Overnight Layover: How to Survive It & Look Cool Doing It

Source | Leah Kelley

Source | Leah Kelley

With the holidays coming up, flying across the country to meet and spend time with family is inevitable. Many people would love to opt to fly in cheap and who wouldn’t mind saving money on that, right? But, with cheap flights mean you might have to contend with long layovers, especially overnight hours.

This predisposes the average traveler to spend money on a hotel room for the comfort which at times can be understandable. But since this is an unconventional wellness blog, I share another suggestion that involves the shameless act of sleeping at the ‘port and the essentials you need to get through it.

What you need to know

If you have no checked baggage and just your carry-on, you’re in luck as the airport terminals have more “comfy” chairs or areas where you can sit back, charge your mobile phone, and relax in your secluded corner or space. In addition, you have accessibility to a choice of dining restaurants, bars, and shops/stands for when your hunger strikes. Also, snag a corner near the fancy lounges. Chances are, the Wi-Fi accessibility is much better there when you need to post your “I survived an 8-hour overnight layover” selfie on the Gram.

If you’re under the age of 16, you have accessibility to your own special designated sleeping lounge quarter courtesy of most airlines groups. UNAM or unaccompanied minors have the luxury of being provided with a couch to crash, direct supervision and vouchers for meals. I think I could still get by as a kid again!

If you do have a checked baggage that you have to pick up, you may not be able to get back inside the terminal until it’s time for you to check in. Unfortunately, this leaves you having to sleep at Departures where chairs may be limited. If you snag a chair, awesome! If not no worries- you just have to get creative and set-up a makeshift sleeping quarter on the floor, see the trash bag essential tip below.

For your safety, choose a corner or space where you are easily seen by security and staff. The last thing you want to do is get too secluded to where no one sees you should something happen like a held-up robbery. Not suggesting that is happens often but you never know too many crazies out there.

Now for my layover essentials; skim through this and be sure to pack up accordingly:

Layover Essentials

1. Neck Pillow- obvious-doubles as a pillow for your head.

2. Huge Sweater and Beanie Hat – the sweater can double as blanket while the beanie hat can keep your head warm say if the area is exposed to cold drafts. The beanie also doubles as an eye mask by rolling it over your eyelids.

3. Toothbrush & Toothy tabs- make sure you’re equipped with the necessary tools to combat morning breath. I love these fluoride-free fun mouth cleaners by Lush. Try them, you will like them! I’m not paid by Lush by the way!

4. Alarm on your mobile phone- You going to need something to wake you up so put that Smartphone to use and set-up your alarm. Make sure to charge your phone too- you can find a plug outlet pretty much anywhere these days or buy one of these to charge your phone on the go.

5. Travel Documents – make sure to have your necessary identification and travel itinerary on hand, just in case. Because no one ever said, “Tonight, I want to get kick out of the airport by security.”

6. Trash bag and duct tape- so this is optional and you got stuck in Departures because of your stupid checked baggage. Now, you need to occupy the floor space to get some shuteye. Make sure to pack two extra strength trash bags and a roll of duct tape in advance. Take two trash bags and use the duct tape to connect the two. Lay it out over the chosen space. Throw some decorative pillows. Ha-ha, kidding. Grab your neck pillow and sweaters and you now have your own clean floor space in which to sleep on.

Don’t worry about being the only one sleeping at the airport- it is actually more common than you think. How many times have you seen flights delay? Leaving common folks having to camp out near the terminals; with the right know how and tips you can get through it. Happy journeys for the upcoming holidays!

Have you had to experience a layover? Share in the comments on your tips and tricks and let’s chat!