Layovers—an inconvenient stop between your original and desired destination. Sometimes layovers can be short and easy, and other times they can be long and boring. My layover was 9 hours long. Let that sink in—9 hours! I was at an airport struggling to find some kind of entertainment for 9 hours before I continued to Cape Town. Fortunately, my layover was in London Heathrow, so there was plenty to see and do. Unfortunately, the things to see and do in London Heathrow can be quite expensive. So, I got creative. Here are four relatively cheap things I did, and you can do too.
- PEOPLE WATCH
It’s free, and it’s fun. It is a bit creepy, but only if you get caught. You can create an elaborate story about the people you’re watching, and it can be a fun game you play with yourself.
Eating is always a great option! In the airport, there are restaurants, small kiosks, and convenience stores with food. Some restaurants are super expensive and for the high rollers, so steer clear of those. Others are reasonably priced, you just have to take into account the exchange rate.
- CONNECT TO WIFI
Good ol’ wi-fi! It saves us from so many awkward and boring situations. Most airports offer free wi-fi, but it’s usually for a limited amount of time, so when you connect, make sure you use it wisely. Get in touch with family and friends and let them know you landed safely at your first stop.
- TAKE A SHOWER
If you can swing it, it’s worth it! A shower is a well-needed treat after a long flight, especially if you have another long flight ahead of you. Many major airports now have lounges where you can take a shower, have a meal, and take a nap for a fee. This is the priciest one on the list, but if
your layover is extremely long like mine, it’s actually quite affordable. If you have a smart phone, I suggest downloading the app Lounge Buddy. It tells you if there is a lounge in the airport, where it’s located, and how much it will cost.
These aren’t the only things you can do during your layover, but some of these are the cheapest if you are on a budget. I did all of these things at London Heathrow, and the next thing I knew, it was time for me to board my plane.