Whenever you visit a foreign country, the biggest issue is long-haul flights. Long layovers are a dreaded inconvenience and many people opt to pay for expensive flights rather than suffering a long layover at the airports. However, long layovers can be a two-for-one deal. If you plan well in advance, you can turn this dreaded layover into a fun event. You can leave the airport and get a chance to explore an extra country along the way possibly you’d never thought to visit. Exploring a new city, in a short period, can be a cause of panic, because what if you get lost, or miss your next flight? Hence, it’s necessary to have all the information in hand before planning such a sojourn.
Before turning a long layover into an interesting city tour, these are points to keep in mind.
1. Duration of layover?
You should have a layover of at least seven hours to venture out of the airport. You need to take into account the time it will take you to get to and back from the city center, the time you will take to see the city and the security check that you will have to go through when you re-enter the airport. Calculate the total time needed and then decide whether you should venture out or not.
2. Hours of layover
If layover starts early in the morning, you have a lot of daylight hours to explore. But if your flight lands in the middle of the night and the next flight takes off during the early hours of the morning, it makes no sense to leave the airport. Apart from safety issues, most places will be closed. But if your layover city has good nightlife or fun clubs, it can be a nice way to pass time.
3. The requirement of visa for a layover
A limited number of countries let Indian citizens venture out of the airport without a visa. For some countries, you may need a transit visa, while for others you have to apply for a regular tourist visa.
The best way to explore the city in a short time is to take a guided city tour. So, you won’t get lost trying to figure out the routes and will get to see the famous tourist spots and sights. Another way to make use of your layover is to go on a food tour, which will help you get an insight into the local food culture of the country. For those interested in neither of these, there is always an option for shopping.