While overall satisfaction at US airports has increased in recent years, in New York it is plummeting, with the top three hubs often found at the bottom of the heap. From poor infrastructure to lacking passenger facilities, why do these airports score so poorly and what measures are being taken?

This issue’s investigation piece focuses on the troubles at Istanbul’s brand new airport, which opened to much ado last year, only to be dogged by labour disputes and accusations of unsafe conditions on site, with multiple workers’ deaths blamed on negligence.

We also analyse how airports can become more proficient at using social media to dispel frustration, panic and confusion among their customers in the event of a crisis, and review five futuristic airport designs exhibited at last year’s Venice Biennale.

Finally, we take a look at the choice of bespoke, private terminals and services VIP passengers (or those willing to pay a steep membership price) can enjoy at the beginning of their travels.

Read the issue in full here.

In this issue

The Big Apple turns sour: why are New York’s airports so bad?
Overall passenger satisfaction at US airports has increased in recent years, but several new surveys show that travellers using New York’s three airports are routinely dissatisfied with their experience and rate them as the worst in the country. Heidi Vella explores the main issues infuriating flyers and what measures are underway to address them.
Read the article here.

A beacon of hope: could new tracking tech bring an end to aircraft disappearances?
Built by Aireon and Flightaware, GlobalBeacon is a new technology able to provide global, real-time flight tracking for airlines. Having gone live at the end of last year, Ross Davies looks into its potential to help prevent cases of missing aircraft – and, in turn, save lives.
Read the article here.

Istanbul New Airport: a symbol of discontent for Turkey’s labour force?
Protests over dangerous working conditions during the construction of Istanbul New Airport came to a head at the end of 2018. What are the workers’ grievances, and what do these protests mean for a country whose labourers are often scared to speak up? Joe Baker investigates.
Read the article here.

The role of social media in an aviation crisis
After Gatwick Airport’s IT outage earlier this year, passengers took to social media to shame the handling of the crisis by the airport. How can airports can prepare for the unforeseen when it comes to such cases, and what role does their social media conduct play in dispelling frustration, panic and confusion among passengers? Frances Marcellin reports.
Read the article here.

Airport designs for the future
The North Carolina State University College of Design collaborated with architecture firm Fentress Architects to develop five futuristic airport design concepts for different global locations. Patrick Kingsland profiles these speculative designs and asks if they could point the way to a new era of airport concepts in the future.
Read the article here.

VIP airport experiences: lifestyles of the rich and famous
With passenger numbers forecast to grow in the coming years, new premium services are being launched to improve customer experience at airports, but they come with a high cost. From luxury suites to concierge companies, Adele Berti finds out what airports are offering to spruce up their services.
Read the article here.

Next issue

Forced deportations are a gruelling reality. In the wake of a recent ITF call to commercial airlines to refuse assisting in forced deportations, we look at what role, if any, airlines should play in these scenarios.

China recently announced it was preparing to build its first permanent airport in the South Pole in order to increase its authority in the airspace and provide logistics support to future scientific expeditions. We find out what challenges are involved with building airports in the area and explore what impact the region’s shifting climate could have.

We also round up some of the most interesting ecological projects currently ongoing at airports around the world, from reviving local wetlands in Sydney, to Dublin Airport’s homemade honey.

Finally, we review urgent industry calls to optimise European airspace and look at ways to increase safety in air traffic control by focusing on the human factor behind the operation.