Layovers don’t have to be a horrible experience.
Cheap flights tend to come with extended layovers. For some people this means a depressingly long time in the terminal, for those of you who are adventurous this means a chance to cram in a quick visit to a completely new location.
To start with when you have a lay over minus off the following amounts of time to give you a rough guide to your true lay over time:
- 1h Disembark Aircraft / Clear Emigration/Security
- 2h Time you must be back in the airport before flight.
OK so now you know how much time you really have.
TOP TIP: Pre-Plan your layover. Do some research and for longer layover pre-book your hotel to save yourself money.
Short Stop 1-3 hours:
Most airports are located on the outskirts of town/city so this amount of time isn’t really conducive to leaving the airport. NEVER FEAR it is a great amount of time to nap, have a shower, massage, or sneak in some exercise. Most modern airports will have a good selection of amenities.
Have a Shower: Watery Goodness! Having a shower can wash away the stress of air travel. Most airports these days have the facility to wash so take advantage. Don’t forget to pack a change of underwear to add to that refreshed feeling.
Get Physical: Exercise There is also often a fitness centre that will be available for a one off fee. Getting the blood pumping, and burning off that airline food can make the second leg of your journey much nicer. It can also help you sleep, and remove the risks of long periods of inactivity.
Nap Time: Sleep Pods Popping up in more and more airports are sleep pods, or micro hotels. These give you the chance to hunker down and get some sleep. For people that lack the ability to sleep on a plane 1-2h nap can make even the worst traveller a new person.
Also don’t forget to check out SLEEPING IN AIRPORTS website
Get Out of the Airport: 4-14 Hours
Depending on the time of day this can be the perfect length of time to get out of the airport and go spend some time in town. Most modern airports have metro/public transport links to the nearest cities.
Sometimes sightseeing in that period between flights can make a long journey feel less of a slog by breaking it up. Don’t forget to pack your camera in your carry on.
Don’t overlook things like OpenTop Bus tours, or free walking tours. They can cover a large number of sites in a short time.
Get a Hotel & Explore: 15+ Hours:
Anything over 15 hours means you have time to get a hotel room and relax. Sometimes breaking up your trip with a nice hotel stay can be brilliant. It can also mean having some exploration time as well. Try and balance sleep with seeing new things.
When it comes to hotels companies like Premier Inn, and IBIS (or similar chains) are popping up near airports and charging £44-£70 a night. Getting a good sleep and having a shower can make for a far more relaxed arrival at your destination.
TOP TIP: Planning ahead make sure to pack a change of underwear and your toothbrush in your carry on.
Charge your electronics – regardless of the time you have make sure you put things like Phones/Tablets/Laptops on charge at some point to ensure they’re good to clear security, and be useable when your onboard the flight.
Travelling with a multi-country adaptors can help you charge multiple devices at once.