The dreaded airport layover. A couple hours if you’re lucky — half a day if you’re not — and nothing to do except sit around, eat, drink and wait.
Unless, of course, you’re at one of the increasingly many airports around the globe that offer gyms, yoga studios and other active, heart-healthy ways to pass the time. In that case, use your extra hours between flights to squeeze in a workout before a week full of meetings or to burn off some vacation-related excess.
To get you started, here are eight of the best airports to work up a sweat (and then shower) during your next extended layover.
Baltimore-Washington International Airport | Baltimore, Maryland
Roam Fitness is a new operation that’s trying to put gyms in airports around the world. For now, they’ve got one location inside BWI (with plans to open three more domestic locations in 2018). You’ll find a range of cardio equipment — treadmills, bikes, a rowing machine — plus weights, TRX bands, bosu balls and everything else you need for a proper workout. Afterward, use one of the private showers to freshen up before your flight.
G-Force Health Club
Dubai International Airport | Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Located inside the Sheikh Rashid Terminal is the G-Force Health Club, which features plenty of resistance and cardio machines for a good sweat. If swimming is more your thing, take a few laps in the pool — or take a relaxing dip in the hot tub. The gym continues to feel more like a spa as you discover the saunas, steam rooms and massage rooms. At which point you might just scrap the workout altogether and get a massage.
Ambassador Transit Lounge
Changi Singapore International Airport | Changi, Singapore
Airport lounges are great places to kick back with Wi-Fi and free snacks. Rarely are they also good places to exercise. But you can do that at Singapore’s Ambassador Transit Lounge, where the on-site gym has bikes, treadmills and ellipticals, plus benches and free weights. When you’re done, those snacks will be waiting. Plus a shower. And a nap suite. Maybe missing your connection wouldn’t be so bad …
Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport | Dallas, Texas
Travelers can unwind, stretch and de-stress at one of the world’s busiest airports by partaking in yoga. With two locations — one in Terminal B and one in Terminal E — the complimentary studios offer mats, exercise balls and resistance bands. While the unmanned studios don’t have instructors, they do have instructional videos for beginners and advanced practitioners. (Find similar yoga rooms in San Francisco International Airport and Chicago O’Hare.)
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Pearson International Airport | Toronto, Ontario, Canada
This full-fledged gym offers 10,000 square feet of space packed with everything you could possibly need, including all your favorite machines. If you’re in a hurry, head for the nine-station Fit Fix circuit training area, and you’ll get a full-body workout in just 20 minutes. If you forgot anything or didn’t pack workout gear, no worries: The gym offers clothes and shoes for rent.
Hilton Athletic Club
Chicago O’Hare International Airport | Chicago, Illinois
Located within the domestic terminals, you’ll find the Hilton Airport Hotel. And within that hotel, you’ll find the Hilton Athletic Club, which is loaded with weights, machines and cardio equipment. So make your layover productive by scoring a day pass and you can enjoy a great workout. Or, take advantage of the other facilities and treat yourself to a little relaxation courtesy of the steam room, sauna, lap pool and hot tub.
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Bodystreet Fitness Studio
Munich Airport | Munich, Germany
Bodystreet Fitness is a popular concept in Europe that combines low-impact personal training with electric muscle stimulation technology. Basically, you perform a light workout while wearing strategically-placed sensors, which target your muscles and result in more efficient exercise. It might be one of those you’ve-got-to-see-it-to-believe-it situations, but hey, when in Munich …
Fit on the Fly at Fairmont Vancouver
Vancouver International Airport | Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
The in-airport Fairmont offers packages specifically for travelers on the go. Day passes include access to the hotel’s full-service gym and pool, plus luggage storage and even head-to-toe workout gear if you don’t have your own — or don’t want to unpack your bags.