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London Stansted Airport

Customer Reviews

3 star Skytrax Rating
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Queuing Times 12345
Customer rating from 684 reviews
2/10
3 star Skytrax Rating
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4/10

"airport prioritises profit over passenger comfort"

(United Kingdom)

Verified Review | Owing to a change in personal circumstances I am now using this airport about once every two weeks and I am increasingly frazzled by how this airport prioritises profit over passenger comfort. The security situation is actually not too bad - you have to feel for the staff because this airport caters for a lot of family holidays and so people with kids and who are not frequent flyers. Given that context, it's okay and they have laid on a lot of staff and X-ray machines. There is often a queue, but even during the morning rush it's about 5 minutes queuing time before you are at the X-rays. And if you want to get through even faster, the fast track lane is about four pounds. But the real issue with this airport is the cynical way each and every passenger is forced to walk nearly a kilometre through a compulsory duty free maze to get to the departure gates. Sales assistants hassle you with perfume, it's bright, stinks of multiple fragrances and is generally unpleasant. What you realise when you get to the end is that the gates are in fact about 5 metres from security as the crow flies, it's just that they've devoted literally half the airport floorplan to the duty free area. It takes at least five minutes to get through - which could be the difference between making a flight or missing one if something has gone wrong earlier in the journey. It would just be so much more considerate of the airport to allow pax to skip the duty free if they wanted to. The current situation is one of implied contempt.
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitAugust 2016
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
1/10

"is failing on all counts"

(Netherlands)

The purpose of an airport is to move large numbers of people onto and off their flights quickly, pleasantly and safely. London Stansted is failing on all counts. On arrival, despite the presence of large numbers of electronic passport readers, we were forced to use a very small number because passengers can apparently not be trusted to use them without 1-1 supervision by security staff, which makes the whole exercise irrelevant. Departure from this airport is where the true horror arises. Passing security checks was not particularly fast, but I've experienced worse. However, the waiting area behind security was a lovecraftian horror of the worst sort. All passengers are funneled through a narrow, winding passage passing not only between shops but at the start right through one. The experience is like a visit to an Ikea from hell where there are no shortcuts, and everyone is blocking the passage because no-one knows where they are going. After 10-15 min of shuffling through this you arrive at the "waiting" before the gates, a cramped feeling circle surrounded by overcrowded eating establishments and packed with seating already filled by passengers who cannot proceed to their gates because these are only shown on the boards when they actually open. The gate areas themselves are nice and spacious, but nobody is actually sitting there because you have to queue for boarding as soon as you arrive there.
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitAugust 2016
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
no
1/10

"2.5 hours through passport control"

(United Kingdom)

Arrived at London Stansted last night at midnight- we were queuing as soon as we got into terminal building. There was no order, proper queuing. We were then told over 12's could use the e-passport reader and so use the quicker line. Unfortunately some of our party had small children and had to join the slow moving line. It took us 2.5 hours to get through passport control - shocking!
Experience At AirportArrival Only
Date VisitAugust 2016
Type Of TravellerFamily Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages N/A
Wifi Connectivity 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
1/10

"absolute chaos"

(United Kingdom)

Absolute chaos, staff were rude, offensive, absolutely no organisation through security. Inconsistency with regards of luggage. I literally could take anything through whereas my friend had to remove half of her luggage through security. Total dissatisfaction. I will not travel from Stansted again.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitAugust 2016
Type Of TravellerCouple Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
1/10

"it was chaos"

(United Kingdom)

We arrived at Stansted airport for our Ryanair flight a bit late due to accidents causing hold ups on the journey but we arrived at about 3.30 for our 4.40pm flight on Ryanair FR8853. Unfortunately this is when the problems started, first of all there was traffic backed up because the barrier to the Meet and Greet car park was not working, when we finally got through we parked the car and went to the Meet and Greet office to hand over the car keys. When we arrived at the Meet and Greet office it was chaos, excessive queues of people waiting, people complaining about lost cars/keys, this caused a delay with us getting to the check in desk. However we still made it in time for check in and checked in with Ryanair for our flight. We then went to security to go through to departures, here again we were delayed, myself and my wife went through security after quite a wait in line but my daughter and 2 year old grandson were stopped for further searches, the security staff took bags and some soft toys from my daughter for further checks and left her standing by a desk with her son in the buggy. My daughter waited there for some time but no one returned with her bags and the child's soft toys, eventually concerned about the length of time I had been waiting for my daughter and grandson I returned back to security and found her standing at a desk not knowing what was going on. I then searched for someone to speak to about her belongings which hadn't been returned, I then discovered that they had been put back through the scanner and some items were sitting on the conveyor waiting to be picked up. The soft toys were not there though so we had to leave without them. I can not believe that security staff would leave a mother and child without any explanation what they were doing or tell her where to pick up her belongings, how did they expect a mother with a buggy to get back through all the people to pick her belongings up? The delay in security meant we had to run through the departure area to our gate only to find out the gate had been closed 2 mins previously. We then had to get back out of the departure area of the airport, no one could tell us where to go and this was also a terrible experience, eventually we found our way back out by following Emergency Exit signs and collected our off loaded luggage. We then returned to Meet and Greet to get our car back where we were met by total chaos, there were queues of people snaking out of the office and along the walkway, the staff didn't have a clue what was going on and had lost keys and cars, people were complaining, children crying. I have never seen such a mess. After waiting for over 90 minutes and repeatedly asking when I would get my car keys I was offered my keys, only they were not my keys they were the keys to someone else's car. 40 minutes later I finally got my keys. The chaos at the Meet and Greet service caused us to miss our flight and I had to book another outbound flight for the following day with Air Malta (the only airline with anything available).
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitAugust 2016
Type Of TravellerFamily Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages 12345
Airport Shopping 12345
Airport Staff 12345
no
1/10

"worst airport I have ever experienced"

(United Kingdom)

Shocking once again at Stansted at departures and arrivals. Departure lounge is now complete following the recent work. Purely awful - almost 800 meters of walking required through the middle of a shopping centre. Everyone is channelled through it squeezed in narrower and narrower. Once finally through it you are pinned in to a small cramped waiting area with hardly any seating available. Bar and restaurants all highly over priced to what you pay normally for the same brands etc. Arrivals is even worse. I am currently typing this having queued up at passport control for over 30 minutes - and still only half way up to the Border control desk. Now I am all up for tight security etc but surely they know August is going to be a busy time and they know well in advance of arrival flight times. Put on extra staff? To make things worse, all other personnel on my flight have all been through and collected their luggage. As non EU passport holders, they had no queue. So, a British Citizen with a UK passport takes over an hour to get through pasport checks. I can honestly say, Stansted airport is the worst airport I have ever experienced.
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitAugust 2016
Type Of TravellerFamily 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
1/10

"frustrating and stressful experience"

(United Kingdom)

Believe it or not, planes do actually depart from this shopping mall. You have to hunt high and low for them, fighting your way through endless duty free stores and perfume sales people, but they are there. Since the latest redevelopment this "airport" is now basically one big shopping centre. Space and seating in departures has been slashed in half, you'll be hard pressed to find somewhere to take the weight off your feet. Passengers are now herded through a narrow passageway lined with shops - everything is about the hard sell, trying to get as much money out of you as possible. It's a frustrating and stressful experience. Want somewhere to sit down for a bit while waiting for your flight? Forget it. Stansted used to be a large, open airport with a pretty spacious departures area, not any more. Prepared to be penned in like cattle. Avoid if at all possible.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitAugust 2016
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

"herds of people being pushed"

(United Kingdom)

Like the last post on here this was my first visit since the builders have left. We used the long stay parking and everything went OK. Check in (Thomas Cook) again went smoothly, but then the herd of cattle side of Stansted started to show itself. Zig zagging up and down to security made you think that you were at a theme park queuing for a ride. Then this awful winding airside shopping mall type set up. Herds of people being pushed towards the eating area and when you eventually end up there you can either join a queue for over priced food or try to find a seat in the middle seating area which on my visit was nigh on impossible, to me the whole airside experience was a mess. Arriving back two weeks later was no better. Even more zig zagging to use the e-passport scanners, but the luggage did arrive promptly. By now is 1am so getting the bendy bus to the long stay should be a piece of cake. Not so, long queues of tired and cold passengers almost fighting and pushing in to get onto each bus when it rolled up every 20 minutes or so, each bus left totally rammed with people and luggage. In my view MAG haven't improved the experience at all, modern airports are open and airy places something this airport isn't. The local news has stated that Stansted wants to push for more long haul routes and I hope they get them, but people want to be better treated if they're paying several hundred pounds for flights rather passengers coughing up 49 quid for a flight from Dublin. I hope I never have to use this airport again, but I know I will.
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitAugust 2016
Type Of TravellerFamily 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
3/10

"a big step backwards"

(United Kingdom)

My first visit since the new layout, a big step backwards. It's all about trying to sell and no consideration for the customer, no surprise really and the airport now mainly serves Ryanair. The plus point is there are now a lot of sercurity lanes. Then you move through a long narrow winding path of retail outlets, not wide enough to cope with the volume of people. The departure area is crowded and messy. Modern airports are trying to reduce the journey through the airport and increase the efficiency, Stansted has done the opposite. It used to be a basic, open airport, now I'll do my upmost to avoid it in the future.
Experience At AirportDeparture Only
Date VisitAugust 2016
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
1/10

"everything was done badly"

(United Kingdom)

I've never reviewed an airport before but I was so angry about yesterday's experience that I feel the need to. First, the price of the airport carpark. It cost almost as much as the flight for a four day stay. Second, leaving from last gates there is an area where I believe four flights were leaving at once from the same circular space. It was a cattle pen. Some people were getting mixed up in the wrong queues and the only way to sort it out was for staff to run around shouting. I was going to Bucharest and the airport there (Henry Coanda) was a haven in comparison. On the return journey everything was done badly: the plane had to wait to get a parking space, it was a good twenty minutes after the staff had said we could get off before we actually did. Why not tell passengers to stay in the seats until the doors really do open? Despite having back and front entrances we all had to exit from the front, which makes accessing cabin luggage harder. Passport control is a nightmare. There was a member of staff shouting instructions at the beginning of the queue about something or other but unless you were close enough it was inaudible. I am guessing it was about e-passports but I got shunted into one of the rolling queues anyway and it took almost 30 minutes of constant shuffling to get through. (What's it going to be like when we have formally left the EU I wonder?) The bus to the mid-stay carpark is supposed to arrive every 10 minutes. We waited 25. The area at the front of the airport has 'No Smoking' signs but these were completely flouted so that we had cigarette smoke wreathing around us. I took the law into my hands on this occasion but the lady I spoke to just pointed to the other smokers and shrugged. My flight arrived at Stansted at midnight. I got to my car at about 1.20am. Stansted is ghastly. My worst airport experience in many years of regular flying.
Experience At AirportArrival and Departure
Date VisitAugust 2016
Type Of TravellerSolo Leisure
Queuing Times 12345
Terminal Cleanliness 12345
Terminal Seating 12345
Terminal Signs 12345
Food Beverages N/A
Airport Staff 12345
no