Sleeping in Airports

Birmingham Airport Guide

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

The far end of the D concourse was very quiet and had some seats without arms. This area is set up for US Airways, possibly their connection carriers – but it was not in use at all on this Saturday. -bexar4

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 about their time at Birmingham International Airport.

What to Expect

Birmingham International Airport features two interconnecting terminals (1 and 2) linked by a central “Millennium Link” building housing shops restaurants and service counters The terminals house 48 departure gates between them, including 24-hour eateries and a large duty-free complex. WiFi is available, and comfort may be found through fee-based access into one of the airport’s private lounges. See Airport Lounges in the airport guide below for locations and rates.

Where to Sleep

Most travellers who opt to spend the night at this airport are doing so to catch an early morning flight. After security checkpoints close for the night, passengers are restricted to landside, and must re-clear security the next day after security reopens. The airport is described as clean and secure, but seating is described as hard to find and uncomfortable. Floor sleeping might be more comfortable, provided one has a sleeping bag and/or travel mat. The airport is brightly lit, and noise echoes at all hours across the cavernous ceiling, so consider bringing eyeshade and earplugs/noise-cancelling headphones. For uninterrupted sleep, there are hotels near the airport. 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 – Location: Airside. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs. [ more lounge info ]

Passes  Aspire Lounge (South) – Location: Airside, next to Gate 1. Lounge Access: Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs. [ more lounge info ]

Passes  No. 1 Birmingham Lounge – Location: Airside. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door • Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs. [ more lounge info ]

Airline Lounges

If you are travelling with Emirates on elite status tickets and frequent flyer membership, there is an Emirate Lounge (Location: Airside, near gates 40-68 on the North Pier). Showers are available in this lounge. For more information, check the airline’s web site.

If sleeping in Birmingham Airports does not appeal to you, there are hotels near the airport:

  • Ibis Budget Birmingham Airport – The hotel is a short walk from the airport terminal. » Check Rates
  • Ibis Hotel Birmingham Airport – (5 minute walk to the airport terminal) Airport shuttle is available. » Check Rates
  • Ibis Styles Birmingham Airport NEC – Within walking distance of the airport. An airport shuttle is not available. » Check Rates
  • Novotel Hotel – A 2-minute walk from Terminals 1 and 2. » Check Rates
  • Travelodge Birmingham Airport Hotel– (4 minutes from the airport terminal entrance) No airport shuttle available. » Check Rates
  • Holiday Inn Birmingham Airport – (4 minutes from the airport terminal entrance) Free airport shuttle departs every 30 minutes from the hotel to the rail station, where you can then take the free SkyRail to the airport. » Check Rates

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

Free WiFi is available at Birmingham Airport.

Communications

Family Services

  • Baby Care – Baby change stations are located both landside and airside throughout the airport. Boots Drugstore, located airside, offers pre-order service for baby milk. Simply place your order 5 days before your journey, and pick up post security, freeing up space in your hand luggage for other essentials.
  • Sky Zone – Fun and interactive games and activities are available in the Sky Zone, free play areas open to children of all ages! Adult supervision is required. Sky Zones are available in two areas: Gate 3 in the South Lounge, near All Bar One • Gate 54 in the North Lounge, near Costa Coffee and WHSmith.
  • Strollers – If you are arriving at Birmingham Airport, there are coin-operated pushcars available once you disembark the plane. Rate: £1 refundable deposit. The return point is within the baggage hall.

Food & Drinks

  • Food & Drinks – Food concessions throughout the airport operate with varying schedules. These options are open 24 hours: Costa Coffee (Arrivals Greeting area) • M&S Simply Food (Arrivals Greeting area) • Spar grocery store (North Terminal check-in area).
  • Grocery Store – If you need to pick up groceries on your way to your destination in Birmingham, stop at Spar. A wide variety of hot and cold sandwiches, take-away meals and general groceries are available. Location: North Terminal Check-In area, landside, Ground Floor. Hours: Open 24 hours.

Luggage

  • Baggage Trolleys – Need a hand with your luggage? Baggage trolleys are available. Rate: £1 or €2 (non-refundable).
  • Luggage Storage & Lockers – Luggage Point offers storage for up to 3 months. Location: North Terminal Check-In area, landside, next to ICE. Hours: 4:00AM – 10:00PM.
  • Luggage Wrapping – Luggage Point offers luggage wrapping at rates from £10 and up per piece of luggage. Dry cleaning, bubble-wrapping, and shipping services are also available, along with a small retail section of travel goods for sale. Location: North Terminal Check-In area, landside, next to ICE. Hours: 4:00AM – 10:00PM.

Medical Services

  • Pharmacy – Boots – Locations: Landside, Arrivals area (Hours: 3:300AM – 10:00PM) • Airside, within the Departure Lounge (Hours: 4:00AM – 8:00PM) • Airside within the Departure Lounge, Gates 1-20 (5:00AM to 8:30PM).

Mobile Charging

  • Mobile Charging – At the time of this update, we did not have any information about mobile charging availability. If you know, write a review or email us at [email protected]

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. Location: Landside and Airside.
  • Currency Exchange – ICE (International Currency Exchange) kiosks are available in five locations throughout the airport: North Terminal Check-In area, landside, ground floor • South Terminal Check-In area, landside, ground floor • Arrivals Hall car hire desks, landside, ground floor • Departures Lounge, airside • Baggage Reclaim area. Hours: Vary per location.

Prayer

  • Prayer Room – There is a multi-faith prayer room located on the Ground Floor, behind desk 28. Hours: 4:00AM – 10:00PM. Muslim prayer is held on Fridays at 1:30PM and Christian worship is held on Tuesdays at 12:00PM.

Rest & Relaxation

Security

  • Express Lane Security – If you want to get through security “quickly” you can pay £3 per person (pre-book online or pay at the Express Lane entrance).

Shopping

  • Duty Free & Shopping – World Duty Free offers duty-free shopping airside to passengers departing and arriving on international flights. The airside walk-through location is opened the longest, from 2:45AM until the last flight of the day. A small variety of retail shops is also available.

Showers, Salon & Spa

  • Showers – Showers are available in the Emirates lounge. [ see Airport Lounges above ]
  • Spa and Salon Services – Manicures, pedicures, facials, massages and more are available at Cloud Spa. Express services available. No reservation required! Location: Departures Lounge, airside. Hours: 5:00AM – 9:00PM.

Smoking

  • Smoking -Smoking is prohibited inside the airport accept in one designated area which is accessed through the Factory Bar and Kitchen (Airside).

Things to do & see

  • Observation Deck – Relax and watch planes taking off and landing from the vantage point of the aircraft viewing area, which provides picnic tables and a great view of the runway. Location: By the Car Park 5. Hours: 24 hours a day.

Other Services

  • Dry Cleaning – Luggage Point offers same day dry cleaning. Drop off items before 11:30AM for return at 5:00PM. Location: North Terminal Check-In area, landside, next to ICE. Hours: 4:00AM – 10:00PM.
  • Early Baggage Drop-Off – Thomson, First Choice and Falcon passengers travelling on Thomson Airways flights can drop-off their bags the day before their flight. You need to have checked-in online first. Location: Thomson check-in counters. Hours: 12:00PM – 10:00PM (Daily).

The airport is open 24 hours.

As of October 2018, Birmingham airport is served by the following airlines: Aer Lingus • Aerflot • Air Austral • Air Canada • Air France • Air India • Air Mauritius • Alitalia • All Nippon Airways • Atlas Air • Austrian Airways • Blue Air • BMI Regional • British Airways • Brussels Airlines • Cathay Pacific • China Eastern • China Southern • Czech Airlines • Delta • EasyJet • Emirates • Ethiad • Eurowings • Finnair • Flybe • GOL • Hainan • Iberia Express • Jet Airways • Jet2 • Kenya • KLM Royal Dutch Airlines • Lufthansa • Malaysia • Qantas • Qatar Airways • Ryanair • SAS • Singapore Airlines • Smart Wings • Swiss • Thai Airways • Thomas Cook Airlines • TUI • Turkish Airlines • Turkmenistan Airlines • United Airlines • Virgin Atlantic • Vueling • Wizz Air Xiamen Air.

The airport is well connected to the bus system, offering everything from five local bus routes to long-distance buses serving up to 35 cities and towns across the UK. Megabus offers budget inter-city services as well. Tickets are not always available on the bus. For fares, routes, schedule information and to purchase tickets, visit the Birmingham Airport website.

Long-distance buses link the airport to over 35 cities and towns across the UK, with services offered by National Express and Megabus. National Express is the UK’s largest coach operator, with multiple daily services available to and from Birmingham airport.

National Express bus tickets can be purchased onboard from the bus driver if seats are still available, or to guarantee a seat on your departure of choice, purchase your ticket online. For routes, schedules, fares and ticket sales, visit the National Express website.

Megabus offers budget inter-city services between Birmingham Airport and 16 destinations, with fares starting at £1 (plus booking fees). Megabus tickets are only sold online. For routes, schedules, fares and ticket sales, go to the Megabus website.

Car rental desks are located in the Arrivals lounge, between Costa and Deli Hub. Onsite car rental agencies include Alamo, Avis, Budget, Enterprise, Europcar, Hertz, National and Sixt. Hours of operation vary slightly between agencies, but most are open daily from about 6:00AM – 12:00AM.

Licensed black taxis are the only taxis allowed to operate at the airport taxi rank, and are available on a 24-hour basis in front of the airport terminal. All licensed black taxis at the airport are wheelchair-accessible and able to transport up to 5 or 8 passengers, with luggage.

Birmingham International Station is linked to the airport by AirRail Link, a free monorail service that runs daily from 3:30AM – 12:30AM (a courtesy bus is in operation between 12:30AM and 2:00AM. AirRail Link runs frequently throughout the day, and total trip time is just 2 minutes. From Birmingham International Station, the following services are available:

Virgin Trains: 3 trains per hour (tph) to London Euston, 2 tph to Birmingham New Street and hourly service to Wolverhampton (via Birmingham New Street)

Cross Country: 4 tph to Birmingham New Street and hourly service to Manchester Piccadilly, Bournemouth, London Euston (via Northampton), Northampton and Coventry.

Arriva Train Wales: Hourly service to Shrewsbury, with continuing service to Machynlleth, Aberystwyth and Pwllheli on one line, and continuing service to Holyhead (via Wrexham General and Chester) on another line.

Last updated: 2018-10-26

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.