Worst Airports of 2014: Poll names Islamabad airport in Pakistan worst in the world

People voted on comfort, facilities, cleanliness and customer service

Lizzie Dearden
Sunday 19 October 2014 09:16 BST
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Passengers of Karachi-bound Pakistan International Airline (PIA) flights wait after delays at the Benazir Bhutto International Airport in Islamabad on June 9, 2014
Passengers of Karachi-bound Pakistan International Airline (PIA) flights wait after delays at the Benazir Bhutto International Airport in Islamabad on June 9, 2014 (AFP/Getty Images)

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Islamabad airport in Pakistan has been voted the worst in the world, knocking Manila off the top of the unenviable list.

The poll, carried out by the Guide to Sleeping at Airports website, named Islamabad Benazir Bhutto International Airport the very worst based on comfort, facilities, cleanliness and customer service.

The Worst Airports of 2014 report included a quote from a traveller comparing it to a “central prison” because of “aggressive security checks”, crowds and dirt.

“Travellers have also complained about the airport’s inability to handle passengers for over a decade – and thankfully, it seems the end of ISB is near,” the site said.

People queuing at immigration at Manila's international airport
People queuing at immigration at Manila's international airport

“A new airport is slated to be completed for mid-2016, which should dramatically improve air travel to the city."

Others appearing on list included Jeddah King Abdulaziz International Airport, in Saudi Arabia, Kathmandu Tribhuvan International Airport, in Nepal, and Tashkent International Airport, in Uzbekistan.

Manila Ninoy Aquino International Airport came in at fourth place after three consecutive years on the top spot, mainly because of overcrowding and air conditioning problems in Terminal 1.

Positive votes for Terminal 3 of the Philippines travel hub and renovation work have seen its ranking improve, despite continuing complaints about “overcrowding, lengthy queues, limited seating, unfriendly immigration/customs officers and smelly toilets”.

No UK airports appeared in the global top 10 but Luton did make an appearance in the regional list for Europe, being voted eighth-worst.

London's Luton Airport was named the eighth-worst in Europe
London's Luton Airport was named the eighth-worst in Europe (GETTY IMAGES)

Calling London’s airports generally “mediocre”, its distance from the capital counted against it along with its “bleak if sufficient amenities”.

“The real downer occurs upon realising that the airport charges for virtually everything – beginning with wi-fi and ending with the plastic liquid bags for security,” the review said.

“For sleepers, you’d be wise to arrive early to find your most idyllic patch of floor before the masses descend.”

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