For backpackers, sleeping in airports is a common practice. At first I felt that it may be a bit embarrassing to do it, letting the whole world see you as you drift into la-la land and dream of all the other places you would want to visit. Well, I had the pleasure (and displeasure) of trying to sleep in an airport during my Hongkong trip last year.
After arriving at the Hongkong International Airport (HKIA) at around midnight (red-eye flights are cheaper), I was surprised to see that there are actually a lot of people that does sleep in the airport! All of the stores and restaurants are closed except for 7-eleven and the airport has dimmed some of the lights for a conducive sleep. I called our hotel to tell the Chinese lady that we have already arrived and said that they can accommodate early check-in but not until 7am. I said it's ok and we can just stay in the airport and wait for the trains to the city to open at around 6am.
It was (supposed to be) summer when we arrived in Hongkong but I was wearing a jacket and jeans in anticipation that we might be sleeping in a cold airport. And I was glad that I came in prepared because it was indeed cold in HKIA. My friend and I looked for vacant seats and parked our bags near it. Since we are a bit paranoid that our bags might be stolen if we were both asleep, we decided to take turns watching it. As I was waiting for my turn, I looked around and wonder how the airport would look like when all the lights and shops are open. I was glad that I had a chance to see it before it became busy and people start coming in.
After an hour or so, it was my turn to sleep. And just as I was getting ready for some shut-eye, two men came and seated behind us. They opened their laptops (HKIA has wi-fi) and started talking, loudly! Some people woke up and looked at the two men but they didn't seem to bother. They just continued talking and I was getting irritated by their lack of consideration.
Thirty minutes have passed and my hopes of getting some sleep were shattering into pieces. I have to sleep because I need the energy for our day's activities. Hours later and the two men were still talking. Jeez! Before I knew it, it was almost 6am and some personnel were already opening up the doors to the train station. We picked up our bags, lined up to get an Octopus card and waited for the train to arrive. I was excited to explore Hongkong but I'm just not sure if I will have the energy. I looked at our first itinerary - The Peak, oh that should keep me awake!
|This would have been what I would look like if I was able to sleep in the airport (Image from travelblog.viator.com)|
* Find out more information about sleeping in airports at http://www.sleepinginairports.net/