According to the US Department of Transportation, there are over 5,000 commercial airports that are open to the public in the United States. And if you’ve ever flown in the US, you know that not all of them are equal.Air travel can be stressful and chaotic and a bad airport experience can make the whole ordeal even worse.Thankfully, quite a few American airports were designed or improved with that in mind, taking customer satisfaction into consideration.
Curious if the airport you’re flying out of or headed to is among the best in the country? We’ve narrowed down that mega list of American airports to compile our top 7 picks (in no particular order) of the best airports for you to travel through in the US.
Indianapolis International Airport (IND)
For 5 years in a row, this eighty-six-year-old airport has been named the best in North America.IND plans to continue their streak by reeling in even more passenger traffic with the help of Delta’s new nonstop flights from IND to Paris, launching in 2018. Passengers who’ve flown out of IND have been greatly satisfied with the quick and easy TSA procedures — thankfully changing the mood of impatient travelers. In addition to that, there are a variety of diverse dining options such as Wolfgang Puck for a sit-down meal if you have the time or McDonald’s for a grab and go if you’re in a hurry. With improvements continuing to be made, Indianapolis International Airport can easily continue to keep their high ranking.
Portland International Airport (PDX)
Convenience is only a piece of what makes this joint civil-military airport great. Along with the endless food and shopping options, Portland International Airport is recognized for its convenient transportation. From downtown Portland, travelers can hop on a light rail line or even take a bike trail to the airport, where there are parking spots available for bikes. If you have time to kill, check out the mini-movie theater, relax in the spa, or even get a haircut at the barbershop.PDX has previously been ranked highest in satisfaction among large airports and has been recognized for its on-time flight performance.
Baltimore-Washington International Airport (BWI)
The coolest amenity of BWI are the locations both inside and outside of the terminals to keep travelers moving. Travelers with enough time prior to their flight can use the 3 different airport fitness areas to squeeze in a workout: there’s a cardio trail, the Zagster Bike Share (which is an app to rent bicycles to ride the 12.5 mile hiker-biker trail located around the outside of the airport), and ROAM Fitness (a 1,175 sq. ft. gym) located inside the airport. Recently, BWI has made improvements by connecting concourse D and E to allow both domestic and international travelers and flights at both, with plans to do the same for all of its concourses, which will make it much easier for travelers to get around. There are also new popular restaurants like Chic-fil-A, R&R Seafood Bar, and retail shops such as Brooks Brothers and Pandora that have recently opened. Oh, and of course, in addition to all that, you can catch still a variety of nonstop international flights on major carriers.
Bradley International Airport (BDL)
It may come as news to travelers, but this Windsor Locks airport may just be a better option to fly out of rather than choosing to travel through the chaotic and crowded New York and Boston airports. BDL is a smaller airport located in Hartford, Connecticut that has major routes such as non-stop flights on Norwegian Air to Edinburgh and on Aer Lingus to Ireland. Like a lot of other US airports, Bradley has a number of restaurants, shops, and available wifi. Flying from BDL is a relaxed alternative that travelers are simply loving!
Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport (MSP)
Not only can travelers keep occupied while waiting to board a flight with MSP’s free Wifi, but they can also stay busy shopping at the 50+ stores that sell top brands of clothing and shoes, its retail program has been recognized as the best of any large airport in North America. It’s also the 16th busiest airport for passengers in the US and 15th for aircraft operations. Oh and, it’s Delta Airlines second largest hub. AND, it’s received the many awards for safety, snow and ice control, concessions, airport design, and development…shall we go on!
Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW)
Ranked as the fourth busiest airport in North America. DFW has 149 direct domestic connections, which can fly passengers to any major city in the US within 4 hours. There are around 200 nonstop international flights from DFW and it’s also the main hub for American Airlines. But despite bringing in massive customer traffic, this forty-three-year-old airport has earned a reputation for convenience. DFW is greatly recognized for its quick Skylink train system that gets customers to any of the airports five terminals. It’s appreciated by all travelers for its cleanliness of the terminals and restrooms and was recently awarded for customer service by the Airports Council International.
Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG)
It may not be the largest in the nation, but it certainly has been ranked as one of the best in North America. In 2017, Skytrax (an airline and airport review and ranking site) named CVG the second best regional airport in the world. CVG has also been named #1 for Best World Airport serving 5-10 million passengers per year, as well as #5 for best airport staff in North America, and a lot more. This tech-savvy airport gives travelers a heads up on security wait times and parking availability and also has a wonderful collection of industrial murals on display throughout the concourses.
Have you been to any other great American airports? Tell us about it in the comments!