HOW TO SURVIVE LAYOVERS
If you want to do some serious travelling you will need to know how to survive layovers. Some people hate them and will only do if the savings are worthwhile, while with others its all part of travelling. Whether you are either of these, there are certain ways to make life easier while staying in an airport for 5, 10 or 15 hours. I have experienced layovers all over the world, ranging from just a few minutes to reach your next flight, to almost 24hours. In this post I want to make you that little bit more prepared.
TRY AND AVOID THE LAYOVER
First and foremost, everyone would rather get there sooner with fewer shorter layovers. I could spend hours looking through skyscanner, typing a load of different destinations, flying out of Dublin, London, Manchester, Glasgow, the list is endless. It might mean an extra drive but it could save you hours and maybe even some money.
KNOW HOW LONG YOUR LAYOVER IS
Depending on how long your layover is will give you more or less options, if its long you may want to get out of the airport and check the place out. If its short then you could plan to do some work or get some rest if you find the right spot.
CHOOSE A BETTER LAYOVER DESTINATION
If you have options of where you layover is then choose wisely. It will however depend how long your layover is. If its 5 hours then make sure the airport has all the necessary amenities, free wifi, restaurants, free water fountain and lockers if required. If your layover is a lot longer, then look at the possibility of exploring what the area has to offer. Do your research of the area, how long the airport is from the town, bus times and what do to!
USE IT TO YOUR ADVANTAGE
Some people use it as a good way to visit places they wouldn’t normally get the chance or wouldn’t have been interested in. I had a 20hr layover in Bogota, a place which wasn’t on my list of places to visit. I decided to pick up my bags and check in to a hostel, get a great nights sleep followed by some sight-seeing the following day before getting my next flight that afternoon. Of course it was never enough time to create much of an opinion of the place but if I didn’t have that layover I would never had visited Bogota.
MAKE THE MOST OF A LONG LAYOVER
If a layover is unavoidable I always try and make sure it is at least a day rather than just a few hours. This way you can get out and explore, get a full nights sleep on a bed with being rushed ………
Depending on how long your layover is means you could really get out and see what the place has to offer. I had a layover in Fort Lauderdale for 7 hours and when I arrived I immediately put my luggage into storage and made my way to the beach. It’s a great way of splitting up the journey, stretching the legs and getting some fresh air, not to mention the better choice of eateries once out of the airport.
- Silk sleeping liner
- Towel or inflatable pillow
- Position yourself near a departure screen and not a gate
- Always spoon your luggage!
RESEARCH THE AIRPORT
Even if you are flying just out of an airport it is always good to do a little bit of research. Sleepinginairports.com is the most reliable website I found and I use it regularly. Just note that airports will change and some of the information might not be as accurate but generally it’s very good. If my layover is during the day I make sure it has lockers or somewhere I can secure my luggage while I explore to city. However if I plan to catch up on some sleep I make sure that it is possible on Sleepinginairports.com, showers are also a bonus.
So remember you have options, you might want to get to your final destination as quickly or as cheaply as possible or on the other hand use the layover to your advantage to explore a new place.
SAFE TRAVELS, DS x
- What are your tips on how to survive layovers?
- Do you try and arrange long layovers deliberately?
- Do you use this time to sleep, work or explore a new place?
Let me know in the comments below . . .