Customer Satisfaction With Airports Drops in Q2 and Q3 of 2021, says J.D. Power
Research shows rising volume and lack of places to eat accelerated unhappiness >>
by: Harvey Chipkin
Customer satisfaction with airports declined significantly through the second and third quarters of 2021, according to the J.D. Power 2021 North America Airport Satisfaction Study. While airports had maintained historically strong customer scores throughout the pandemic, the combination of steadily rising passenger volumes and shuttered coffee shops and eateries caused the decrease in satisfaction. Michael Taylor, travel intelligence lead at J.D. Power, said that satisfaction reached all-time highs when passenger volumes were severely suppressed by the pandemic, but as leisure travel rebounded sharply throughout the spring and summer of 2021, there was an expected downturn in satisfaction. The data, said the report, conveys changing expectations among travelers. Early in the pandemic, passengers were satisfied with any shop or restaurant being open, but they now expect full service at the airport. Also affecting scores were a labor shortage that translated into lower scores for food, beverage and retail; and major construction projects that clogged roadways and parking areas. Miami International Airport ranks highest in passenger satisfaction among what J.D. Power calls “mega airports,” with a score of 828. John F. Kennedy International Airport (817) ranks second, and Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport (815) ranks third. Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport ranks highest among what J.D. Power classifies as large airports, with a score of 844. Tampa International Airport (843) ranks second, and Raleigh-Durham International Airport (841) ranks third.