Tips for Sleeping in Airports: A Guide for the Common Traveler
If you’re like me, there is nothing better than a good night’s sleep in your own home. However, there are certainly times when travel means I need to get some rest in an airport. For many people, this can be quite the uncomfortable experience. However, after over a decade of frequent travel for work, I have picked up a number of tips. Here are some great ways to get restful sleep in airports.
- Find a Quiet Area
One of the biggest complaints I hear from people is that the airport is too noisy to sleep. The best solution for this is to find an area that is a bit quieter. I will typically find a gate without a flight leaving in the near future. This has two benefits. First, you’ll easily find a place to take a nap. Secondly, it is unlikely that other travelers will be near you talking. This should make it a bit easier to get some rest, but be sure to set an alarm so you don’t miss your flight.
- Pack a Comfortable, Lightweight Blanket
I know some people that simply cannot sleep without something covering their bodies. While I tend to be able to sleep in many places, I do find that having a blanket makes it a bit easier to fall asleep. Perhaps there is something about the softness and warmth. If you think you’ll need to sleep in the airport, pack a lightweight, high quality blanket in your carryon luggage. My personal preference is for Sleep Zone’s cooling throw blanket.
- Choose your Clothing Carefully
One of the most frustrating things you can experience when trying to get some rest in an airport is to be too hot or too cold. It can be very difficult to predict the temperature of an airport if you haven’t been there before. Layering your clothing is an excellent way to deal with this problem. With layers, you should stay warm in an airport blasting air conditioning and be able to strip down to cooler clothes if it is too hot.
- Consider a Pillow
This isn’t something I bring every time I fly; however, if it seems highly probable that I’ll want to get a few hours’ sleep in an airport, I’ll pack a small throw pillow in my carryon. This works well with a larger carryon and can ensure you have a comfortable place to rest your head. It works well when trying to sleep on seating or when picking an out of the way corner of the floor.
- Be Courteous and Discrete
While sleeping in the airport is quite common, not all airports are overly tolerant of the practice. However, being polite, courteous, and discrete makes it likely that you will be allowed to sleep. Be sure not to make a lot of noise and not to position yourself in a place that would bother other travelers. By staying out of the way, you can get some rest while making it likely that security will leave you alone.