Airports are something of a mixed bag. Occasionally, you come across a brimming airport peppered with your favorite fast food joints and shops. On other occasions, you may be in an airport with nothing but a half-empty shop, no restaurant, or anything stimulating.
That is why the list of the best and worst airports in Europe exists today. Nevertheless, you are about to discover some interesting things or facts you didn't know about airports.
Celebrities don't board planes as you do
Celebs often travel by air and in regular airplanes, but only a few know this. Larger airports have unique security protocols and check-ins for famous individuals. VIPs board aircraft directly via a secret door beside the jet bridge.
For instance, some airports use Cadillacs or Porsches to transfer celebrities from the airport terminal to the plane.
The reason some airports are called 'international airports'
Your favorite runway may not host regularly scheduled flights to other countries. However, it may still be called an 'international airport.'
An international airport usually has immigration and customs facilities designed to accommodate private or commercial flights efficiently.
It is not uncommon to see small airports dubbed 'international.' This is because such airports regularly accept private aircraft or international cargo from foreign lands.
Almost every lost baggage gets found and reunited with the rightful owners
You don't need to panic or buy an entirely new wardrobe if your luggage somehow gets lost. According to an air transport communications firm called SITA, approximately 97 percent of lost luggage is found and returned to the rightful owners, often within two days.
Subtle cues deliberately guide passengers around airport terminals
Airport designers intentionally use wayfinding, a brilliant concept, to create stress-free environments at terminals. These cues guide passengers around unfamiliar places in airports.
Wayfinding employs a highly specified series of visual cues that aid passengers navigate the airport grounds. These cues range from signage design and typography to preferred color palettes.
For instance, an airport terminal may showcase signs with straight edges while another has curved ones. Translations are usually pasted alongside universally recognizable pictograms and icons in countries where the English language is not the lingua franca.
These pictograms and icons usually indicate departures, arrivals, transportation links, and restrooms.
The most popular item purchased at airports is water
Bottled water is the number one most popular item purchased at most airports. Passengers are usually reminded of the importance of hydration before and during flights.
But in reality, water is freely available at fountains as soon as you pass the security check. Therefore, consider bringing a reusable water bottle with you the next time you need to take a flight.
This saves you some extra cost, as bottled water sold at airports comes with prices higher than typical retail prices.
The United States has the most airports worldwide
Research shows that the United States has only 19,633 busy airports, the largest number of airports in one country. Brazil is the second nation with the largest number of airports at 2,717. Mexico has 1,740 airports, clinching third place.
Boring waits are becoming things of the past at some airports
Few travelers know that the San Francisco airport has a yoga studio. Even Hong Kong's international airport has a golf course that passengers can try out as they await their flight.
More and more airports are working to ensure that boring waits are a thing of the past.
Never use cash exchange rate services at airports
Most passengers don't get an impressive exchange rate at airport terminals. This is because most exchange bureaus often take advantage of usually disorganized travelers, who only get the most important things done at the last minute.
Therefore, order for best rates online if you somehow forget to purchase your currency in advance. But don't forget to take the cash in the currency of the country you're visiting before leaving for the trip.
These are some interesting things you probably didn't know about airports. So bear these things in mind the next time you're going on a trip or waiting for your flight.