Sunday, 14 May 2017

Layover prayers

A priest and a rabbi walk into an airport bar... or maybe not!
Beyond chapels, multi-faith prayer rooms are a more common sight in airports around the world. But what if you could really use solace, specific to your faith, and in your own language?

For the next 3 months, travelers at Germany's Stuttgart Airport, can step into the "Gebetomat" and choose from 300+ prayers offered in 65+ languages.

The Gebetomat is the brainchild of Oliver Sturm. The Stuttgart installation is just latest version of Sturm's Pray-O-Matic booth, which the Berlin artist designed in 2008.

In 2012, Sturm's prayer booth popped up at Manchester University as part of a 3-year research project on multi faith spaces and prayer rooms worldwide.

Look for the brightly coloured converted photo booth at Stuttgart Airport in Terminal 3, near gate 310. Prayers are free.

Related resources
German airport offers prayer booth in 65 languages - NY Daily News
Pray-o-mat is UK's first - University of Manchester
Interfaith Airport Chapels in The US: Tranquility on The Fly - Vane Airport Magazine

More resources
Hell Will Be an Airport (A Layover Story) - John Pavlovitz
Stuttgart Airport (STR) Transportation Guide - IHateTaxis

Monday, 13 February 2017

They fell in love on a layover

What if you fell in love here on a layover?
Have you ever wondered what could happen to you on a layover? What could really happen? What if you fell in love? If you think it couldn't happen, read on. It happened to them:

A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage - Mwita and Emma
It is a state of intimacy that we relish living, but due to its abstract nature we rarely pay attention to it. We may not understand love, but we know very well that it “conquers all.” For the 32-year-old Kenyan Justus Mwita, he never expected to be caught by his then Swedish girlfriend’s unblinking eyes, which left him both taken aback and pleased while he was waiting for his next flight to Nairobi at Doha’s international airport (Qatar)... [read their story]

IT HAPPENED TO ME: I Fell In Love With A Guy I Met At The Airport and Starting Dating Long-Distance - anonymous
That first plane ride was 12 hours, until Abu Dhabi, where I was stuck for 14 hours and he was stuck for three. I was a bright-eyed twenty-year-old, fresh out of my sophomore year of college. I was off to spend three months in Kenya -- not my first abroad trip, but certainly my first (and longest) solo trip. I was overwhelmed, excited, apprehensive, sad, anxious, and nervous. In the airport, all of these feelings culminated in certain scatter-brained behavior, like continually losing my passport. While I was waiting to board my plane, I dropped my passport... [read her story].
xoJane - Read more stories on the xoJane blog

Related resources - yes, it's what it sounds like
Taxi to Petra: a love story
Looking for love on a layover
Romantic layover ideas
Private Tour to Tunnel of Love from Kiev

Monday, 12 December 2016

Rock Your Layover: Zurich

Have a layover coming up in Zurich? Wondering what you could do with your time?

Here's a little inspiration. We've gathered the following stories from those who have experienced a layover in Zurich. Learn what they did, if it was worth it, and their tips.

Top 10 Tour Picks
Prefer to pre-plan? Here are our top picks.
1. Private Tour: Zurich City Highlights (2 or 4 hours)
2. Private Tour: 4-hour Zurich City Tour
3. Private Tour: 2-hour Downtown Walking Tour
4. Jungfraujoch: Top of Europe Day Trip from Zurich
5. 4-hour Quad Tour in Zurich
6. Swiss National Museum Admission and Classic Trolley Sightseeing Tour in Zurich
7. 2 for 1 Digital Swiss Coupon Pass Zurich
8. Collect the Crystals Scavenger Hunt in Zurich
9. Culinary Tour from Zurich with Traditional Swiss Cheese Fondue Dinner
10. Small-Group Chocolate and Sweets Walking Tour of Zurich's Old Town

FREE Zurich
A few freebies...
FREE Zurich running tours - Run Happy Tour
FREE Zurich self-guided walking tours - GPS My City
FREE Zurich self-guided walking tour - Jetsetting Fools
FREE Zurich walking tours - Free Walk Zurich
FREE Things to Do in Zurich - The Zurich English Student

Getting Out and About in Zurich
Zurich International Airport (ZUR) transportation guide - IHateTaxis
Getting to/from Zurich Airport - IHateTaxis blog
Getting Around in Zurich - Zurich Tourism

At the Airport
Prefer to stay at the airport? There's lots to do...
Services at Zurich Airport - IHateTaxis
Transit Hotel and Day Rooms - Zurich Airport
Showers - Zurich Airport
Layover and Lounges - Zurich Guide
Zurich Airport videos (English and German) - Zurich Airport Magazine
Zurich Airport Review -Travel Adept

Related resources
Travelers' Guide to Buying Swiss-made Products in Zurich - GPS My City
Swiss Parks & UNESCO World Heritage sites - Zurich Region - My Switzerland
Zurich's Best Museums and Attractions - TimeOut
Official Zurich City Guide - Zurich Tourism
Zurich Layover Ideas and Things to Do in Zurich - LayoverIdeas

Saturday, 10 December 2016

10 unique Rome tours

The Colosseum at dusk
Looking for something different to do on your Rome layover?

If you want to avoid the crowds, or have simply seen the big sights, it's easy to get off the beaten track in the city.

Here are some unique Rome tour options to consider:
1. Day Trip from Rome: Ancestors Tour - Discovering Your Italian Family History
2. Vatican's Apostolic Palace Tour ( the Pope's private residence)
3. Borghese Gallery Revealed - A Tour with an Art Historian
4. Vittoriano Panoramic Rooftop Viewing with Skip-the-Line Colosseum Tour
5. Rome Photography Walking Tour: Learn How to Take Professional Photos
6. Rome Mussolini's Bunker and Villa Torlonia in 3 hours
7. Ancient Roman Dinner
8. Rome Art Safari and Jewish Ghetto Group Treasure Hunt
9. Rome Baroque Concert and Tour at Church of Sant'Agnese in Agone
10. Dinner at Local Chef and Sommelier's Home in Rome

Plus 3 great freebies!
40 FREE things to do in Rome - Lonely Planet
FREE museums in Rome (first Sunday/month) - BB Roma
FREE Rome walking tours - Free Rome Working Tour

Related reources
10 Unique Paris Tours
10 Unique NYC Tours
10 Unique Los Angeles Tours
Layover Ideas and Things to Do in Rome
Rome Fiuminco International Airport (FCO) transportation guide - IHateTaxis

Rome Ciampino International Airport (CIA) transportation guide - IHateTaxis

Sunday, 20 November 2016

Luxury Layover: Tokyo

Ginza Wako Clock
Tokyo's Ginza area, one of most luxurious shopping districts in the world
Do you crave a day of luxury in Tokyo? Or perhaps a whole weekend?

There are many possibilities. We've sourced the following to give you some ideas.

Here are some luxury Tokyo tour and transfer options you might consider:
1. Private Custom Tokyo Tour by Stretch Limousine
2. Private Custom Cherry Blossoms Tour by Chartered Vehicle
3. Private Custom Full Day Tokyo Manga Anime Tour by Chartered Vehicle
4. Tokyo Private Custom Full-Day Walking Tour
5. Viator VIP: Mt Fuji Private Tour Including Exclusive Visit with Priests at Sengen Shrine
6. Private Tea Ceremony with Kimono in a Traditional Japanese Garden
7. Oiran Show Including Dinner at Luxury Kaiseki Restaurant in Roppongi
8. Private Japanese Garden Photo Shoot in Tokyo
9. Mt Fuji Private One-Day Tour by Chartered Vehicle from Tokyo
10. Private Tour: VIP Tsukiji Sushi Lesson with a Master Chef

A Tokyo treat to remember your layover: a few luxury shopping ideas and tours:
Top Luxury Souvenirs to Bring Back From Tokyo - Global Blue
Gift With a Twist Tokyo - TimeOut Tokyo
Explore Tokyo's Specialty Shopping Districts - TimeOut Tokyo
Kimono Shopping in Tokyo - Global Blue
Shopping in Tokyo - Like a Local Guide
Specialty retailers in Tokyo - Where in Tokyo
Private Tokyo Custom Shopping Tour by Chartered Vehicle/
Private Tokyo Custom Shopping Tour With a Geisha

Related resources
Tokyo subway stations to get luxury lavatories before Olympics - The Ashai Shimbun
10 Unique NYC Tours
Luxury Layover: London
Layover Ideas and Things to Do in Tokyo
Tokyo Haneda International Airport (HND) transportation guide
New Tokyo Narita International Airport (NRT) transportation guide