Are you going to travel and have a longer layover at Istanbul airport? Are you asking yourself how to keep yourself occupied?
If you’re planning a trip with a layover in Istanbul, you’re in luck! The city has so much to offer, even for those with only a few hours to spare. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the best ways to spend a layover in Istanbul’s airport, including some great options offered by Turkish Airlines. Plus, we’ll give you some tips on what to eat, buy, and see in Istanbul, so you can make the most of your layover.
Istanbul airport is one of the world’s largest airports. So just walking around will take time. If you’re short on time or can’t leave the airport, you can still sample some delicious Turkish cuisine at the airport’s restaurants. Some of the best options include Turkish Delight, simit (a type of sesame bread), and Turkish coffee.
For longer Istanbul airport layovers we reccomend:
Visit a business lounge
Our new favorite way of spending time at the airport! For the business lounge, you need to be eligible for entry. At the lounge entrance, you will need to present your access credential (credit card that includes access or your Priority Pass card), and your boarding passes with the same name on them. Once you enter, just enjoy and relax.
IGA Lounge in Istanbul Airport has really good internet, delicious food, unlimited drinks, a terrace, a shower, and even a sleeping zone. Time at the airport never flew so fast!
Get your free food voucher
You don’t have lounge access? Are you flying with Turkish airlines and do you have 5 hours waiting time? Get your free food voucher! Go to the Turkish Airlines help desk and they will give it to you. We got one voucher each and we could choose from a couple of restaurants in the food area.
If you have a layover in Istanbul airport for 6 hours or even more then it’s not so fun to spend it at an airport, you will get bored sooner or later. Here is what you can do:
Join Turkish Airlines TourIstanbul free city tour
How to join the tour
It’s easy. First, you have to leave the arrivals area – when you come from your flight, you head towards passport control and get your passport stamped, a visa for Slovenian citizens is not required. Just to be sure, check for your country online.
After passport control, follow the exit, go to nothing to declare and after that, you turn right. Walk a bit and you will see Turkish Airlines Help Desk on your right side.
No reservation is needed, you just come to the help desk and they will give you all the information. You will need your passport and both of your flight tickets (both have to be with Turkish Airlines)
You have different tour schedules, the best is if you check it HERE.
How the tours look like
The bus will pick you up at the airport and take you to Istanbul. You will get an English-speaking guide. You will discover the classics such as Blue Mosque, Hagia Sophia Museum, Topkapi Palace, and the Grand Bazar. At the end of the tour, they will take you to lunch, all included in the tour, which means for free. We enjoyed the tour a lot, it made our waiting time much easier.
Relax in a hotel paid by Turkish Airlines
If your layover is longer than 12 hours, Turkish Airlines provides a complimentary hotel accommodation service, where passengers can rest and relax in a comfortable hotel room before continuing their journey. The hotel accommodation service is available to passengers traveling in Economy Class and is completely free of charge. Turkish Airlines covers the cost of the hotel room and transportation to and from the airport, making it a convenient and cost-effective option for those with long layovers. To qualify for the hotel accommodation service, you can book your room at the Turkish Airlines Hotel Desk in the airport’s transit area.
Enjoy the Istanbul Airport layover
In conclusion, a layover in Istanbul is an opportunity to experience one of the world’s most incredible cities, even if only for a short time. So why not make the most of your layover and explore Istanbul’s history, culture, and cuisine? Whether you choose to explore the city on a guided tour, rest in a comfortable hotel room, or simply relax in one of the airport VIP lounges, you will enjoy for sure!