Airport Sleeping Pods: FAQ


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Airport sleeping pods or capsules are tiny accommodation.

Pods are a great alternative to airport hotels, especially if you are on a budget, or you need only a few hours’ rest. Also, airport sleeping pods are a much better alternative to sleeping on airport chairs or floor. Because they offer comfort, privacy and are often soundproof — perfect for a few hour’s sleep.

Mostly they are located in departure and transit areas. That means they are also accessible to transit passengers (on connecting flights).

Read on to learn more about airport sleeping pods.

Pods at a capsule hotel
Pods at a capsule hotel at Sheremetyevo International Airport in Moscow

1. What Are Airport Sleeping Pods? Capsule Hotels?

Airport sleeping pods and airport capsule hotels.

What are those? They are tiny accommodation catering to transit passengers. Pods are often located in departure and transit areas. That means they are easily accessible also to transit passengers / layover passengers.

Airport sleeping pods are basically a tiny, often soundproof (at least partly), room with a bed. Sometimes sleeping pods are more like tiny rooms, with more amenities, but oftentimes sleeping pods are small capsules with a bed only. That’s why they are often called capsules.

With airport sleeping pods you can take a nap in the privacy of your private pod (also known as a capsule) while not spending a fortune!

Capsule hotel (or pod hotel) is a hotel with a number of pods that travelers can rent for a few hours to a day. Capsule hotels offer dorm-like spaces for sleeping, but with more privacy. Usually these are the same small capsules with a bed only. Some airport capsule hotels also offer shared bathrooms and showers.

A pod in a capsule hotel is basically a bed surrounded by walls, and the beds are stacked on top of another. Similar to beds in a dorm room/hostel.

Sleeping Pods / Capsules Are Tiny

More often than not, it’s only a bed.

There’s zero space for suitcases and big backpacks. All you can fit in a capsule is a small carry-on bag / suitcase. Mostly you will have to put it on your bed. But… most of travelers have more luggage or want more comfort, that’s why many airport pod hotels offer storage lockers.

Can’t Find a Capsule Hotel?

Sometimes there are just pods, but no hotel.

Some airport sleeping pods are not located in a separate zone.

Some airport sleeping pods are located right in the terminal, right next to chairs and airport shops. These are just pods. And if you are staying at one of those sleeping pods, you won’t get a separate shower or bathroom reserved for the guests of the pods. You’ll have to use the bathrooms available at the airport.

What about luggage? You may have to look for luggage storage at the airport. If your bag is too big or you don’t want to take with you inside the pod.

2. What’s Inside a Sleeping Pod at the Airport?

Pods usually feature a slide door/entrance.

Some capsule hotels are more sophisticated than others. While the simplest pods feature only a bed, shelf, light and electrical outlets, the more modern ones may have also a TV, air-conditioning, mirror, clothes hangers, etc. 

You see the same pods in capsule hostels and hotels all around the world. So, you may have stayed in one such pod already.

3. Where Can You Find Sleeping Pods?

First of all, not all airports have them.

You might expect to find airport pods in large major airports all around the world. Mostly airport sleeping pods are located in departure and transit areas, so they are easily accessible to transit passengers. If you have a long layover, you may want to rest for a few hours. That’s, actually, one of the best things to do during a long layover. So, you can arrive to your destination feeling the best.

As with everything, some airport capsule hotels are better than others. Some of the capsule hotels are with a reception. It can be self-service check-in counters too. So, they are more easily spotted. Some, however, are stand-alone pods, located right in the terminal, besides the gates and chairs.

Good example of the latter — Aerosleep in Sheremetyevo and Vnukov Airports in Moscow (see photo below). Right next to the capsules, there are self-service check-in counters and credit card terminals which allows you to check in and pay for the capsule on the spot. 

Capsule hotel at an airport
Pods at a capsule hotel at Sheremetyevo International Airport in Moscow

4. How Much Does It Cost to Stay at a Capsule/Pod Hotel?

Yes, pods are cheaper than airport hotels.

But they are not cheap. Some top rated airport sleeping pods such as Yotel Air cost almost as a room at an airport hotel.

In most cases, airport sleeping pods can be rented for a few hours (not a full day). Usually, it’s 7 or so hours. The prices can range from 25 to 250 EUR/USD for a few hours. It depends on the capsule hotel and airport.

Often capsules have a per-hour rate.

5. Popular Airport Sleeping Pod Companies

There are several chains popular worldwide.

Yotel Air

Probably the most popular capsule hotel chain is Yotel Air.

Yotel Air offers more luxurious capsules which are more like small, smartly designed rooms, complete with en-suite bathroom, desk, TV (single or double) and a bed which turns into a couch. Yotel Air rooms are big enough to accommodate luggage, too. Yotel air capsules are extremely comfy and modern. But there’s a drawback too — prices are high. Stay at this capsule hotel will cost you more or less like a stay at an airport hotel.  

Yotel Air capsule hotels are in: Singapore Changi Airport, Istanbul Airport, London Gatwick, London Heathrow, Amsterdam Schiphol Airport and Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport. Some airports have Yotel Air hotels both at airside and landslide areas of the airport.

Other Sleeping Pod Companies

Other well-known airport sleeping pod companies are:

1. GoSleep — a capsule with a flat bed, storage space for your luggage and USB outlets. The screens blocks out light and offers privacy, at the same ensuring air circulation.

Where can you find them? Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, Abu Dhabi Airport, Moscow Sheremetyevo Airport.

2. Napcab — soundproof private cabins with a bed and work space. 

Where can you find them? Munich Airport, Frankfurt Airport and Berlin Airport.

3. SleepBox — tiny soundproof rooms with a bed, wall folding desk, nightstand, electricity outlets and adjustable lighting.

Where can you find them? Dulles International Airport.

These are not the only airport capsule hotels and airport sleeping pods. These are just a few examples. More and more airports around the world start offering airport sleeping pods.

Capsule at a Capsule Hotel in Malaysia
Inside the sleeping pod

Alternatives to Airport Sleeping Pods

1. Sleeping at the Airport

Some airport have better “sleeping arrangements” than others.

Large major airports in most cases are better for sleeping than smaller ones.

The best sleeping “options” are located airside, after security check. Chairs at the airside area often are more plentiful and comfortable than those of the landslide area. Also, larger airport terminals usually are better for sleeping than the smaller, less important ones.

Large, modern airports such as Singapore Changi or Hong Kong Airport have designated sleep areas, reclining chairs and even sofas.

How to be better at sleeping in airports? How to sleep in an airport and feel okay the next day? Check out Sleeping In Airports, a guide about, well, sleeping in airports around the world. Also read our article about sleeping in airports.

2. Airport Hotels

Airport hotels are more comfortable and at the same time more expensive alternative to airport sleeping pods.

Airport hotels are a great option if you have a long layover, or layover during the night. Or, if there are two of you (or if you are traveling as a family). Staying at an airport hotel might cost you the same as booking two capsules.

3. Free Hotel Stays for Layovers and Stopovers

Some airlines offer free hotel stays to transit passengers.

The best examples are Turkish AirlinesQatar AirwaysEmirates and Etihad. If your stopover is longer than a certain amount of time (let’s say 20 — 24 hours), you may get a free or heavily discounted 4*/5* hotel stay for one or two days (depending on your travel class). 

The free or discounted hotel stay is mostly only possible in airlines’ hub cities (Istanbul, Doha, Abu Dhabi, etc.). Other conditions may apply. Make sure you read the description carefully. Learn about some of such deals here.

Have you tried sleeping pods in airports or elsewhere? What was your experience? Are airport sleeping pods worth it in your opinion?

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