Air Travelers Rank Hobby Airport a Top-10 in Passenger Satisfaction Among Large Airports

Sept. 25, 2017

George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) and William P. Hobby Airport (HOU) showed significant increases in passenger satisfaction over last year, according to the J. D. Power 2017 North America Airport Satisfaction Study.

Bush Intercontinental Airport ranked No. 11 among "mega" airports with a score of 752 (on a scale of 1,000)—jumping up from 709 in 2016. William P. Hobby Airport showed the most significant gains, according to the survey. Hobby Airport is now ranked No. 7 among "large" airports with a score of 765 (on a scale of 1000)—up from last year's 737.

"This survey shows our passengers are highly perceptive and recognize the great work that has been done to elevate the experience of flying in and out of Houston," said Houston Aviation Director Mario Diaz. "But make no mistake - we are not finished renovating, rebuilding and creating a world-class airport for this great city."

In the spring of this year, the airport system rolled out a complete upgrade of its concessions programming including world-class shopping and elevated dining experiences spiced with local flavor. The airports also now offer free Wi-Fi, which was rated second fastest in the country, and a mobile-device responsive website. Bush and Hobby Airports together were the first in the nation to offer turn-by-turn wayfinding technology via "LocusMaps Online".

In addition, Hobby Airport welcomed 12.9 million passengers in 2016 with more than 800,000 flying in and out of the new $156 million international concourse which has received accolades from industry leaders and, more importantly, customers. The concourse opened in October 2015.

Bush Airport welcomed almost 42 million passengers in 2016 and, earlier this year, opened—in partnership with United Airlines—a new Terminal C North concourse. Terminal C North offers a more comfortable and lavish concourse-to-gate experience for customers.

Plans are now underway for a new Mickey Leland International Terminal that will elevate the airport experience for the growing international passenger traffic in Houston.

Houston Airports have topped other satisfaction and efficient operation surveys over the past year including:

  • Bush Airport was ranked No. 3 among the most improved airports in the world and the No. 9 airport in the world for dining, according to an annual survey conducted by Skytrax.
  • The Bureau of Transportation Statistics ranked Bush Airport No. 8 among the top 29 hub airports in the U.S. for on-time performance in 2016 with more than 83 percent of flights operating on time.
  • ranked Bush Airport No. 5 overall in its 2017 U.S. Airport Dining Scorecard and ranked tops among the top 20 most trafficked airports for vegetarian and vegan dining options.
  • Bush Airport was named a Top 5 Favorite Airport for Millennials.
  • Houston Airports website earned two Best In Category honors from the American Marketing Association Houston Chapter.
  • Engineering News-Record named Hobby expansion 2016 Project of the Year.
  • Seven top airlines in Skytrax 2016 ratings provide non-stop service out of Bush Intercontinental.
  • Hobby Airport earned 4 stars in international airport ratings, one of only three U.S. airports to do so.

The 2017 J.D. Power North America Airport Satisfaction Study measures overall traveler satisfaction with mega, large, and medium North American airports by examining six factors (in order of importance): terminal facilities; airport accessibility; security check; baggage claim; check-in/baggage check; food, beverage and retail.

Now in its 12th year, the study is based on responses from 34,695 North American travelers who traveled through at least one domestic airport with both departure and arrival experiences (including connecting airports) during the past three months. Travelers evaluated either a departing or arriving airport from their round-trip experience. The study was fielded from January through August 2017.