Airport calls ‘Worst Airports 2023’ survey ‘deeply flawed and misleading’


Manchester Airport’s furious response to being named in the Which ‘Worst Airports 2023’ survey could probably be heard over the roar of a jet engine.

They are, to put it mildly, not pleased with the consumer site for deeming them one of the worst airports, and have said the negative picture created by the survey’s data is ‘deeply flawed and misleading’.

The Which survey creates a deeply flawed and misleading picture of the service we are providing to our customers this summer

Which has published its annual ‘Best and Worst Airports’ list, based on the results of an online survey completed by its members.

Following last year’s damning bottom ranking - terminals 1, 2 and 3 propped up the table - the airport once again finds itself rooted to the relegation zone when it comes to sending holiday-goers packing. Perhaps adding insult to injury is the fact Liverpool Airport topped the survey. 

However they believe that the unwanted crown of ‘Worst Airport in the UK’ has been unfairly thrust on them as a result of out-of-date data and a ‘tiny and unrepresentative sample’ of passengers.  

They even went so far as to give Which a kicking by claiming it ‘becomes less and less relevant’ with every passing year. Meow.

A Manchester Airport spokesperson bellowed to the heavens: “Manchester Airport is proud to give the people of the North easy and affordable access to a wide range of global destinations. We are committed to providing a great experience to all passengers, and feedback this summer has been really positive, building on the strong Christmas and Easter getaways we delivered.

“Our customer service is driven by investment in our people – we have recruited more than 3,000 colleagues since April 2022 and established a new 100-strong resilience team, trained in a variety of roles so they can respond at short-notice to ensure passengers get a good level of service.  It is also driven by investment in our facilities, especially the £1.3bn transformation of Terminal 2, through which more than 80% of our passengers will fly by 2025.

“We take all customer feedback seriously, but the Which? survey creates a deeply flawed and misleading picture of the service we are providing to our customers this summer.

“The survey is out of date – covering June 2022 - June 2023 and not including the majority of this summer season - and is also based on a tiny and unrepresentative sample of the 25 million passengers who travel through Manchester Airport each year."

Manchester Airport Fights Back 3
Take-off with Easy Jet over Rostherne Mere close to Tatton Image: Confidentials

Hackles well and truly raised, the spokesperson continued: “Year-by-year the Which? survey becomes less and less relevant as response rates continue to dwindle, with half as many people surveyed this year as were 12 months ago. There were only 567 responses relating to Manchester Airport - 0.002% of our annual passenger numbers.

“As part of our commitment to delivering great customer service, we continually survey passengers. In July and August this year, 93% of those passengers rated their overall satisfaction with the service they received as good, very good or excellent.

“Since April this year, we have welcomed more than 10.4m people through Manchester Airport, who have travelled to more than 180 destinations with nearly 50 different airlines - and 95.6% of them have got through security in under 15 minutes. Almost three quarters got through security in under five minutes and 99.8% in under 30 minutes.”

So there.

Manchester Airport Fights Back
Negotiating the airport Images: Confidentials

Which say: “For years members have told us that Manchester Airport can be grim. ‘It’s just not a nice airport,’ one person said. Another complained that the layout was ‘poorly designed’. But this year it went from bad to worse – with a sea of two-star ratings and the lowest score for security queues at every terminal.

“‘Security queues are horrific,’ claimed one passenger, and ‘waiting areas are overcrowded, you can never get a seat.’”

While most travellers have taken issue with Manchester Airport at one time or another, it seems they won’t back down in the face of 567 responses being wielded in their general direction. Instead it seems they’re brushing off the title and looking ahead to raising a glass in the ‘fizz bar’ of their £1.3bn Terminal Two. Only time will tell whether the billion pound facelift will see an improvement in its Which ranking.

If you liked this article you'll like:

Mayfield Depot blossoms with RHS Bridgewater

Aviva Studios must not repeat the mistake of Urbis

Chorlton's shoddy shopping centre to be upgraded

Get the latest news to your inbox

Get the latest food & drink news and exclusive offers by email by signing up to our mailing list. This is one of the ways that Confidentials remains free to our readers and by signing up you help support our high quality, impartial and knowledgable writers. Thank you!