True, you’re probably more concerned that your destination looks good than the airport you’re flying through, but it helps to get off to a good start. And while some airports can be beautiful (think Heathrow Terminal 5 or Denver, for instance) some are downright hideous. Here are eight of the worst:

Heathrow Terminals 1-2: London, England

Terminal 5 at Heathrow is one of the most beautiful in the world, and T3 has recently undergone a welcome overhaul, but the first two are sorely lacking. Dirty corridors, long walks and confusing signage await you when you land. Welcome to the UK!


Charles de Gaulle: Paris, France

There are many reasons the Eurostar between London and Paris is so popular, but one of them is because taking the train is much preferable to flying, when flying involves experiencing Heathrow and Charles de Gaulle. Bad signage, bad service and bad architecture – a section of the exterior even collapsed and killed four people in 2004.

El Paso International Airport: El Paso, Texas

You’ll either love or hate the architecture – a domed copper roof that has little to do with southwestern architecture, for instance. If you want to take your eyes off the building, feast them on the 36ft statue of a man on horseback – apparently the world’s largest bronze equestrian statue. Shame it depicts a man best known for killing 800 local Native Americans.

José Martí International Airport: Havana, Cuba

Overcrowded and underequipped are the bywords here – although there are a few stalls to pick up some last minute Che Guevara memorabilia, once you’re through to the departure gates, it’s every man for himself when it comes to finding a chair – there simply aren’t enough going around to service the large international planes. Not the kind of atmosphere you want before boarding a long haul flight.


Bob Hope Airport: Burbank, California

Is it cute or is it ugly? Burbank airport in California is so tiny that it could be the former – but the fact that baggage reclaim is outside in a barely covered space by the road turns it into the latter. On the plus side, if you’re not worried about things like shopping or facilities, it’s a good airport for Studio City and the inland parts of LA. 

LaGuardia Airport: New York

LaGuardia Airport in Queens, New York
is the smallest of the three area airports and without a doubt the
ugliest. The dreary rundown exterior is just a preview of the hideous
conditions you will ensure upon entering one of their terrible
terminals. Once voted as the “best airport in the world” in 1960, these
days this airport is not feeling the love from the aviation world.


Sheremetyevo International Airport: Moscow, Russia

Oh Russia. What were you thinking? Okay, okay it was the 70s and design
back in the old U.S.S.R. was probably not that attractive, but can’t you
upgrade your unattractive airport already? I mean the airport looks
like an abandoned warehouse for crying out loud! It has been 30 years
since the Olympics graced your country and with many people flocking to
Russia in 2014 for the next winter games, you might need to get a move
on comrade. 


Lynden Pindling International Airport: Nassau, Bahamas

Not sure who the genius was who designed this sad looking airport, but
this is not the first thing I want to see when arriving in a tropical
location like Nassau.
Lynden does not offer much in the way of places to dine while waiting
for your plane and the dirty blue carpet throughout the terminals
seriously needs a steam cleaning. Once you escape this gruesome airport
you will need a few frozen cocktails to ease the pain.


What do you think is the world's ugliest airport? Did we miss an airport on our list? Tell us about it by leaving a comment below. 

One Response

  1. Michael

    The El Paso Airport shouldn’t be on this list. Agreed, the huge statue before the parking lot is hideous, but that’s not the airport terminal building. The renovation of a few years ago did a lot to accentuate El Paso’s uniqueness and cultural history. The comment about the old terminal being hidden is inaccurate. That was covered up in the early 1970’s, and the architect who did the recent renovation uncovered a lot of that neat stuff.


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