Juba Airport Reviews



1.1 out of 5 stars

Based on 13 user reviews

Facing a flight delay, layover or overnight sleepover at Juba Airport? Read reviews by travellers in the Sleeping in Airports community who have been there or share your own airport experiences, tips and photos!

And for more airport information, check out our Juba Airport Guide where you will find all the essential information you need to know including: airport lounges, WiFi, luggage storage, showers, nearby hotels, 24 hour food options and other services/facilities available at the airport.

Reviews from the Community

    • Guest
    • 0 helpful votes

    Upgraded Tent



    Pros: The tented area is larger and the plywood floors have been replaced

    Cons: Still terrible

    Having used the airport for a recent in country flight I found the Tented departure area was now larger and the flooring was replaced. Also the flights are still shouted out but now the shouter walks around shouting out the flight. There is still a fridge at the back of the tent to buy overpriced beverages, no toilets, broken seats, etc and all the horrible Landside issues remain.

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    • Guest
    • 0 helpful votes

    Juba Airport



    There is no airport at all, just a tent without floor, impracticable during rains, and awful the rest of the time because of the heat (often more than 40° celsius).

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    • Guest
    • 0 helpful votes

    Juba Airport



    I’ve been travelling widely around the world during last 20 yrs. JIA (Juba International Airport) is absolutely the worst ever seen. It’s not only because it’s in tents. Earlier, when it was still in permanent building, the place was absolute disaster, like a gate to the hell. It’s already starts on parking area. Numerous arrogant and aggressive street boy jackals are attacking you in order to forcefully to carry your luggage. same goes with parking a car. Large crowd of car washers are again forcefully looking after your car, “washing” it with sandy rags and so on which is more sand blasting than actual wash. It doesn’t help to tell them that such kind of service is not needed. If you’re not paying to the boy, police is stopping and making you to pay. Organized crime.

    When finally getting to departure “terminal”, handling hassles are there who really want to help you. Regardless of your need or not. Getting to totally over crowded check-in desk is a challenge because there are just way too many people in a very small area. Perhaps half of them are not travelling anywhere, just hashers. After check-in you need to carry your luggage through the crowd to security checking which can be manual. Do I need to tell more? After that to immigration which is totally other story. After surviving immigration, security checking is waiting. It’s varying something in between of almost ok to pure harassment. You never know… Then you’re in waiting hall which is well described in 2017 review. Excluding the artist’s rendition is actually nicer than the real thing (in the artist’s version, the seats are actually functional!) On arrival, again Immigration could be own article to write, but lets concentrate luggage handling and customs. Again the place is totally overcrowded, min half of people are helping handymen who again are trying to forcefully to sell their services. If you’re really agreed the price beforehand, enormous arrogance and barging will take place on parking area. Even tough you’ve agreed the price, it might not change anything. Customs is pure despotism and serious corruption. Especially if you carry something else (legal) than your personal belongings like clothes etc and food you to eat. Anything which is even slightly reflecting either commercial or company gear, money will change the owner. You’re offered to get to the customs terminal which is very far away and practically impossible to reach. Or sort out your problems in cash. Luckily there is a space for negotiations of the price which goes unabridged to custom officers pension fund. Finally getting out from the hell, if your own (company) vehicle is not waiting you there, “taxis” are under the mob. You know what that means. Ref: car washing boys if you’re driving by your own vehicle. I didn’t mention anything about services like cafeteria, wifi, toilet or such. Those things just doesn’t exists. Welcome to Juba!

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    • Guest
    • 3 helpful votes

    It’s All True



    Pros: You won't be in that tent more than a few hours and are about to leave! You'll have a good story for your friends back home. There was a cat.

    Cons: Everything

    “Departure Tent”*But Arrival Tent Just As Bad*. Park your vehicle at the nearby carpark. Pay 300 South Sudanese Pounds to the boys who swarm your car upon arrival and they’ll haul your suitcase over their head and carry your suitcases 100 meters above the dirt and puddles across to the airport area. Feel like a jerk it works out only $1.60, but try to rationalize it.

    Men in uniform and randoms crowd the gate chatting, feigning a first checkpoint to the area where the tent stands, and they glance in your general direction as you wave your ticket. Bring a strong looking friend or colleague to help you navigate the chaos of the tent airport ahead.

    Concrete bricks, stones and cinder blocks are thoughtfully placed in the middle of vast brown puddles so that you don’t have to sink into a muddy mosquito filled pool, feet submerged up to your ankles. The rainy season has made the floors, which are made of plywood, soft and rotted, a perilous journey to get to where the airline check in stands are. Plank upon plank of plywood are loosely thrown over holes, don’t trip over, and be grateful you aren’t on crutches or otherwise disabled. This place isn’t for you. At airline check in desk, the network not working, but have patience. You’re so close to getting out! South African logistics guy comments that at least in the Central African Republic has a working luggage carousel. But at least the plane wasn’t cancelled by the government, your shoes are dry and your ankle is not twisted.

    Carry your suitcases to the X-ray machine. Then move to the left where you’ll have to haul your suitcase up on a desk and have it be rummaged through invasively by hand, as of course x-ray machine hasn’t worked in months either. Don’t have attitude with the man sitting arrogantly with his ass on the desk as you struggle with your bag, he is National Security in civilian attire, avert your gaze submissively unless you want to be detained for nothing. Eavesdrop as a Poor Fellow is having a conversation with National Security man with the big ass, still sitting on the table refusing to move for you: “… Is there any way.. Oh but I do understand..” and Poor Fellow offers him a groin-level handshake that shouts “I am passing you money discretely. ” Don’t mess with National Security man. The contents of your checked luggage are either ignored, rendering the exercise the farce it is, or molested, depending on the airport official. National Security man looks at you blankly and says “Can you hurry up because people are behind you” as you try to comply. Don’t forget to quickly reattach a padlock afterwards as your bags are going to be sitting in the elements for a while before your flight comes.

    It’s time to get your passport stamped! Turn around and elbow your way back out of the crowd packing the narrow space behind you. Don’t twist your ankle, don’t step on that street kid’s slippers and bare toes, and set your feet securely on the stepping stones so you don’t fall in the water beside the plywood tent platform. Resist the urge to take photos of this incredible sight, or you’ll be arrested. Find the little window and get your exit stamp. You got this!

    Pass into the waiting tent, the one big “room” of the tent. The VIP area is under a tree if you’re crafty. But main and only tent room is good for fully taking in the experience. You are pleased to see they’ve taken the flaps off the front of the tent so it’s less claustrophobic, removing the entire front “wall”. If you can say that anything in this “airport” is actually a “wall” or “floor” or “ceiling”. It is more breezy, with a view directly out to the runway and planes coming and going. Goal is in sight!

    It’s least busy in mornings, but given that most of the limited seating is physically breaking, you’ll still have to have cat like reflexes to not spend your entire time standing. It’s every person for themselves, survival of the fittest. Some of the broken rows of seats are resting on cinder blocks so your backside will be 20cm from the floor, giving a unique child-height perspective you may not have experienced in a while. The rows of seats are in various states of disrepair, so one side of the row might be floor height and the other end at regular albeit lopsided level in one set. Hey, you can also be innovative like those two guys and take a concrete cinder block lying randomly in the middle of the floor and use it as a seat. One guy picks up an empty crisp potato crisp packet thrown on the floor to protect his backside from the dusty dirt of the cinder block concrete. Enjoy watching the humanity.

    Beware of more holes in the floor, people dropping rubbish, empty water bottles where they stand. Don’t worry, they’ll just throw some more loose plywood on top. Eventually all will be consumed and sink down into the bog underneath our feet where the tent stands.

    Wonder who everyone is and why they’re here. Aid workers, kids, locals, military guys in fluorescent vests, people sporting IOM, USAID, MSF, other NGO T-shirts, the CIA looking guy in a beard and dark glasses, UN police… ID cards still hang around people’s neck like a security blanket, almost a self-protective instinct until they get to the safety of their plane.

    An amused white man, killing time near to the VIP tree, is jumping up and down in the floorboards. Like a trampoline. You also will be raised up and down in your seat as people walk past and put weight on the floorboards. Kind of fun if you like feeling seasick.

    A pretty young patchwork calico cat, weaves under people’s legs and under chairs, totally chill, owning the place. Feel suddenly emotional and heartened by the presence of the beautiful little soul in such a godforsaken place. Snap fingers and call cat over, he is obviously used to people. Calico patchwork cat scratches and bites you. Nice. Asshole. Want to be more like that cat.

    As you wait, know, with confidence, that there is no place daring to call itself an ‘international airport of a capital city’ as bad as this. Feel weirdly proud of yourself and your endurance levels. Wish again you could take photos because people in the outside world just won’t believe you that it’s as bad as it is.
    Listen out for your flight because there isn’t a loudspeaker. It’s being called!!! Feel the joy that your flight is going ahead, and that you and your dirty shoes are almost out of here! Walk across the grass, identify your bags on the runway, thank goodness, they’re there! Laugh out loud when you feel silly for asking if you had to also carry your two suitcases to the plane too. No. You don’t. Walk to your plane and walk up the steps. Civilization waits you. Congratulations. You made it!

    Note – Author did not dare take photos but found photos taken by those braver online at:
    * http://hotinjuba.com/7069-2/- “This photos of Juba International Airport Departure terminus will leave you in shock”
    * http://www.cbc.ca/news2/interactives/south-sudan/ – “How the world’s youngest country went from dreams to despair”
    * http://www.eyeradio.org/camps-set-juba-airport-renovation-underway/ – “Camps set up at Juba airport, renovation underway”
    * http://www.dailymail.co.uk/wires/afp/article-4610610/S-Sudans-Juba-airport-gateway-country-crisis.html – “S. Sudan’s Juba airport, gateway to a country in crisis”

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    • Guest
    • 0 helpful votes

    Tent Terminal is an Improvement



    (Guest Review by maxgib) The old terminal building had certain benefits, like the Jit duty free shop, the Ethiopian sandwhich dude, and solid floors. But I actually prefer the (not so) temporary white tent terminal. It may be rickety and absurd and completely inadequate, but there is none of the urine stench of the building. The ammonia fog you had to sit in was choking; maybe they should have connected the urinals to a pipe, instead of letting them drain straight onto the floor. Now, no bathroom, no floor, no problem!

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