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Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

Destination Expert
for San Jose
Level Contributor
5,904 posts
108 reviews
Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

How are those airports in the middle of the night, when airport lounges are typically shut down? Sometimes there's no reason to adjust to a new time zone and/or try to sleep. For starters, my opinions:

AMS. abuzz. Many shops/restaurants seem open. Heineken on tap is a bonus.

HKG is huge, seems nice in the middle of the night, but most shops can be closed. Some terminals can get really quiet. I think the terminals are a nice place to go for a walk at night.

ICN is nice, always abuzz, but seems terribly expensive.

LAS can be abuzz but IMO dull.

LAX can be abuzz but IMO dull.

SFO gets really dead with most shops closed.

DAR is essentially unbearable even if it can get enough electricity to get the air circulating.

Anybody here able to describe ADD, AUH, BOM, DOH, DBX, FRA, IST, SIN, SEZ? I'd like to hear about the vibes in those places in the middle of the night.

Edited: 11:33 am, April 10, 2013
Destination Expert
for Livigno, Lombardy
Level Contributor
39,445 posts
162 reviews
1. Re: Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

Dubai is definitely one of the busiest, everythings open and that's when most of the flights arrive and depart so it's like other airports during the day.

United Kingdom
Destination Expert
for Mauritius, Grand Baie
Level Contributor
16,930 posts
1,288 reviews
2. Re: Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

Dubai can be manic even in the middle of the night when other airports are asleep at the same time.

Destination Expert
for Patong
Level Contributor
3,057 posts
18 reviews
3. Re: Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

Changi in Singapore. Flights arriving all hours, lots open, and has a waterslide I hear somewhere. My stopover wasn't long enough to try it.

Edited: 12:38 pm, April 10, 2013
Berkshire, England
Level Contributor
8,064 posts
60 reviews
4. Re: Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

You don't want to be stuck in MIA overnight!!!! Did it once when plane went technical! Dreadful experience.

Fortaleza, CE
Level Contributor
8,441 posts
377 reviews
5. Re: Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

Obviously depends on the airport's layout (e.g., LAX's terminals are physically separated so one terminal can be much busier than another), how many flights total come and go, and at what hours. Even smaller airports in Brazil can have flights throughout the night, but they can also be widely spread out, and still be dull, almost ghost towns. I once spent most of Xmas Eve in O'Hare, between flights, waiting for the weather to let up so my flight to LAX could leave. Last airport I enjoyed spending the night in-- well, within the same structure-- was at DTW, but I was sleeping in a comfy bed in the Westin Hotel in the main terminal.

London, United...
Level Contributor
20,996 posts
23 reviews
6. Re: Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

Abu Dhabi the same shops open, lots of people.

Last time I was at heathrow in the middle of the night, everything was shut, people milling round, yes, but most shops closed, not sure what it is like now,

I try to avoid transiting middle of the night though, if possible.

Level Contributor
48,357 posts
91 reviews
7. Re: Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

This is better put together at sleeping in airports dot net

Nowy Sacz, Poland
Destination Expert
for Poland
Level Contributor
4,024 posts
42 reviews
8. Re: Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

Not the middle of the night, more the middle of the day, but many years ago I was flying on a full ATA DC10 LGW to Newark and the wind was blowing the wrong way, so we needed to refuel. They opened Gander for us and an Aeroflot flight, which was taxi-ing out as we taxied in. One huge echoing concrete airport terminal, about 100 out of 300 got off as we were promised the ice cream was some of the best in Canada. Not sure of the comparability, but it was good, and we got to send postcards from Gander on our US holiday!

Lake Crystal...
Level Contributor
384 posts
24 reviews
9. Re: Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

Lima, Peru was a hopping place at 2:30 AM, on a Monday morning, when I went through. All the stores open, buskers singing and dancing, folks lined up for "fast food."

Destination Expert
for Thailand
Level Contributor
17,657 posts
3 reviews
10. Re: Favorite airports in the _middle_of_the_night_?

Singapore Changi - excellent always :)