June 18, 2012

Best U.S. airports, also according to me

Now that I've gotten what I have deemed this country's worst airports out of the way, here are the ones that I consider among the best.  Again, I haven't experienced all the airports in the U.S., but then again, this isn't an official list or anything.  So without further ado...

Reagan National Airport (Washington, D.C.):  I want to hug this airport.  I want to love it and squeeze it and call it George.  It is a mere 5 miles from downtown DC.  It has its own metro stop, making it cheap and easy to get to and from.  If I’m feeling lazy, a taxi can have me home in 15 minutes. Except for the very early morning hours, the security lines here are practically non-existent.  The place is half deserted on the afternoon before Thanksgiving.  It’s glorious.

Charlotte-Douglas International Airport (Charlotte, NC):  If I have a long layover, CLT is where I want to be.  Large windows, rocking chairs, and trees are located just about everywhere.  Don’t knock the rocking chairs - they are fabulous.  The main food court has a sushi bar and live piano music.  It’s almost a shame that flights here seem to generally take off and land on schedule.  Despite having more layovers here than I can remember in recent memory, I can’t remember a single significant delay.  Score.

Baltimore-Washington International Airport (Baltimore, MD): If you can’t easily make your way to BWI within the DC/Baltimore region, you are a complete travel amateur (sorry).  It is serviced by light rail, Amtrak, a commuter train line called MARC, and multiple bus systems.  And if you’re driving, the BWI parking garages have a sensor system that tell you how many open parking spots are in each level and row.  How brilliant is that? Plus, prices at BWI can often be the best deal in the metro area, and security lines aren’t nearly as long and annoying as they are at Washington Dulles.

Panama City International Airport (Panama City, FL):  It’s brand new, not at all crowded, easy to get in and out of, and Southwest has deemed it worthy of their presence.  Plus, world-class beaches are just a few minutes away.  This place is one big WIN.


  1. I'm on board with your DCA and BWI assessments, and now you've made me want to try flying in/out of the others. Good stuff!

  2. I flew into Reagan last November and loved it! It is like an airport should be for the passengers. I hear Pilots hate it, though. The last time it was adequate to airliners was, when they had radial engines and 28 seats...

  3. Aaron - woot, glad you feel the same way! Tilman - I can see how pilots wouldn't like DCA... there's no room for it to expand, and there are some pretty extreme flight restrictions given the location. I would actually be really interested to hear what the best and worst airports are from a pilot's point of view.