How to make the most of your flight layover – 9 hours in Dubai

I am sure that if we were to choose we would always pick a non – stop flight, where you just get on a plane and arrive at your destination. In reality though this is not always the case as non – stop flights can be more expensive or may not be available and you have to choose a connecting flight. If your layover is for 1 to 3 hours then maybe your only option is to wait at the airport, but what happens if your layover is 4 to 12 hours long? It is then that you have to get out of the airport and explore a new destination at the lowest cost.

Every time I have a long layover I take advantage of it and in that way I have visited New York for 8 hours, I have been to Zurich for 6 hours and Frankfurt for 7 hours. This is the cheapest and quickest way to see the main sights and decide whether you want to visit that destination again or not.

At the top of Burj Khalifa

{The view from the 163 floor at Burj Khalifa – Dubai}

How to plan your layover

Hand luggage: Make sure you don’t have many or heavy bags to carry. Even if you have checked in your bags you may carry a lot of hand luggage that will make you slower and tired because of the weight.

Lockers: Find out if the airport has lockers so you can lock any cabin bags that you didn’t check in or leave any hand bags that are heavy to carry. Usually there is a charge for this service so you could check before hand to find out the cheapest options.

Transportation: Allow enough time for your transportation to and from the airport so you don’t stress about catching your next flight.  So for example a 9 hours layover may translate to 6 hours of actual sightseeing.

Plan ahead: It would be wise to have a plan so you don’t waste time when you are in the airport on how to get to the city and on what to see.

Currency: If the city you are visiting has a different currency then try to use your credit card instead of exchanging money as it will end up costing you more.

Time of your arrival: The time of your arrival will play a major role as you will be limited of things to do and see if for example, you arrive during the night or in the early hours of the morning.

Dubai for 9 hours

view from the top of Burj khalifa

{Amazing man made pools seen from the top of Burj Khalifa}

In my recent trip to Asia we had to layover for 9 hours in Dubai airport, till we got our final flight to Dublin. As none of us had visited U.A.E. before, there was no question whether to visit Dubai or not.

As mentioned earlier those 9 hours did turn out to be a lot less as we arrived at 5 am local time in Dubai, so many of the attractions were closed and we also wasted time in finding our way through Dubai airport, locking our bags and getting the train to the city.

the view Burj khalifa Dubai

Dubai Mall

Dubai is known for its very hot weather so the majority of the sights are indoors. One of the main attractions is the Dubai Mall. Spending a few hours in Dubai Mall shopping and seeing the people dressed in their traditional attires is one of the nicest ways to spend a few hours and get to see the culture.

The view from the top Burj khalifa

{My Dubai crew}

Burj Khalifa – At the top of Burj Khalifa

Choose to visit Burj Halifa and go at the very top floor. A tour of the Burj Khalifa adding on the waiting time to get your tickets and find an available slot can take up to 3 hours or more. Make sure to visit it as the view from the very top floor is breathtaking as it is the highest building in the world. The tickets to the top can be more expensive but the waiting time is a lot less, however  if you book your tickets in advance you can get a very good deal.

At the top of Burj Khalifa - justkassi

just kassi travels Dubai

Dubai is a world of its own. It is such a beautiful place to visit and I would love to visit it for longer exploring every site with more time, but at least we had those 9 hours to get introduced to its magic.


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