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Incheon International Airport is consistently rated among the best airports in the world, and this year (2012) it grabbed the number one spot for the Best Airport in the World award by Skytrax. Here are 25 reasons Incheon International Airport is the best!
1. Mega Quick Immigration – The Korean ppalli ppalli culture (the need to do things quickly) is awesome when it comes to immigration. Average time for arrivals is 12 minutes (vs 45 minutes world-wide) and departure 19 minutes (vs 60 minutes). (Source)
2. You’ll Get Struck by Lighting before Losing your Bags – Losing your bags is one of the most frustrating things that can happen to a traveler to Korea. Incheon Airport has a 0.0001% baggage mishandling rate, which means you’re more likely to get struck by lightning. Yay! (Source)
3. The Staff – Korean customer service is usually pretty good. But the staff at Incheon Airport is even better. They’re respectful, helpful, and can generally speak pretty good English.
5. Really Spacious and Bright – The huge windows make the airport feel like it’s bigger than it actually is, and it also lets all that natural sunlight in, which is really good for depressed people ;).
6. Mega Easy and Affordable Access – Affordable limousine buses from Incheon Airport go to pretty much any corner of Korea. There’s also a brand new train that’ll get you to downtown Seoul in no time.
7. Gardens Galore – Incheon Airport doesn’t just have a garden. It has seven! Sometimes you need a break from all the chic and modernness, and just return to semi-manufactured (but still really peaceful) nature.
9. Free Computers – No, not to keep silly. Not everyone might have a laptop or smartphone to get the free wifi offered at Incheon Airport, so computers are free to use for anyone. So accommodating! (Yahoo! writeup on free wifi and computers)
10. Medical Services – If you need some medical attention for that smelly feet problem you got, Incheon Airport has a medical center that’ll offer services like checkups, dental services, and emergencies. (Official website)
11. Free Showers – After sitting in a plane for hours next to some stinky dude, you’ll definitely want to take advantage of the free showers offered in their hotel-styled bathrooms.
13. Dry Cleaning – If you’re headed to a wedding or a formal business meeting in Korea, you might have some nice fancy clothes all wrinkled in your suitcase. Make sure you look slick and drop off your clothes at Incheon Airport’s dry cleaning.
14. Children’s Playroom – Traveling with kids can be really tiresome. Let your kids waste their energy in Incheon Airport’s free children’s playroom. (Parental supervision is required).
15. Beauty Services – Get your hair and nails done so you can arrive in Seoul with some flash!
16. Prayer Rooms – Incheon Airport offers prayer rooms so that you can go in and pray for a speedy return to Korea 😉
17. Shopaholics Heaven – At Incheon International Airport there are 90 duty free shops. It’s basically a shopping mall with an airport attached to it. (Download shopping guide here.)
18. Golf Course – Located really, really close to the Airport is a golf course. Getting out in the sun and hitting a few balls make for a nice relaxing day. Make a booking here.
19. Two Movie Theaters – You can catch the latest Korean movies or Hollywood blockbuster at two of Incheon Airports movie theaters. Two might seem like over kill, but nah… it’s just awesome!
20. Ice Rink – Is there anyone that doesn’t like Kim Yuna? Pretend to skate like the queen of ice by iceskating at Incheon Airport’s ice skating rink. Airport icerink is cooler than ice!
22. Traditional Korean Cultural Experience – You can make traditional Korean crafts at the Incheon International Airport Korean Culture Experience and see traditional Korean musical and dance performances for the very reasonable price of free.
23. Korean Culture Museum – Check out Korean traditional culture that dates back thousands of years. And it’s not just some lame pictures of things; they actually have really important stuff!
24. Spa and Sauna – If you’re on a layover at Incheon Airport and have a few hours to kill, take a moment to relax at the spa. You can even sleep there. Spa + sleep > traveling dark eye circles. (See more venues by CNNGo.)
25. Transit Tours – With transit tours to temples, historic sites and newer attractions, you’ll get a taste of Korea within a couple of hours. Incheon International Airport makes layovers fun! (See details)
Have you ever been to Incheon International Airport? Share your experiences in the comments!