Despite ongoing challenges in the airline industry due to increased traveler volume, pilot shortages, and weather-related disruptions, overall passenger satisfaction at North American airports increased by 3 points on a 1,000-point scale in 2023, according to a new report.

The annual J.D. Power 2023 North America Airport Satisfaction Study, which compiled responses from over 27,000 individuals from the U.S. and Canada, found that the three-point increase to 780 from 773 last year was mainly driven by better terminal facilities, food and beverage services, retail services, and baggage claim experiences.

“It has not been an easy year for North American airports, but major capital improvements they’ve made over the last several years and new investments in getting food, beverage and retail operations back up and running at full capacity have helped them manage the crush of passengers,” Michael Taylor, managing director of travel, hospitality and retail at J.D. Power, said in the report.

Despite the improvement, elbow room remains a challenge for airports, with 60% of travelers reporting severe or moderate crowding within the terminals.

Related: Airline Industry Executives Warn of Prolonged Air Travel Disruptions—For At Least Another 5 Years

The study also found that satisfied passengers tend to spend more money at airports, with those who rate their experience as “delighted” spending an average of $44 in the terminal, compared to $29 for those who rate their experience as “disappointed.”

Where are the best airports in North America?

As for which airports rank the highest, J.D. Power named Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport No. 1 for traveler satisfaction with a score of 800 on a 1000-point scale, followed by Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport (796), and Harry Reid International Airport (787) In Las Vegas. The study ranks the top 20 “mega airports” (classified by the study as hubs with 33 million or more passengers annually) in North America.

Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport had the highest customer satisfaction rating for North American airports in 2023. Walter Bibikow | Getty Images.

The study collected 27,147 surveys from U.S. and Canadian travelers who rated their experiences at North American airports for both departures and arrivals, conducted between August 2022 and July 2023.

Here are the top 10 North American mega airports with the highest traveler satisfaction rates on a 1000-point scale, according to the report.

1. Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport

Customer satisfaction: 800

2. Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport

Customer satisfaction: 796

3. Harry Reid International Airport

Customer satisfaction: 787

4. Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport

Customer satisfaction: 783

5. Miami International Airport

Customer satisfaction: 783

6. San Francisco International Airport

Customer satisfaction: 781

7. Denver International Airport

Customer satisfaction: 777

8. Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport

Customer satisfaction: 777

9. Orlando International Airport

Customer satisfaction: 777

10. George Bush Intercontinental Airport

Customer satisfaction: 776

You can view the full list, here.

Madeline Garfinkle

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