Daytime Airport Layover Ideas

Daytime Airport Layover Ideas

Day layovers are always far more flexible with what you can do to kill time. This includes visiting airport shops, restaurants, airline lounges. During day layovers you may even have the luxury of leaving the airport and do a bit of layover city sightseeing depending on how long your layover is. I’ve done this in Bilbao and show you how in my “Conquering Bilbao In 8 Hours“. I use all these daytime airport layover ideas myself when I am on my Latina travel adventures and know they make time fly when waiting for your connecting flight.

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Take a peek at this daytime layover guide with the best daytime airport layover ideas below.

Disclaimer: This daytime airport layover ideas guide may contain affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, we receive a small commission on purchases made through these links. By making a purchase using these links, you are directly supporting and allowing me to continue providing you with free high-quality travel guides. Thank you!

Important Airport Layover Message

As a Latina traveler, female traveler and solo traveler, I can’t stress this enough. Even during the day, keep your items close to you at all times and be mindful of your surroundings, especially if you decide to snooze during your layover. Stay near cameras, be mindful of whose around you, if possible stay near airport staff, etc.

Short Layover City Exploration Tips

  • Figure out about how much time you will have in a city accounting for the time to return to the airport plus the 2 hour grace period asked by airlines to be at the airport.

  • Pick the top 2-3 things you want to see/do. The key with layovers is not wanting to do the most but deciding what you really want to see and what is realistically doable with the amount of time you have available. 

  • Map out the most time efficient/economical way into the city and how you will go about getting to the top items on your list. With small cities like Bilbao most of the top attractions are near each other and easily walk-able.

  • Fingers crossed, you don’t have to switch airlines and that your luggage won’t be with you. This will make your layover city tour doable. If that isn’t the case, see if the other airline will take your luggage before the 2 hour check-in window. If you ask nicely and explain why, they should have no problem. I was easily able to do this in Bilbao. In a pinch and should the airport not provide pay for storage facilities, bring luggage with you. Then find a hotel which can hold your luggage for you in their storage. If they think you will be checking in later etc.  they will not charge you. Consider looking for luggage storage facilities too. Check

7 Best Airport Day Layover Activities

Visit A Premium Lounge

Avoid the crowds, stay safe and unwind in a more premium setting during your layover. When I have a 3+ layover during the day I always get a day pass to an airport lounge. Think tranquillity and comfort as you sit down, stretch out, enjoy a pre-flight bite and a drink from the selection available, including free alcohol at most lounges with your day pass visit. Some lounges even offer shower facilities which is a big bonus if you need to freshen up.

Airport lounge access is included for first class flyers but anyone can access these lounges when they purchase a day pass or have an airport lounge membership like Priority Pass. They give you access to multiple lounges throughout the world and other great deals from their travel partners.

Find the perfect Priority Pass membership for you HERE.

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Get Your Steps In

Stroll through the airport, and if possible, step outside and enjoy some fresh air. This is an excellent opportunity to familiarize yourself with the airport layout before your connecting flight. Make sure you’re aware of the necessary directions and timings to reach your next flight on time. You’ve got plenty of time, so there’s no excuse for missing your flight. Moreover, this leisurely walk serves as a gentle exercise that promotes blood circulation, beneficial after one flight and before the next.


It’s a common practice for travelers to catch some sleep at airports during layovers. More traveler-friendly airports offer seats without armrests, though it’s worth noting that it may not be the most comfortable sleeping experience. Personally, I always bring a lightweight blanket that also doubles up as a pillow when folded. This adds a bit of comfort to my airport naps.

As a Latina solo traveler, I know that safety is crucial, especially when sleeping in public places. To ensure a level of security, I wrap my backpack straps around my legs while I rest or put my legs on top of my roller suit case. This precautionary measure helps prevent any potential theft as I’ll be instantly awaken if someone tries to yank it away.

Plan For Your Trip

This is the perfect downtime to do the following items in a airport restaurant, premium lounge or at the gate:

  • Check the weather of the destination you are going to
  • Check the current time at the destination. (There may be a time difference.)
  • Figure out how to get to the place you will be staying from the airport.
  • Research local or ethnic cuisine. My go-to is Tripadvisor.
  • Research places to visit – Be sure to start by checking out my free destination guides to tons of cities HERE.
  • Read up on current news in destination city, country and neighboring cities and countries

Grab A Meal

During a day layover, visiting an airport restaurant can be a fantastic way to pass the time. Especially in larger airports, there is a diverse range of restaurant options catering to all types of travel budgets. Some airports even host restaurants run by renowned chefs. They also may offer a unique opportunity to savor local cuisine or must try restaurants or dishes from the city where your layover is.

Freshen Up

During a layover, you can utilize the airport bathrooms to freshen up, although be prepared for busy and crowded conditions, which may limit your time and privacy. Alternatively, many airports now provide spa services, allowing you to indulge in massages and beauty treatments without having to leave the airport. This offers a convenient and luxurious way to pamper yourself, making your airport layover a more relaxing and upscale experience.

Looking to shower at the airport? Some premium lounges offer shower facilities. It may be worth buying a day pass if you aren’t flying first class to shower, eat, drink and unwind all included in your day pass. Find an airport lounge with show facilities HERE.

Airport Shopping

During a layover at the airport, you can indulge in shopping or window shopping, depending on the available shops in your terminal. Some airports boast high-end stores like Burberry, Versace, and Gucci. These offer a fantastic opportunity to browse luxury goods.

If you’re next destination is your final destination or traveling with just a carry-on, the airport is an excellent place to purchase alcohol. This can be useful if your final destination sells alcohol at extortionate costs like Iceland or Sweden. I’ve done this and saved a lot of money in these destinations.

Additionally, don’t forget about duty-free shopping, where you can find attractive deals on various items, making your layover retail experience even more rewarding.

Long Layover At Night?

Night layover ideas

These daytime airport layover ideas may not work if your layover is at night since restaurant, shops and lounges do close. Here are my tried and tested methods for making overnight airport layovers less dreadful. These 7 surefire ways to pass the time have personally helped me during multiple overnight layovers I’ve experienced. By implementing these strategies, you can make the most out of your layover and turn it into a more enjoyable experience.

Overnight Airport Layover – How To Kill Time Article

More Airport Related Resources

Check out this additional article related to staying healthy on the road so you can prevent sick days on vacation below.

Disclaimer: This daytime airport layover ideas article may contain affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, we receive a small commission on purchases made through these links. By making a purchase using these links, you are directly supporting and allowing me, a Latina travel blogger to continue providing you with free high-quality travel guides. Thank you!

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