TPA Ranks as 2nd Best Airport in the US


The Tampa International Airport is no stranger to acclaim. TPA consistently finds itself listed among the finest airport’s in the world for their excellent customer service, great facilities, plenty of events, a wealth direct international flight options and plentiful options for food and shopping while you wait for your flight.

The recent additions of Rum Fish Grill, PF Changs, Ducky’s and The Hard Rock Cafe have elevated dining options before and after the security checkpoint. The praise comes well before the completion of the planned $1 billion dollar renovations at the airport.

It is for these reasons that J.D. Power ranked Tampa as the second best airport in the US. The ranking was determined by evaluating responses from 38,931 North American travelers who traveled through at least one domestic or international airport with both departure and arrival experiences (excluding connecting airports) during the past three months.

TPA’s prominence is more remarkable when you consider the increased traveler traffic over the past few decades. Many airports weren’t designed to handle the current volume of air travelers.

“Yet airports are overcoming infrastructure limits by affecting the things they can influence. Airports are successfully applying technology to improve check-in (+5 points year-over-year), security screening (+3 points) and the food, beverage and retail shopping (+10 points) experiences.

Michael Taylor, director of the airport practice at J.D. Power

A renewed emphasis on localized flavor (soon diners will be able to enjoy Tampa staples like Bella’s Italian Cafe at the airport) has given TPA a true signature touch. Travelers can now get a taste of local roast from Kahwa Coffee, sample fresh seafood at Guy Harvey, indulge in a Cuban sandwich at the iconic Columbia Restaurant and browse works by Tampa Bay-based artists throughout the terminals. It provides an indellible taste of Tampa for arrivals and departures.

Most promising about TPA’s updates is the promise of job creation. Over the past year, the airport has held several job fairs looking to fill hundreds of new positions for construction work, concessions and managerial positions. We have no doubt once the $1 billion renovations are complete, TPA will find itself in a class of its own.

Written by Brian Bailey

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Brian Bailey is the founder of I Love the Burg and That's So Tampa. In addition to regular contributions to each blog, he's been featured as a commentator to Bay New 9, The Tampa Tribune, The Tampa Bay Times, The Tampa Bay Business Journal and The Business Observer as well as national outlets including The Huffington Post and The Wall Street Journal.