Sleeping in Airports

Amsterdam Schiphol Airport Guide

Whether you have a layover, overnight sleepover or you are just quickly passing through, our Amsterdam Schiphol 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.

As of November 6, 2015 there was no library, no museum, and no leather sofas. The place was not quiet at all. Everyone said ‘it was being renovated’. However, I didn’t see any construction workers. All in all, and most importantly, there were no leather sofa sleepers. And, no one had any idea where the sofas were shipped to. – Rob

Airport Overview

To help you plan your layover or overnight sleepover, we are here to give you the low-down on what travellers have reported back to us during their time at Amsterdam-Schiphol Airport.

What to Expect

Amsterdam Schiphol consists of a single-terminal with three departure halls and six piers radiating off the halls. It is expected that travellers wait in the departure halls until notice boards indicate that flights are boarding. At that time, travellers head to the appropriate pier to find their boarding gate.

The departure halls are rife with creative airport amenities, including a casino, transit tours, fitness facilities, a library, a museum and designated rest zones. Travellers also have access to free WiFi and pay-to-use showers. For those looking for a little added comfort, there are first class lounges – one of which includes showers – that economy class passengers can pay to access.   See Airport Lounges in the airport guide below for locations and access information.

Where to Sleep

Amsterdam Airport has a wide range of places to sleep; however, if you are airside, you will fare better than those attempting to sleep landside.

Landside – Sleeping in the terminal is only permitted overnight, so you will not be allowed to lay across chairs or benches during flight operation hours. Starting at 12:00AM, security guards patrol the landside area to check ID and boarding passes. If you do not have a boarding pass, you will be escorted out of the airport and permitted re-entry at 4:00AM.   One past reviewer recommended the cafe on the left side of the terminal.

Airside – There is plenty of armrest free seating. Specifically, there are padded chairs, soft benches and chaise lounges between Piers E and F in the internet area. There is also a green rest area with lounge and bean bag chairs before the D gates. Both locations tend to be popular with overnighters so it’s worth showing up early to snag a good seat!

No matter where you plan to sleep, earplugs or noise cancelling headphones and warm layers or a blanket will increase your comfort level. Reviewers have commented that the terminal can be both loud and cold at times.

If you’re looking for uninterrupted sleep there is are sleep cabins and a transit hotel directly inside the airport’s secure zone, and other hotels nearby that are connected by shuttles.  See Airport Hotels in the airport guide below.

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.

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 (ie. Priority Pass). 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!

Passes  Aspire Lounge (No.26) – Location: Terminal 1, Airside. Schengen flights only. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs. [ more lounge info ]

Passes  Aspire Lounge (No. 41) – Location: Terminals 2 and 3, Airside, Panorama Deck on the 3rd Floor. Non-Schengen flights only. Showers are available ($). Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs. [ more lounge info ]

If sleeping in Amsterdam Airports does not appeal to you, there are transit hotels inside Schiphol Airport as well as hotels at the airport (but outside the terminal):

In Transit Mercure Schiphol Terminal – Located after Customs in the transit area of Lounge 3, 1st floor. Access via entry point between Gates E & F. From outside the airport, go through Departures Hall 3 and pass through security between check-in desk 22 and 23. Day rooms are available from 10:00AM to 7:00PM. You must have a passport and ticket for a flight departing same or next day. » Check Rates

In Transit YotelAir – Located in the airside/transit area of the main terminal, Lounge 2, near Pier D. Day use rooms are available in 4 hour blocks. There are also shower facilities that can be rented for 15,00€. Due to renovations inside the terminal, be advised that there may still be some construction noise. » Check Rates

At Airport Sheraton Hotel – (2 min from the Arrivals Hall via covered walkway) Direct access from baggage claim. Day rooms available from 8:00AM to 6:00PM. No airport shuttle. » Check Rates

At Airport Hilton Hotel – (7 minute walk from the airport terminals via covered walkway) The hotel is an easy walk from the main terminal. » Check Rates

At Airport citizenM hotel – (4 minute walk from Arrivals Hall 4) A trendy budget hotel within a short walk of the airport. No airport shuttle. » Check Rates

Near Airport Ibis Budget Amsterdam Airport – (7 minutes from the airport) A free airport shuttle departs approx. every 20 minutes from 4:45AM – 1:15AM. Pick-up from platform A9. » Check Rates

To see more options there is a list of hotels near Schiphol Airport that can be sorted by price, distance, traveller rating and popularity.

Free WiFi is available at the airport in 4 hour increments. Connect to the “Airport_Free_Wifi”. Once your 4 hours is up, you can re-join the network to start another free session. If you want to download or stream movies or files, a premium service is available for a fee, payable by credit card, debit card or vouchers purchased in the airport.

For travelers without their own mobile devices, computers with internet access are available for use in the Internet Centres. Your first 5 pages of printing are free. Locations: Airside – Lounge 1 near Gate C • Lounge 2 • Lounge 4 • On the Holland Boulevard.

Business Services

  • Airport Business Point – A waiting lounge at Schiphol Plaza where you wait for business associates or drivers. Location: Arrivals Hall 2. Hours: 9:00AM – 6:00PM.
  • Conference Rooms – Exchange Avenue offers business travellers the ability to rent conference halls and boardrooms. Location: Departures Level 1, 3rd Floor.
  • Work Stations – Set up your own office space at one of the work stations available for passengers. Free to use, the desks come equipped with power outlets. Locations: throughout all airport departure lounge areas, as well as Piers C and D.

Communications

  • SIM Cards – Communicate cheaper and easier on your mobile phone with the purchase of a local SIM card. SIM cards are available for sale in the Airport Telecom Shop or at the Service Point.
  • WiFi – see “Airport WiFi/Internet” above.

Family Services

  • Baby Care Facilities – Feed and care for your baby in privacy and comfort in the Babycare Lounge. Changing tables, seven infant bed cabins, wash basins, comfy seating and other amenities are available. Location: On Holland Blvd., between Departures Lounges 2 and 3. Hours: 6:00AM – 10:00PM.
  • Children’s Play Areas – Kids Forest is a forest-like play area where your kids can run around and burn off some steam before getting on the flight. Hours: Holland Boulevard.
  • NEMO Science Museum – Kids will enjoy visiting the NEMO Science Museum where 8 interactive stations are available to learn about technology and science.

Fitness

  • Fitness – The Sheraton Fitness & Spa offers a day pass that allows you unlimited use of gym, sauna and rainforest showers, steam room and spa area. Located: landside between Schiphol Plaza and the World Trade Centre. Rate: EUR 20. Hours: 24 hours / 7 days a week. * The sauna and steam room are not available between 11:00AM – 6:00PM.

Food & Drinks

  • Food & Drinks – Food concessions throughout the airport operate with varying schedules. These options are open 24 hours:
    • Landside – Balcony Bar (Departures 1) • Burger King (Plaza) • Grand Cafe Plaza (Arrivals 3) • Hello Goodbye Bar (Arrivals 1) • La Place Restaurant (Plaza) • Starbucks (Plaza).
    • Airside – Amsterdam Bread Company (Lounge 2) • Bread! (Lounge 3) • Cafe Chocolat (Lounge 1) • Dutch Kitchen (Holland Boulevard) • Harvest Market (D-Pier) • Mediterranean Sandwich Bar (Lounge 1) • Park Cafe (Lounge 1) • Silverscreen Bar (E-Pier) • Starbucks (Lounge 1).

Luggage

  • Luggage Storage & Lockers – Lockers are no longer available at the airport. The Baggage Depot is available to store bags of all sizes. Rates are € 6, € 9 or € 12 per item (depending on size), per 24-hour period. Heading somewhere warm? You can also store wardrobe items at € 2,50. Location: Landside, baggage depot between Arrivals 1 and 2. Hours: Open 24 hours.
  • Luggage Wrapping – Protect your luggage and its contents with Seal & Go shrink foil for a fee of € 12 per bag (or more for oversized bags). Location: Departures Hall 2 (Hours: 4:15AM – 8:00PM) • Departure Halls 3 (Hours: 5:00AM – 10:00PM).

Medical Services

  • Medical Services – Urgent and emergency medical care is available 24 hours a day at the First Aid Post. The First Aid Post also has its own pharmacy, located conveniently inside of the clinic, and a travel clinic (read Travel Clinic section below for details). You can enter the First Aid Post from its landside entrance in Departures Hall 2, one level above Check-In Desk 16, or its airside entrance on the 2nd floor of Lounge 2.
  • Pharmacy – The Drugstore can be found Airside in Lounge 2 and 3. Hours: Opens 90 minutes before the 1st flight and closes 30 minutes after the last flight A pharmacy is also available onsite in the First Aid Post for patients of the clinic, open 24 hours.
  • Travel Clinic – Medical advice and required vaccines for your destination are available at the First Aid Post Travel Clinic. Contact the travel clinic at least 4 weeks in advance, as some vaccines need to be given weeks before the journey in order to be effective. Location: At the First Aid Post. You can enter the First Aid Post from its landside entrance in Departures Hall 2, one level above Check-In Desk 16, or its airside entrance on the 2nd floor of Lounge 2. Hours: 8:30AM – 4:30PM.

Mobile Charging

  • Mobile Charging – Charge your laptop while you get a little work done, by using one of the many work stations located throughout all airport departure lounge areas, as well as Piers C and D. Each workstation offers compact work space with built-in power outlets for charging. Charging stations are also available next to the blue or white payphones located throughout the airport.

Money

  • ATMs / Cash Machines – Need cash? ATMs are available. Fees may apply, so be sure to check your bank’s fee schedule and your daily withdrawal limit if you are travelling internationally. You may also want to notify your bank of your travel plans. Locations: Airside and Landside. Schiphol also offers the first bitcoin machine in Europe. Exchange your remaining remaining euros for bitcoins or erhereum (maximum redeemable amount is 100€). Location: Landslide, Plaza.
  • Banking Services – ABN AMRO offers full-service banking and foreign currency exchange at kiosks located throughout the airport. Some ABN AMRO ATMs dispense foreign currency. The ATM in Plaza only dispenses Euro. Hours: Vary, with most ABN AMRO desk locations open from 6:00AM – 9:00PM.
  • Currency Exchange – GWK Travelex offers foreign currency exchange and foreign currency ATMs in these locations:
    • GWK Travelex – Locations: Departure Lounge 1, start of D Pier (Hours: 6:00AM – 8:30PM) • Arrivals Hall 3 (Hours: 6:00AM – 10:00PM) • F-Pier and G-Pier (Hours: 6:00AM – 8:00PM).
    • ABN AMRO – Locations: Landside: Schiphol Plaza. Airside: Lounge 1 • Lounge 2 • Lounge 3 • D-Pier. Hours: vary by location but most are open at least 8:00AM – 9:00PM.

Prayer

Prayer Rooms – Pray or meditate in the peaceful interfaith, non-denominational Meditation Centre. Amenities include an onsite library with religious books in different languages. Rotating Anglican, Roman Catholic, and Protestant church services are held daily at 11:00AM. Location: Airside, near the F gates. Hours: Open 24 hours. The Meditation Centre office is open 9:00AM – 5:00PM.

Rest & Relaxation

  • Cots – In the event of bad weather or massive flight cancellations, this airport has a supply of cots for stranded travellers. If you are stranded during a weather delay, contact an airport employee to find out when the cots are located. Unfortunately, the cots are not available for travellers who simply decide to spend the night in the airport. Due to the amount of wacky email we receive about this, we’ll also let you know that cots cannot be “reserved” and we don’t know where they are kept. Please speak to a gate agent or an airport employee.
  • Hotels – see the “Airport Hotels” section above.
  • Lounges – see the “Airport Lounges” section above.
  • Massages
    • Massage-O-Matic – Enjoy a shiatsu massage chair which features relaxation with music. Duration: 8 minutes. Location: Landside, Arrivals 4. Airside: 9 different locations. Rate: 2,00€.
    • XpresSpa – Stop by to enjoy a short 15 minute or long 30 minute chair massage. Facials, manicures, pedicures are also available. Locations: Airside, D Gates • Lounge 2, Level II • Lounge 3.
  • Rest Zone – The airport has 5 rest zones with reclining relaxation chairs. Locations: Gates D, Two locations near Gates E (upstairs), Near the entrance to Gate D (upstairs), Near the entrance to Gates C. These locations may have changed during the recent renovation. Rate: Free.

Shopping

Duty Free & Shopping – Tax-free shopping is available at all airside shops for all passengers. Prices are generally lower here than they are most other stores in the Netherlands. Exceptions to the rule are books, magazines, and flowers, for which all passengers pay tax, and tobacco products, which are tax-free only for passengers (boarding pass required). In addition, you will find many shops to pass the time while at the airport. Check out the Go Gourmet or Go Home (3 locations Airside) for any last minute needs. Hours: 1.5 hours before first flight – 30 minutes before last departure.

Showers & Spa

  • Shower – There are a few areas in the terminal where you can enjoy a shower:
    • Mercure Hotel – Location: Airside, Lounge 3, Upper Level, piers F, G and H (opposite KLM Crown Lounge). Rate: € 19,50 (including towels and toiletries).
    • Yotel – Location: Airside, Lounge 2, Upper Level, piers D and E (opposite the M&M’s store). Two shower cabins are available. Rates: € 15.00 for up to 1 hour (including towels and toiletries).
  • Spa & Salon Services – There are a few spas and salons at Schiphol Airport:
    • Rituals Spa – Location: Departure Lounge 1 (Follow the signs to Pier B/C). Hours: 6:00AM – 8:00PM.
    • XpresSpa -Manicures, pedicures, facials, massages and other express services are available at XpresSpa. Locations: Lounge 3, airside, top level • Lounge 2, airside, top level • Pier D, airside, near Starbucks. Hours: Vary per location.
    • Sheraton Fitness & Spa – Ther Sheraton Hotel offers a day pass that allows non-guests unlimited use of gym, sauna and rainforest showers, steam room and spa area. Located: landside between Schiphol Plaza and the World Trade Centre. Rate: EUR 20. Hours: 24 hours / 7 days a week. * The sauna and steam room are not available between 11:00AM – 6:00PM.
    • Coiffure En Vogue – Update or clean up your look with a fresh hairstyle. Location: Arrivals 1, landside. Hours: unknown.

Smoking

Smoking Rooms – Smoking is only permitted in designated areas inside and outside the terminal. Smoking is allowed indoors in specially-designed smoking rooms inside of Lounges 2 and 3. The rooms are conveniently located near restaurants and are clearly marked “Smoking Room”.

Things to do on a Layover

  • Airport Park – Enjoy a touch of the great outdoors from inside! Loungers, bean bag chairs, and exercise bikes are available in this green and leafy lounge. A pre-recorded birdsong adds to the relaxing atmosphere. Rate: Free Location: Airside Hours: Open 24 hours.
  • Casino – Why pay for a hotel room, when you can just as easily blow your money at the casino. Only at the casino do you actually have a chance of leaving with more money than you came in with. Location: Room 2, between Gates E and F. Hours: 6:30AM – 7:30PM.
  • Library – This is the world’s first airport library inside. In addition to books, you can read or listen to music on the iPads. Rate: free.
  • National Museum – The Rijksmuseum Amsterdam Schiphol contains a permanent exhibition of ten works of old master from the Golden Age. Location: Airside, on Holland Boulevard, between the E and F Pier. Hours: daily from 7:00AM – 8:00PM. Rate: free.
  • Panorama Terrace – The Panorama Terrace offers a great view of the aircraft and tarmac. Location: between Arrivals 1 and 2 and 3. Hours: 9:00AM – 5:00PM (Winter) and 7:00AM – 8:00PM (Summer).
  • Transit Tours – There is a tour company located in the terminal that offers transit tours. The stopover excursions are 2-3.5 hours in duration. See more sightseeing options for longer transits below.

More things to do away from the airport with more than 4 hour transit:

  • Museums: Rijksmuseum, Van Gogh Museum, Anne Frank House, Zaanse Schans
  • Keukenhof, to view the tulip displays in Spring
  • Madurodam, the minitaure city is open 365 days
  • Delta Works, Canal trips and the village of Giethoorn
  • Aviodrome, the National Aviation Theme Park
  • The Floating Dutchman, a bus ride on the water. Departures: 10:00AM, 1:00PM and 4:00PM (Wed – Sun)

The airport is open 24 hours.

As of November 2018, Amsterdam airport is served by the following airlines: Aer Lingus • Air Berlin • Air Europa • Air France • Air France • Air France • Air Malta • Alitalia • Austrian Airlines • Azerbaijan Airlines • British Airways • Bulgaria Air • Cathay Pacific • China Airlines • China Southern • Corendon • Cyprus Airways • Czech Airlines • Delta • easyJet • EgyptAir • El Al Israel Airlines • Emirates • Iberia • Icelandair • Iran Air • Israir • Kenya Airways • KLM • Korean Air • LOT • Lufthansa • Onur Air • PIA • Pegasus Airlines • Rossiya • Royal Air Maroc • Royal Jordanian • SAS • Singapore Airlines • Sun d’Or • Sky Airlines • Surinam Airways • Swiss • TAP Portugal • Transavia • Turkish Airlines • Tunisair • United Airlines • Ukraine International Airlines • Vueling • Viking Hellas • Wind Jet.

Schiphol is served by buses from the city and surrounding regions. Bus stops for all bus lines can be found at Schiphol Plaza, directly in front of the Arrivals and Departures Halls. The most notable bus line is Line 397 (Amsterdam Express), for rates, fares and schedules, visit the 9292.nl website.

Schiphol is served onsite by the following car rental agencies: Avis, Budget, Enterprise, Europcar, Hertz and Sixt. You can find these agencies in Schiphol Plaza, directly behind Arrivals 3.

Some hotels provide their own airport shuttle service. Contact your hotel of choice for shuttle availability and service. Here is a list of hotels that offer airport shuttle service:

The airport offers standard taxis, travel taxis (good for groups) as well as business taxis (luxury service). For more information, visit the Schiphol Airport website.

Schiphol Airport has a train station (connections throughout the city as well as connection for long distance travel) located directly below the airport, accessible via Schiphol Plaza and Departure and Arrival Halls. A single-use chipcard or OV-chipkaart can be used to ride on the NS (Dutch Railways), which can be purchased in the train station (see yellow machines with blue signs overhead). “Ticket and Service” desks, located next to the red and white checked cube, provide information and sell train tickets for both domestic and international trains.
For fares, routes and schedule, visit the NS website.

Last updated: 2018-11-13

This guide is for informational purposes only to assist with your planning.  All information, including rates and hours, are 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 web sites. 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, write a review or send an email to [email protected] and we will update this guide.