PHOENIX — As the travel industry grapples with the economic losses brought about by the coronavirus pandemic, Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix has been recognized for its treatment of travelers.
The airport topped the J.D. Power 2020 North America Airport Satisfaction Study, the company announced Wednesday.
Sky Harbor ranked the highest in passenger satisfaction among 'mega' airports with a score of 805 out of a possible 1,000. Miami International Airport ranked second with 801 and McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas slid into third with 797 points.
Dallas Love Field ranked highest among large airports with a score of 844. Indianapolis International Airport took the top spot among medium airports with a score of 866.
Mega airports include those with 33 million or more passengers per year. Large airports boast 10 to 32.9 million passengers per year while medium airports typically see 4.5 to 9.9 million passengers annually.
Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego applauded the news and said that this is a testament to the hard work its employees perform every day for customers.
“This is an exciting moment for Phoenix Sky Harbor," she told Patch in a statement. "This really highlights the world-class service that is provided to airport customers each and every day and the enhancements Sky Harbor has made to its facilities. It is a testament to the work our employees are doing at the airport.”
While satisfaction with airports in the country has risen throughout the pandemic, the J.D. Power report said that is largely due to the lower number of travelers taking flight. Passenger volume this past Labor Day reached 40 percent of what it did in 2019, according to the report.
“Compared to the pre-COVID-19 environment when most airports were running significantly over capacity, the lack of crowds and long lines is actually creating a very convenient experience for travelers right now, Michael Taylor, J.D. Power's travel intelligence lead, said in a statement. "Obviously, this lower passenger volume is not sustainable for most airports. Airport managers are doing all they can to provide a safe and clean environment to facilitate a rebound in travel.”
The report, in its 15th year, is based on approximately 26,058 completed surveys from U.S. or Canadian residents who traveled through at least one U.S. or Canadian airport in the last 30 days. The survey was conducted from August 2019 to July 2020.
Sky Harbor has not been immune to the economic effects of the virus.
In April, the CARES Act included billions in relief for airports, of which Sky Harbor was awarded more than $147 million. The city of Phoenix recently announced that the Airport Small Business Assistance Program will give $1 million in grant funding to 18 concessionaries in the airport.