Travel Tips February 20, 2018
Here’s How To Make Your Layover Feel Like A Mini Vacation
Layovers can be a drag, especially if you’re already weary from a long flight. However, there are plenty of ways to turn that unwanted downtime into a mini-vacation. Here are some ways to make your layover count.
1. Buy a one-time lounge pass.
Contrary to popular perception, airline lounges aren’t only for the poshest travelers. Many lounges actually offer one-time passes for as little as $30-$50. But why would you want to cough up the extra dough?
Oh, so many reasons. Many lounges offer free food and beverages, which can sometimes include alcohol. The free edibles alone will likely balance out the cost of entry, especially if you were planning grabbing a meal in the airport anyway. Plus, lounges offer comfy chairs, an abundance of outlets and unique extras alike beauty treatments and even showers.
2. Enroll in TSA Pre-Check or Global Entry.
Anything that lets you sidestep those long security lines is a must. TSA Pre-Check allows passengers on domestic flights (and some international flights) to enjoy expedited screening. Read: you get to keep your shoes on. Global Entry will allow you to get through customs and border control faster when you’re flying into the U.S.
3. Indulge in a drink.
Getting drunk before your flight is a big no-no (you could be barred from boarding), but a glass or two of something soothing could do a lot to calm those pre-flight jitters. Many airports now offer luxe bars or indie coffee shops that can whip up something special befitting a mini-vacation.
4. Take advantage of airport freebies.
Take a few minutes during your vacation planning and see what your layover airport has to offer. Some airports offer hidden perks like free yoga rooms, live music, free cinema screenings, galleries and museums, or even rooftop pools. Keeping yourself entertained is a big deal when you might have hours before your next flight.
5. Don’t be afraid to get some shuteye.
If you’re traveling in a group and have someone to keep watch over your things, don’t be shy about stretching out in the terminal and counting a few sheep (but do be courteous if seating is limited). It’s also worth looking into whether your layover airport has a dedicated nap room or "micro-hotel" where you can pay for a few hours in an actual bed.
6. Try to find some natural light.
Positioning yourself by a window or skylight could make you feel more relaxed and help you acclimate faster to a new time zone. Plus, a bit of sunshine makes everything better.
7. Reframe your layover as "you-time."
How often does it happen that you have absolutely nothing to do and nowhere to be for hours at a time? If you start thinking about your layover as a bit of pre-vacation personal time, the hours might fly by. Start that beach read early, watch some trashy TV or bring some fun puzzle or game to play with your kids.
Layovers may be a fact of life, but they don’t have to be painful if you follow the tips above. However, if you’re looking to avoid a long stay in the airport, check out the top airlines that have the most on-time flights