Sydney Airport's status as one of the world's best airports has been reconfirmed with its top three ranking in the latest survey of world airports.In what is claimed as the worlds' largest airport passenger survey, attracting over 1.4 million* nominations around the world, Sydney's Kingsford Smith Airport ranked third behind its much larger rivals, Hong Kong and Singapore. The independent survey was undertaken by UK aviation market researchers,
The survey data was gathered through online customer surveys, corporate travel questionnaires and airport customer interviews.
The top 10 rankings in the Skytrax survey were:
1. Hong Kong
6. Chicago O'Hare
8. Kuala Lumpur
This is the second year that Hong Kong International Airport has won this coveted title. Singapore Changi took second place, displacing last year's runner-up, Kuala Lumpur International Airport which slipped to 8th position.
According to Skytrax, Sydney Kingsford Smith provided a very strong performance to come in at 3rd place - particularly since, in terms of size, SYD is considerably smaller than either Hong Kong or Singapore.
"This is another outstanding result for Sydney," says Sydney Airports Corporation CEO, Tony Stuart. "To be ranked third out of all the world's airports, regardless of size, reinforces our continuing commitment to providing the very best journey experience for our passengers and an efficient, competitive port for our airline partners."
Mr Stuart accepted the award certificate during a whirlwind visit by Skytrax executives in Sydney earlier in the week.
Mr Stuart said the Top Three ranking of key South East Asian ports, Honk Kong, Singapore and Sydney was a key reason why the Asia/Pacific region was the tourism and travel hotspot - driving growth in an otherwise flat global travel market.
Schiphol Airport Amsterdam grabbed the honours as Best European airport, and a fourth position in the global ranking - ahead of Copenhagen who also moved up 3 places from last year's position.
Dubai Airport remained top in the Middle East and ranked 7th in global terms - Bahrain placed 2nd in the regional category.
London Heathrow may be the worlds' busiest international airport, but the passenger rankings did not place it in the worlds Top 10, and on regional ratings it falls into 4th place behind Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Helsinki.
Amongst North American airports, Chicago's O'Hare was placed top - a first into the top 10 global rankings, with Vancouver maintaining last years performance and retaining a ranking in this top group.
Commenting on the Survey results, Edward Plaisted, chief executive of Skytrax said, "our survey is now the worlds' largest airport passenger survey and the only global study that covers just about every customer type from all areas of the globe. We have more than trebled the number of survey respondents over the 2001 study."
"Hong Kong has clearly established itself as a firm favourite amongst the travelling public and analysis of the final votes show their support to be far spread and not just restricted to Asian passengers - Europeans, North Americans and Australians in particular stating strong preferences for
"The final award represents much more than just the size of facilities an airport offers - it is about the quality of service delivery at front line outlets, ambience of terminal areas, ground transportation options, through to the cleanliness of toilets, smoking room facilities and more."
"Sydney Kingsford Smith was a very strong contender in 2002, demonstrating that size is not everything! Qualities of staff assistance and service were a prime driver for passenger selection of this airport, combined with the general improvement in facilities during the past 2-3 years."
"We do not split the Airport of the Year Survey into passenger capacity groupings, but certainly if we did then Sydney would be ranked worlds' best in the 15-25 million passenger category."
"In terms of survey timing, we had to contend with the impact of September 11th, and were closely monitoring survey responses to ascertain the effects (if any) of enhanced security procedures upon the passengers final airport perception."
"The strongest evidence was in North America itself, where many felt the need existed but that reaction measures were unnecessarily impacting on the whole airport experience.
Across Europe and Asia / Pacific, most respondents said they observed little change, aside from additional peak period security scanning queues, Mr Plaisted said."
* The total number of eligible nominations received during the Survey period was 1,434,582 entries - an increase of over 1 million on the 2001 results.