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Top 10 Things to do During Layovers

Have a few hours to kill while you're waiting for your next connecting flight? If you're like many passengers, you'd rather spend your layover doing something more entertaining than impatiently waiting by the gate. Need some ideas? Here are ten fun activities you can do to help pass the time during your next layover:

1. Sample the Local Food Scene

Airport food has come a long way in the past decade. Forget your typical fast food joints, you can find excellent sit down restaurants serving up award-winning local cuisine at airports all over the country. The best part about these eateries is that they give transient travelers the opportunity to try out the area's famed local fare: chow down on lobster rolls and New England clam chowder at Legal Sea Foods in Boston's Logan International Airport; southern soul food at Chicken + Beer at Atlanta's Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport; or Obrycki's Restaurant & Bar's famous spicy deviled crab cakes and oysters at Baltimore-Washington International.

Shopping during an airport layover

2. Shop 'Til You Drop

Tired of perusing newsstands and souvenir shops? Many of the major airports have switched their focus from magazines and key chains to include a diverse line-up of retailers sure to capture you're attention. Shop at Dylan's Candy Bar, Hugo Boss, and Estee Lauder in Detroit's Metropolitan Wayne County Airport; The Disney Store, Lush, and Harley Davidson at Orlando International Airport; or shop from luxury designers like Burberry and Gucci at Toronto Pearson International Airport. With shopping options like these, you'll have to get a bigger carry-on!

3. Lounge Around

Need a break from the hectic airport environment? You've probably passed one of the discreetly marked airport lounges and wondered what lay beyond. No matter what class you're flying, there are airline and airport-run lounges you can enter by simply paying a fee at the door or purchasing through a lounge membership program like Priority Pass. Lounges typically offer a host of services to help you pass the time including TVs, food, drink, reading material, Wi-Fi, work desks, shower facilities, and more!

4. Go Wine Tasting

Calling all wine lovers, this one's for you! Vino Volo is an airport wine bar company offering wine flights and small plates for travelers in over 30 airport locations. Vino Volo opened its first location at Washington Dulles International Airport and is dedicated to providing high-quality wines and a relaxing environment to help travelers to unwind. Not a wine connoisseur? No problem! Their knowledgeable staff will map out their hand-selected wines on an easy-to-understand taste graph to help you discover your favorite.

5. Catch Up On Sleep

Feeling sleepy? Spend your layover catching up on some much-needed rest! If you're traveling through San Francisco International Airport, you can even rent your own private nap room! Located inside their International Terminal, FreshenUp offers nap rooms available to the public for $40 an hour. Nap rooms come equipped with a bed, free Wi-Fi, desk, mirror, and showers for an additional cost.

6. Work Out

After all that sitting around, you might want to get your blood pumping and burn off some excess energy with a work out. Several larger connecting airports now offer on-site facilities like yoga rooms, walking tracks, and fitness gyms for stir-crazy travelers. Next time you're passing through Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, take a walk on the Sky Harbor Fitness Trail, a one mile walking path that gives travelers a chance to exercise, while also providing views of the downtown Phoenix skyline and natural landmarks like Camelback Mountain.

7. Pamper Yourself

Is traveling wearing you down? Use your layover to provide some much-needed me time. Many national airports now have relaxing spas so travelers can receive manicures, pedicures, facials, massages and more to be pampered in between flights! Passing through Dallas? The SkySPA at Dallas/Fort Worth International offers travelers the option to visit a steam room, rooftop saltwater pool, and even a luxurious "Death by Chocolate" body facial.

8. Pet a Pooch

Traveling can be stressful, so why not ease the tension by visiting with some four-legged friends? Several airports are now employing therapy dogs in efforts to de-stress passengers. Visit the Canine Airport Therapy Squad (CATS) at your next layover in Denver International Airport, or the Wag Brigade in San Francisco International Airport to pet, play around, and pass the time!

9. Appreciate the Arts

Try using your next layover as an opportunity to culture yourself by indulging in paintings, sculpture, photography, and pottery. Mini-museums and art galleries are now a common feature of many modern airports featuring local artists and a variety of rotating exhibitions. Boston's Logan International, San Francisco International Airport, and Miami International Airport have all ben heralded by critics for showcasing both established and upcoming regional artists.

10. Hedge Your Bets

Feeling lucky? If you have a layover in Las Vegas' McCarran International Airport, try to hit the jackpot with one of the many slot machines located throughout the airport. Who knows, you may make this a layover worth remembering!

Ready to tackle your next layover head-on? Layovers can be a drag, but with these ten fun layover activities, you can be sure to enjoy every minute of your next trip!


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