Airports are vital to domestic and international travel. Typically, airports are central hubs for all things relating to air travel: arrivals, departures, layovers, and more. That said, not all airports offer the same experiences. Some countries pride themselves on providing travelers with creative, hospitable, and fun airports. Here are the world’s five best airports.
In an increasingly travel-oriented world, travelers expect more of airports—more comfort, more amenities, and better services. To demonstrate how high the bar is set, FlightHub and JustFly are revealing their picks for the world’s best airports.
Singapore Changi Airport:
For seven years in a row, Singapore Changi Airport has taken home top honors. One look at the facility and its many offerings, and it’s easy to see why. Singapore Changi Airport is massive. The 13-square-kilometer airport is more of a theme-park than anything else.
It’s one of Southeast Asia’s most significant travel centers and was listed as one of Asia’s busiest airports in 2018. Everything about this airport runs smoothly. The architecture is world-class, and the amenities are top-notch. Some travelers deliberately book long layovers in Singapore to experience all Changi Airport has to offer. Here are some of the features.
- Shiseido Forest Valley
- Canopy Park
- Sunflower Garden
- Mirror Maze
- Tube Slide
- Free movies in 24-hour theaters
- Light shows
- Sound shows
- 400 stores
- More than 160 eateries
Tokyo Haneda International Airport:
Among many things, Japan is known for its rich history. It’s also known for its relentless pursuit of innovation and futurism. Tokyo Haneda International airport blends both sides of Japan together seamlessly. The airport is divided into several sections, each with its highlights.
They’re on full display in the miniature theme-park recreation of Tokyo above the check-in counters. Here’s what the Haneda Airport International Terminal has to offer:
- Tokyo Pop Town
- Don Quijote
- Planetarium Starry Café (first of its kind in the world)
- Hello Kitty Outlet
- Flight simulators
- Observation deck
- Nihonbashi Bridge replica
- Dozens of stores and restaurants
Seoul Incheon International Airport:
Like Japan, South Korea easily mixes traditional and modern culture. Seoul Incheon International Airport is a microcosm of the larger country. It’s also consistently near the top of the world’s best airport lists. Incheon International Airport is vast, bustling (one of the busiest in the world), and acts as a primary arrival and departure point for Seoul, the heartbeat of South Korea.
Airports Council International has ranked it as the best airport in the world for the past 15 years. Skytrax has also named Incheon International Airport the world’s cleanest and best international transit airport. See the points below to learn more about this award-winning airport.
- 72-hole golf course
- Driving range
- Free hospitality service
- Cultural museum
- In-house spa
- 24-hour sauna
- Sleeping rooms
- 7 indoor gardens
- 2 movie theaters
- An “ice rink”
- Close to 100 stores
- Dozens of restaurants
Hamad International Airport:
Hamad International Airport is unique in more ways than one. It’s the only international airport in all of Qatar. According to some estimates, Hamad airport may be able to handle up to 93 million passengers annually, a feat that will surely be tested in 2022 as Qatar hosts the FIFA World Cup.
The airport design is based on an oasis theme; it has water motifs, wave-inspired roofing, and plants typically found in arid regions. As of 2019, Hamad International Airport was named Best Airport in the Middle East five years in a row. The Travel + Leisure World’s Best awards also named Hamad International as the second-best international airport.
Finally, Hamad ranked 5th among the best airports for dining. Here’s why it’s so impressive:
- 11 international art installations
- Oryx Airport Hotel
- Quiet rooms
- Private bedrooms
- Nap pods
- More than 30 restaurants
- 70 luxury retail stores
Munich Airport is the 2nd busiest in Germany and the 8th busiest in Europe. It was also named the top European airport for 10 of the previous 12 years. More impressively, it’s one of the very few airports to be given a 5-star rating by Skytrax (including the four other airports on this list). FlightHub and JustFly have listed some of Munich Airport’s perks below:
- Visitors Park
- Mini golf course
- Visitors Hills
- A shopping mall
- A supermarket
- On-location brewery (Airbräu)
- Live music
- World’s largest human-made stationary wave
- Surf & Style annual showcase
- Historic aircrafts
- Christmas Market
- An ice-skating rink (winter)
- Private cabins for rest and work
Traditional airports are distinctive spaces. Between arrivals and departures, the average traveler begins to feel stuck in limbo. The world’s best airports turn layovers into memorable experiences. The airports on this list show ingenuity, careful planning, and flawless execution. They’ve considered how their facilities will meet and surpass passenger needs, making them some of the best in the world.
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