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Saturday, September 25, 2021

Skytrax ranks Qatar’s Hamad Int’l sixth best airport in the world

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Hamad International Airport. Credit: Sanjiban Ghosh/Flickr

For the third consecutive year, Hamad International Airport (HIA) has been named the best airport in the Middle East, according to Skytrax.

HIA also once again joined the shortlist as one of the top 10 airports in the world.

This year, it jumped four spots to #6, beating out the likes of Zurich, Heathrow and Frankfurt.

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Meanwhile, Singapore’s Changi Airport once again ranked first in the world in 2017. It was followed by Japan’s Tokyo Haneda International Airport and then South Korea’s Incheon International.

The award comes a few months after HIA was awarded five-star status by Skytrax.

Qatar’s airport is one of only six globally to hold that status, and was the first in the Middle East to nab the honor.

Climbing in the ranks

HIA’s Skytrax rankings have been climbing steadily since the airport opened in 2014.

In response to yesterday’s awards, the airport said on Twitter, “We are (grateful) to our staff and partners who help achieved these awards, and brought further success to the State of Qatar.”

According to Skytrax, its airport rankings are drawn from customer nominations from around the world.

Airports are evaluated based on 39 key performance indicators, including check-in, arrivals, transfers, shopping, security and immigration.

Hamad International Airport. Credit: Sanjiban Ghosh/Flickr

On its website, Skytrax said HIA “has been described as the most architecturally significant terminal complex in the world, as well as being the most luxurious.”

HIA has consistently received high scores for cleanliness, WiFi connectivity and shopping options. It also has a spa, pool and playgrounds for kids.

Expansion afoot

However, on Skytax’s passenger feedback website, HIA has a score of 6/10. This is in part because visitors continue to lament long lines at immigration and security.

The congestion has only worsened as the airport began operating beyond its capacity of 30 million passengers last year.

Queueing for immigration at Hamad International Airport. Credit: V Anand Kumar (@VAK_305) / Twitter

Traffic jumped 20 percent in 2016, to some 37.3 million travelers, according to airport figures.

HIA added Concourses D and E last year, and plans are now afoot to expand the airport to handle some 50 million passengers annually.

Officials have previously stated a 2020 goal for completion for that expansion.

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