What to do during Airport Layovers: Top 10 tips

Everyone that has traveled at least once, knows about the waiting times at the airport. Depending on which flight you are taking or which airport you are flying from, you need to be earlier or later there. But either way, since it is always recommended to be there at least one hour before you will have to wait.

So, what to do when you have so much time left until you have to board? Sometimes it seems that there are not many options. But there are more than you think. We want to help you make your waiting time in the airport more fun, because there is nothing worst than wasted time!

1. Read

Always take a book or your E-book with you. It always helps, during the flight or during waiting times. A good book is a good way to spend your time. We believe that reading is very important. By reading you learn from other peoples experiences. You can learn from their success or their mistakes without going through them. Make sure to always have a book with you.

2. Watch a movie

It is good to always have some movies on your computer, phone or tablet. Waiting times can get really long sometimes. So, you may not feel like reading anymore, and just feel like watching a movie. Have some always ready, in case you need some distraction.

3. Learn a new language

Are you going to a country where they speak a different language? Do you have some particular interest in learning a new language but don’t seem to have the time? What about your waiting time in the airport or your flying time?

Nowadays there are so many options to learn a new language. Download your favourite app to learn a language and get to it. Take your language learning book with you and use the time to keep learning. Maybe find someone from that country and try to practice the language with them. What better place to find someone from that country than in such an international place like an airport is?

If you are going to a country where they speak a different language and you don’t know how to say anything, search for some words you may need. Find out how they say the basic sentences, in case you get there and need some help.

If you need some tips on how to learn a language than check out our Top 5 language learning tips.

4. Get some work done

When we go on a trip we want to make the most out of it. We want to enjoy every second of it and have fun, without having to worry about work. So this spare hours are really good to get some work done before the trip. Get as much done as you can so you don’t have to worry much about it when you are on holidays.

5. Take pictures

“Airports see more sincere kisses than wedding halls”

In airports we can find all kinds of feelings. It is amazing to admire the people and their emotions. Some people are happy because they are going on vacation, some are starting a new life and leaving all behind and are filled with mixed feelings, hellos, goodbyes…

So, take advantage of all those feelings, they can result in amazing shots. And if you have more time, you can also do some editing.

Waiting in Bagkok Airport

6. Eat

Airport food is usually expensive, so we recommend to take some food with you. Make some sandwiches and take some snacks with you. If you have a long layover you will get hungry. And it is good to always have some food handy.

But I know that walking through the foodcourts and seeing sometimes those really tasty dishes makes you want to try them. Sometimes you are in a country you have never been and you want to try the dishes. Here you have a chance to do it too, and some airports have really good restaurants. Just be aware that it won’t probably be the cheapest.

7. Leave the airport, go sightseeing

Sometimes layovers are extremely long. Some airports are well communicated by train or bus with the city centre. If your layover is 5 hours or more, going out of the airport and exploring the city for a bit can be a really good option.

Even thought it will be a short say in the city, you will get to explore it, grab something to eat, take some pictures, and enjoy it. It will be probably more fun than spending all those hours on the airport.

Meeting a friend during a layover in Madrid

8. Search for activities

There are some airports that have entertainment facilities. For example in some airports you can find gyms or some areas where you can do sports. Other airports offer Yoga, or green areas where you can relax or do some sports as well. So take some sportswear just in case.

Some others like the Amsterdam Schiphol Airport have a small museum where you can spend your waiting hours getting to now more about the country. While others have art placed around the airport.

You can also find Spa area in some Airports, where you can get a massage to make your waiting time stress free. And other airports, like the Austin Airport (AUS) offer live music.

So before you fly make sure to figure out everything the airport you are going to be “stuck” in has to offer. And if you get the chance to chose, chose to be “stuck” in one of the “cool” ones. Maybe at the end you even wish your layover had been longer.

9. Sleep

It is also a good time to get some rest before getting to your destination. Maybe once you get there you want to go see things right away. Use the time before getting there to sleep.

Some airports have more comfortable areas, with couches, lounge chairs… Go there for a nap. But if you don’t mind being more comfortable, every seat can be your bed for a couple of hours.

Nowadays more and more airports are also offering sleeping facilities inside the airport. This is usually in form of small sleeping cabins, with a bet, a desk and sometimes also shower and bathroom. Find out if your airport offers some of it, and go for a relax nap in your own “room”.

10. Do some shopping

Airports usually offer a lot of shopping possibilities. Did you forget something that you need for your trip? Is there a store you really like and you can’t find in your home country?

Go check out the duty free, they may have your favourite perfume, those sunglasses that you really want, or maybe they have some special drinks that you can’t find somewhere else and that you want to take home with you. If you are flying somewhere where  alcohol is really expensive is also a good place to buy some before arriving.

If not, go check out the different stores. Maybe you buy something, maybe you don’t, but for sure it will make time go by faster.



Hopefully we helped you make your next layover more fun. If you want tips on how to travel the world on a low budget then you should download our FREE E-Book with the best tips on How to Travel the World with 30$ a day.

E-bookk Travel with 30$ a day

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *