Airports are the portals to experiences, the jumping-off points of great journeys, important business trips, heart-breaking farewells and emotional reunions of friends and family.

They're also stressful, crowded, time-wasting expensive miseries. A good airport, then, is really one that mitigates the discomfort of being there, and gets the job done, on time. After all, no one goes to an airport just to shop, see the art exhibits or eat at the restaurants.

AirHelp, an air passenger rights expert that helps travelers get compensation for disrupted travel, ranks the world's best and worst airports for passenger experience. Maybe if you know how bad an airport is, you can plan for setbacks - add a few extra hours to pad your travel time, bring a decent bag lunch, or sedate yourself as accordingly.

AirHelp scored 133 of the world's airports for:

  • On-time performance (60% of score) - flights that arrive or depart within 15 minutes of schedule are considered on time.
  • Service quality (20%) - this includes customer service, cleanliness and security wait times
  • Food and shopping options (20%)

The survey of 40,000 people was conducted in over 40 countries between Jan. 1 and Dec. 31, 2018. Pictured is Singapore's Jewel Changi Airport, which opened in March 2019. It has gardens, an indoor waterfall, attractions, and 300 shops and restaurants.

Based on AirHelp's survey, these are the 15 best airports in the world, followed by the worst.

Photo: Travel man / Shutterstock