Queues, crowds, and chaos: Why UK airports are ruining your travel experience

A look at everything wrong with UK airports and why we shouldn't stand for it

Annie-Rose Edwards
6th December 2022
No matter where you are in the world, the routine airport farce before jetting abroad is nobody’s holiday highlight. We dream of swift bag-drops and breezing through security, but instead face the grim reality of ridiculously early flights, excruciating waits, and needlessly rude staff that make for an exasperating airport experience.

Whilst no UK airport has mastered a hassle-free departure, I firmly believe Manchester Airport is the worst place to fly from. With painfully long security queues and short-tempered staff that make you feel like you’ve wound up in the headteacher’s office, Manchester Airport offers nothing but continuous, unwarranted stress. Thought you were through the worse and could enjoy a peaceful browse around Duty Free? Wrong. As if the shambles of security weren’t enough, you’re then met with chaotic, overcrowded departure lounges. With not a seat in sight, I've spent endless hours crouched by the toilet queue waiting for my inevitably delayed flight to finally show.

Image Credit : Pixabay

I’m by no means the only frustrated flyer, in fact, a survey by Which? in 2022 officially named Manchester as the UK’s worst airport. Of course, our airports have faced extensive challenges because of Covid, however it’s all too easy to blame abysmal travel experiences on staffing crises, when in reality the problem existed long before the pandemic ever did.

So many countries have succeeded in creating efficient airports perfectly suited to the busy modern-day traveller, with the likes of Porto and Zurich Airport impressing passengers with slick security procedures, abundant seating, and designated charging points in every departure lounge. As other places strive to transform travel with stress-free airports that Brits could only dream of it really does beg the question of when UK airports will finally follow suit.

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