Best in the World: Incheon International Airport

Landing in popular airports always excite me because I have no idea what to expect. The moment I step out of the plane, I am already searching for something to “wow” me. I always end up floored, but this one takes the cake.

Incheon International Airport1 is the best according to Skytrax for 2012 and has been sitting pretty at the top spot for seven straight years by the Airports Council International. With all these accolades, who wouldn’t expect a lot. First impression counts, and IIA didn’t disappoint.

Welcome to Incheon!

Welcome to Incheon!

Number one airport based on SKYTRAX

Number one airport based on SKYTRAX

Which way to go

Which way to go

The airport alone can very well be the reason for you to visit South Korea. Our arrival is a blur, because we made it in Incheon quite late (ehem, delayed flight), so I don’t have enough stories about the arrival process. People at the airport communicate in English very well, so getting information’s quite easy. There’s a train to take you to the concourse which left me dumbfounded. Why would I ride that?, I thought. As it turns out, it’s part of the whole process and it applies to both departure and arrival. The moment we found our way to our assigned carousel, most of the bags are already there. And my car too (I wish!):

A Hyundai car inside the airport—coolness

It’s best to be on time for departure because you would definitely want to explore the place. The wide hallways are perfect for those hurrying to catch their flight even during peak hours, seats are everywhere, escalators are plenty—all these and the reason why I think they are number one: efficiency. I am not exaggerating. It took us only 20 minutes from check-in to the duty free area. That time could’ve been shorter if we didn’t unpack our stuff into another bag (TIP! If you purchased prepaid excess baggage and you are in a group, IAA counts the weight by bag, not by group. It doesn’t matter if your companions have less than 30kgs and you’re the only one with excess—you must lessen the weight of the heavy bag). Immigration is a breeze—no long lines here. It greatly helps that ALL counters, be it in the check-in or immigration is open. Define efficiency!

No Joke. Eva Air + Hello Kitty

No Joke. Eva Air + Hello Kitty

Here are more photos. You might have noticed that I tweaked the colors a bit to make it feel “warmer.” You know how airports usually have that “cold” feeling with the materials and architectural design. A different treament, just to differentiate it with my Suvarnabhumi Airport photos.

Train station vibe

Train station vibe

You know it's a nice airport when you can have a row of seats to yourself

You know it's a nice airport when you can have a row of seats to yourself

Korean Air planes outside

Korean Air planes outside

Rockin' cool socks in an equally cool airport

Rockin' cool socks in an equally cool airport. Bad Badtz Maru ♥

You can have moments like this... and take note, this was around 7:30 in the evening.

You can have moments like this... and take note, this was around 7:30 in the evening. That's because they have like, four escalators each for going up/down

Rest and relax, you read that right @ Incheon International Airport

Rest and relax, you read that right

Paldo noodles! Oh yes!

Paldo noodles! Oh yes!

An octopus has emerged from my spicy soup

An octopus has emerged from my spicy soup. It's my first time to see one!

This was right across where we sat while waiting for boarding. Spacious it is!

This was right across where we sat while waiting for boarding. Spacious it is!

I’m no global girl because I haven’t been around much. But it makes me giddy thinking that I have been to the top 3 airports2 in the world! Woohoo! ♥ My only regret is that I didn’t explore much of IIA—no glimpse of the ice skating rink! That can be a reason for me to come back. And oh, HK and SG, can I come back too? You know, I didn’t have my own camera when I visited both of you… :P

P.S. YOU HAVE TO CHECK OUT THEIR ULTRA-COOL TOILETS! I got the name (Hygolet) so go and search it online! Didn’t have a photo of it, but you really have to check it out. You can sit on the seat, thanks to a plastic that can be replaced after use!

RELATED POSTS:

  1. IIA []
  2. the other two: Hong Kong International Airport and Singapore Changi Airport []

MM

Nerd and geek in one. Likes words and pictures. I post my discoveries, interests, ideas, photographs, thoughts and works in this blog. About | Like on Facebook | Follow on Twitter

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Comments

  • Lei

    (TIP! If you purchased prepaid excess baggage and you are in a group, IAA counts the weight by bag, not by group. It doesn’t matter if your companions have less than 30kgs and you’re the only one with excess—you must lessen the weight of the heavy bag)

    Does that mean they only allow 1 check-in baggage per person? Omo! Eotteohke?

    • MM

      No naman.. in our case kasi 30kg yung alloted namin per person. Baka Incheon limit talaga yung 30kg.

  • Miko

    Hi MM, my name is Miko. I’ve been a blog fan of yours for a while (aka, God Knows how long!) I posted a comment here because I would like to request for your help. PM Fajardo, a fellow blogger of mine, started this simple yet worthwhile project called The Notebook Project.

    Wherein the project plan is simple: buy 10 notebooks instead of buying a cup of coffee, milk tea, ice cream or whatsoever and send it to PM so she can hand them over to the many kids in Bagac, Bataan who needs it most. Most of the parents their are farmers and fishermen and the kids need all the help they can get.

    We hope we could get help to spread word about this worthwhile project across so that we can get more people to donate and help. I am posting her blog link here so that you can personally check it out: http://prinsesamusang.wordpress.com/2012/05/09/the-notebook-project-what-can-your-100-pesos-buy/

    Thanks for giving time in reading this little message :)

    • MM

      Hi Miko! Aww, thanks a lot! First time I got that, thanks! :)

      That is a really nice project. I will come up with a post for this to spread the word! I’ll find time to go through my things; I think I have some unused notebooks lying around somewhere.

      Thanks for the support for my blog and for informing me of this project. :)

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