Sleeping in an airport overnight isn’t something we enjoy, but it’s sometimes unavoidable.
We have to remain at the airport for hours when weather delays, or during missed connections or long layovers, and we can’t always run to a hotel room if we’re saving money.
So, what do you need to sleep at the airport?
Here are a few tips to help you sleep in an airport:
- Prepare your supplies.
- Protect your belongings.
- Find a safe place.
- Stay away from isolated locations.
- Set your alarm.
- Expect security to wake you up.
- Get information from the airport website.
- Create a restful space.
Sleeping in airports isn’t ideal, but you can make it more comfortable and safer with a few extra tips.
8 Tips on How to Sleep at the Airport
1. Prepare Your Supplies
When I discover I’ll be spending the night at the airport, I start by stocking up the essential things such as food and drinks, even if it’s just for a long layover.
Also, most airport food courts close after the last flight so keep that in mind. Even if you get a day pass or priority pass for the airport club, you probably can’t use it all night.
Vending machines, though, tend to stay on, so you can at least get a granola bar.
But, if your flight becomes delayed because of bad weather, you may get some food vouchers, which can help you save money.
Besides food, you should also think about getting a refillable water bottle, which you can fill up at the airport water fountain to stay hydrated.
Additionally, most airports are always cold, especially during the night. So, when preparing to sleep, I get some extra clothing from my luggage to lie on the floor, just in case the airport benches aren’t comfortable.
Plus, heavy jackets and other clothing items make perfect pillows and bedding on chilly nights.
Finally, if the environment is safe, earplugs or headphones playing an ambient noise will also help you have a peaceful night.
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2. Keep Your Belongings Secure
It’s paramount to travel light when sleeping at airport terminals, as this will prevent your items from getting lost.
For instance, I prefer to keep my bags in luggage storage or behind one of the ticket counters. Some places, however, don’t offer this service, so, as an airport sleeper, you’ll have to protect your items yourself.
Specifically, passports are an essential item, so make sure that your passport is inside your pocket. You can also wear it around your neck so you can rest easier knowing it’s in your sight.
Also, the bag containing your essentials, such as your phone, wallet, and travel documents, should be close to you all the time.
Finally, I also double-check my carry-on bag to ensure it’s locked away from thieves before falling asleep.
3. Find a Safe Place
Not all spots in the terminal are secure for airport sleepers. Thus, when you must spend a night at these busy places, identify a comfortable and safe environment close to the airport lounges.
The best places to spend your night are the benches because seats without armrests can offer travelers much more comfortable seating.
However, some areas may close at night, but you can usually count on the international terminal to stay open 24 hours.
A security camera should also monitor the place you’re spending the night. Additionally, stay away from areas with high traffic to rest without numerous distractions.
Or, if you don’t feel safe in the area, head over to the car rentals hall and ask for a car rental, which you can stay in for just a few hours.
4. Stay Away From Isolated Locations
When traveling solo, I stay away from isolated locations.
Most international airports have prayer rooms and yoga spaces. And you may want to sleep in these rooms, but you won’t be safe at night.
Instead, sleep near other travelers or close to your departure gate.
5. Set an Alarm
It’s easy for people to oversleep when spending the night in the terminal. Your body is already tired from the activities of the day, so ensure you set the alarm before sleeping.
Also, give yourself plenty of time, especially if you’re sleeping pre-security in the baggage claim.
6. Expect Security To Wake You Up
Many airports have security at every corner, and not all airports are friendly to those who fall asleep there. So, don’t be shocked when the guard wakes you several times during the night.
When security wakes you up, they probably want to know why you’re spending the night. But, after showing them your boarding pass, they’ll leave you alone.
Thus, have these documents close to you to clear up confusion fast.
7. Get Information From the Airport Website
Technology has made things easy for everyone, and with your smartphone, you can go to the company website to learn what happens when travelers get stuck. Some airports even offer their customers comfortable chairs for the night, while others have quiet lounges, called Minute Suites, for rent.
However, look at the customer reviews about the services before settling into these sleeping facilities.
Also, remember that companies change their services from time to time, so the information you’re getting might not be helpful when you’re stuck at the terminal. Some of the policies might have changed, especially in smaller airports.
Finally, after learning about the services offered to the travelers spending a night, confirm at the customer care desk just to be sure.
8. Create a Restful Space
When you’re sleeping at an airport terminal, getting a good rest is difficult. You can, however, create a restful space.
For instance, before sleeping, I block out light using an eye mask. Also, you can check flights leaving at nearby gates to avoid getting woken up, especially if you’re a light sleeper.
However, it’s easy to miss essential announcements for your next flight when sleeping. To avoid this, I ensure I have my headphones while sleeping.
Finally, I love to wake up a few minutes before I should, so I can clean my face and brush my teeth. A few airports even have showers, such as Changi Airport.
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How To Get a Good Sleep at the Airport?
You might not get the comfort you need while spending your night at a cold airport. However, you can make your time in the airport better by staying in a safe location, protecting your belongings, and stocking everything you need for the night.
Stick your credit cards and cash in a safe place too. You can also talk to the night-shift workers who can recommend a secure location for the night.
Table of Contents
- 8 Tips on How to Sleep at the Airport
- How To Get a Good Sleep at the Airport?