Another airport review: TPA, MSP and DCA

Awhile back I promised to right another installed of my airport review.  In my last review I covered CMH, PHX and MCO.  This time I will be commenting on TPA, MSP and DCA.

Having lived in the Tampa Bay metro for the better part of a decade I have become very acquainted with Tampa International Airport.  It is a medium sized international airport with six terminals.  They are all relatively new or recently updated and there is free wifi throughout the facility.  I feel that free wifi is a necessity for any airport these days. I don’t mind paying for higher bandwidth but I should be able to get at least 512kbps to 1mbps for free while I travel.

TPA has a nice mix of bars and restaurants and has reasonable parking. In fact, the first hour in the terminal garage is free which makes it nice for those coming to pick you up.  They can meet you at the gate – something I love – and it doesn’t cost you anything.

Now MSP is a different story.  Minneapolis is a great town and I like going there but the airport is a bit dodgy.  Its big and undergoing a lot of renovations.  I like the changes but wifi is spotty because of it and some of the new bars and restaurants are too trendy and too expensive.  Don’t get me wrong, its now MCO – I just hate that airport.

Lastly there’s DCA.  Prior to 911 I used to fly out of DCA to Omaha (OMA) several times a month on Midwest Express.  Even though I lived in Columbia, MD it was faster and better service to shuttle down to Reagan National and fly  direct.  DCA has been renovated recently and has some of the best retail and dining establishments one could ask for in a secondary airport.  The flight pattern in and out is a bit odd making for steep banks and turns but its not as bad as the near free-fall approach in Logan.  Anyway, I like DCA and it’s been awhile since I’ve been there.  I think the wifi is free there but I honestly can’t remember.  I’m looking forward to heading back in the near future for work.

I’ve decided that I am going to begin a travel log type series within this blog that will cover airports, airlines, hotels, car rentals and restaurants.  Each time I travel I will try something new and share with my fellow product people and anyone else that happens to kill a few brain cells reading my posts 🙂  Let me know if there are particular places you’ve been that I should try and review.


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