How To Sleep in an Airport

A Guide to the Everlasting Layover

Traveling can be exhausting and the dreaded layover can leave you exhausted. Sleeping in an airport can be an easy task if you follow a few simple guidelines.

  1. Verify your flight information. Probably one of the easiest mistakes to make is ignoring the helpful TV monitors that give a flight status. Verify the boarding time and gate of your departing flight. Take advantage of update information provided by some travel agencies. Some agencies offer itinerary updates that can be sent to your mobile phone.
  2. Set an alarm. If you want to make sure you will make it on time, set your mobile phone or watch to wake you up a few minutes before boarding begins. This will give you the opportunity to use the facilities and verify your gate information is still correct.
  3. Find a safe and quiet place. It's much easier to sleep when it is quiet and you feel safe. Find a gate near your departing gateway that is not in use. Usually you can find chairs or benches that you can lay across. To dampen noise you can also purchase earplugs from the magazine shops in most airports or listen to your favorite MP3 player.
  4. Make your bed. Set up your sleeping environment so that you are both safe and comfortable. Using a jacket or sweatshirt can make for a nice pillow. I usually try to incorporate my carry on luggage and or backpack into my bed so as to avoid any unwanted hands from rifling through my bags.
  5. Plan your sleep time. Deciding how much sleep you need is very important. As a good rule of thumb, giving yourself 75% of your available time to sleep is a good metric. So if you have an hour before your flight you would have 45 minutes to sleep, five to wake up and another ten to buy a snack and hit the head. The longer you sleep the more time you will need to give yourself to wake up and take care of things (meals, bathroom breaks, correspondence).


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