I decided to start a new series called the “Layover City Guide” to give you a bit of flavour of what you can see in certain cities and destinations for a couple of hours. I typically try to fit in a longer layover so I can visit an extra city, particularly those that can be quite expensive to travel to on its own. As a result of this, I’ve been to Paris about 3 times in under 12 months, and New York about 6 times in the same year!
Whatever the case and circumstances, I hope this could come handy for your – especially considering that 6-24 hours can be a lot of time to discover a new city! To the best of my ability, I will also try to provide information on getting to the city centre and back to the airport. I will also try to link any relevant pages so that you can always have the most recent information as much as possible!
This list will continually be updated with any new post!
The Layover City Guide
Each layover city guide has been carefully written and published with information that I have personally used to get to/from and around the city. To the best of my knowledge, these information are current at the time of writing. But of course, there will always be new information, updates and so on, so please be sure to check the latest information where you can.
I understand how overwhelming and scary it can be to go around, and navigate a new public transportation system without speaking the language whilst travelling solo. I will do my best to describe my experiences in details, but you are more than welcome to send me an email if you are looking for information!
These guides are intended to provide you with an idea or two of how to:
- Get to / from the airport to the main city
- Use the public transportation system
- What are the must-see and do and eat spots in the city
- Find anything interesting worth writing home about
- Estimated cost of getting around
Layover / In Transit Tips
Factor in the travel time to and from the airport
Leave enough time to go through security/re-boarding or re-check in if needed; that should give you an estimate of how much time you have in the city. Aim for at least 9+ hours layover (which should give you at least 5 hours in the city and enough less travel time).
Where to store your luggage
Confirm ahead of time if your bags are going straight to the destination. For cabin luggage, there are often “Left Luggage” / locker options at the airport for a small fee. The airport website will usually have this information.
Do you need visa?
All the layover excursions I’ve taken, I’ve never needed a visa. I travel with a Canadian passport but before you exit the airport, it’s always a good idea to check / ask.
Public vs. private transportation option
If you’re travelling solo and have enough time, public transit will always be the cheapest, albeit slower. For a family/larger group on a short amount of time, private transportation or ridesharing options will probably make the most sense if you can split the cost across more people.
Consider buying city cards
In some cities, there are all-inclusive city cards that cover public transportation, entries to museums/popular destinations, and discounts at participating venues / restaurants. This could be a more economical option for travelers or group travels.
Check if your airline / airport has free layover tours / perks
Some popular airlines like Turkish Airlines, Icelandair, Singapore Airlines, Etihad Airways offer layover perks (i.e. free tours) at their hub city if you have a long enough layover. Some airports offer these in partnership with the local tourism board, or airlines, and could be another great way of not having to plan your own itinerary.
Do you have any requests? Send me an email or leave a comment below!