A close up of the fuselage and the cabin of a Kenya Airways Embraer 190 airplane parked at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi on January 13, 2020. On Thursday, March 10, 2022 the airport was named the Best in Africa by Airports Council International in the top most category available to Africa, the 5-15 million passengers-per-year category. Photo: Shuttertsock
A close up of the fuselage and the cabin of a Kenya Airways Embraer 190 airplane parked at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi on January 13, 2020. On Thursday, March 10, 2022 the airport was named the Best in Africa by Airports Council International in the top most category available to Africa, the 5-15 million passengers-per-year category. Photo: Shuttertsock

Airports Council International (ACI) World on Thursday announced the recipients of this year’s Airport Service Quality (ASQ) Awards.  The annual awards recognize “airport excellence in customer experience worldwide.”

Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi was named as the sole Best Airport in Africa overall in the 5-15 million passengers-per-year category – the top most category for Africa. The airport is the hub for the national carrier Kenya Airways, the only airline operating a non-stop flight from the East and Central African region to New York.

This is the second year in a row the Nairobi airport is receiving the award. In 2020 it tied in the category with Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja, Nigeria.

Kotoka International Airport in Accra tied with Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport in Mauritius for Best Airport in the continent in the 2-5 million passengers-per-year category. This is Kotoka’s second win in a row, although in 2020 it was the sole winner.

In the under 2 million passenger-per-year category, another Kenyan airport, Moi International Airport in the port city of Mombasa took top honors, the second year in a row it has done so.

The 2021 results were based off more than 370,000 customer surveys conducted at airports in 91 countries.

“After a second year of the pandemic, this year’s ASQ winners are especially reflective of customer experience leadership during the most challenging time in our sector’s history,” said ACI World Director Luis Felipe de Oliveira in a statement. “We are exceedingly proud of their stellar leadership in delivering the very best customer experience.”

In response to the pandemic, the ASQ survey recently added health and hygiene questions to assess customer feedback on the measures airports are taking to address customer concerns. In Best Hygiene Measures category, Aéroport de la Réunion Roland Garros in Sainte-Marie, Réunion and Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport in Mauritius took top honors in Africa.

In North America, the top most category, over 40 million passengers-per-year, was a tie between Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and Toronto Pearson International Airport.

The Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport tied with Salt Lake City International Airport for the title of best in North America in the 25-40 million passengers-per-year category while Tampa International Airport was the sole winner in the 15-25 million-passengers-per-year category.

The airports will be honored later this year at the ASQ Ceremony during the ASQ Forum and ACI World Customer Experience Global Summit in Krakow, Poland.

About Tom Gitaa

Born and raised in Kenya's coastal city of Mombasa, Tom is the Founder, President and Publisher of Mshale. As the founder, he did a lot of the reporting during the humble beginnings of the newspaper. While he still does the occasional reporting, he now concentrates on the publishing side of the news operation. Tom was also the original host of Talking Drum, the signature current affairs show on the African Broadcasting Network (ABN-America), which was available nationwide in the United States via the Dishnetwork satellite service. On the show, he interviewed Nobel laureates such as 2004 Nobel Peace prize winner, Professor Wangari Maathai, the first woman from Africa to win the peace prize and heads of states such as the president of The Gambia, Yahya Jammeh at State House, Banjul. Tom has served and chaired various boards including Global Minnesota (formerly Minnesota International Center), the sixth largest World Affairs Council in the United States. He has previously served as President of the Board of Directors of Books for Africa, the largest shipper of donated books to Africa. He also serves on the boards of New Vision Foundation and the Minnesota Multicultural Media Consortium. Tom also served two terms on the board of the United Nations Association. He retired from running full marathons after turning 50 and now only focuses on half marathons.

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