Bergamo named world’s second-worst airport

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Travellers complained about Bergamo airport staff's poor linguistic skills. Photo: Paul Barker Hemings/Flickr
16:25 CEST+02:00
Bergamo's Orio al Serio International airport, outside of Milan, has been named the second worst airport in the world. Among the complaints were tales of "stupid" staff and the "horror" of visiting the toilets.

The news may come as little surprise to those who have found themselves stuck at the airport, 45km from Milan. Used as a hub for budget airline Ryanair, Bergamo came second only to Manila NAIA (Terminal 1) according to the rankings by travel site "The Guide to Sleeping at Airports", which were based on votes by readers.

Their league table was based on four categories: "comfort, convenience, cleanliness and customer service".

Travellers certainly did not hold back in their evaluation of the Italian airport.

Under the title ‘worst airport ever’, one person described the airport as extremely loud, dirty and cold, before summarizing their thoughts of the staff. “Dear Bergamo airport security, you are the most stupid staff ever”, the review said.

Another - titled ‘Worst I ever experienced’ - appeared to have had a terrible bathroom experience. “Did I mention the toilets? Horror!” they wrote.

One person seemed perplexed by the sheer number of people “loafing around without T-shirts or shoes as if they were in their homes”. This was evidently not the gateway to the world’s fashion capital they were expecting.

A recurring theme was the lack of linguistic skills of the staff. Many visitors said they tried to communicate with security staff in English, to no avail.

Below Bergamo in the rankings came Calcutta, then Islamabad and in fifth was Paris' Beauvais, just ahead of Chennai, Frankfurt Hahn, Mumbai, Rome Fiumicino and Los Angeles.
At the other end of the scale the best ranked airports were Singapore Changi, Seoul Incheon, Amsterdam Schiphol, Hong Kong and Helsinki Vantaa.

Explaining its ranking system, the airport guide said: "When selecting an airport to declare as the "worst", travellers were asked to consider the four C's: comfort, conveniences, cleanliness and customer service.

"Some of these factors may include:

"Comfort: Metallic seating, armrests, crowded terminals and limited seats make for an unpopular airport for long delays or layovers."

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"Conveniences: Bad signage in the terminals, difficult transfers, a lack of 24-hour food, and nothing to do in transit."

"Cleanliness: dirty floors, bathrooms and food courts."

"Customer Service: unfriendly staff, airport scams, anti-airport sleeper policies, immigration officers who prefer to play Angry Birds than process travellers."

What's the worst airport you have been to in Italy? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below, or tell us on Twitter or Facebook.

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