Photo: Chiangi Airport Group
For most people, going to the airport is a singularly frustrating and stress-inducing experience.But that’s not the case at Chiangi International Airport in Singapore, a sort-of airport fantasyland that’s garnered more than 370 “best” awards from travel groups and publications since it opened three decades ago, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Unlike the average airport, everything at Chiangi is done with the traveller in mind.
- The cozy rest areas have big couches and TVs–and you don’t need to buy a premium aeroplane seat to use them.
- There’s a roof pool–and free bus tour of Singapore for airport visitors.
- Instead of screeching loudspeakers, soothing music is piped in and announcement are kept to a minimum.
- Technology is everywhere–there are touch screens in the bathrooms and the whole place has free WiFi.
- There’s a four-story amusement park slide, a movie theatre, and a kids’ play area.
- The airport is super green: it has a wall covered entirely in plants and gardens dedicated to cacti, sunflowers, and orchards.
- It’s got a full-blown mall, with everything from a dry cleaner to dental care to a flower shop.
With amenities like that, visitors to Singapore may want to just hang at the airport until it’s time to catch a flight back home.
The airport, which has four terminals, serves some 100 airlines flying to over 210 cities in about 60 countries and territories worldwide.
42 million passengers passed through Chiangi in 2010, making it the 18th busiest airport in the world.
Unlike most international airports, the focus at Chiangi is on the traveller experience. There are TV lounges with big, comfy chairs everywhere.
Forget your toothbrush? There are tons of shops, including clothing and jewelry stores, a flower shop, a dry cleaner and even a medical centre.
You won't have to worry about running out of battery, either. There are charging stations everywhere.
This is no ordinary airport interior. Chiangi has an entire wall with plants that are rotated in from the airport greenhouse.
But it's also a money maker: visitors can only ride the full four stories if they've spent $8 at an airport retailer.
The rooftop pool is small, but it's the only rooftop airport pool we've ever heard of, so it's tough to complain.
Even the bathrooms are stylish. The toilets have touch screens that let you inform an attendant if the toilet paper runs out.
This is one of Chiangi's nap areas. Unlike other airports where nice amenities are reserved for business class travellers, anyone can relax here.
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