Istanbul Ataturk Airport

Customer Reviews

3 star Skytrax Rating
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Queuing Times 12345
Customer rating from 392 reviews
4/10
3 star Skytrax Rating
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1/10

"horribly wretched customer service"

(United States)

Unverified | There are not enough words in the English dictionary to describe this airport. So I will just sum it up with a few sentences. The first thing is the horribly wretched customer service at the airport and the flight was only a little better. From the money exchange to the information desk rude and uneducated people. Secondly the airport is nasty and smells near every gate corridor and beyond. The shopping area is the only clean area. They don't even tell you your gate number until 30 min before your scheduled flight. Incredible.
Experience At AirportTransit
Date VisitNovember 2017
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
2/10

"experience was not pleasant at all"

(Switzerland)

Unverified | Unfortunately I had to spend 5 hours at this airport between 2 flights and the experience was not pleasant at all. Overcrowded airport, not enough seating and dirty. I tried different toilets and they were all filthy, very disgusting. This airport is really a shame compared to the very good experience on Turkish Airlines. I guess this will improve with the opening of the new airport next year.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitNovember 2017
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages N/A
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
4/10

"A little courtesy goes a long way"

(United Kingdom)

Verified Review | Really busy airport, with quite some walking distances. After the fast track passport check, people traveling in economy can join the business security check, a simple lack of cordoning off a lane then fails the 'fast track' approach entirely. (Male) security and passport staff are often stumm - akin to being rude - never saying anything other that 'you have visa', even when you thank them. A little courtesy goes a long way (and it should be a given), especially when you're using priority lanes! Unfortunately Turkish Airlines doesn't have any transport to the gates for lesser abled passengers (even when traveling in Business) either, while other airports (or airlines) have buggies or golf carts. Unlike promised by the check-in staff, there are no business class buses either when flying from an apron gate (where the plane's not docked at the gate). When questioning the ground staff on why there was no business class bus, we were told 'economics' and that buses are are only available for incoming and domestic flights. Considering a business fare is considerably higher than eco, you don't expect to stand and wait around in the shuttle bus for up to 20 minutes until it fills up completely, with everybody stepping on each others toes, being squashed. - pretty poor show Turkish Airlines!
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitNovember 2017
Type Of TravellerCouple Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages N/A
Airport Staff 12345
no
2/10

"Dirt is literally everywhere"

(Slovakia)

Verified Review | First of all, I do not understand how the airport can score and land as one of the top airports. While having an international transit you have to pass the security which is not scaled and prioritized. Having one lane for business class ticket or gold card holders is a joke. Dirt is literally everywhere. You can easily play football with PET bottles, especially in the elevators. Going to a toilet on a gate was even bigger mistake. I almost returned my breakfast I had eaten a couple of minutes back. Have you missed your flight? Well according to the display at the gate I didn’t - showing last call for another half an hour at least. I arrived 15 minutes prior the scheduled departure. I wasn’t alone as another 7 people arrived about the same time. What’s even better if you look for customer care or service you have to go back literally through the entire terminal. You arrive to the so called care point and guess what the services are limited and the staff can’t help you. To get the service you need you have to go outside and then pass the security once again. The only postitive I can write about the airport is the Turkish Airlines Lounge, which is really best in class. But once you are not gold card member, you will never enjoy the airport, especially when you “miss” your connecting flight. From last friday I will do my best to avoid travelling via this airport.
Experience At AirportTransit
Date VisitOctober 2017
Type Of TravellerBusiness
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
1/10

"a nightmare of an airport"

(United Kingdom)

Unverified | Had the misfortune of arriving at this airport for a 1 day meeting and could not wait to leave. The entire arrival hall seemed to be in chaos as many flights had landed at the same time. On departure, check in at Turkish was met with the usual air of rude indifference and once through a basic level of security, the eateries were typically over priced as was duty free. This is a nightmare of an airport to visit and the level of rudeness and unhelpfulness from airport staff does not assist the situation.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitSeptember 2017
Type Of TravellerBusiness
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
6/10

"ok airport to fly into and from"

(United Kingdom)

Verified Review | Used Ataturk airport with my wife and member of my family to fly to DXB on business. That particular trip was the last of its kind taking place after the July 2016 incidents in Istanbul. Airport security was stricter than before in that the presence of security personnel was increased. Lots of places to eat, albeit much more expensive than in Istanbul itself, and not that tasty! Also, lots of shops with luxury goods with fairly good offers. Turkish products at the airport (tea, baklava, lokum) are much much more expensive than in the most exclusive shop in Istanbul or at Turkey's land borders, and not in a satisfactory variety! The airport is fairly big but can get where need to in good time. The Customs Office (Gumruk) to get the relevant stamp in order to get the Turkish Tax Free Refund is not very easy to find, but asking any Turkish airport employee or security (ozel guvenlik) or police officer will get you there! Arriving without Turkish coins could be a problem as the luggage carts must be paid. An ok airport to fly into and from!
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitNovember 2016
Type Of TravellerBusiness
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Airport Staff 12345
yes
4/10

"airport is very overcrowded"

(Romania)

Verified Review | This is the dirtiest airport I have ever been to. Unfortunately I had to spend more than 12 hours during a layover in this mess. The airport is very overcrowded, terminal seating is limited at the gates and there are no rest areas (or at least not easily accessible since I couldn't find any in 12+ hours) for transit passengers which do not need to go directly to the gate. The mess in the terminals was awful. Crumbs everywhere, left over fast food packaging dumped on the floor, soda bottles, the lot. And worst of all, nobody seemed to be assigned to clean the facility, it just stayed like that throughout the day. The airport is also very large, with no convenient way of getting around. If you have to go from terminals 100 to 700 or vice-versa, be prepared for a good walk, since there are very far apart. Passport check lines can be very long also, however waiting times are not that bad. To sum up, not a nice airport to be in, even for short periods of time, let alone for several hours.
Experience At AirportTransit
Date VisitSeptember 2017
Type Of TravellerCouple Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
3/10

"oblivious airport staff, chaos everywhere"

(Slovakia)

Unverified | This turned out to be a nightmare experience. I purchased the ticket with Turkish Airlines AUH-IST-KSC. Transiting time in Istanbul of 2hrs was sufficient enough - so I thought - to get refreshed, buy a cappuccino and some croissant. Wrong. For some unexplained reason, IST airport started with Security control checks in the transit area. Don't ask me why. I have an aviation background and I failed to understand logic behind this decision. Passengers coming from the airplanes and transiting to another flights are cleared already, but obviously not for IST airport authorities. I understand the high security threat of potential attacks, but to force passengers in the transit area to go through security checks (again) simply doesn't make any sense to me. Especially when the airport doesn't have procedures to speed up the process or to accommodate passengers with shorter connecting times. There were definitely more than a thousand people waiting, waving with their boarding cards, trying to get the attention of oblivious airport staff, chaos everywhere and waiting time approximately 2 hours. There is no process for passengers with short connecting times and staff clearly do not care. When we approached them, it was like speaking to a stone. No interest, no friendliness, no pro-active approach. They told us that this is the everyday case (hundreds of people with short connecting times not being able to make it for their flights due to the waiting times at new security checks) and they don't care, procedure is procedure. I was told that if I miss my flight, I should go back to the Turkish Airlines transit counter and they will help me to get to my next flight. My next flight would be in three days - and only that was the argument that finally counted and someone from the Turkish Airlines helpdesk helped me to get through. I'm positive I wouldn't have made my flight otherwise. Other than that, this airport can't surprise me anymore. I've never been able to connect to Wifi, shops are okay, but nothing special and staff are fine too. I'd never recommend to anyone to fly through this airport with a shorter connecting time than 3.5hrs.
Experience At AirportTransit
Date VisitSeptember 2017
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
7/10

"I cannot fault it"

(Saudi Arabia)

Verified Review | Expensive Duty Free Shops and Trolleys hard to find. Landed and departed from this airport and overall I cannot fault it, except for the fact that it is hard to find baggage trolleys before going to the carousel to collect luggage. No clear signs of where to find them either. Furthermore it requires 1 Lira to operate one and this can be annoying as if you have just arrived, you will be required to change money first and then buy a low value item from the shop in order to get a coin. Departures has a nice selection of restaurants with local and international eateries. As for Duty Free shops, they are ridiculously over priced and are more expensive than shops in downtown Istanbul.
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitSeptember 2017
Type Of TravellerCouple Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
yes
1/10

"badly run and staff are so rude"

(Ireland)

Unverified | The airport is badly run and staff are so rude. A member of staff told me to join a queue labelled domestic transfers for visa clearance. Stood in line only to have a finger waved to me and told to go to the international queue because I don't have a Turkish passport. This should be made more obvious to save embarrassment. In the end apparently I didn't need to stand in the international citizen queue so I am still baffled as to what I was meant to do. There is no wifi to speak of and generally it is a busy airport, lots of hanging around with not much seating to speak of. Would avoid in future.
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitSeptember 2017
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no