Airports have become more than hubs that connect people to their flights; they are now centers of commerce where nearly everything you could possibly want is available for purchase. If you want to get a massage and pick up a hamburger before your next flight, you can do that. If you want a latte and the latest copy of the Wall Street Journal, there’s undoubtedly a coffee shop that will be happy to oblige. The best part is that many of these services are available at low cost, so whether you’re a frequent flyer or you’re going somewhere on holiday, you can live in the lap of luxury in between flights.
Free or Cheap Internet
Wi-Fi has become a standard offering in libraries and fast food restaurants, and the same is true for many businesses within an airport. You might have to purchase a five dollar coffee to gain access to it, but it’s a small price to pay if you have work that needs doing before you arrive at your destination. Even if you just want to kick back and kill some time with flash games, you can take full advantage of the features on your laptop or smart phone while you wait for your next flight.
- Spa Services
The Denver International Airport contains miniature spas that offer a 10-minute massage for a measly $15, and you can get your hair trimmed and blow-dried for just $5 more. If you have a long layover and you a little extra cash to throw around, you can opt for a private session for $75. The best part is that all of this can be done without needing to make a reservation.
The death of Blockbuster doesn’t mean it’s the end of rentals. Instead of a big, traditional storefront that stocks DVDs and VHS tapes upon rows and rows of shelves, they’ve put kiosks in various businesses that enable customers to rent titles for as little as $1 for 24 hours. If you’re in an airport, InMotion will even provide a portable DVD player for $10 or less.
- Fitness CentersNot every airport comes equipped with one of these, but a great deal of international airports are integrating health services for those who desire them, and if you’ve brought a set of workout clothes, you can sweat the stress right out of your body for $5 to $20.
- Valet Parking and On-Site Parking
For around $40 per day, most international airports will be happy to park your car for you. At the Minneapolis Saint Paul International Airport, they charge $10 for the first hour, $3 an hour beyond that, and the maximum charge per day is $40. Considering how hectic and time consuming travel can be already, it is well worth the cost.
If you would rather park your own car, you can pay for on-site parking online or over the phone. The price depends on the package you choose, but generally, if you’re willing to walk a long distance to the main entrance, you will be able to park your car for $6 per day or less. The closest spots will generally run between $22 and $25. Many airports have website services you can check in order to factor the cost into your travel expenses.
Airports have almost advanced to the point that you can practically live there, what with all the amenities and luxuries they now offer. The next time you’re flying through, be sure to check out what’s available in order to make your travels more enjoyable and stress-free.
Marvin Lee is a freelance blogger who writes about travel from his home in the UK. If you are flying through Birmingham, Marvin recommends checking the Birmingham airport parking prices so you can leave your car there and travel hassle-free.