Jumbo Airport Story LadiesGamers.com

Jumbo Airport Story Review

Game: Jumbo Airport Story
Genre: Simulation, Strategy, Casual
System: Nintendo Switch (Also on Steam (Windows), iOS and Android)
Developer | Publisher: Kairosoft
Age Rating: US Everyone | EU 3+
Price: US $14.00 | UK £11.69 | EU € 13,00
Release Date: February 2nd, 2023

Review code used, with many thanks to Kairosoft.

Kairosoft are renowned for making simulation games for all different kinds of locations and scenarios – shopping malls, adventure villages, basketball clubs and wildlife parks (to name just a few). Their latest port to the Nintendo Switch is Jumbo Airport Story, where the aim is to make the airport the destination.

This is the first Kairosoft game I’ve played, so will I be relaxing in the first class lounge or just going round and round on the baggage carousel?

Building Your Airport

Jumbo Airport Story LadiesGamers.com
Your Personal Assistant – Celeste Skye.

Once you’ve chosen your CEO character, and named your city and airport (pre-named in case you struggle creating something), Celeste Skye pops up and starts explaining how to play.

Jumbo Airport Story LadiesGamers.com
It needs to be connected but not overlapping.

Your first task is to build an apron so any planes which land can unload and restock. Celeste guides you through the menu, and you position the apron on the airfield in an appropriate spot.

Jumbo Airport Story LadiesGamers.com
Incoming aircraft.

Just in time, as a plane needs to land to refuel. Celeste suggests a bistro might help to keep the pilot entertained whilst waiting, and again she shows you the build location in the menu.

Jumbo Airport Story LadiesGamers.com
My bookstore is inaccessible!

With a large pot of money to spend, I built other outlets. Unfortunately, I forgot to add any flooring, so initially, my book store was cut off from the rest of the terminal building. Not a problem, as you can easily move and demolish buildings or add extra flooring. Something I got very familiar with, as with each expansion, I moved most of my shops around!

The game continues in a similar flow, if anything is new, Celeste will point out what is happening and guide you accordingly.

Visitors, Special Guests and Group Tours

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Pro Gamer becomes a regular guest.

Your airport will attract various visitors; some are just there for a day trip to the terminal building, but of course, others are arriving or awaiting flights. Each visitor has a satisfaction level and fan rating. The better the facilities and entertainment in the airport, the more satisfied the visitor; hence, their fan rating will increase. At various fan rating levels, visitors will give rewards, new items or projects. Get a visitor’s fan rating to 100, and you receive a medal. Medals help upgrade your airport and carry forward to your next playthrough.

Jumbo Airport Story LadiesGamers.com
The Mayor of Snowland is looking satisfied – hopefully, this will enable travel links.

However, you must achieve full satisfaction with special guests or group tours in just one visit.  When you invite a special guest, you can recommend the area where they should enjoy their visit.  For a group tour, you can select their destination, plane and where they should wait. In both cases, you can’t control which facilities they use whilst in the airport. However, the rewards for achieving success are big and growing your airport quicker.

Facilities and Shops

Jumbo Airport Story LadiesGamers.com
Start with a limited number of facilities to build.

There are many different buildings you can add to your airport – bookshops, food stalls, souvenir shops, information counters, restrooms, etc. There are two types of buildings, those where your visitors can spend money, and those which give inspiration. Although both types have a popularity rating. Inspiration will gain research points, which help to develop food dishes or improve your planes.

Jumbo Airport Story LadiesGamers.com
Seafood bowl, red bean dessert and brown rice tea – a great combination!

Special items and plants can increase popularity, as well as getting a perfect combination of dishes to serve at the food outlets. I thoroughly enjoyed trying out the various combinations of food, and it was satisfying when I gained popularity points. In addition, there are certain buildings which work well together; for example, the beauty saloon and beauty spa are compatible and increase ratings. However, there are some which don’t want to be near each other, like the restrooms and shrine.

Flying High

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And there are still more destinations to unlock!

As you impress overseas mayors and sign contracts with new airlines, the world expands. In order to fly to far off cities, you will need planes capable of the distance. Carrying out research will increase the number of passengers and comfort of the journey and will also open up the ability to acquire larger planes.

The Ultimate Airport

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3.5 stars…. getting there!

At the end of each year, you receive a rating – with the aim of getting 5 stars. The ratings are based on the popularity of the eateries, shops, facilities and services. Building more of the same facility, using popularity-increasing items and adding more plants will all help to increase the rating.

Jumbo Airport Story LadiesGamers.com
It’s hard to get individually popular facilities.

As well as the star rating, you have an airport rank. By completing the three tasks, you can request to ‘Rank Up’. I managed to get to rank 7, but getting five types of facilities with the required popularity is hard.

Jumbo Airport Story LadiesGamers.com
My airport after ten years.

At the end of 10 years (which took me about 14 hours to get to), the game calculates a ‘high score’ based on a number of factors, including remaining money, overall popularity, fan rating, flight destinations and the number of planes. You can carry on playing, but the high score will not alter. Alternatively, you can start a new game and see if you can score higher. Medals won, along with compatibility knowledge carry forward to a new game. Additionally, you can play at double speed.


Jumbo Airport Story shares a similar style to all the Kairosoft management simulation games. Its bright colours and lovely pixelated characters fill the screen with familiarity.

The game works really well in either docked or handheld mode, and there is a good use of the touchscreen functionality. Although there is a lot of text, the font is large enough to read easily on a small screen.

Moving around the menu can be a little annoying at times, as ‘back’ takes you to the game, rather than the previous menu level. However, you can zoom in and out of your airport with ease.

On the whole, it plays well. I encountered one oddity whereby the text appeared as blocks, but a relaunch of the game resolved the issue. It happened several times, though I couldn’t pinpoint a cause. There were a couple of places where the English translation failed, or the controls weren’t labelled well enough, but nothing which was game-breaking.

This kind of game is where the screen is constantly filled with activity. For some gamers, it might be too busy to look at. However, I found that as I was guided through the game, with a constant drip of new activities, it wasn’t as overwhelming as I first imagined.


Jumbo Airport Story is great fun to play. There is something amusing about seeing little pixelated characters weave between the airport terminal buildings, sweating as they rush to get to their planes. There is a constant flow of activity, which is a very enjoyable and slightly addictive way to spend some time.

Final Verdict: Two Thumbs Up Two thumbs up

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