PETALING JAYA: The ranking for the Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) has sunk to its lowest ever. It is now at number 54 on Skytrax World’s Top 100 Airports list.
At its best, Malaysia’s premier gateway took second spot. That was in 2001.
It managed to stay in the Top 10 until 2012. For instance, in 2010, it was at number 5. But the freefall began in 2013 when it dropped to 14th place. In 2014, it dropped further to 20th place before recovering marginally to climb one spot in the following year. But it failed to maintain the momentum and fell further to 34th place in 2017, and in 2018, it ended up at number 44.
This year, Singapore’s Changi Airport took the top spot.
According to Skytrax, a consultancy firm based in Britain, Malaysia Airports Holdings Bhd (MAHB) had refurbished KLIA last year but travellers were not impressed.
“Some toilets had been upgraded last year, but more work needs to be done to impress travellers,“ it said.
“The old skytrains are still in use but they often break down, according to the staff at duty free outlets,“ it added. However, Skytrax acknowledged that the autogate for holders of Malaysian passports at the Immigration counter had been upgraded last year.
The consultancy said Changi took the top sport because it had new facilities, new events, new technology and new food and beverages outlets.
MAHB said last year that it was working on a total revamp of the passenger facilities at the airport.
It said it was doing this to stem KLIA’s rapid decline in international rankings.