Airport Mini-Suites: Crashing Before a Flight
Airport Naps Made Easy with Mini-Suites
By Heather Terry
Finally, travelers no longer have to sleep in uncomfortable metal chairs, on the floor, or on benches while waiting for their flights, thanks to the development of napping rooms.
USA Today broke the news that Atlanta’s Airport has opened five mini-suites for travelers to nap in while waiting for their flights.
Mini-suites are becoming a trend and soon the San Francisco International Airport will also be building rooms for passengers to rest. They intend to make about 14 rooms with similar luxuries as Atlanta included in the Suites. Associate deputy Cheryl Nashir states, “We view amenities and services as the new frontier.”
Extensive personal suites including spas and showers for travelers have been common throughout Europe and Asia, and now have spread to American airports.
American airports have always been seen as a hectic environment where everyone is hurrying. But now, thanks to Mini-Suites, travelling in airports can be experienced as a more leisurely atmosphere with accommodating spaces.
Mini-suites are seven feet by eight feet and equipped with many luxuries. Some examples are a system to make calming sounds, a day bed, pillows, blankets, a small desk, a 32’ flat screen television with DirecTV and flight information, as well as internet access.
For $30 an hour you can rest and freshen up for your flight in your own space, away from the hectic rush of other travelers and uncomfortable benches. $7.50 is added to every additional 15 minutes in the mini-suite.
With all the luxuries included in the suite, families and individuals travelling for business or pleasure can rent a room for an hour to not only nap, but get ahead of their work in peace and quiet. Extra time waiting for a flight can be enjoyed more leisurely in these mini-suites, from watching a television show, to surfing the internet, to napping.
Due to heightened security, delays, and cancellations, flyers have to stay occupied longer within the airport. U.S. Airports took initiative to add more shops and restaurants to entertain waiting travelers.
Nashir states that the airports are interested in keeping their travelers as happy and comfortable as possible so they were interested in giving mini-suites a try.
Some travelers do not see the point in taking advantage of mini-suites. They think the layover times are not unbearably long, and loading on the airplane usually starts 30 minutes prior to take off.
Vancouver International Airport has tried something similar to mini-suites, MetroNaps’ sleeping pods. However, because of lack of demand, sleeping pods were discontinued.
U.S Airports plan on building more mini-suites, as well as Minute Suites, Unique Retreat, and Edo Traveler Suites. So far, Minute Suites in Atlanta’s International Airport has exceeded expectations. In the first two weeks, they have had 160 customers.
Unique Retreats will open next year in San Francisco International Airport. They will install 14 rooms that have curved walls instead of corners. This gives the feeling of having more space.
Luxuries will include a bed, desk, a 32’ television and WiFi with the option of movie rentals.
Edo Traveler Suites are being built in Canadian and American airports that include similar luxuries as mini-suites. However, additionally, private toilets and showers will be included in these rooms.
So far with the success of mini-suites, this new trend is expected to spread throughout North America. Now if you face delays next time you are flying, at least you will have the opportunity to relax and enjoy your time waiting for your flight instead of lingering from store to store.
Heather Terry is a graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and a former editorial assistant at GoNOMAD.
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