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User currently offlineChuckles1225 From United States of America, joined Mar 2002, 160 posts, RR: 1
Posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2637 times:

The two airports battling for the title of the world's busiest. I've been to both and prefer Atlanta. They have the more organized terminal layout. What do you think?

ask not what your pilot can do for you, ask what you can do for your pilot
48 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
User currently offlineMls515 From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 3081 posts, RR: 8
Reply 1, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2490 times:

I think ORD is a little better for O & D since there's more curbside space. People can be dropped off nearer to their gates than at ATL. I don't think the terminal layout is all that big of a deal since at ORD you will likely only need to be in one terminal, with the exception being that United Express passengers making a connection to mainline UA and vice versa need to move from T2 to T1.

However, for a big airport, I like ATL's simplistic design with the rows of island-terminals connected underground.

User currently offlinePilothica737 From United States of America, joined May 2001, 297 posts, RR: 3
Reply 2, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 11 hours ago) and read 2479 times:

ATL blows ORD out of the water...er air

User currently offlineSkyway1 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2459 times:

I prefer ORD. But whenever I fly ORD I make no connections, so it makes it way easier.

Chris  Smile

User currently offlineLOT767-300ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 4, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2445 times:

ORD is reclaimed its title in 2001 thank thee lord
O'Hare takes back busiest title

By James Evans
January 17, 2002

O'Hare International Airport reclaimed the title of the nation's busiest airport from Hartsfield Atlanta International Airport in 2001, new Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) figures released Thursday confirm.
O'Hare recorded 911,861 takeoffs and landings during the year, compared with Hartsfield's 887,403 for the same time period.

While Chicago's major airport saw its arrivals and departures increase by just 2,884 in 2001, compared with the year earlier, Hartsfield saw its operations decline about 3%, or 26,046, compared with the year earlier.

A Chicago Department of Aviation spokeswoman said that favorable weather conditions, particularly in the spring and summer, along with a reduction in labor disputes, boosted O'Hare's number of operations.

Despite losing the title of busiest airport, Atlanta had more commercial airline flights during the year, reporting 671,049 operations, compared with O'Hare's 650,019. O'Hare, however, showed stronger numbers in express flights, charters and general aviation operations.

Like numerous airports, O'Hare experienced a sharp decline in both domestic and international commercial traffic in the wake of Sept. 11. According to FAA figures, commercial airline traffic was off each month from the year earlier: down by 35% in September, 24% in October, 21% in November and 9% in December.

The top 10 busiest airports after Chicago and Atlanta are: Dallas-Fort Worth, Los Angeles, Phoenix, Detroit, Denver, Las Vegas, Minneapolis-St. Paul and St. Louis.


Anyways i live right by ORD and i love it. Though a bit too much AA and UAL we still get way more Int'l that ATL. ORD is more diverse and theres always something interesting to spot. I love the airport to death......DOWN WITH ATL!!!!!!!

User currently offlineAirplanetire From United States of America, joined May 2001, 1809 posts, RR: 2
Reply 5, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2431 times:

I live in Atlanta, so I'm sure that I'm a little biased, but I think ATL is much better when it comes to layout. It is very easy to used in that aspect. ORD has a horrible and confusing layout IMO. ATL is bad though when it comes to an aviation enthusiast, I think, because there is pretty much only Delta and Airtran. ORD is great for seeing exotic airlines for the US.

User currently offlineRogueTrader From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 2420 times:

From an ease of use and efficiency persepctive, ATL is superior in both terminal and runway layout.

BUT, ORD is far more interesting. Different terminals, some from the 1950's, some brand new. A hodgepodge all squashed in at different angles of planes, buildings and runways. And then...the magnificent bad whether days with the grey foggy skies and slush and snow. Its great.

Even if you get stuck at ORD for a while the restaurants and bars are full of surly characters (not just UA employees!) and more interesting than ATL's polite society. I've been stuck at ORD due to snow for hours, and it just turns into a big drunken party. Sometimes we let the pilots drink too.

kind regards,


User currently offlineMls515 From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 3081 posts, RR: 8
Reply 7, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 2401 times:

ORD is nowhere close to a "horrible and confusing" layout despite not being as simplistic as ATL is.

What's so confusing about 3 side-by-side terminals with concourses fingering out, with the whole airport sharing a sequential lettering system for it's concourses?

User currently offlineATA L1011 From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 1456 posts, RR: 6
Reply 8, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 2396 times:

Whats so great about ORD reclaiming that title.

Treat others as you expect to be treated!
User currently offlineTimberwolf24 From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 582 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 2397 times:


Lets not forget Atlanta only has one airport Chicago has two ORD and MDW!!!

Living in LA, ORD/MDW will always be home!
User currently offlineSESGDL From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 3541 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 2394 times:

Atlanta is still largest by passengers though. That article was dumb because hasn't ORD always had more movements than ATL? I sure don't remember a year that it didn't. ATL has a MUCH better runway layout than ORD and is easier for traffic, so ATL gets my vote!

User currently offline2cn From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 648 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 2367 times:

LOT767-300ER- ATL is still the busiest in the world in terms of passengers. ORD is only the busiest in terms of aircraft movements.

User currently offlineUnitedflyer1 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 2364 times:

It was great prior to March 7, 2001, then it became the terrible Mini Ohare that it is now, not the quick in and out historic airport that it was.

User currently offlineOzarkD9S From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 5665 posts, RR: 20
Reply 13, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 2355 times:

When the runway realignment at ORD is finished it will be one of the coolest airports around. Interesting assortment of carriers & aircraft types. It will become THE North American alliance battleground: oneworld vs. Star. No other airport is so hotly contested, nor will be in the foreseeable future. (North American airport, I should clarify!)

User currently offlineHartsfieldboy From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 552 posts, RR: 1
Reply 14, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 2305 times:

Look at my user name, I wonder which one I prefer?  Smile

Has anyone ever walk from Concourse L to the United terminal? What a long, tiring walk if you want avoid the wait going back thru security if you decide to take the people mover. At ATL, you can be anywhere in the airport within 15 mintutes. And what about tranfers from International to domestic? The terminal is far away and you have to go thru security again. Their people mover is just a lame answer to ATL's
Transportation Mall which is WITHIN security.

And passengers is the more favorable buisest category to win. ATL has full planes and remember that people spend money to make an airport thirve, ORD has empty jets that pollute and make noise.

User currently offlineLOT767-300ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 15, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 2293 times:

I do realize that it has more passangers. Im not that thick.


Empty jets that pollute and make noise? Oh man THE only pax carrier now that uses 727s into ORD is Delta and they are from Atlanta so it must be loud and dirty there also. UAL and NWA pulled out 727s and UAL took out 737-200s theres nothing here to smoke with. Empty jets? Hardly we just have a greater amount of GA and Cargo traffic. You can be anywhere at ORD in 15 also. The layout is very simple i dont know what people compalin about. Theres 3 domestic terminals side by side and Int'l T5 is right by the domestic terminals...

User currently offlineAerLingus From China, joined Mar 2000, 2371 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 2274 times:

Remember that when you combine O'Hare, Midway, and even Meigs passenger traffic, you blow away Atlanta as far as numbers are concerned.

O'Hare's layout is easy! Just look at the map.

Get your patchouli stink outta my store!
User currently offlineNational_757 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 2269 times:

Living in Chicago for eight years, I am obviously biased towards O'Hare. And since I haven't even been anywhere near ATL, I can't make a fair comparison between the two. But O'Hare rocks!!!!

Take Care,

Fly National Airlines to Vegas

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User currently offlineCmk10 From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 513 posts, RR: 3
Reply 18, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 2266 times:

I am going to have to say ORD. I found connecting flights at ORD to be easier as well as better air conditioning and better food. Nothing against ATL, i still love you, you sexy little Georgia airport  Nuts
Just a little Saturday humor
DC-10's Forever!

"Traveling light is the only way to fly" - Eric Clapton
User currently offlineDC-10 Levo From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2001, 3432 posts, RR: 3
Reply 19, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 2257 times:

I think ORD is the busiest.
ATL is busy, but not as busy as ORD.


User currently offlineBlink182 From United States of America, joined Oct 1999, 5499 posts, RR: 14
Reply 20, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 2259 times:

Go ORD!!

Having connected at ORD from the international terminal to terminal 3 via the airport tram, security is not that big of a deal, honestly.

Going through security again took about five minutes and I found Terminal 3 easy to navigate. Plus, the foodcourt right in the middle cannot be beat! Where else can you have Chicago style pizza at 9:30 pm. 10 feet away from your flight to LHR(as was in my case).

ATL is nice, but with the island terminals are very long and can be a pain to walk from one end to the other.


Give me a break, I created this username when I was a kid...
User currently offlineCactusA319 From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 2918 posts, RR: 23
Reply 21, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 2235 times:

ORD rules period.


If you add the large amount of pax flying through MDW, we'd have more pax than ATL. It's easy to be tops when you have just one major hub airport. Chicago has two.

ORD has been the world's busiest airport for years before Johnny Come Lately ATL.

ORD has far more interesting movements, both international and cargo than ATL. British, Air France, Air India, BMI, Kuwait, Mexicana, Korean, JAL, Turkish just to name a few.

The terminal layout is confusing? What you can't navigate yourself around something that's not in a straight line? It's fairly simple. And if you want to take the people mover because you're too lazy to walk then yes you have to go through security but the lines at ORD aren't usually very long. We added more checkpoints for more efficient screening.

True ATL has a better runway layout, but that should change when ORD realigns it's runways.

ORD was voted best US airport by a prestigious business traveller magazine.

ORD simply rocks the house.

User currently offline2cn From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 648 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 2225 times:

You cant include MDW with ORD for passenger stats since thats two against one.

User currently offlinePW100 From Netherlands, joined Jan 2002, 3103 posts, RR: 18
Reply 23, posted (14 years 1 month 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 2216 times:

ORD terminal lay-out may not be that difficult...however it just doesn't get any easier than ATL. I mean, just how on earth will one come up with anything easier than the likes of ATL and DEN..

BTW, in 2001
ATL beat ORD on pax numbers
ORD beat ATL on total movements
ATL beat ORD on total air transport movements

Just for the sheer number of movements, both ORD and ATL get my  Big thumbs up


Immigration officer: "What's the purpose of your visit to the USA?" Spotter: "Shooting airliners with my Canon!"
User currently offlineHartsfieldboy From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 552 posts, RR: 1
Reply 24, posted (14 years 1 month 3 weeks 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 2198 times:

ORD is by no means difficult to navigate. However, ATL is FASTER to naviagte, as well as easier, so ATL trumps ORD. In the 5 minutes it takes to go back thru security at ORD, you would already be at your gate at ATL.

ATL was busiest in the nation back in the 40s, and until 1980, ORD had the better airport. When Midfield opened, ATL surpassed ORD by a long shot. And if you want efficent screening, ATL is the airport. We have no duplication of security and other services because of the centralized layout, so ATL is a cheaper airport for airlines to operate at. And if ORD is so better, why are other airports copying ATL's layout and not ORD's? You have Denver, Detroit, and I THINK an airport in South Korea has a master plan which calls for a layout very similiar to ATL.

25 ZID : ATL is the newer airport and it's runway and terminal layout were designed after the advent of the hub system. Whereas ORD has had to make do with pie
26 TrnsWrld : I have been to both airports many times and my vote goes to Chicago any day. You guys are all yappin about security check points??? who cares im all a
27 Wilcharl : ORD has ATL beat hands down for O&D's where as ATL is way higher on connections.... If the King ahem mayor of chicago's airport plan goes into affect
28 Doug_or : hartsfield- detroit's new midfield is a dead ringer for O'hares b and c concourses. sorry.
29 Post contains links and images Hartsfieldboy : Just WAIT until the new ORD configuration is complete then ORD will blow ATL out of the water (six and POSSIBLY seven runways in use at once!). We are
30 PW100 : Hartsfieldboy Has construction started of the fifth parallel runway at ATL? When will it be finished? PW100
31 DTW/ORD Fan! : My name says it all!!! When I'm at my relatives in suburban CHi-town, (20 mins from ORD) we're under flight paths. I can look up, from their deck, and
32 CactusA319 : If you want to talk O&D, 40% of all of ATL's passengers have Atlanta (pop 4 million) as their O or D. That means 31 million people a year, higher tha
33 Hartsfieldboy : PW100: The drainage system has been or is being built right now. All the property has been bought and the dirt needed is secured. CactusA319: Sleepy l
34 Post contains images CactusA319 : Oprahport? Ouch. Actually Oprah parks her jet at MDW...next to Boeing's BBJ. But that's irrelevant at this point. You guys got the record for most pa
35 TrnsWrld : hehe that was cute CactusA319. Im all about ORD myself living about 15 miles NW under the 14L and 14R approach path. Deliver Everyones Luggage To Atla
36 Post contains images PatM04 : ATL all the way!! Its completely awesome, and always got something going on.
37 N757st : Just thought that I would add a statement to all those people saying " Well, Atlanta has 1 airport and Chicago has two". Well, if you want to count al
38 RickB : Having flown into both for the first time a few weeks ago - I have to say I prefer ATL. ORD was too cramped to be comfortable and they where having pr
39 DCA-ROCguy : ORD has much better spotting and far more character than ATL. But until the Daley-Ryan plan is implemented and the runways are reconfigured, I'm afrai
40 DeltaSFO : My airport is bigger than yours... no my city has three airports, yours only has one, na na na na na na. But wait, my airport has hubs for the world's
41 CactusA319 : It's all in a good fun DeltaSFO. You gotta let loose once in a while and not take things so damn seriously. Shit judging by your response you'd think
42 Post contains images Hartsfieldboy : CactusA319: If Oprah has Midway under her control, maybe we can change the airport name to O'prah. It would be a good complement to O'hare. What airpo
43 Post contains images DTW/ORD Fan! : HARTSFIELDBOY- Jerry uses O'prah, "she's" PLENTY big enough for his jet, hehehe *snicker, snicker*. Go ORD.
44 Post contains images Concorde1518 : Atlanta is most likely less confusing to the passenger, but ORD has enough wings that you won't have to go out of security to change terminals, and yo
45 Post contains images ZID : Now, now Hartsfield read the first part of my statement : "As for easier connections, well it's the luck of the draw no matter which way you go". Plea
46 ZID : Oh I forgot one more thing, although the numbers in my previous post already point it out, but you were mistaken about ATL holding the all-time record
47 Post contains images Hartsfieldboy : ZID: OK, my mistake ATL is still BETTTER. HAHAHA!!
48 Post contains images Travelin man : LAX is better than both of them. blahblahblahblahblah (i hate that "message too short" notice)
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