While giant airports such as JFK, LAX and Chicago O’Hare often dominate the travel scene due to the sheer number of passengers who pass through them each day, the United States is home to many smaller, friendlier airports that take some of the headache out of travel. USA TODAY 10Best teamed up with a panel of experts to identify some of the best small airports, and readers voted to determine the top 10, which serve fewer than 10 million passengers each year, yet excel with their commercial flight offerings, easy access and amenities. Scroll through to see the winners.
10. Des Moines International Airport (Des Moines, Iowa). Passengers can fly from Des Moines International Airport to more than 20 popular destinations around the country. American, Allegiant, Deltas, Frontier, Southwest and United serve the airport. Passengers enjoy amenities such as free Wi-Fi, shopping and a variety of dining options (including three full-service restaurants).
DES MOINES INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
9. Buffalo Niagara International Airport (Buffalo, New York). Buffalo Niagara International Airport is undergoing a multimillion-dollar expansion, giving a facelift to one of the oldest public airports in the country. Passengers often use this airport as a convenient and money-saving alternative to Toronto. Food options reflect local flavors (buffalo wings at Anchor Bar, Labatt’s beer at Blue Zone or fresh coffee at Tim Hortons).
BUFFALO NIAGARA INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
8. Wichita Dwight D. Eisenhower National Airport (Wichita, Kansas). Passenger approval ratings are almost always high at this airport, especially for its parking facilities, ease of security, cleanliness, rental car facilities and concessions in the relatively new terminal. The airport also scores points for its high percentage of on-time departures.
WICHITA DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER NATIONAL AIRPORT
7. Bradley International Airport (Windsor Locks, Connecticut). Bradley International Airport ranks as the second-busiest airport after Boston Logan, yet it remains a convenient option with on-site parking, lots of charging stations, free Wi-Fi and proximity to both New York and Boston.
6. Paine Field (Everett, Washington). With just two gates, this newly reopened airport just 45 minutes from downtown Seattle offers daily flights to destinations like Las Vegas, Orange County, Phoenix, Portland, San Diego, San Francisco and San Jose aboard Alaska and United.
5. Piedmont Triad International Airport (Greensboro, North Carolina). Allegiant, American, Delta, Spirit and United fly to this airport serving Greensboro, High Point and Winston-Salem, North Carolina. The airport’s motto is “fly easy,” which is easy to do thanks to short lines, sparse crowds and eight rental car options onsite.
PIEDMONT TRIAD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT
4. Long Island MacArthur Airport (Islip, New York). Travelers wishing to avoid the big, crowded New York area airports (JFK and LaGuardia) will find a peaceful alternative in the town of Islip. Long Island MacArthur Airport, about 50 miles from Midtown Manhattan, is served by Southwest, American and Frontier.
LONG ISLAND MACARTHUR AIRPORT
3. T.F. Green Airport (Warwick, Rhode Island). Loyal fans of T.F. Green Airport in Rhode Island love it as an alternative to Boston Logan for its lack of crowds and lines and quick access to Providence and Boston via a dedicated train station. It’s also an excellent option for travelers heading to Cape Cod.
T.F. GREEN AIRPORT
2. Huntsville International Airport (Huntsville, Alabama). Delta, American, United, Silver Airways and Frontier all fly into this small Alabama airport with nonstop service to 10 major destinations across the country. The airport is small and easy to navigate, with an onsite hotel and a nice range of food and beverage options for an airport of its size.
ERIC SCHULTZ/THE HUNTSVILLE TIMES VIA AP
1. Myrtle Beach International Airport (Myrtle Beach, South Carolina). Myrtle Beach International Airport ranks among the fastest growing airports in the state. Passengers fly in and out on eight different airlines to more than 50 destinations across North America. It wins high marks from passengers for its convenient location and the ease of getting through security and to your gate.
NATHAN ISAKSEN/MYRTLE BEACH INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT