Terminal Illness: JKIA on Frommers' 12 Worst Airports in the World

JKIA has had its share of problems in the last few years and now a travel website has given it a rather an unflattering review calling it a "third world construction site."

In a post appropriately titled "Terminal Illness", online travel guidebook website Frommers has classified Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Nairobi(NBO) amongst the 10 Worst Airports in the World. According to Frommers,

Some airports deserve special condemnation, though. In some cases, they deserve to be literally condemned. Assembling this top 10 list of misfits I scanned professional surveys and delay statistics and asked my frequent-traveler friends to come up with the ten airports where you'd least like to spend an extra hour.


Jomo Kenyatta International Airport ranks 7th on the list. Frommers says this on JKIA:
Nairobi's airport, which aspires to be an international hub, was built to support about 2.5 million passengers and now averages about double that. As a result, the Kenyan government announced plans to expand the airport. That was in 2005. They aren't done yet.

I've been to JKIA, and it reinforces all of the stupid stereotypes about Africa that you wish weren't true. It's hot, ugly, dirty and confusing, full of touts and scam artists and perpetually overcrowded. African airports don't have to be like this, of course: the
Marrakesh airport is one of the most beautiful in the world, and Johannesburg's O.R. Tambo airport is at least efficient.

The Kenyan government says construction on a new terminal
will begin in January. Perhaps someday, the Nairobi airport improvement project will be finished. Until then, this Third World construction site remains a place for travelers to avoid.

Do you agree with Frommers' drab review of JKIA?

Here is Frommers' 10 Worst Airports:
  1. Chicago Midway Airport
  2. "Paris" Beauvais Airport, France
  3. Newark Airport Terminal B
  4. LaGuardia Airport US Airways Terminal, New York City
  5. Amman Queen Alia Airport
  6. Paris -- Charles de Gaulle Airport, Terminal 3
  7. Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Nairobi
  8. Moscow Sheremtyevo Airport Terminal B/C, Russia
  9. Manila Airport Terminal 1, Philippines
  10. JFK Airport Terminal 3, New York City
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