Getting poked and prodded by security after hours of getting jostled by crowds and weaving through the intricate systems of lines at the larger airports was never fun and certainly isn’t necessary. Discover what some of America’s little-known gems—smaller airports—have to offer. Inc. reveals a list of some of the best alternative airports where you can find convenience and fewer headaches.
You know the major New York City airports—JFK, LaGuardia and Newark—but when is the last time your flew into MacArthur Airport in Long Island? Never? Well the smaller but ultra convenient airport may save you a headache and a few hassles. Dominated by Southwest Airlines, which is known for cheap flights, MacArthur is accessible from the Long Island Railroad and a short 10-minute shuttle ride.
A great alternative to the Dallas/Fort Worth Airport, Dallas Lovefield is located seven miles northwest of the downtown Dallas central business district, so public transportation is a great option and you won’t need to worry about raking up parking fees. Southwest Airlines, Continental Airlines and Delta all fly out of the convenient airport.
There are several alternatives to LAX, but the Long Beach Airport is a definite stand out amongst the options. Highly accessible by public transportation, with the highest on time departure rate of 86 percent (versus 80 percent at LAX), this airport is a great option for travel—though it does only fly to 19 unique destinations, which limits your options for destinations.
With an on time departure rate comparable to that at LAX, Burbank is another excellent alternative airport that offers travelers an easy airport experience with lots of cheap parking, short lines at check in and security, and 29 unique destinations.
Located 60 miles from downtown Boston, T.F. Green in Providence, RI is a great alternative to Boston’s Logan International Airport. Though it has less than half the number of destinations as Logan, T.F. Green has an 80 percent on-time departure rate and will cause fewer headaches than the notorious Logan. Public transportation to T.F. Green is not as simple as to Logan, but it is still an option and if you are renting a car or using your own, the drive to and from Boston is an easy one—taking just about an hour.
With 94 unique destinations, BWI offers travelers looking for an alternative to Washington, D.C. Dulles International airport with extensive options and is just 34 miles from the center of Washington, D.C. With a 77 percent on-time rate and great ground transportation options this smaller airport comes with few drawbacks compared to its larger, busier counterpart.
A great alternative airport when flying in or out of Chicago, Chicago’s O’Hare Airport has a low on-time rate of 67 percent and is one of the busiest airports in the country. Midway International Airport, typically thought of as O’Hare’s alternative, comes with headaches of its own and a 73 percent on-time rate. Milwaukee County’s General Mitchell International Airport has 64 unique destinations and a 79 percent on-time rate for departures. Amtrak makes the trek to Milwaukee easy with seven round trips daily, the 90-minute one-way trip to the airport only costs $21—much cheaper than taking a cab.
Instead of battling crowds at Miami International Airport, just 40 minutes from Miami, the Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport is a less busy, easy alternative. With a 4 percent higher on-time departure rate and 101 unique destinations this airport offers travelers a solid travelling experience, and is also easily accessible by public transportation.