Now, I have to admit that Miami International is high on my list of Places Needing Improvement. Granted, the new South Terminal is pretty spiffy, and the new shops in the old terminal are a huge step-up. Still, there's more than a little work left to be done -- like speeding up the luggage delivery (and seeing that nothing is missing from your bag), fixing the escalators, etc.
But is it among the nation's worst airport? Well, yes, according to a story by US News (reported by TravelMole, an industry news cruncher.)
US News distilled government numbers to come up with an Airport Misery Index, based largely on delay records and load factors. (I'd throw in a few more factors, such as quality of airport staffing. Last trip through MIA, the non-local travelers in front of me were aghast to learn that at the Versailles outlet on our concourse, no prices were posted, the staff largely didn't speak English, only one person seemed to know the prices -- and they were truly outrageous.)
The 10 worst, according to the US News rankings:
- Chicago O'Hare
- San Francisco
- Dallas/Fort Worth
- Las Vegas
- JFK in New York
Least stressful, according to the report: San Jose.
Of course, none of these compares with some of the international airports I visit. Both London Heathrow -- which blessedly just opened a new terminal -- and Charles de Gaulle can try a traveler's patience to the max. But worst I've ever seen, anywhere: Douala, Cameroon. The place is a dump, the AC doesn't work, the temperatures even in the cool season are hellish and the bribe factor -- well, that's another story, but let's just say you'd better come with cash in hand.
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