Most savvy travelers do whatever they can to avoid a layover. Nobody likes sitting in an airport, scanning the same racks of paperbacks, or ordering a third basket of fries while they wait for their connecting flight. And for those who don’t want to spend hours at a hotel bar or cringe at the idea of attempting to nap in seats with permanent armrests, layovers can be absolute torture.
But not at these airports! Here, travelers can soak, float, unwind and even squeeze in a bit of exercise instead of simply sitting around counting down to boarding time. So pack your swimsuit for a layover at these three airports, and you might find yourself booking a lengthy layover on purpose.
Changi Airport, Singapore
Singapore’s Changi Airport is often lauded as the best in the world, and they have the awards to back it up. In fact, the facility has won best airport awards from numerous surveys and organizations over the years, largely because of the airport’s lush interior atrium, complete with hedge maze and rain vortex.
But did you know there is also a pool at Singapore Changi Airport? A pool and a hot tub, in fact. The rooftop pool is located inside the Aerotel Airport Transit Hotel in Terminal 1.
There’s also a poolside bar along with shower facilities, so you can rinse off after a few laps or clean up between long flights.
Guests of the hotel get complimentary access to the facilities, but if you’re simply dropping in for a few hours, a day pass costs about $13. The pool is open from 6 a.m. to midnight every day.
Suvarnabhumi Airport, Bangkok
Swim, shower, spend a few minutes on the treadmill or in the weight room ... it’s all an option during a long layover at Bangkok’s Suvarnabhumi Airport. To access these amenities, head to the Novotel Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport via the free shuttle or underground walkway.
Once you arrive, a $28 day pass to the fitness center will grant you access to an outdoor swimming pool, Jacuzzis, steam and sauna rooms and even fitness classes.
» Learn more: 6 credit cards that come with airport lounge access
Hamad International Airport, Qatar
An indoor swimming pool, gym, hydrotherapy tub and showers — who could ask for more? For day passes that start at just under $50, you get access to all of the above at the Vitality Wellbeing & Fitness Centre inside Hamad International Airport in Qatar.
For a little extra, you can even book a massage, facial or body treatment to tackle that jet lag, try out the golf simulator or play a bit of squash (they’ll provide shoes and racquets).
The fitness center is open 24 hours a day, so no matter what time your flight touches down, you can enjoy the amenities and the relaxing glass-encased lap pool.
The bottom line
Layovers don’t have to be the worst part of travel. In fact, these airport pools may make a layover one of the most relaxing parts of your trip. So don’t fear mindlessly wandering the aisles at the duty-free shop the next time your flight is delayed. If you pack your swimsuit for a layover at these airports, you may even enjoy the wait.
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Planning a trip? Check out these articles for more inspiration and advice: Find the best travel credit card for you Review: Qatar Airways Al Safwa First Class Lounge, Doha Choosing among airports? Don’t let price be your only guide