Mention a layover or connecting flight and frequent travelers across the world would have let out a collective groan a few years ago. However, these days, you may get a different reaction, with some people booking flights with longer layovers so they don’t have to rush from one flight to another. That’s right! Why would anyone want to stay longer in an airport? Take a look at some of the reasons travelers are enjoying airport stays just as much as the destinations.
1. Watch a movie!
Gone are the days when you had to bring a book with you or make do with simply reading a newspaper – because you can watch an entire movie while waiting for your connecting flight. And we don’t mean on your laptop! Picture this: you haven’t had the time to watch the latest 3D film but you’ve found yourself on a layover in Hong Kong. Simply head to the largest IMAX theatre in the area, which just happens to be situated right inside the airport!
Best airport to head to: Hong Kong International Airport
2. Take a dip
On a hot summer day, don’t worry about trying to cool yourself off in the air-conditioned airport lounge. You can get a little healthy, a little active and a little refreshed by jumping into a pool! Depending of course on where you’re headed, the rooftop pool in Singapore’s airport can actually rival your eventual destination. It even has a Jacuzzi if you’re looking to go all out.
Best airport to head to: Singapore Changi Airport
3. Play some golf
Forget high intensity workouts and competitive sports. Airports now know just what you need to get you active without having you break into a sweat, especially if you’re waiting for a connecting flight to jet you off to a business meeting. Hone your golfing skills in ranges that can almost compete with actual ones outside the airport! Seoul in South Korea has an 18 hole course that’s just perfect.
Best airport to head to: Incheon International Airport
4. Relax in a sauna
This one is not for the body shy. If you’re alright getting a little closer to passengers like you, a sauna is a good place to head. You don’t have to make conversation, but you won’t be able to avoid being in the same room as them! However, if you can get over that, Helsinki in Finland is a brilliant place to enjoy a gorgeous sauna experience. Just remember – it’s unisex!
Best airport to head to: Helsinki Airport
5. Soak up the sky
So, you love the outdoors but you don’t really want to lay yourself down on a patch of grass to stare up at the sky! Japan as always, has you covered! With a café called Starry Café, you can actually eat, drink and look up at a sky full of stars! There’s a planetarium along with projections of things like the Northern Lights. Perfect for in between your travels!
Best airport to head to: Tokyo Haneda International Airport
6. Drink up!
Fancy a bit of brew before you head off to your destination? A layover in Germany could be just what you need. You’ll never want to leave this airport if you head to the Bavarian tavern inside it. You can learn about beer, sample some from the brewery on the site or just watch it being made!
Best airport to head to: Munich airport
7. Get married!
No, we’re really not kidding. You could actually use a long layover to get married before continuing on to your honeymoon. We know that you would usually prefer a big, fancy wedding, but for those who aren’t that fond of saying your vows that way, this may just be too perfect. From wedding planners to wedding packages, get just what you need – and you don’t even have to be in Vegas to do this!
Best airport to head to: Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport
8. Recharge at a spa
Long flights can be quite harrowing. And, if you have to make your way over to another one after waiting hours at an airport, they can be even more tiring. The best way to stay relaxed, recharged and ready for your trip is to make use of one of the several spas that airports are privy to these days. From short 15-minute services to those that last hours, get just what you need. We are particularly fond of Elemis in London!
Best airport to head to: Heathrow Airport
9. Take a nap!
No, we’re really not kidding. Earlier, you would have to make do with sleeping on chairs or on the floor with your bag as a head rest. Then hotels and suites came up, but most are too expensive and not good enough for just an hour or two of sleep. Enter the nap pod – a space for travelers to sleep without being worried about paying too much or getting neck cramps! And yes, India has one too. With Snooze at My Space in Delhi, you can actually even listen to music, use Wi Fi or watch TV before and after your nap.
Best airport to head to: Indira Gandhi International Airport, Abu Dhabi International Airport
10. Get healthy
Missed your workout, and won’t make it to your hotel in time for your next one? Airports come to your rescue! A long layover is the perfect time to make sure you still stay fit with several great 24-hour fitness centers equipped with gyms and trainers at your service! And don’t worry; you can take a shower afterwards too! Dubai has the G-Force Health Club that’s miles better than most!
Best airport to head to: Dubai International Airport