For anyone who has traveled during the holidays or overseas, you know that the occasional layover is one part of travel that cannot be avoided. Most travelers can agree that layovers are one of the worst parts of air travel but inevitably, we’ll all get stuck with the wait at one point or another. Luckily, instead of feeling trapped and bored in the airport on your next layover, the team at Royal Holiday has some easy tips and tricks to help make your time spent waiting go by much more quickly.
Get Some Sleep
If you’re on a long haul flight, the best thing you can do when stuck in the airport is get some much needed rest. While not all airports are open 24 hours, most international airports will be and should have a few well-placed sleeping options available. If you are having a hard time finding a good spot, don’t be afraid to ask the airport staff for advice. If all else fails, look out for comfy lounge chairs and remember that some airports even have sleeping cabins available for rent.
Head to the Lounge
Many airlines offer a one day pass to their frequent flying club for an additional charge. With a one day pass, you’ll have access to the coveted airline lounge area. Here you can enjoy complimentary WiFi access, comfortable lounge chairs and snacks. Drinks aren’t usually included in the price of a one day pass but many airlines will let you tack on up to 3 children under the age of 18 at no extra charge.
Research Your Final Destination
When you’re stuck in the airport for a long period of time you have the perfect opportunity to get some last minute research in on your final destination. Whether you’re looking to secure a dinner reservation or want to find the perfect museum to visit while you’re in the area, this is a great time to hop on your laptop and get to work. To help your research go smoothly, try finding a spot near the food court or your departing gate that has comfy chairs and a charging outlet.
Read a Book
Depending on the length of your layover, you may be able to get through an entire book during your wait. If you didn’t pack a book in your carryon bag, visit one of the airport stores or download a free reading app to your smartphone and choose from hundreds of titles to sink your teeth into.
Some major airports have fitness centers on sight that feature basic machines like treadmills and bikes. But if you’re not lucky enough to be waiting in an airport that offers this perk, don’t despair. There are plenty of spots in the airport where you can get in a few minutes of yoga stretches or you can simply go for a walk around the terminal. Don’t worry about getting funny looks from other travelers, because once you’re finished you’ll feel more energized and you’ll have burned some calories too.
Conversation is a great way to pass the time and chances are you’re not the only person in your terminal who’s stuck waiting for their next flight. Strike up a conversation with other travelers, airline staff or airport staff to get you through your layover. You can chat about everything from your final destination, to your hometown and everything in between. Plus, there is always the chance that you’ll meet someone headed to the same destination and you can plan on meeting up with them later in your trip!
Between chatting up your fellow passengers and taking a much needed nap, try playing a game or 2 to pass the time. Pack travel size versions of classic board games into your carry on or come prepared with your favorite word puzzle books. Airport gift shops often carry crossword puzzles and other game booklets at reasonable prices as well. You can also download games to your laptop or smartphone for hours of free entertainment. If possible, challenge some of your new friends to a game or two to keep the time flying by.
If you are going to be waiting for a connecting flight for more than a few hours, it is a good idea to head out of the airport and explore the city you’re in. You can take a cab or public transportation to any destination you can think of in within a few miles of the airport. The experts over at Royal Holiday travel suggest investing your time in food and culture spots. Spend the day exploring local museums, parks and shopping districts to get the most bang for your buck. And if you aren’t a fan of airport food options, this is the perfect time to indulge in some local cuisine that will hold you over until your next flight.