If you plan your trip with the aid of an online booking agency, particularly one of those discount ones, chances are you will always benefit from the best flight-path which ensures you have minimal chances of suffering a flight delay in addition to having to contend with very little by way of stopover times. If the flight-path suggested by the best of these online flight search platforms includes a long stopover, that means that it’s as good as it gets and in some cases I’ve learnt of stopovers which are as long as eight hours!

Explore the destination’s short activities

Okay, so while eight hours makes for one of the longer stopovers, by no means is it the longest one I’ve heard of. The longest one I’ve heard of was experienced by a South African friend of ours who was going back home from his Egyptian trip through the UAE and Mahé Island, Seychelles, where there would be a 20-hour (overnight) stopover.

The flight landed on the island at 13:00, which means he could make full use of the time to actually explore the destination and stay overnight, so there are indeed some short activities to indulge in, many of which are designed for such long (short for activities) stopovers.

Explore the duty-free mall

This perhaps applies more to flight delays than long stopovers because it’s something one usually does in any case, but yeah, you can really use the time to properly explore the duty-free malls and make conversation with the staff to see if they perhaps don’t have much better deals for you than those which are openly displayed. This is how you can by-pass some extra luggage charges and perhaps have some of the items you buy shipped off to your home or final destination.

Get some sleep (if you can)

For those for whom sleeping in the plane is downright impossible, the airport benches can make for a great place to try and catch-up on some much needed and precious sleep.

Milk the delay

If you claim here you can perhaps get some good compensation in the case that your layover is as a result of a flight delay as opposed to a regular stopover, otherwise you should do your best to milk the delay in the moment as well. Have a chat with the airport manager and voice your concerns. This is how people land free passes to the business lounge and in some cases even get special immigration clearance from customs to perhaps “land” in the country and explore the destination they were otherwise just transitioning through for a bit.

Catch up on some travel-planning admin

There is always some admin associated with travel you can catch up on, even if it means organising some of the photos you’ve snapped up to so far along your trip, otherwise you can use the time to finalise bookings for some of the activities which are going to complement your lodging or perhaps just hunt discount coupons and codes so that you can save some money while exploring your destination.