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Top free airport layover tours

Airports don’t always have to be associated with long queues, pricey coffee, tedious waiting hours and jet lag. Thanks to enterprising airlines, airports and tourism boards, even layovers can now provide for time-of-your-life experiences! Gather around, here are some exciting and free airport layover tours to make your day!

Hm, who else can make your day? We bet Pickyourtrail can!

Changi airport, Singapore

Layover time: 5 – 24 hours

Changi Airport
Image credit – jcdecaux

If Singapore Airport’s enormous shopping arena, butterfly garden and other amenities seem like a dull thud against the exciting city calling out to you, sign up for one (or both, your call) of Changi Airport‘s free city tours. The Heritage tour lasting 2 – 2.5 hours will take you across Singapore’s neighbourhoods like Little India and Kampong Glam. To catch a bit of Singapore’s nightlife and spy on the iconic Singapore Flyer and Merlion Park in their all their well lit glory, take the City lights tour.

Note: Changi Airport organizes four Heritage tours, two City Lights tour in a day.

Get those cameras out!

Incheon International airport, Korea

Layover time: 2 – 6 hours & more

Incheon Airport
Image credit – airportcarsonline

Get exploring and moving in Korea. The Incheon Airport’s free city tours begin at 8 in the morning. Offering a range of tours, you can choose from the 2 hour Temple Tour or, for the more adventurous, the Gwangmyeong Cave Tour. Not much time to spare? Choose the shortest hour-long tour of the ancient Buddhist Yonggungsa Temple. For those wary of leaving the airport premises, sign up for the Incheon Airport Culture Tour. Taking you through Arrival Hall’s Culture Street, a traditional craft gallery, Traditional Korean Culture Center and climaxing with a Classic concert.

Note: Offers 8 tours, operating between 8 am and 3 pm.

Taiwan Taoyuan international airport, Taiwan

Layover time: 7 – 24 hours

Taiwan Taoyuan international airport
Image credit – archdaily

Discovering Taiwan right up your bucketlist? Well, count this layover a blessing in disguise. The Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport organizes free half-day tours that will take you to the city’s cultural and historic attractions.

Note: Limited to 18 passengers only, the tours are offered on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Narita International Airport, Japan

Layover time: 5 hours & more

Touring Japan

Get to know Japan better. As a part of its Transit & Stay program, the Narita International Airport lets you choose between spending your layover sheltered in Tokyo’s shopping arena or discovering the city on a 3 hour tour with a guide. The guided tours also include exploration, cuisine tasting, and culture indulgence of the nearby towns.

Note: Narita International airport offers 5 tours in total. These are also open to guests at hotels nearby, too! 


Ataturk Airport, Istanbul

Layover time: 6 hours & more

Touring Istanbul
Image credit – dailyturkeytour

As a part of Touristanbul, the Ataturk Airport offers a 5 hour city tour that takes you across Istanbul’s many city attractions like Blue Mosque Taksim Square, Grand Covered Bazar and more. You will also be ushered into the best restaurants for breakfast / lunch / dinner.

Note: You must be flying with Turkish airlines and have a Turkish visa.   

New Doha International Airport, Qatar

Layover time: 5 hours & more

New Doha International Airport
Image credit – pinterest

Between 4 am and 7 pm, the New Doha International Airport offers four tours lasting up to 2 h 45 m that will show you the man-made island of Pearl Qatar, Katara Cultural Village, Museum of Islamic Art and more. Buckle up for an unforgettable experience.

Note: You must be flying with Qatar Airways to sign up for any of the tours.

Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam

Layover time: 6 hours & more

Slightly unique, this is a layover tour organized entirely by the KLM Dutch Airlines. Their ‘Layover with a Local’ program requires passengers to fill a questionnaire, who will then be paired with an English speaking local. Your local guide will then take you around the city – bus tickets and first round of drinks paid for.

Note: You are required to hold a Transit Visa. And, no brainer, be a passenger of the KLM airlines. 

Salt Lake City International Airport, Utah

Layover time: 2 hours & more

Temple Square Tour
Image credit – toursofutah

Tours from the Salt Lake City International Airport generally last about 1.5 hours and lead to the Temple Square – easily accessing and visiting other attractions of Salt Lake City.

No free tours but a layover at Hong Kong can get you a free transit VISA to set you on your city exploration mode! 

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