OR Tambo airport best in Africa - website

OVERNIGHT: A stranded passenger sleeps on the floor in Madrid's Barajas airport. Picture: Reuters

OVERNIGHT: A stranded passenger sleeps on the floor in Madrid's Barajas airport. Picture: Reuters

Published Oct 20, 2014


Johannesburg - If you’re stuck between flights and have to sleep in the airport, avoid the international airports in Islamabad and Khartoum.

But if you’re stuck overnight at an airport in Africa, Joburg is the place to be.

The Best and Worst Airports 2014, by an offbeat website for travellers, SleepingInAirports.net, warns travellers what to expect.

“Airport sleeping is no longer just for the cheap young backpacker. Nowadays, early morning flights, long layovers, flight cancellations, snow storms and erupting volcanoes are just a few reasons why you will see travellers from all walks of life stretched out on airport floors around the world,” says the website.

The site’s readers rated airports based on their services, facilities and sleep-ability.

Benazir Bhutto International Airport in Islamabad, Pakistan, topped the worst list. “This airport is like a central prison,” wrote one traveller, saying touts and taxi drivers “loot people”.

Second worst internationally was Jeddah in Saudi Arabia, near Mecca, and the main transit hub for the Hajj pilgrimage. “It isn’t overly clean, crowds can be a problem and services for travellers are in short supply… says the report.

Third was Kathmandu in Nepal. “Just make very sure that you never, NEVER need to use the washrooms in this airport,” said one annoyed traveller.

Singapore’s Changi International was tops internationally for the 18th year in a row. “Travellers praised the airport for its overall soothing ambience, its intuitive layout and friendly staff. The sheer volume of activities and amenities left some transit travellers wondering if they have landed at a shopping mall or resort rather than an airport,” says the report.


South African airports were voted best in Africa. OR Tambo International near Joburg was tops: “It’s clean, quiet, has lots of shops, wi-fi and decent seating.” Second was Cape Town International: “Clean, pleasant, easy to navigate, modern and with pleasant staff.” Third was Durban’s King Shaka International: “Clean and comfortable… Money well spent,” said one traveller. Fourth was Algiers in Algeria and fifth was Addis Ababa in Ethiopia.

Africa’s worst were the international airports in Khartoum, Sudan; Kinshasa, DRC; Tripoli, Libya; Dar es Salaam, Tanzania; and Luanda, Angola.

The Star

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