Flight delays, connecting flights that seem to last for ten million years, the consequences of using budget airlines, or missed flights because you were moving too slow: these are just some of the reasons why many travelers need to sleep in a place more fleeting than a tweet during basketball season—airports.
Many travelers find themselves sleeping in airport chairs and benches all the time, but if you take a closer look, do you think they’re enjoying it? It’s clearly not the most comfortable sleeping spot in the world but beggars (or in this case, temporarily homeless), can’t be choosers. So making the best of it is the only best option.
In order to have an effective sleeping time in airports, one must consider the following:
Sleep near your gate
This is for the purpose of you not missing your flight. You’ll hear the flight alerts from here, or—in case the queue has already started moving—someone will definitely be kind enough to wake you up.
Don’t leave your bags
This shouldn’t really be here, because signs at airports repeatedly tell us that bags left unattended will be confiscated. However, people could be very forgetful sometimes—especially when you’ve just had your nap and need to use the bathroom. Take your stuff with you at all times, unless you want airport guards digging into your luggage.
Wear layered clothing
Many airports in the world have ridiculous air-conditioning colder that could challenge the weather in the Himalayas, so just to make sure, wear layers of clothing to adjust to the temperature.
Make up your mind
Let’s say you’ve just landed and have a 5 to 6-hour layover. This will not be enough for a complete sleep if you decide to roam around the airport. Make up your mind on what you have to do—napping is okay, but this will have the tendency to stretch on for hours and it’s possible you’ll miss your flight. Be safe and just stick with one activity if you have an awkward time to spare.
Keep your bags close to you
Although you’ll most likely experience thieves outside of the airport, you should always be very careful. Keep all your belongings close—hug them when you’re sleeping if you have to. It’s better to be safe than bag-less before even reaching your destination.
You’ll be surprised at the number of people who will share the same airport sleeping arrangement with you. If you’re not feeling sleepy, try approaching people (mostly backpackers) who are also supposed to spend a ridiculous amount of time in there, and most of you can make the most of it. Watch a movie (at least one of you will surely have a laptop), play cards, or simply talk.
Sleeping in airports could be a drag, but sometimes it’s the journey that really matters—true, it sounds very cliché—but staying in airports will give you many stories that you won’t experience anywhere else. And you’ll be surprised you’ll find yourself sleeping like a baby.