Crash landing: Schiphol airport plummets in world rankings

The people have spoken — and they’re not happy with Schiphol airport. Travellers have knocked Schiphol down 14 places in the battle for the best airport in the world. 

Yep, that’s right. The results of the annual 100 best airports in the world are out. Schiphol airport has plummeted in the world rankings from a cool and calm 15th place all the way down to 29th. 

This isn’t all that surprising given the chaos the airport saw in the past year. Travellers simply aren’t as satisfied with the airport anymore, and the truth is in the rankings. 

Is it time to make the most out of the trains instead?

READ MORE | 19 best day trips from Amsterdam: the ultimate travel guide

Schiphol airport’s history of chaos

Let’s face it, the past year hasn’t been a good one for Schiphol. 

The airport wasn’t prepared for the flood of people wanting to travel as soon as COVID-19 restrictions were eased. As a result, the popular international airport was met with a huge influx of travellers passing through its terminals.

All while also dealing with a big shortage of airport staff.

The result? Delayed flights, cancelled flights, and queues that took multiple hours to reach the end. 

People had to arrive at the airport four hours before their flight departed to be sure to catch it. So, a 9 AM flight? That meant being at the airport by 5 AM.

Caps on the number of passengers allowed to pass through the airport also led to restrictions on the number of flights that could use the airport.

As a result, once they were in, many passengers found themselves stranded at the airport with last-minute flight cancellations. #worthit

READ MORE | Chaos at Schiphol: why the biggest Dutch airport is struggling so much

Leaving the airport proved to be just as stressful. At the luggage retrieval section, it wasn’t a much better experience for travellers. 

Due to the shortage of airport workers, suitcases were placed in little mountains throughout the baggage hall and finding yours became an impossible treasure hunt. 

The best airport in the world?

Looking for a better experience? Air travellers voted Changi Airport in Singapore as the best airport in the world in 2023, moving up two places in the ranking. All you have to do to get there is hop on a — oh wait. 

Changi Airport is followed by Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar, in second place and Haneda Airport in Tokyo, Japan, in third place. 

New year, new you, and hopefully, new airport experiences. Let’s hope our Schiphol can do better this year. 🤞 

What was your experience at Schiphol airport in 2022-2023? Tell us in the comments below!

Feature Image:Depositphotos
Naomi Lamaury
Naomi Lamaury
Naomi came to the Netherlands four years ago for her studies with two suitcases and without ever having been to the country or knowing much about it. Now, you can find her eating ‘bitterballen’ and fighting against the Dutch wind on her bike every day like a local. Naomi enjoys writing about what is going on around her alongside a warm cup of coffee.


  1. I was lucky to have avoided the Schiphol insanity for a bit, but one couldn’t escape it forever… Back in September 2022 I arrived in Schiphol after a trip to Turkey and was not allowed to go to the immigration check as it was incredibly busy, along with all non-EU passengers. We waited for 30-45 mins before we were allowed to go down, which was not terribly bad in comparison to those waiting 3-4 hours, but I was quite surprised of it. Thankfully my next trip wasn’t bad, on account of arriving on 2e Kerst.


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