Sleeping in Airports

Abu Dhabi Airport Guide

Whether you have a layover, overnight sleepover or are just quickly passing through, our Abu Dhabi Airport Guide is a great place to start planning your visit.  Here, you’ll find information on services and facilities available inside the airport – including details about airport lounges, WiFi, mobile charging points, lockers, 24-hour food options, nearby hotels, and everything in between.

When I asked, the staff were more than happy for me to enter the terminal, despite not flying out from there in the morning. – rossh89

AUH Airport Overview

To help you plan your layover or overnight sleepover, here is a quick run-down about what to expect during your time at Abu Dhabi International Airport (Code: AUH).

What to Expect

Abu Dhabi Airport has three terminals, which, at the moment, are not connected by a free shuttle service. Walking between any two terminals should take less than 20 minutes. While the airport has been undergoing extensive refurbishment in recent years, reviewers report that the airport is incredibly crowded, with long lineups during security screening. The airport also has a reputation for inadequate seating and insufficient restrooms in certain areas. All three terminals offer food concessions, duty-free shopping, banking, business services and free WiFi. Several lounges can be found in both Terminals 1 and 3. See Airport Lounges in the guide below for locations and rates.

Abu Dhabi Airport Guide
(Photo courtesy of a guest traveller / 29Jun2018)

Sleeping in Abu Dhabi Airport

Terminal 3 at AUH Airport has been identified as having the best sleeping spots, especially in Gates 28 and 29. If you find a sleeping nook, the terminals are described as noisy and cold, so consider earplugs and a sweater or travel blanket. Terminal 3 also has two dedicated sleep lounges with sleeping pods available for a fee. For privacy and comfort, a hotel is connected to Terminals 1 and 3. See Airport Hotels in the guide below for more details, or read some traveller reviews for more tips.

To help us keep this guide up-to-date, you can add or update information or write a review to submit airport tips and photos. You can also visit the airport’s website for current information. For more airport information, continue scrolling down to explore more in our Abu Dhabi Airport Guide.

In this guide we may refer to locations as “landside” and “airside”. Landside is the public area of the terminal located in the non-secure zone, before security. Airside is the secure area of the terminal that you must reach by going through security.  For more information on Europe’s Schengen Area, click here.

Airport Hours

The airport is open 24 hours.

Abu Dhabi Airport Hotels

If sleeping in Abu Dhabi airport sounds like a nightmare, there is a hotel connected to the terminal from the public zone.

  • Premier Inn Abu Dhabi International Airport – Located next to Skypark multi-story car park opposite Terminals 1 & 3. Direct access from the airport terminal via retail corridor inside of Skypark.   » Check Rates

Visit Tripadvisor to see a list of hotels near Abu Dhabi Airport that can be sorted by price, distance, traveller rating and popularity.

Airport Lounges

Pay-per-use, Single Visit Passes & Lounge Memberships

Regardless of what class of service you are flying, there are lounges that you can enter by paying at the door, purchasing a lounge pass or through a lounge membership program. Visit the individual lounge page for more details about the lounge itself and to also find out how you can gain lounge access with just an economy class ticket!

Terminal 1
  • Al Dhabi Lounge – Location: Terminal 1, Airside. Showers are available. Hours: open 24 hours. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge pass • Lounge membership programs.
  • Diamond LoungeTemporarily Closed – Location: Terminal 1, Airside. Showers are available. Hours: open 24 hours. Lounge Access: Prepaid lounge pass • Lounge membership programs.
  • Al Reem Lounge Temporarily Closed – Location: Terminal 1, Airside. Showers are available. Hours: open 24 hours. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Lounge membership programs.

Airline Lounges

If you are a First or Business Class traveller with Etihad Airways or an Etihad Airways partner airline you may have access to the lounges listed below. For more information, check the airline’s website. Terminal 1: Etihad Premium Lounge (Airside) • Etihad Arrivals Lounge (Landside). Terminal 3: Etihad First Class Lounge & Spa (Airside) • Etihad Premium Lounge (Airside) • Etihad US Premium Lounge (Airside) • Etihad Arrivals Lounge (Landside). Related Pages: Abu Dhabi Airport Lounges

Drinking Water

Information is unavailable. Does the airport have water fountains or water bottle refill stations? Click here to update this guide.

Food & Drinks

Food concessions throughout all terminals operate with varying schedules. Terminal 1 has approximately 16 restaurants/cafes; eight are on the Airside, while the other eight are Landside. Terminal 2 has only two restaurants, one Airside and the other Landside. Terminal 3 offers the most vast selection, with 15 restaurants on the Landside and 15 on the Airside. The airport webstate states that a wide variety of restaurant options are open 24 hours a day.

Luggage Storage & Lockers

Short/Long term storage and lockers are available. Location: Terminal 1, Arrivals Hall • Terminal 3, Arrivals Hall.

Mobile Charging

Information is unavailable.  Click here to update this guide.

Rest & Relaxation Zones

The airport offers areas with reclining seating for people to rest in between flights, but they are generally in open areas that might have a lot of noise for a deep sleep.

Take precautions even when sleeping in the rest zones.  In December 2019, a traveller at another airport reported that money and credit cards had been stolen from their bag even though the bag was right beside them.  Protect and lock your bags as you would sleeping elsewhere in public.

Showers

Showers are available in the Al Dhabi lounges. See Airport Lounges for locations. According to the airport website, free showers are located near Gates 32 and 37; however, a reader tells us they are actually near Gate 35 (you need to go down the stairs). Free showers can also be found in Terminal 3, in the restroom close to Gate 3. See Airport Hotels above for locations.

WiFi/Internet

Free WiFi is available at Abu Dhabi Airport. Connect to the “ADAC Free Wireless” network. Additionally, there are 50 free internet kiosks located in the Departure Lounges of all three terminals.

More Airport Information

More Services, Facilities & Things To Do On A Layover

Business Center – Offers telephone, fax, copying machines, safety deposit, and left luggage service. Location: Terminal 1, Departure Area.

Family Services

  • Baby Care Facilities – Change and feed your baby in privacy and comfort at one of the numerous baby-changing rooms and nursing rooms near all restrooms throughout the airport.
  • Children’s Play Area – When you want to ensure your kids burn off all their energy before their flight, take them to the children’s play area. Locations: Terminal 1, Airside.
  • Strollers – The airport provides complimentary baby strollers to help parents get around the airport more easily. Locations: various pick-up points throughout the airport.

Information Desk – If you have any questions, visit one of the airport information desks. Locations: located in every terminal. Hours: unknown.

Luggage

  • Baggage Trolleys – Need a hand with your luggage? Baggage trolleys are available free of charge. If you want a porter, the fixed rate is AED 21/US$ 5.70.
  • Luggage Storage & Lockers – see “Luggage Storage & Lockers” above.
  • Luggage Wrapping – Protect your bags from theft and damage by having your bags wrapped in plastic. Locations: T1, T1A, and T3, Landside, Check-In.
Abu Dhabi Airport
Abu Dhabi Airport gate area (photo courtesy of a guest reviewer / September 2022)

Medical Services – Urgent and emergency medical care is available at the Medical Services Clinic. Location: T1, airside, near the Immigration Arrival Hall. Hours: Open 24 hours. If you are a passenger at T2 or T3, call the clinic or seek the assistance of an airport staff member for access to the clinic.

Money

  • ATMs / Cash Machines – Need cash? ATMs are available. Fees may apply, so check your bank’s fee schedule and daily withdrawal limit if you are travelling internationally. You may also want to notify your bank of your travel plans. Locations: Landside and Airside.
  • Currency Exchange – Four Travelex shops are located in Terminals 1 and 3. Hours: varies, with many open 24 hours a day.

Newspapers & Magazines – The airport provides free magazines and newspapers available at these locations in Terminals 1 and 3: First & Business Class Lounges • VVIP Lounge • Departure Gates • Arrivals Gates • Food Court •  Arrivals Area

Pharmacy – There are 2 pharmacies: Bin Sina Pharmacy (Terminal 1, 1st Floor, airside) • Boots (Terminal 3, 1st Floor, airside). Hours: open 24 hours.

Phone – Pay phones can be found throughout the airport.  SIM cards, phone cards and headsets are sold at the book stores and newsagents.

Post Office – Information not available.

Prayer Rooms – Clearly marked, gender-separated prayer rooms are available in each terminal.

Shopping – Duty Free shopping and a large selection of retail outlets are available, some of which are open 24 hours.

SIM Cards – SIM cards are sold at bookstores and newsagents.

Smoking – Designated smoking booths and lounges are available in these areas: T1, airside, 1st Floor (Al Dhabi Lounge) • T2, airside, Ground Floor • T3, airside, 2nd Floor.

Spa – Pamper yourself at TOSA Spa. Location: Terminal 1, Lower Level, Airside. This spa offers express foot/back treatments and body massage. A full range of luxurious spa treatments are available to members and guests of the Etihad First Class Lounge. Location: Terminal 3, 2nd Floor, Airside.

Travel Agencies – If you are arriving in Abu Dhabi and need local arrangements or help planning a last minute trip abroad, there is an Omier Travel Agency (Skypark Plaza, Landside) that can probably be of assistance.

VAT Refund – Eligible travellers can receive a refund for any VAT paid on purchases made during their visit. The Tax Refund counters are available in 3 locations: T1, next to Etihad Airlines Transfer Desk (Airside) • T1, next to the Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank (Landside) • T3, opposite Costa Coffee (Airside).

Things to do

  • Golf Course – Located a short drive (7 minutes) from the airport, the Al Ghazal Golf Course is considered one of the finest sand golf courses in the world. If you have a 3-5 hour transit, you can play 9 or 18 holes.
  • Transit offers – If you have a 4+ hour transit time in Abu Dhabi, you may want to take the opportunity to explore the city. Visit the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque, the Ferrari World theme park, Souk Qaryat Al Beri, or zoom around the F1 Yas Marina Circuit.

Note: A transit visa may be required for you to leave the airport. Be sure to inquire before making arrangements to leave the airport during transit.

Airlines
Abu Dhabi airport is served by the following airlines: Air Arabia • Air Blue • Air India • Air India Express • BADR Airlines • Biman • Cham Wings • Egypt Air • Etihad Airways • Go First • Gulf Air • Indigo • KAM Air • Middle East Airlines • Pegasus • PIA • Qatar Airways • Royal Jordanian • Saudi Arabian Airlines • Sri Lankan Airlines • Syrian Arab Airlines • Turkish Airlines • Wizz Air.
Airport Transportation: Getting To/From The Airport

Bus

The airport is served by several lines of Abu Dhabi’s economic public bus system. Buses are air-conditioned and green and white in colour. Bus stops are marked by blue/white signs on the lower curbside outside each Terminal. Departures are every 40 minutes, 24 hours a day, and take about 45 minutes to travel between the airport and the city (depending on traffic). At the time of this update, a one-way bus fare was AED 4.00. If you are flying economy class with Etihad, you may be eligible for free coach service when arriving or departing from Abu Dhabi International Airport. Connections are available to Dubai and Al Ain. The Etihad Coach service can be reserved online up to 24 hours before the flight.

Car Rentals

Car rental service is available 24 hours a day at Skypark Plaza, opposite Terminal 3 and just a short walk from Terminals 1 and 3. Skypark Plaza is accessible from Terminal 2 with a 5-minute drive or a 1 km walk. The following car rental agencies are available onsite: Avis Budget • Dollar • Europcar • Hertz • Thrifty.

Hotel Shuttles

At the time of this update, we could not find any hotels that provide an airport shuttle.

See also Airport Hotels above.

Inter-Terminal Transportation

Temporarily Unavailable. It takes 20 minutes to walk between the two terminals – AUH airport offers a free shuttle service, which runs in 15-minute intervals between Terminals 1 and 2. Shuttle stops are outside Terminal 1 at Entrance 5, upper curbside, and Terminal 2 in front of the Departures Hall.

Ride Sharing

Uber is available in Abu Dhabi. A ride from the airport to the city centre will cost you from 131.00 to 158.00 AED.

Taxi

Metered taxis are available 24 hours a day at the airport. Late-model six-seater Mercedes Vito vans serve terminals 1 and 3. These luxury taxis are equipped with GPS, extra baggage space, and multilingual male or female drivers. Multiple currencies are accepted for payment. Terminal 2 is served by metered Toyota Camry taxis from taxi ranks outside the Arrivals Hall. At the time of this update, the flag drop is AED 25.00 with an AED 1.60 charge per km up to 50 km (9 fils per km above 50 km).

Layover Sightseeing

Do you want to make the most of your stopover or long layover by getting out of the airport to do some sightseeing?  Check out our Abu Dhabi Airport Layover Sightseeing guide or explore Things to do in Abu Dhabi on Tripadvisor.

Abu Dhabi Photo Gallery

To share your photos of Abu Dhabi Airport, write a review or click here to send us a update:

Related Pages: Abu Dhabi Airport Photos

Last updated: 2024-02-06

This guide is for informational purposes only to assist with your planning.  All information, including rates and hours, is subject to change at any time without notice.   The information in this airport guide is based on information collected and/or received from the airports, lounges, hotels, transportation providers, and their websites. We are not representatives of any of the above-mentioned service providers. To report errors or to add/update any items mentioned in the guide: update the airport guide or  write a review.