This Midwest Airport Ranked Top Three In The US For Having The Angriest Passengers

If air travel makes you irritable, you're not alone. A lot of people feel angry on travel days. For some, it's the confusing TSA rules and being selected for additional airport screening (even when you're sure you've done nothing wrong). For others, it's the long lines and crowds of people. And in some cases, a condition such as travel anxiety or even jet lag can trigger mood changes and irritability.

According to one Forbes Advisor study (via Daily Mail), some airports seem to attract more angry passengers than others, including one unexpected Midwest spot. The outlet compiled negative posts on X (formerly known as Twitter) to determine which airports have the most disgruntled travelers, and the results may not be what you'd expect. Coming in at number three on Forbes' list was Eppley Airfield, a moderately busy port in Omaha, Nebraska.

So what is it about Eppley that sets people off? Forbes found that X users tend to complain about travel delays and cold weather when passing through the Midwest airport. However, these frustrations might not reflect the reality: Data from the Bureau of Transportation Statistics reveals that over 77% of the airport's flights between January 2023 and January 2024 were on time, and only 0.84% of flights were delayed due to weather. Additionally, Eppley received decent marks in J.D. Power's 2023 North America Airport Satisfaction Study with 804 points (out of 1,000), just missing the average of 809 points for medium airports.

One California airport has the country's angriest travelers

Two airports beat Eppley Airfield in Forbes' ranking of the angriest passengers, and according to the findings, you might bump into more irate travelers as you head south. Jacksonville International Airport in Jacksonville, Florida, placed second, with 60% of analyzed X posts about the airport containing negative content. Common themes included complaints about lines, TSA, delays, and employees. Like Eppley, however, Jacksonville International performed well in J.D. Power's 2023 survey, receiving 821 points (even more than Eppley).

Forbes' angriest airport, John Wayne Airport in Orange County, California, also differed from the J.D. Power study. Forbes discovered that 65% of analyzed X posts about the Golden State airport contained angry or negative feedback, and people tended to be most annoyed with the noise, airport staff, and TSA procedures. However, in J.D. Power's data, John Wayne Airport placed second in the list of large airports based on customer satisfaction. The airport near Disneyland received a whopping 829 points, far surpassing the national average of 789 for large airports.

It's important to note the limitations of Forbes' analysis. It analyzed only 37,000 X posts that referenced the 60 busiest airports in the U.S. (an average of only 617 posts per airport). Additionally, people are more likely to post to social media about a bad airport experience. These are likely some reasons for the discrepancy between Forbes and J.D. Power.

The Midwest is also home to the calmest airport

Though Forbes' data might not perfectly match other research on traveler satisfaction, it still serves as a reminder that you might run into more angry passengers in some airports than others — and, sometimes, you might be one of those disgruntled fliers yourself.

To keep tension at bay and combat airport anxiety, consider flying into one of the list's calmest airports instead of the angriest. For the lowest chances of encountering a Negative Nancy or Downer Dan, travel through Indianapolis International Airport, the calmest airport in the country according to the Forbes analysis. It's no surprise that passengers at the Indiana hub would be content: Indianapolis International was ranked highest in J.D. Power's 2023 list of medium-sized airports, while Airports Council International recognized it in 2023 for its top customer satisfaction scores.

If you won't be flying in or out of Indianapolis any time soon, consider traveling through Seattle-Tacoma International Airport or Kansas City International Airport instead. These spots were also found to elicit the fewest negative X posts and may offer a calmer experience for stress-prone travelers.