Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport was constructed out of a World War II plane factory — humble beginnings — and has since evolved into one of the world’s busiest airports, servicing 83.4 million travelers in 2018.
Top complaints among travelers include a lack of organization and unfriendly staff, warranting the 7.1 quality of service rating. Recent reviews on Skytrax, a community-sourced travel guide, are consistently scathing — a scan of recent reviews all include “awful” in the headline.
Another common grumble? Long security wait times. (To bypass infuriating queues, we recommend registering for TSA PreCheck — a tip that is extremely useful for all airport travel. Almost all U.S. citizens are eligible to apply for the program.)
Plus, the weather here is miserable most months, with those infamous Chicago winds causing frequent flight delays. The airport has no control over storms, of course, but it’s also been singled out for having a poor design that contributes to back-ups and delays.
The airport’s one major highlight? Its culinary offerings, with a delicious bite for everyone. Outposts include celebrity-chef eateries like Wolfgang Puck and Tortas Frontera by Rick Bayless. Wicker Park Seafood and Sushi Bar is an elegant option for layover lunches, with wrap-around floor-to-ceiling windows displaying the Terminal 1 runways — sip on some chilled sake to deal with O’Hare stress.
(AirHelp didn't have enough data to assess Chicago Midway, the city's sister airport. But generally speaking, customers are split on which is best.)