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AirAdvisor Airport Score

Top 10 World’s Best Airports 2023 - Global Ranking by AirAdvisor

AirAdvisor has fought for air passengers' rights for many years. We know exactly what matters the most when it comes to flights from airports all over the world and what affects travellers' journeys. Over 130,000 air passengers have already trusted us with their flight disruption claims, and with a win rate of 98%, it’s no wonder our clients rank us highly.

We researched airports relevant to travelers from the UK and USA, considering their travel patterns and preferences. This resulted in a ranking that excludes less relevant airports.

It’s easy to regurgitate charts published by government bodies, but they don’t give you the whole story. Our goal is to explore all the factors that contribute to a positive overall experience rather than just looking at which airports have the least number of delays. While this is certainly important, it’s not the only thing travellers want to know about.

To get our complete and accurate ranking, weeks of work went into amassing the data, mining it, and analyzing it, and the result is a comprehensive AirAdvisor worldwide airport ranking, and here, we’ll outline the world’s top 10 airports.

From the airports with the best shopping options and accessibility to the best-reviewed airports and the ones with the most on-time flights - we analyze it all! The benefit to you is that if you pick any of these airports, especially those in the top 3, you’re bound to have a comfortable and enjoyable passenger experience, which is what everyone wants.

Be among the thousands of AirAdvisor satisfied customers and contact us to start your claim today for disruptions due to delays or cancellations.


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Top 3 Best Overall Airports For Passenger Experience

Athens Eleftherios Venizelos Airport
26.84 score
1st place

Athens Eleftherios Venizelos Airport

Athens, Greece

Palma de Mallorca
25.29 score
2st place

Palma de Mallorca

Palma de Mallorca, Spain

Rome Fiumicino (Leonardo da Vinci)
24.23 score
3st place

Rome Fiumicino (Leonardo da Vinci)

Rome, Italy

Since we’re seeking to answer the question of which is the best airport in the world, the winner of this coveted title, receiving the highest overall score, goes to Athens Eleftherios Venizelos Airport. Athens Airport’s AirAdvisor score was 26.84, beating out its next closest competitor, Palma de Mallorca Airport, by more than one whole point. Its strong points are punctuality and Google reviews, as it ranked highest overall in both these categories.

Palma de Mallorca’s AirAdvisor score of 25.29 is more than respectable, so it takes the number 2 spot, with notable points being its high percentage of on-time flights and positive Google reviews. Rome Fiumicino Airport rounds out our top 3 best airports in the world nicely with an AirAdvisor score of 24.23, thanks to its 5 stars from Skytrax and reliable punctuality.

A Look at the World’s Top 3 Best Airports

1
Madrid Barajas

Athens Eleftherios Venizelos Airport

Athens Airport is the hands-down winner based on the comprehensive AirAdvisor score. Greece is a bucket list country for many travellers from both the US and the UK. For Americans, Athens is exotic, and for Brits, Athens offers lovely weather and a reasonably short and inexpensive flight. Plus, Athens Airport is the gateway to the city itself and the picturesque Greek islands that surround it.

In 2022, the airport welcomed 22.7 million travellers, and over 67% of them were international (source), so it’s common for Brits and North Americans to use Athens Airport as a hub. Greece’s largest airline, Aegean, also calls this airport home. Because it’s so popular, it’s fantastic that the overall passenger experience here is likely to be positive.

26.84
2
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

Palma de Mallorca

The Spanish island paradise of Mallorca is a hotspot for travellers from around the world, but especially those from the UK. There are regular non-stop flights from major UK cities like London, Manchester, and Cardiff, and the prices are generally affordable thanks to Ryanair. In all, 26% of the passengers in and out of Mallorca Airport are British (source).

This destination isn’t nearly as popular with Americans, but that’s starting to change. United Airlines offers more direct flights to the island every year, and as of summer 2023, you can fly non-stop to Mallorca from Newark, Denver, Chicago O’hare, Houston, and San Francisco.

25.29
3
Barcelona El Prat

Rome Fiumicino (Leonardo da Vinci)

After the UK, Italy is the most visited European country by Americans (source). Many of these passengers fly into the country via Rome Fiumicino, using ITA Airways, Italy’s flag carrier airline. Additionally, Americans are the single largest group that flies into the city (source). As for flights from the UK, they are plentiful, and there are over 40 non-stop flights from London to Rome every day. Simply put, Rome is a top destination for both British and American travellers.

24.23

A Look at the World’s Top 3 Best Airports

The Other Airports - Spots 4 Through 10

Just because an airport didn’t make the top 3 on our list of the 10 best airports in the world doesn’t mean you should write it off. Here are the locations that round out our top 10.
4
Madrid Barajas

Madrid Barajas

Madrid Barajas Airport just barely missed our top 3 with an AirAdvisor score of 24.05. This is good news for the over 50 million people that pass through the airport annually. The airport ranks highly for punctuality and has an impressive 5-star rating on Skytrax. If the Google reviews were a bit better, it would have snatched the number 3 spot from Rome.

From the US, 32 different routes take passengers to Madrid on Spanish airlines, like Iberia, which has a hub here. And from the UK, there are 24 routes available. Of the 10 million visitors the city gets annually, many fly into Madrid Airport, and over half of these passengers are international ones, many from Britain and the USA.

24.4
5
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

As the best airport in the US on our list of the world’s highest-ranking airports, LAX does a lot of things well to earn its 21.67 total. The airport actually takes second place for punctuality but has lower scores for the travel distance to the nearest city and passenger experience.

Los Angeles International Airport is a base for routes across the country and overseas flights to London, so it’s well-used by both domestic and UK passengers.

21.67
6
Barcelona El Prat

Barcelona El Prat

The UK sends more international travellers to Spain than any other country (source), and nearly 3 million US residents visited Spain in 2022. Barcelona is a top destination here, and so many of these passengers arrived using El Prat Airport.

The ideal base for exploring the Costa Brava and Catalan culture, and acting as a base for budget carrier Vueling Airlines, Barcelona Airport ranks in the upper middle of the pack for most parameters, so its position on the AirAdvisor world airport ranking makes sense. And so does its overall score of 20.96.

20.96
7
Orlando International Airport

Orlando International Airport

Another entry from the US and the gateway to Disney World, Orlando International Airport ranks as the best airport in the world for shopping experience. That, combined with solid scores for passenger experience based on Google reviews, gives Orlando Airport a 19.53 AirAdvisor score keeping it pretty high on the list.

Over 58 million people visit Disney World per year, so it’s good to know that if you’re planning a domestic trip to Orlando or are making the trek from the UK, you’ll have quite a good experience. The only thing to watch out for is that Orlando International Airport scores relatively low on punctuality.

19.53
8
Dublin Airport

Dublin Airport

It’s nice to see that Dublin Airport makes it into our top 10 list, also with a score of 18.76, mostly because this is the main base for the low-cost carrier Ryanair, so passengers from the UK may connect here often. This airport is responsible for 80% of all the international traffic coming into the country, so if you’re planning to visit Ireland, chances are good you’ll land at Dublin Airport.

 

 

19.53
9
Amsterdam Schiphol

Amsterdam Schiphol

Amsterdam Airport is actually tied with the next airport for the overall AirAdvisor score with 18.76. More than half of the Americans who visit the Netherlands will stop in Amsterdam, using the airport, and in 2022, nearly half a million Brits visited the city.

Schiphol, a hub for the Dutch national airline KLM, is a reliable airport and sits in the middle for most metrics. The exceptions are for travel distance to the nearest city, where it ranks fourth, and shopping experience, where it ranks seventh, slightly higher than its overall position.

18.76
10
Tenerife South (Tenerife Sur)

Tenerife South (Tenerife Sur)

Tenerife South Airport squeaks into our top 10 with less than 1 point separating it from 11th-place Edinburgh Airport. This is great for passengers from the UK, as up to 2 million Britons hit the beaches in this stunning Canary Islands city every year. Brits account for nearly 50% of all the tourism here, so it’s nice to know that the airport ranks fairly high.

As for what stands out about Tenerife South, the answer is not too much. The airport is steadily in the middle of the 23 airports we looked at, with a respectable 17.47 total, The exception is for the shopping experience category. For that, it scored the worst, tied with Venice Marco Polo Airport.

17.47

The Other Airports - Spots 4 Through 10

Just because an airport didn’t make the top 3 on our list of the 10 best airports in the world doesn’t mean you should write it off. Here are the locations that round out our top 10.

Top 3 World’s Best Airports by Punctuality

Analysis is based on "Eurocontrol data", as you have text below
Athens Eleftherios Venizelos Airport
30.60 score
1st place

Athens Eleftherios Venizelos Airport

Athens, Greece

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
30.00 score
2st place

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

Los Angeles, USA

Madrid Barajas
29.80 score
3st place

Madrid Barajas

Madrid, Spain

It’s so important for your flight to arrive on time. Delayed flights can result in missed connections and even wasting precious time at your vacation destination. Because of this, we weighted punctuality to account for 40% of the overall score, so it’s probably not a shock that Athens Airport also tops this list.

But the second and third spots go to LAX and Madrid Barajas, respectively. Their high punctuality scores keep them well-positioned in the overall top 10, even though other categories, like transfer cost and distance, didn’t score that well.

On the flip side, if you’re wondering which US airports rank the worst for delays, check out our article on the 6 Worst Airports in the US Based on Chronically Delayed Flights. Hint: LAX doesn’t make the list, but Orlando Airport does.

 

Top 3 Airports with the Best Consumer Reputation

(based on 735,564 Google Reviews)
Athens Eleftherios Venizelos Airport
23 score
1st place

Athens Eleftherios Venizelos Airport

Athens, Greece

Palma de Mallorca
20 score
2st place

Palma de Mallorca

Palma de Mallorca, Spain

Rome Fiumicino (Leonardo da Vinci)
20 score
3st place

Rome Fiumicino (Leonardo da Vinci)

Rome, Italy

Allotted the same weighting as punctuality, Google reviews are the perfect indication of the complete passenger experience at an airport from people who’ve actually been there. Since this is a big component of the overall AirAdvisor score, you may not be surprised to learn that the top 3 airports for consumer reputation are the exact same airports as the overall best airports in the world for passenger experience (and in the exact same positions).

 

Top 3 Best Airports by Transfer Cost

Bordeaux Merignac
19 score
1st place

Bordeaux Merignac

Bordeaux, France

Nice Cote d'Azur Airport
19 score
2st place

Nice Cote d'Azur Airport

Nice, France

Orlando International Airport
16 score
3st place

Orlando International Airport

Orlando, United States

There’s nothing worse than losing a big portion of your travel budget to something boring like airport transfers. That’s why we feel it’s an important factor in the overall airport score. The top spot here goes to Nice Côte d'Azur Airport, where you can take the tram from the airport to the Promenade des Anglais for as little as €2. Bordeaux Airport also shares the first spot, and you can take a bus into the city for the same rate. Palma de Mallorca rounds out this category in the number 3 place, where the bus will take you from the airport to the city centre for anywhere between €2 and €5, depending on exactly where you want to go.

 

Top 3 Best Airports by Transfer Distance

Faro (Gago Coutinho Airport)
21 score
1st place

Faro (Gago Coutinho Airport)

Faro, Portugal

Venice Marco Polo
21 score
2st place

Venice Marco Polo

Venice, Italy

Nice Cote d'Azur Airport
21 score
3st place

Nice Cote d'Azur Airport

Nice, France

Portugal’s Faro Aiport is the closest airport to the city centre of any that we evaluated. It’s only 6.5 km (4 miles) to the Faro Marina from the airport. In addition to being tops for transfer cost, Nice Airport is also one of the best airports in the world for airport transfer distance. From the airport to the city centre, it’s less than 8 km (5 miles). Once you land here, you can enjoy your Cote D’Azur vacation almost instantly.

Venice Marco Polo Airport rounds out the top 3 for this metric. The total distance from the airport to the Venice Mestre Train Station on the edge of the tourist centre is 10 km (6.2 miles).

 

Top 3 Airports based on shopping experience

Orlando International Airport
23 score
1st place

Orlando International Airport

Orlando, United States

Madrid Barajas
22 score
2st place

Madrid Barajas

Madrid, Spain

Edinburgh Airport
21 score
3st place

Edinburgh Airport

Edinburgh, Scotland, UK

Airport shopping is a fun pastime for some people and a means to an end for others. If you like shopping, this category will definitely be of interest. And even if you don’t, it’s a good indicator of the service you’ll get if you need to pick up something you forgot to pack.

If travellers actually planned their trips around the quality of the airport shopping, everyone would be flying in or out of Orlando Airport since it’s ranked best overall. Madrid Barajas and Edinburgh Airport take the second and third positions here.

Honourable mention in this category also goes to Dubai International Airport. It’s a haven for high-end shopping, and you can peruse stores like Gucci, Hermes, and Chanel while waiting for your flight. What could be better?

If you’re using any of these 3 airports, you’ll probably have a lovely shopping experience based on excellent customer service and the selection of stores and goods.

Top 3 World’s Best Airports by Punctuality

Analysis is based on "Eurocontrol data", as you have text below

It’s so important for your flight to arrive on time. Delayed flights can result in missed connections and even wasting precious time at your vacation destination. Because of this, we weighted punctuality to account for 40% of the overall score, so it’s probably not a shock that Athens Airport also tops this list.

But the second and third spots go to LAX and Madrid Barajas, respectively. Their high punctuality scores keep them well-positioned in the overall top 10, even though other categories, like transfer cost and distance, didn’t score that well.

On the flip side, if you’re wondering which US airports rank the worst for delays, check out our article on the 6 Worst Airports in the US Based on Chronically Delayed Flights. Hint: LAX doesn’t make the list, but Orlando Airport does.

Top 3 Airports with Best Consumer Reputation

(based on 735,564 Google Reviews)

Allotted the same weighting as punctuality, Google reviews are the perfect indication of the complete passenger experience at an airport from people who’ve actually been there. Since this is a big component of the overall AirAdvisor score, you may not be surprised to learn that the top 3 airports for consumer reputation are the exact same airports as the overall best airports in the world for passenger experience (and in the exact same positions).

Top 3 Best Airports by Transfer Cost

There’s nothing worse than losing a big portion of your travel budget to something boring like airport transfers. That’s why we feel it’s an important factor in the overall airport score. The top spot here goes to Nice Côte d'Azur Airport, where you can take the tram from the airport to the Promenade des Anglais for as little as €2. Bordeaux Airport also shares the first spot, and you can take a bus into the city for the same rate. Palma de Mallorca rounds out this category in the number 3 place, where the bus will take you from the airport to the city centre for anywhere between €2 and €5, depending on exactly where you want to go.'

Top 3 Best Airports by Transfer Distance

Portugal’s Faro Aiport is the closest airport to the city centre of any that we evaluated. It’s only 6.5 km (4 miles) to the Faro Marina from the airport. In addition to being tops for transfer cost, Nice Airport is also one of the best airports in the world for airport transfer distance. From the airport to the city centre, it’s less than 8 km (5 miles). Once you land here, you can enjoy your Cote D’Azur vacation almost instantly.

Venice Marco Polo Airport rounds out the top 3 for this metric. The total distance from the airport to the Venice Mestre Train Station on the edge of the tourist centre is 10 km (6.2 miles).

Top 3 Airports based on shopping experience

Airport shopping is a fun pastime for some people and a means to an end for others. If you like shopping, this category will definitely be of interest. And even if you don’t, it’s a good indicator of the service you’ll get if you need to pick up something you forgot to pack.

If travellers actually planned their trips around the quality of the airport shopping, everyone would be flying in or out of Orlando Airport since it’s ranked best overall. Madrid Barajas and Edinburgh Airport take the second and third positions here.

Honourable mention in this category also goes to Dubai International Airport. It’s a haven for high-end shopping, and you can peruse stores like Gucci, Hermes, and Chanel while waiting for your flight. What could be better?

If you’re using any of these 3 airports, you’ll probably have a lovely shopping experience based on excellent customer service and the selection of stores and goods.

As many as 84% of passengers don’t know their rights related to flight delay compensation. Don’t be one of them. Instead, contact AirAdvisor to start your claim today!


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Top 23 Airports Ranked - Global AirAdvisor Rating


Final RankingAirportFinal ranking scorePunctuality ScoreReviews rankingTransfer CostShopping RankRank distance to citySkytrax Rating
1Athens Eleftherios Venizelos Airport26.8430.62361633
2Palma de Mallorca25.2926.420166163
3Rome Fiumicino (Leonardo da Vinci International Airport)24.2325.82051545
4Madrid Barajas24.0529.813922105
5Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)21.673010131843.5
6Barcelona El Prat20.9622.2131614124
7Orlando International Airport19.539.8191623163
8Dublin Airport18.7617.613148164
9Amsterdam Schiphol18.7622.410117204
10Tenerife South (Tenerife Sur)17.4721.21341103
11Edinburgh Airport16.73235621163
12Venice Marco Polo16.3819.67161213
13Faro (Gago Coutinho Airport)16.2215.810143213
14JFK15.2313.21391063
15London Heathrow14.459.61322094
16Nice Cote d'Azur Airport13.76710196213.5
17Bordeaux Merignac11.8815.41194153
18London Gatwick10.8712.2711323
19Frankfurt Airport10.654.87819134
20Manchester9.7110.42912143
21London Stansted9.2612.243913
22Paris Charles De Gaulle7.683.459584
23Berlin Brandenburg7.184391064

Methodology and Calculations

Our first focus is on airports that are commonly used by passengers from the US and the UK, taking into account their specific preferences and travel patterns. This provides a clearer picture because all the unnecessary information has been filtered out. If British and North American passengers rarely visit these airports, why include them?

Our methodology is based on a thorough analysis of crucial metrics from various trusted sources, such as punctuality, reviews, distance from the closest city, transfer cost, shopping experience, and Skytrax ranking, which makes it reliable and complete. Plus, our punctuality numbers are from 2022 and 2023, so they’re up-to-date.

The data we used is gathered from a variety of places, including the Bureau of Transportation in the US, EUROCONTROL, Google, Rome2Rio, and Skytrax. A mix of sources eliminates bias and focuses on the big picture that we’re after.

We thought about what we’d want to be included in the rankings to get the best overall score, and those criteria are punctuality, Google reviews, transfer distance and cost, shopping experience, and Skytrax rating. Let’s define these factors:


This is a measure of on-time flights. The higher the on-time flight percentage of the airport, the higher the score. To get this score, we included all the data from 2022 and the available data up to April 2023. This way, the information is as recent as possible and, therefore, the most relevant.

We looked at the star rating for each of the airports to get the average score out of 5. This amounts to a total of over 735,564 reviews!

We used Rome2Rio to get the average cost of a transfer to the nearest city from the airport. Since everyone likes to save money, the lower the transfer cost, the higher the score. Conversely, the higher the cost, the lower the rank.

We calculated the average distance for a transfer to the nearest city using Google Maps. Time is of the essence when you’re on vacation, so shorter distances rank higher.

When you need to kill time between flights, shopping is always fun (and useful). We used the Google reviews from the airport’s shops to get a score out of 5.

Skytrax is a global airline ranking system that assesses various factors of airports and airlines. This includes things like in-flight services, airport lounges, and staff. The result is a star rating out of 5, with 5 being the most prestigious. These star ratings are used as a global benchmark.

This is a measure of on-time flights. The higher the on-time flight percentage of the airport, the higher the score. To get this score, we included all the data from 2022 and the available data up to April 2023. This way, the information is as recent as possible and, therefore, the most relevant.

We looked at the star rating for each of the airports to get the average score out of 5. This amounts to a total of over 735,564 reviews!

We used Rome2Rio to get the average cost of a transfer to the nearest city from the airport. Since everyone likes to save money, the lower the transfer cost, the higher the score. Conversely, the higher the cost, the lower the rank.

We calculated the average distance for a transfer to the nearest city using Google Maps. Time is of the essence when you’re on vacation, so shorter distances rank higher.

When you need to kill time between flights, shopping is always fun (and useful). We used the Google reviews from the airport’s shops to get a score out of 5.

Skytrax is a global airline ranking system that assesses various factors of airports and airlines. This includes things like in-flight services, airport lounges, and staff. The result is a star rating out of 5, with 5 being the most prestigious. These star ratings are used as a global benchmark.

 

Once we had our important factors, we needed to assign them a weight. Some things are more important than others, so the highest percentages were attributed to punctuality and Google reviews, which are likely to have a bigger impact on traveller satisfaction. The other criteria are important to a positive overall journey, but less so. Here are the metrics as a whole, including the weighting percentages.

AirAdvisor Airport Ranking Methodology

Metrics

Definition

Weighting

Punctuality

The more on-time flights, the better

40%

Google Reviews

Star ranking from Google, out of 5

40%

Transfer Cost

Average transfer cost to the nearest city, the lower, the better.

8%

Shopping Experience

Star ranking of the airport shops from Google, out of 5

5%

Transfer Distance

Average transfer distance, the shorter, the better

4%

Skytrax Rating

Taken as is

3%

After countless hours of data amalgamation and analysis, we applied the weights to the raw scores to get our final list of the best airports in the world, ranked high to low. Are you anxious to find out the winner?

What are the Take Aways?

It’s good that we now know the answer to the question of which is the best airport in the world - it’s Athens Eleftherios Venizelos. The value here is that each airport has strengths and weaknesses, and you can use the Global AirAdvisor Ranking to better plan your next flight.

You can use this information to allocate time and funds to transfers, know the chances of your flight arriving on time, and what to expect from the shopping and other passengers’ experiences.

If you’ve already planned a trip via one of the AirAdvisor top 10 airports, you’ve hit the jackpot and can rely on having a better-than-average experience. And if your preferred destination doesn’t rank very high, at least you know its shortcomings and what to expect. When you’re armed with information, you can make the best decision possible and enjoy a relatively seamless vacation abroad.

 

Top 10 World’s Best Airports FAQ

We used several criteria weighted differently. These include flight punctuality, Google reviews, shopping experience, transfer distance and cost, and Skytrax rating. The airports were compared against each other and given an overall score.
Knowing which airports rank the highest and, conversely, which rank the lowest allows passengers to better plan their itineraries. You can allow extra time between connections if the percentage of on-time flights is low, avoid surprises related to transfer costs and transfer time, and get a well-rounded overall picture from our passenger experience metric.
Absolutely. We did all the heavy lifting using multiple trusted sources to amalgamate data that’s free of bias and comprehensive. These sources include EUROCONTROL, Google Maps and Reviews, Rome2Rio, and Skytrax.
Athens. Anyone flying into Athens Eleftherios Venizelos is fortunate because it received the top AirAdvisor ranking overall. It also topped the individual categories of punctuality and passenger experience, which account for 80% of the total score.
From our list, the top US airports are Los Angeles International (LAX) and Orlando International. They are number 5 and 7 worldwide, respectively.
About AirAdvisor

AirAdvisor is an airline compensation company with deep expertise in consumer advocacy for air passengers. We fight for air passenger rights in cases of flight disruptions all over the world. Our mission is to ensure that air passengers are fairly compensated for the inconvenience and frustration caused by delays, cancellations, overbooking and baggage problems.

Why should airlines deny compensation to passengers for flight disruptions, when the average pay of an airline’s CEO is almost EUR 2.8 million? We work to defend your rights as an airline passenger because travel should be comfortable, and everyone should be treated fairly.

That’s why we simplified the process of getting flight compensation from airlines for those who lack the time, energy, or resources to do so themselves. With legal partners in countries around the world, we enforce our clients’ flight claims in courts and advocate for their passenger rights before civil aviation authorities. To further our vision, our team of experts lobbies for improved airline regulations that will protect air passengers worldwide.

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