Traveling around Europe, especially when you’re on a tour, is relatively easy. There are a lot of different modes of transportation and most options are affordable for travelers. But, traveling TO Europe from your home country is a bit of a different story. Finding flights to any part of the continent can get expensive, even more so if those flights are direct.
However, one way to save on flights to Europe is by paying for the cheaper routes; the ones that almost always have long layovers in another city. Generally, people would do whatever they could to avoid such long layovers, eager to get directly to their destination. But, we’ll tell you why having a layover can actually be a blessing in disguise.
You Can Stretch Your Legs
Depending on where you’re coming from, a flight to Europe is exhausting. Having a layover is a good chance to get out and stretch your legs for a decent amount of time, as well as a chance to get a breath of fresh air. Obviously, if the layover is just a few hours, then you’re stuck at the stuffy airport, bored out of your mind waiting for the next flight. But, when you have more time, there’s no rush!
Things Are Generally Close to the Airport
In my home state of New York, the new biggest airports are quite a trek from the actual city. And, because the airport itself is so crowded, it’s virtually impossible (and expensive) to get in and out in such a short time. But, in Europe, many big airports are just a short ride into the city, and it’s well connected by train, tram, bus, or even Uber!
You Have Time to Explore Another City (Free of Charge)
Think of your layover this way: You get a free ride to another city in Europe without having to pay a dime extra to get there. It’s the pit-stop of all pit-stops. Many airports or train stations also have lockers where you can leave your belongings, so you don’t have to be weighed down while you explore. So, get out, enjoy the city, sightsee a bit, and get back to the airport in time for your flight. Just remember to eat while you’re out since that airport food is expensive!
You Can Crash at the Lounge and Save Money on a Hotel
Sometimes, there can be a downside of having a long layover, and that can be when your layover is at nighttime. You can’t really explore the city you’re stopping in if you land at 10 P.M. and you need to be back at the airport by 5 A.M. the next morning. But, one of the benefits of this is being able to sleep at the airport and save money on a hotel and transportation into the city. Also, some of those lounges are pretty snazzy!
Some Airports Run Free Layover Tours
Not sure where to start your layover tour? Overwhelmed by what to see in such a short time? Luckily, some airports run free or very affordable layover tours so you don’t have to worry about anything. Just ask the information desk and they’ll direct you. Best to tip a bit!
You Can Get Last Minute Souvenirs
When your long layover is on the return, you get all these benefits, plus the chance to buy last minute souvenirs that you didn’t have time to buy at your primary destination.
Does your flight itinerary have a long layover in another city? Don’t fret! Make it fun!
Hana LaRock is originally from New York, though has called other places around the world her home for the last two years. She currently lives in Mexico and freelance travel writer. When she’s not working, she enjoys writing, reading, spending time with her dog, and of course, traveling. You can find her at www.hanalarockwriting.com.