your trip a breeze by making it easy to get to your connection, offering tasty restaurant options, and giving you a clean and comfortable place to rest before your flight. A bad airport can stress you out with crowds, dirty facilities, and poor dining options.

J.D. Power just released its Annual North America Airport Satisfaction Study to find the best and worst airports to fly through. The study surveyed passengers on six factors:

  1. Terminal facilities
  2. Airport arrival/departure
  3. Baggage claim
  4. Security check
  5. Check-in/Baggage check
  6. Food, beverage, and retail

For the survey, airports were broken down into three categories: Mega airports (33 million or more passengers per year), large airports (10 to 32.9 million passengers per year), and medium airports (4.5 to 9.9 million passengers per year. 

Flyers’ overall satisfaction with the airport experience increased slightly this year compared to 2022. “It has not been an easy year for North American airports, but major capital improvements they’ve made over the last several years and new investments in getting food, beverage and retail operations back up and running at full capacity have helped them manage the crush of passengers,” said Michael Taylor, managing director of travel, hospitality and retail at J.D. Power. 

Next time you fly, you might want to consider avoiding the lowest-ranked airports if you can. 

Blurry images of people walking through a large central airport terminal
chungking | Adobe Stock

The Worst Mega Airports

  1. Newark Liberty International Airport
  2. Toronto Pearson International Airport
  3. Seattle-Tacoma International Airport
  4. Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport
  5. Boston Logan International Airport

The Worst Large Airports

  1. Philadelphia International Airport
  2. Honolulu International Airport
  3. Montreal-Pierre Elliot Trudeau International Airport
  4. Oakland International Airport
  5. San Diego International Airport

The Worst Medium Airports

  1. Kahului Airport
  2. Hollywood Burbank Airport
  3. Bradley International Airport
  4. Cleveland Hopkins International Airport
  5. Eppley Airfield
Empty airport terminal with large window
indukas | Adobe Stock

For an easier trip, try to plan your travels to take you through one of these top-rated airports.

The Best Mega Airports

  1. Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport
  2. Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport
  3. Harry Reid International Airport
  4. Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport
  5. Miami International Airport

The Best Large Airports

  1. Tampa International Airport
  2. John Wayne Airport, Orange County
  3. Salt Lake International Airport
  4. Raleigh Durham-International Airport
  5. Sacramento International Airport

The Best Medium Airports

  1. Indianapolis International Airport
  2. Southwest Florida International Airport
  3. Ontario International Airport
  4. Palm Beach International Airport
  5. Albuquerque International Airport

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