The winter provides a variety of travel opportunities that make the season enjoyable. Ski vacations, hiking adventures and ice fishing trips make the snowy weather more of an advantage than a burden while on your wintry getaway. However, when it comes to getting to your destination, the snow and ice can become your worst enemy. Travelers should always be prepared for flight delays and cancelations if they’re departing or arriving in a snowy destination. It’s common for travelers to find themselves in situations where they have to stay the night at the airport due to a cancelation or long delay. As storms continue to blow through many parts of the country, travelers should always be ready for an airport sleepover. Here’s a guide to surviving a night at the airport for solo and group vacationers.
For Independent Travelers
If you’re on your own during an overnight stay at the airport, safety should be your top priority. According to The Guide To Sleeping In Airports, it’s never a smart idea to fall asleep wearing any valuables, such as jewelry. You never know who might be near you and you don’t want to call any unwanted attention to yourself. Cover up your bag or purse that contains your wallet and your personal identification, keeping it out of sight and close to you at all times. Always fall asleep in an area with a decent number of people. Although a quiet corner in an isolated section of the airport may seem enticing to your tired body, this could increase your risk of falling victim to robbery and other potentially dangerous situations. I recommended wearing headphones or a hood to block out any loud outside noises that may interfere with your nap. Just be sure to set an alarm with your phone on vibrate so you don’t miss your flight, especially if you’re a heavy sleeper.
In some airports, travelers have the option of sleeping in pods. For a price, these offer sleepy travelers a bed in a locked capsule for a certain period of time. Depending on the airport, you may be able to buy a certain amount of time.Travelers can find these in airports in cities such as Beijing, Tokyo and Munich. Meanwhile, airports in Atlanta, Dallas and Philadelphia also have mini-suites that provide travelers with a bed priced by the hour. For people who find their flights changed to a time later the next morning, it may be worth it to check into a nearby hotel. This will cost you, but it will also give you some peace of mind as you rest, as well as a decent bed.
For Travel Groups
It’s always better to get stuck in an airport with a group of friends or family than on your own. Safety should still be considered an important factor when getting through the night at the airport. Explore the area together and try to find a spot near a security guard or camera for extra safety. If the airport is particularly crowded, you can even ask a member of security if there are any spots he or she would recommend for groups that are secure and less noisy. The great thing about getting stuck overnight with a group is that everyone can take shifts sleeping so you don’t have to worry about your belongings getting stolen as you drift off. You can set a designated time that each person can rest before you switch roles. Activities like playing a game or watching a movie on someone’s laptop can pass the time quickly and keep you awake until it’s your turn to catch some shut-eye.
If there are no chairs available to lie down on, many airports offer cots for groups of travelers who are stranded for the night. This can make sleeping a lot easier and is less painful than lying on the ground. Ask for a cot the minute you know you will be staying overnight because if your flight was disrupted due to weather, chances are that many other people’s were too and supplies can run out fast. An alternative to sleeping for young travelers is simply making the most of your time, especially if you’re departing from your destination and returning home. Don’t let a flight delay or cancellation ruin the end of your journey. If the airport is located in the heart of the city, for example, it can be fun to think of your flight change as an extension to your vacation. Check out any local late night restaurants that may be open, or have a drink at a local bar to end the trip with a bang. You can also explore the airport to see if there are any shops or take-out eateries open – in busy cities with large airports this is often the case.