Almost 20.000 voters had their say in this year’s comprehensive survey and poll. So what makes an airport best-in-class? It all boils down to the four Cs: comfort, convenience, cleanliness, and customer service. So, it should come as no great surprise that, for the 17th time running, Singapore Changi Airport won the coveted Golden Pillow award. Boasting a great range of high-end facilities and services, the Southeast Asian aviation hub proves that killing time at an airport can be fun and productive. At Changi, travelers enjoy Wi-Fi and internet access, special snooze chairs, free movies, and even live music. In addition, they can while away the hours with city tours, a swimming pool and jacuzzi, 24-hour massage and spa facilities, video games, music and TV lounges, gardens, video games, and a 4-storey slide – all within easy reach. Sleep-deprived souls are treated to blankets and pillows and even receive tips from the staff on the best sleeping spots.

Also in the survey’s top ten: Amsterdam, Helsinki, Hong Kong, and Munich – all thanks to a specific profile. Amsterdam’s Schiphol airport, for example, offers weary transit passengers several rest zones with reclining seats while entertainment options include city tours, TV lounges, and a museum. Helsinki Vantaa drew plenty of votes for its strong art focus, a great book swap area, and incredibly friendly staff. Additionally a new, free of charge relaxation zone with different kinds of foldaway sleeping places opened in early October which will please the tired traveler. Meanwhile, Hong Kong features an IMAX theater while those at Munich Airport can choose from activities like crazy golf, airport tours, or malty delights from the airport’s own microbrewery.

To be on the safe side (and to give you a chance to book a hotel or reconsider your route), Sleeping in Airports also lists the world’s worst airports. Contenders for this dubious accolade include Bergamo, Calcutta, Manila, Mumbai, and Los Angeles.

The highly praised website was launched by Donna McSherry, a Canadian travel agent, in 1996. What started out with a mere three reviews has now evolved into a popular online draw for international travelers looking for the best budget deal. Currently, the website lists more than 7.700 airport, train and bus terminal reviews, while the site’s lively community shares their experiences and advice with fellow travelers. In addition, Sleeping in Airports features plenty of useful and entertaining tips and insights like using sticky notes to ask others to wake you at a certain time or why arrival areas tend to be more comfortable than departure halls.

Text: Romy Uebel
Header Image: Yunioshi