Me in Lima Peru at the airport


6 Things to Do During an Airport Layover


I don’t care how disciplined you are.


You need to have a game plan before a long or short layover.


If not, you will fall prey to mindless scoreboard watching.


You know exactly what I mean.


Your impatient, fearful feelings will goad you into staring blankly at flight schedules, clocks and airline representatives. Maybe you will gorge yourself or drink yourself into a stupor, to pass the time.


Grabbing a bite to eat or drink is okay but if you want to something that raises your energy and improves your travel experience consider these 6 activities.


1: Sleep


During a recent 11 hour layover in Manila I slept at least 7 of those hours.


These glorious 7 hours spanned a late night to early morning stretch where I would have been sleeping anyway, as I had spent the prior 3 months in Southeast Asia.


Sleeping is one of the best things you can do during extended layovers because you rest, recharge your battery and prep for future flights best by entering into sleep-mode.


Cat nap during short layovers too. Just set your alarm to avoid missing flights.


I prefer to find the quietest spot possible, usually in boarding areas where no flights are scheduled for a few hours.


One added bonus of super long layovers; these break periods almost always occur in large international airports, meaning you will find a peaceful, quiet spot for extended snoozing.


2: Write Your Next Blog Post


I have written well over 100 blog posts during airport layovers.


Add up the hundreds of hours you spend at an airport. You’d be insane to say that you cannot find the time to write blog posts.


You always have time for what you value.


Set aside 1-2 hours during your next layover. Find a quiet spot. Or simply pull out your ear buds and listen to your favorite tunes then get to writing.


Spend your layover productively. Write your next blog post.


3: Meditate


No need to become the next Buddha during your layover.


Set aside 20 to 30 minutes of airport down time to meditate.


Find a quiet spot (unused boarding areas are gems). Relax your body. Relax your mind. Follow your breathing.


Airport in San Jose Costa RIca


Travel tends to unearth ample fears; the fear of missing your flight, the fear of being 36,000 feet above the earth’s surface in a steel tube, the fear of leaving behind loved ones, the fear of spending time in a new land. Meditating helps expand your awareness so you can face, embrace and release these fears, and so you can avoid becoming a bitchy tourist.


I meditate for 5-10 minutes at least during most layovers. Doing so brings me back to the moment, dissipating my lower energies and instilling a sense of gratitude in me for my rocking globe trotting lifestyle.


4: Do *Not* Sit and Wait Impatiently for Your Flight to Begin Boarding


Big mistake.


I see many travelers make this error; sitting in the waiting area and impatiently waiting for your flight to begin boarding.


I almost never do this because I see the frustration build as travelers huff and puff over minor delays, long lines and the general process of getting a big group of people from the boarding area into a huge steel cylinder.


This tip applies for any wait time as soon as you enter the airport. Follow the other tips. Do something productive.


Don’t stare at signs, clocks or airline customer service representatives.


5: Get a Hotel Room


Get a room!


No; not just if you are feeling a wee bit romantic. Book a hotel room to rest up, shower or to sleep for an extended period of time.


When we flew from JFK to Bali at the beginning of our trip our airlines put us up at the fabulous Novotel in Taipei Taiwan. 5 star hotel with all the perks.


Kelli and I have also booked rooms during layovers for 5 to 8 hours of solid sleep, a shower and more than anything, solitude. Sometimes it’s worth it to drop the extra cash to have your own place for a handful of hours. Especially when you are prepping for a long haul flight around the world.


6: Write Your Next (or First) eBook


I wrote this ebook while traveling from JFK in NYC to Bali.


How to Retire to a Life of Island Hopping (Part 2)



I wrote most of the eBook during layovers in places like JFK, Taipei and Singapore.


The layovers were not particularly long; I just blocked all else out and went into each layover with a set game plan.


Find a quiet spot. Open a Word document. Write your first eBook. Or next eBook.


Open a passive income stream while helping your readers.


Things to Do During a Layover


What tips can you add to this list?


How do you keep busy during an airport layover?


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