Saudi airports rated worst in the Middle East
RELATED NEWS: Saudi rejects airport criticism
by Courtney Trenwith
Saudi Arabian airports have been ranked the worst in the Middle East in an online survey.
Three Saudi airports were included in the top five worst in the region, compiled by readers of the Canadian website sleepinginairports.net.
Jeddah King Abdulaziz International Airport was the worst – also taking out second place in a global list of the worst airports to sleep in.
Dammam King Fahd International Airport and Riyadh King Khalid International Airport were ranked fourth and fifth, respectively.
Sana’a International Airport in Yemen’s capital was voted second, followed by Damascus International Airport, Syria.
By contrast, the airports rated the best in the region were Dubai International, Doha Hamad International, Abu Dhabi International, Muscat International and Tel Aviv Ben Gurion International.
While both Yemen and Syria are in the midst of conflict, Saudi Arabia, the largest oil exporter, is one of the wealthiest countries in the world.
Following decades of little investment in the aviation industry, the kingdom is now revamping and extending more than 20 airports, including the three in the list, as it also moves towards opening up the sector.
“While some airport terminals in the Middle East are characterised by great opulence and excess, those that made the Worst Airports list are described to be entirely the opposite,” the website says in explaining the list.
“Voters complain about the disorganisation, crowdedness, and uncleanliness of these five airports – with particular emphasis on long queues managed by inefficient-verging-on-hostile staff.
“The four C’s that we appreciate so much are generally nowhere to be seen – and for some reason, this is particularly frequent at airports across Saudi Arabia. If you do find yourself with a layover or delay in one of these airports, you may want to join other travellers who prefer to splurge on a lounge or an airport hotel as these airports tend to be somewhat unforgiving for sleepers and travellers on a lengthy layover.”