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Survey Highlights Top 10 Airport Annoyances

Holidays should begin at the airport; a nice meal and a glass of wine are the perfect start to a well-earned break, but believe it or not, many people find spending time at the airport an aggravation.

Many travellers find airports stressful and get wound up spending any amount of time in an airport - we’re not just talking about delays and disruptions, we’re talking about each and every time they travel.

A recent poll by online travel agency, Sunshine.co.uk, questioned 1,952 UK travelers, who had flown from a UK airport in the past 6 months, and found that the majority thought the whole airport experience was ‘very’ stressful.

The survey's results are ranked in order of most annoying, let’s see if you agree:

  1. Queues
    Unsurprisingly, queues were the biggest bugbear at an airport with 79% of respondents saying this was their greatest annoyance. Whether it’s at check-in, security, passport control or simply waiting for refreshments, we British don’t like to queue.
  2. Prices
    The price of food and drink and other items was ranked second, with 68% of those polled saying airport restaurants, bars and cafes are overpriced.
  3. Busy, busy, busy
    If you're traveling during peak holiday periods then it’s little wonder that the airport is busy, but that said, 47% of those asked were fed up with how busy airports actually are.
  4. Hyperactive children
    Other people’s children can be annoying. 32% of respondents found children, especially hyperactive and unruly ones, infuriating.
  5. Everything too spread out
    According to 27% of the poll, airports are just are too large and everything is just too far apart.
  6. Baggage reclaim
    Spending too much time waiting at baggage reclaim is a wind-up, according to 24% of those polled.
  7. “I’m First”
    Priority borders are rubbing everyone up the wrong way. 17% said they found those paying for fast-track boarding annoying.
  8. Unfriendly service
    Rude staff are not a good way to kick start our holidays, according to 16% of the votees.
  9. Boarding passes required when shopping
    Why oh why do we need to present our boarding passes when we’re only buying a newspaper? 11% wondered why too.
  10. Security measures
    5% of those polled found the strict security measures an aggravation – but don’t forget they are there to keep us safe.

While there’s very little we can so about some of the obvious annoyances, such as tight security measures, prices and queuing, there are some things we can do to reduce the amount of stress. Things such as:

  • Leaving enough time to get to the airport.
  • Being prepared and not leaving it until you are at the airport to buy last-minute purchases, such as foreign currency, which will invariably be more expensive than buying online or on the high street. Don't forget to book airport parking in advance too for the best possible prices.
  • Travelling at the quietest time of the day or on less popular days.
  • Taking a picnic with you to avoid airport restaurant prices.
  • Travelling with hand luggage only will negate the need to wait at baggage reclaim.

Speaking about the results, sunshine.co.uk’s Managing Director, Chris Clarkson, said, "A lot of the airport annoyances are simply unavoidable. They are busy places and you're bound to be faced with crowds, hyperactive children and some of the more unfriendly members of staff that can be found in airports, but don't let any of that put a dampener on your holiday! Just look forward to kicking back on that beach and let any irritations fizzle out!"