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Taiwan's Taoyuan International Airport ranking sinks to 82nd place

SKYTRAX’s 'Top 100 Airports' sees Taoyuan Airport drop places for four consecutive years

Taouyuan International Airport is lagging behind other regional airports. (CNA photo)

Taouyuan International Airport is lagging behind other regional airports. (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Over the past four years, Taoyuan International Airport has dropped in the U.K.'s SKYTRAX “Top 100 Airport” rankings, plummeting to 82nd place in 2023.

Factors contributing to the decline include failure to accommodate an uptick in tourism post-COVID. Taoyuan International Airport once ranked as high as 13 in 2019. However, it has since struggled with labor shortages and has yet to implement "smart airport" concepts and technology, per UDN.

Looking at airports in neighboring countries, rankings have been stable during the COVID epidemic and post-epidemic. Many airports in the region have also carried out renovations. For example, Singapore’s Changi Airport added multifunction facilities and a shopping mall.

Additionally, Japan’s Haneda Airport added an “airport garden” to cope with a surge in international tourists expected for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. After Seoul’s Incheon Airport’s phase four expansion next year, it will become the third-largest airport in the world in terms of passenger capacity.

Shih Hsin University Department of Tourism Professor Chen Chia-yu (陳家瑜) said regional airports are constantly striving to improve. He noted Haneda Airport added more commercial facilities, seeks to become a barrier-free space in response to its aging population, and looks into small details to improve the visitor experience.

He said Singapore’s Changi Airport added a shopping mall, a conference center, and a leisure area for both international passengers and Singapore residents. Chen believes Changi completely breaks the mold of an airport as a transportation hub to create something more alluring for international and domestic visitors.

Chang Jung Christian University Department of Aviation and Marine Transportation Management Professor Hwang Tay-lin (黃泰林) said that post-COVID, labor shortages were experienced around the world, and both airports and airlines found themselves shorthanded. He notes that most operations at Taoyuan Airport continue to be manually operated, so implementing the concept of "smart airports" is a necessity.

Hwang says that smart facilities could help improve service standards and convenience at the airport. Hwang also urged Taoyuan Airport to keep pace with neighboring Asian countries and their transportation facilities, such as Changi Airport and Incheon Airport.