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Airport Hotels - the wise alternative to sleeping at the airport

A rude awakening to trying to sleep at the airport...

Despite working for Airparks, a company that specialise in airport hotels, in my infinite wisdom I decided it would probably be a good idea to try to sleep at the airport the night before my flight to Prague. I'd roughed it before, how bad could it be? Have a few beers in the airport pub, a few cups of coffee, then a bit of shut eye on one of the numerous seats and benches that adorn the pre-check in lounge.

The first part went to plan, a couple of pints in the somewhat expensive airport bar, followed by a few games in the arcade before tiredness suggested I 'retire' to my proposed bed for the night. As I struggled to get comfy on the rather thin, worn, cushioned seat I took a look at my watch. Only six hours until check-in. A perfect amount of time to catch some sleep.

The thing with the seats in the airport is that their designers are cruel, heartless sadists, who's only design brief was to 'make a chair that even Narcoleptics couldn't catch forty winks on'. I've had better nights sleep on jagged rocks. So since sleep seemed to be out of the question and thoughts of a nice, comfy room in an airport hotel entered my mind a feeling of regret came over me.

In the haze of sleepless boredom I decided to take a look around the airport. Anything that could have distracted me from the fact I had five and half hours left until check-in was closed. A few arcade machines could be found at the end of the terminal, surely I could burn a couple of hours off there? Ten quid later and I'm regretting my very existence. Trundling back to my bed/bench I discover that most of my fellow travellers have managed to drift off. One under the seats, two simply in the middle of the floor, one bolt upright and one horrifically bent into the shape of three armrests.

I decide to grab a cup of coffee and a sandwich, half out of hunger, half in a bid to kill more time. I did have four hours left after all. A grand total of £6 later, with a cup of coffee brewed in a shoe inside me I realise that I've already spent about £30 on food, magazines, beer, computer games and surfing the internet...£30 I could have spent on an airport hotel room that would've meant a good night's sleep, a lie in, a hearty breakfast and a short transfer to the airport.

When we eventually got to Prague, I'd gone 30 hours without sleep. I felt rough, dirty and tired, and spent the first part of my holiday catching up on sleep.

I'd now highly recommend an airport hotel for those morning departures, sleeping at the airport isn't easy - in fact it's rubbish, expensive and can crack that holiday mood.

So book your airport hotel today with Airparks (yes, surprisingly the company I work for...). Airparks can save you up to 60% on the price of an airport hotel and can offer parking as well as transfers all inclusive.

Published by: Barry Holloway
Date Updated: 30 March 2006 - A guide to roughing it in airports...
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