TPG readers’ favorite airport hubs around the world

Nov 10, 2019

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A while back, we asked our TPG Lounge readers to share their favorite airport hubs around the world, the ones they prefer to fly through whenever they aren’t able to fly nonstop. Here’s a look at some of our favorite answers. (Some responses have been lightly edited for style and clarity).

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Favorite hubs in the U.S. and South America

Whether it’s the food, the music or the ease of getting around in a hurry, our TPG Lounge members had some great reasons for choosing their top U.S. airport hubs.

“Philly (PHL) for my Vino Volo stops, to get points and great wine! Sign up for their app and you also get free tastings. Also love Atlanta (ATL). There are always other flight options if something wonky happens, a great Delta Sky Club lounge in Terminal B and great walking between terminals [so you can] skip the tram.” — Megan C.

“I try to go through Dallas (DFW). When there isn’t weather affecting the operation, it is just a true pleasure. It’s a world-class airport with modern, amazing food and shopping options as well as views of the tarmac from the terminal. DFW is the USA’s best airport.” — Andrew D.

“Delta girl here. Detroit (DTW) or Minneapolis (MSP). DTW because it was my home airport for many years until I moved and I feel at home at the Delta terminal my Dad helped build. MSP because I’m also very familiar with it and it’s got a lot of great shops and restaurants. DTW wins because the Delta lounges are nicer and less crowded.” — Regina P.

“Anything with a United Polaris Lounge. I try to keep it to San Francisco (SFO).” — Mark F.

Related: The best credit cards for airport lounge access

Have you been to the United Polaris Lounge in San Francisco? (Photo by Zach Honig / The Points Guy)
Have you been to the United Polaris Lounge in San Francisco? (Photo by Zach Honig/The Points Guy.)

“Seattle (SEA). Having three Alaska Airlines lounges and minimal delays makes for a great experience.” — Ocean H.

“When I’m flying with Southwest, I like to go through Nashville. I’m not a big country music guy but I’ll still take a layover with live country music over the same old.” — Jeremy S.

“As a United flyer, I like Denver (DEN) because barring delays, it yields the shortest cross-country time when no direct flight is available between San Francisco (SFO) and Charlotte (CLT).” — Jean-Francois R.

“Houston (IAH), Dallas (DFW), Philadelphia (PHL), Atlanta (ATL), Miami (MIA) or Hong Kong (HKG). The Centurion Lounges are great!” — Michelle N.

“Depends where I’m going. If it’s Central or South America, then El Salvador International Airport (SAL) because the connection times are short, the airport is easy to navigate and you don’t have to clear customs on a connection unlike in Mexico City (MEX) or Panama City (PTY).” — Christopher B.

The best hubs in Asia and Europe

SIN and ICN each scored major points with our TPG Lounge audience, while HKG earned a nod for its epic lounges. Here are some of their other top picks in Asia and Europe.

Seoul (ICN) has great amenities: movie and nap areas, free showers, free city tours, a Korean art and culture area and of course, Korean food. What’s not to love?” — Myron L.

Singapore (SIN) hands down. I can spend a whole day in there.” — Johnny Z.

“Hong Kong or Taipei when I’m heading to or from San Francisco. Singapore is great, too, but it does lengthen the flying time for me since I live in Cebu, Philippines.” — Emily C.

“From Los Angeles to Asia, I like Hong Kong (HKG), Taipei (TPE) and Tokyo (NRT). Good lounges and shopping.” — Peter H.

“Incheon (ICN) in Seoul. Great lounges and a lot to do. I really enjoy South Korea so I don’t mind taking an extra day or two on a layover.” — Shawna J.

“Hong Kong. That Centurion Lounge is pretty hard to beat no matter what class you’re flying in.” — Ethan S.

Related: The best ways to fly business class to Asia using points and miles

An inside look at the Centurion Lounge at HKG. (Photo by Peter Madden for TPG)
An inside look at the Centurion Lounge at HKG. (Photo by Peter Madden for TPG)

“Hong Kong (HKG) or Singapore (SIN) ideally. Even if I can’t get into the cities, which are both great, the airports are fantastic.” — Ross H.

Seoul (ICN) has lots of places to sleep for free, tons of Priority Pass Lounges, a hotel in the secured area, a few cheap hotels near the airport and they don’t stamp your passport if you decide to leave the airport!” — Itamar R.

“Dublin. I am all for clearing customs before arrival.” — Justin L.

Amsterdam (AMS). There’s a casino, a free museum and lots of interesting sightseeing.” — Ti N.

“For flights from Chicago (ORD) to South Africa (JNB/CPT), I prefer Zurich (ZRH) because of the really easy transfers and awesome SWISS lounges. Frankfurt (FRA) is good, too, because of the great airside Sheraton for layovers over eight hours as well as easy flights on Lufthansa and South African Airways. Frankfurt is better for daytime layovers than Munich (MUC) because it’s just 12 minutes by S-Bahn to downtown Frankfurt, whereas Munich is over 50 minutes away.” — Bjorn S.

Related: The best ways to get to Europe using points and miles

Why choose just one?

Some of our TPG Lounge members didn’t have just one favorite airport hub, but listed several they preferred to fly through all over the world.

“Chicago or Houston. Super easy to navigate and the people are always so nice! I’ve never had a bad experience at either. In Asia, Singapore or Narita. In Europe, anywhere in Germany — their airports are amazing!” — Shan P.

“Depends on where I’m going. Minneapolis if traveling [I’m traveling around the] U.S. — it’s clean and efficient. Internationally, I’d connect in Madrid, Istanbul or Singapore any time, preferably with long layovers so I can get out into the city a bit.” — Brett C.

“Houston because I can drive home from there if a connecting flight gets messed up. Chicago and Newark for the United Polaris Lounges. I choose which of the three based on the weather at the time of year I’m flying. Overseas, I just avoid Paris and prefer Munich or Zurich over Frankfurt because of ease of transfer. I do get my exercise though at Frankfurt!” — Lara H.

“After my last experience in Dallas (DFW) with Global Entry and facial recognition, which took under five minutes, I’m not sure I’ll ever choose another U.S. port of entry. That was excellent! In Asia, you can’t go wrong with Hong Kong (HKG) for the lounges.” — Debbie C.

Related: 13 key things to know about Global Entry

Featured photo of SIN by Ethan Steinberg/The Points Guy.

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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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