Airport Privatization: Yay or Nay?

Hi guys,

The title pretty much explains it, but are you in favor of privatizing airports or not? Currently, there are no major, Class Bravo airports in the United States that are 100% private.

But it’s been done before. Look at London’s Heathrow airport. It’s a major international airport, one of the most famous, if not the most famous, airport in the world, and it’s turning nearly US $6-8 in profit per passenger it gets through its four walls.

Here is a video that goes into some detail on this:

So what do you guys say: should we privatize airports all the way or not? Leave a comment with your opinions below after voting here.

  • Yes, airports are business
  • No, airports are a public commodity

0 voters


Having visited both private and public airports it’s clear and obvious that private airports are better they just have the incentive to get everyone through as quickly and painlessly as possible.

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Sorry guys, there was an issue with the poll, if you don’t mind, please renter your options. It is fixed now, so nothing to worry about now

Private airports are the way to go. Because State-run airports just means more expenses to the state. If the state owns something that makes a lot of money, I am against that as that is a sign of a planning economy. So, private airports are the way to go.

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Of course it’s a business, how else would airport make money?

There are no private class bravos in the US for a reason, none of them make money. Heathrow turns a profit because of its location, it’s in an optimal location for connecting traffic. Heathrow to passenger traffic is what Anchorage is to cargo traffic. Building an airport to make money is extremely difficult in most places, if not impossible.


I suppose there’s less of a desire for publicly owned airports to actually turn a profit because of the cash flow they receive from the government.

But at the same time, airport quality decreases the more state funded it is. Privatization will increase the quality of the airport experience. I don’t know about you, but I would much rather connect through Heathrow than somewhere in the US.

I think JFK is publicly owned I’ve read that it’s owned by the city of New York and operated by the Port Authority.

KSNA used to be private, but the county bought it. 😒

I don’t mind that tho (I live 15 mins away). They are making money. They are bringing in new routes (KSNA-KBNA). They are keeping GA up.

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I know it’s still a great airport, it was just unique when it was privately owned and operated. It is good that we are gaining routes again because we have lost quite a few in the last year.

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Yeah we did…still missing Interjet

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Airports take up such giant plots of land, that it’s almost impossible for true and pure competition to exist, in terms of consumers selecting where they want to leave and arrive. For this reason, the land and infrastructure should be publicly owned. However, private companies should compete and be contracted to provide airport services. This creates a “bubble” of competition within the walls of the airport for companies to compete with each other, and turn a profit that is both beneficial to shareholders and consumers.

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Yes, I meant there are no private class bravos 🤣 corrected my typo

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Here in Albania we ve had terrible experience with airport privatizations, so i have to say no

This would reduce the politics behind airport projects. In my country, our main airport has been unable to get any major upgrades in over 10 yrs due to such, you have the bureaucracy, the corruption and add the back and forth between the government and various contractors/lenders like the AFDB(African Development Bank) and the IMF. You know what solves these problems? Privatisation.

@NeperQiell it would really depend on the regime/govt. The rampant corruption here in Africa makes the development of aviation-related infrastructure rather difficult if not impossible.

Ironically its the exact opposite here, so yeah it definitely depends

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that is a bit of a problem for long haul low cost carriers…

I always think privatization is a good thing. I think with more private companies that we have, the stronger the economy can grow because it challenges businesses and corporations to make a product worthwhile or a service worth paying for, rather than having a government subsidize a program, obviously only meeting the bottom line. I think one of the hardest things about running q airport though is the initial investment. Not only because almost everywhere in the world that is worth getting to already has an airport but also the expense required to build an airport is astronomical and I highly doubt a private company could get investors to pay billions for a project that could fail. Most governments build airports obviously on the grounds that by providing a means of transportation into their jurisdiction, their economy can grow, but let’s be honest most private corporations have a " everyone for yourself" mentality. Usually the profit margins are so small that by the time a company would make back their initial investment, I just don’t think it would be worth it. Obviously there are good models like London Heathrow that work but unfortunately I think we will have to look forward to government-run airports in the future.

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