Sleeping in Airports

Chicago O’Hare Airport Guide

Whether you have a layover, overnight sleepover or are just quickly passing through, our Chicago O’Hare 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.

My flight got canceled and I had to spend the night at the airport. That’s how most O’Hare stories begin. – hozomeen

As of February 2023, there have been news reports of a growing homeless/migrant population at Chicago O’Hare Airport. If you need to sleep in the public/landside area of the airport, you may want to reconsider and stay at an area hotel instead.

ORD 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 Chicago O’Hare Airport.

What to Expect

Chicago O’Hare Airport (code: ORD) is made up of 4 terminals (Terminals 1, 2, 3 and 5) and nine concourses (B, C, E, F, G, H, K, L and M). Terminals 1, 2 and 3 are in the same building, while Terminal 5 is across a taxiway. An automated train connects all four terminals.

Overall, the airport is loud, busy, crowded and needs a makeover. Reviews are mixed on the cleanliness of the airport terminals, but there are many complaints of filthy restrooms. Bring hand sanitizer! Amenities are limited for an airport this size. Still, you will find several affordable eateries, even though, at the time of our September 2023 update, there is only a Dunkin’ Donuts in Terminal 3 open 24/7. O’Hare Airport has a few unique amenities, including a yoga room and an urban garden. WiFi is available, and mobile charging is available near the gates.   Travellers looking for a little added comfort can pay to access one of the first-class lounges, some of which have showers.   See Airport Lounges in the guide below for locations and access information.

chicago o'hare airport guide
(Photo courtesy of a SleepingInAirports contributor / September 2019)

Sleeping in Chicago O’Hare Airport

While there’s minimal sleep-friendly furniture, a few worthwhile sleep spots have been reported.   Covid-19 has unfortunately changed some of the past sleep-worthy seats, so you will need to roam to find some armrest-free seats.   Explore our guide to sleeping in Chicago O’Hare Airport or read airport reviews for more tips. If comfort and privacy are what you prefer (and you don’t mind paying), there is a hotel situated outside of Terminal 2 and many nearby hotels that offer a free airport shuttle. See Airport Hotels below for more info.

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 Chicago O’Hare 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 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!

  • American Airlines Admirals Club – Multiple Locations – Concourse G • Concourse H/K (Showers are available) • Concourse L.
  • Swissport Lounge – Location: Terminal 5, airside, near Gate M13. Lounge Access: Lounge membership programs.
  • United Club – Multiple Locations – (2) Concourse B, (2) Concourse C and (1) Concourse F. Lounge Access: Pay at the Door with proof of United Airlines ticket • United Club Membership.

Airline Lounges (members only)

  • Delta Sky Club – Location: Terminal 5, Airside, Concourse M, Between Gate 11 and M14. Lounge Access: Elite Status • Lounge membership programs.
  • SAS Lounge – Location: Terminal 5, between Gates M19 and M20.
  • British Airways Lounge – Location: Terminal 5, Gate M7.

Military Lounges

  • USO Lounges – The USO offers two lounges that are free of charge to active members of the US military and their families. Locations: Terminal 2, Mezzanine Level above Northwest Ticket Counter, landside • Terminal 3, Rotunda, Mezzanine Level, G Concourse, Airside.

Related Pages: Chicago O’Hare Airport Lounges

Chicago O'Hare Airport Hotels

 Quick Facts
  • Nearest Hotel:  At the airport
  • Sleep Cabins & Pods: No
  • Day Rooms: No
  • Nearby Hotels with Free Shuttles: Yes

When the prospect of sleeping on the floor or in a chair is giving you nightmares, there are other options for those who are looking to sleep at O’Hare Airport in comfort.   If you are on a layover, you must pass through immigration/security as there is no transit hotel. An onsite hotel at Terminal 2 is your most convenient option, but you could probably find a better deal at one of the off-site hotels offering free airport shuttles.

Hotel at O’Hare Airport

Hilton Chicago O’Hare Airport Hotel – Located across from Terminal 2 and connected to all domestic terminals via an underground walkway. Free shuttle to Terminal 5. » Check Rates

Hotels near O’Hare Airport

  • Aloft Chicago O’Hare – A free airport shuttle is available. Pick-up is at Door 3 in the Shuttle Bus Center, between Terminals 1, 2, and 3. » Check Rates
  • DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Chicago O’Hare Airport Rosemont – Free 24-hour airport shuttle drops off at Departures (Domestic Terminal) and arrives at Hotel Bus Shuttle Center Door 3. The shuttle does not automatically go to the International Terminal, so call the hotel and wait at Gate 5E for airport pick-up. » Check Rates
  • Embassy Suites Chicago O’Hare Rosemont – A free 24-hour airport shuttle is available. » Check Rates
  • Crowne Plaza Chicago O’Hare Hotel & Conference Center – Free airport shuttle is available from 5:00 AM – 10:00 PM. The shuttle arrives at Door 2 of the Bus & Shuttle centre (domestic terminal). Call the hotel directly to pick up from the International Terminal (Door 5E). » Check Rates

For more options, visit Tripadvisor to see a list of hotels near O’Hare Airport that can be sorted by price, distance, traveller rating and popularity.

Airport WiFi / Internet and Mobile Charging

WiFi

Free unlimited WiFi is available at Chicago O’Hare Airport. Connect to the “_Free_ORD _WiFi” or the “Boingo Hotspot” networks and watch an ad for access to the internet. For uninterrupted, commercial-free access, a premium high-speed service is also available for a fee through the “Boingo Hotspot” network. One-hour, 24 hour and 1 month plans are available.

Mobile Charging

Charge your laptops and other electronic devices for free while seated at “Power Stations” throughout the airport. Locations:

  • Terminal 1 – B5 • B11 • B12 • B14 • B19 • C5 • C15 • C21 • C28.
  • Terminal 2 – E8 • F2 • F5.
  • Terminal 3 – G13 • G17 • H12 • K9 • K12 • L10B.
  • Terminal 5 – M13.
  • Individual seats with built-in power outlets are available airside at some airline waiting areas.

More Services, Facilities & Things To Do On A Layover At The Airport

Art in the Airport – Beautiful sculptures, murals, paintings, and exhibits are displayed throughout the airport.

Duty-Free & Shopping – Duty-free shopping is available airside in Terminals 1, 2, 3, and 5. In addition, a wide variety of retail shops and newsstands are available throughout the airport complex. Several Hudson News stores can be found in all terminals.

Family Services

  • Family Lounge – When you want to ensure your kids burn off all their energy before their flight, take them to the family lounge, which is equipped with toys, video games, climbing structures and even occasional live performances. For parents, there are comfortable seats with mobile charging outlets! Locations: Terminal 2, Main Hall, near Gate F1.
  • Mothers Room – Special rooms for nursing mothers have comfortable seating, a sink and a little washing area.
    » Terminal 1 – B10..
    » Terminal 2 – Between E5 and F9.
    » Terminal 3 – Rotunda • L6.
    » Terminal 5 – Gate M8 •M20 • M32 • M37.
    » Multi-modal Facility – Level 1, South Side • Level 1, North Side.
  • Lactation Pods – Mothers needing a private spot to nurse or pump can use one of the Mamava lactation pods. Locations:
    » Terminal 1 – Gates B7 • C11 • C23
    » Terminal 2 – Gates E1 • F1
    » Terminal 3 – Gates G12 • K1 • K5 • K19 • L24

Fitness

  • Health Club – Non-Guests can pay a small fee for a day pass to use the Hilton Athletic Club [ see Airport Hotels above ]. The facilities have a steam room, sauna, lap pool, Jacuzzi and full-service locker rooms. Location: Between Terminal 2 and the parking garage. Rate: The non-guest rate is $15 plus tax.
  • Yoga Room – Relax or stretch between flights at the airport’s yoga room. The room has a wall-mounted TV that displays yoga poses to follow. There is no changing room, but there is a nearby bathroom on the Mezzanine where you can change clothes. Location: Terminal 3 Rotunda, airside, Mezzanine Level, near the Urban Garden. Hours: 6:00 AM – 10:00 PM.

Food & Drinks – Most food concessions throughout the terminals operate with varying schedules. At the moment of our September 2023 update, the only eatery open 24/7 is a Dunkin’ Donuts in Terminal 3, Concourse H, Gate H4. Vending machines are located throughout and are available 24 hours a day.

Pro-Tip: Watch planes land and take off from one of these airside restaurants: Berghoff Cafe (T1, Gate C26) • Food Court (T1, Gate C26) • Chili’s Too (T3, Gate G10) Watch planes on the ground from one of these restaurants: Tuscany Restaurant (T1, Gate B18) • Goose Island Beer Company (T1, C10) • Tortas Fronteras by Rick Bayless (T1, Gate B10 and T3, Gate K4) • Wicker Park Seafood & Sushi (T2, Main) • Starbucks (T2, Main and T3, Gate H1) • Chicago Cubs Bar & Grill (T3, Rotunda) • Macaroni Grill (T3, Gate K2).

Information Desk – Have any questions? There are information desks to provide assistance. Locations: Terminal 1 (Gate B8 • C18) • Terminal 2 (Gate F4) • Terminal 3 (Gate K2) • Terminal 5 (M15, Upper/Ticketing Level • Lower/Arrivals Level).

Luggage

  • Luggage Storage & Lockers – Not available.
  • Luggage Wrapping – Information not available.
  • Luggage Trolleys – At one point, luggage trolleys were available for a $5 fee. We could not confirm this at the time of our September 2023 update. If you know whether they are still there, click here to update our guide.

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.
  • Banking Services – Full-service banking, as well as faxing and photocopies, is available at Seaway National Bank in two locations: T2, landside, Main Hall (Hours: 6:00 AM – 9:00 PM) • T5, landside, Lower Level (Hours: 7:00 AM – 9:00 PM).
  • Currency Exchange – More than 200 currencies are available for exchange (paper currency only) at Seaway National Bank in these six locations:
    • Terminal 1 – Airside, near Gate B9 • C18.
    • Terminal 2 – Landside, Gate K10A • F10.
    • Terminal 3 – Airside, Gate K11.
    • Terminal 5 – Landside, Upper Level  • Landside, Lower Level.

Postal Services – At one point, there were mailboxes throughout Terminal 1 • Terminal 2 • Terminal 3 • Terminal 5. We could not confirm this at the time of our September 2023 update. If you know whether they are still there, click here to update our guide.

Rest & Relaxation

  • Cots –  At one point, the airport provided cots, pillows, blankets, and toiletry kits. According to a traveller in June 2021, this service is no longer offered, likely due to Covid. If you know whether these are still available for passengers, click here to update our guide.
  • Hotels – see “Airport Hotels” above.
  • Lounges – see “Airport Lounges” above.
  • Rest Zones – No dedicated sleeping areas, quiet areas or rest zones exist. If this information has changed, click here to update this guide.

Prayer – If you need a quiet place for prayer or meditation, visit the interfaith O’Hare International Airport Chapel. Prayer rugs, religious books, rosaries, and Juma ablution (wudu) facilities are available. Location: T2, landside, Mezzanine Level, near the USO Lounge and above the Delta ticket counters.

Showers – Freshen up at the Hilton Athletic Club [ see Health Club above ], the American Airlines Admirals Club (Terminal 3, Concourse H/K) or United Polaris Lounge (Terminal 1, Concourse C, Gate C18). [ see Airport Lounges above ]

SIM Cards – A reader has asked us to include where to buy SIM Cards. If you know, click here to update this airport guide.

Smoking – Designated smoking areas are located outside of the terminals.

Spa & Salon Services

  • Spa / Beauty– Manicures, pedicures, facials, massages and more are available at Terminal Getaway Spa. Three locations: T1, airside, Gate B12. Hours: 10:0AM – 6:00 PM (Mon, Thu, Fri, Sun) • 12:00 PM – 6:00 PM (Tue, Wed) • 1:00 PM – 6:00 PM (Sat). • T3, airside, Gate H1 (Hours: 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Mon, Thu, Fri, Sun) • 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM (Tue, Wed) • 1:00 PM – 6:00 PM (Sat).
  • Barber – If you want a quick trim or your beard needs a touch-up, The Barber Shop is conveniently located for passengers. Stop by the Hilton Chicago O’Hare for a $50 haircut or a $40 shave. Location: Between Terminal 2 and the parking garage. Hours: 9:00 AM – 7:00 PM (Mon – Fri) • 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Sat) • 12:00 PM – 5:00 PM (Sun).

Traveler’s Aid – This non-profit organization assists stranded and distressed passengers. Volunteers assist passengers with general airport and destination queries for situations such as transportation assistance, lost or stolen money, wiring money, emergency housing, etc. The staff in the info booths and the main office can assist with crisis intervention information and social services for travellers and visitors. Locations:

  • Main Office – Location: Terminal 2, Airside, next to Children’s Museum.
  • Terminal 1 – Airside, near Gate B8 • Airside, near Gate C18
  • Terminal 2 – Airside, near Gate F4
  • Terminal 3 – Airside, near Gate K2
  • Terminal 5 – Upper Level Lobby, M15 • Lower Level Lobby.

Urban Garden – An exhibit of over 26 different plants showcasing the sustainability of aeroponic gardening. Locations: Terminal 1 and Terminal 2.

WiFi – see “Airport WiFi/Internet” above.

Related Pages: Things to do at Chicago O’Hare Airport

Airport Hours

The airport is open 24 hours.

Keep in mind that airline check-in and baggage drop hours vary according to the flight schedule. Check these hours with your airline. If you are in the public area (landside), you will not be able to get through to the secure area (airside) until the morning. The TSA security screening checkpoint and the TSA pre-checkpoints have different time schedules. TSA security screening checkpoint Hours: 3:30AM– 11:00PM. Tsa pre-checkpoints Hours: 4:30AM– 8:00PM.

  • Checkpoint 1 (Terminal 1): 3:15AM – 11:00PM
  • Checkpoint 2 (Terminal 1): 4:15AM – 7:45PM
  • Checkpoint 3 (Terminal 1): 3:45AM – 8:00PM
  • Checkpoint 5 (Terminal 3): 3:30AM – 8:30PM
  • Checkpoint 6 (Terminal 3): 3:45AM – 8:00AM
  • Checkpoint 7 (Terminal 3): 3:15AM – 9:00PM
  • Checkpoint 7A (Terminal 3): 3:15AM – 11:00PM
  • Checkpoint 8 (Terminal 3): 4:00AM – 8:30PM
  • Checkpoint 9 (Terminal 3): 3:15AM – 8:00PM
  • Checkpoint 10 (Terminal 5): open 24 hours

Times are subject to change without notice.

Airlines

Chicago O’Hare airport is served by the following airlines: Aer Lingus • Aeroméxico • Air Canada • Air France • Air India • Air New Zealand • Air Serbia • Alaska Airlines • All Nippon Airways • American Airlines • Austrian Airlines • British Airways • Cape Air • Cathay Pacific • Contour Airlines • Copa Airlines • Delta Air Lines • Denver Air Connection • EVA Air • Emirates • Ethiopian Airlines • Etihad Airways • Finnair • Frontier Airlines • Iberia • Icelandair • Japan Airlines • Jetblue • KLM • Korean Air • LOT • Lufthansa • Qatar Airways • Royal Jordanian • Swiss • SAS • Southern Airways Express • Southwest Airlines • Spirit Airlines • Sun Country • TAP Air Portugal • Turkish Airlines • United Airlines • VivaAerobus • Volaris • WestJet Airlines.

Airport Transportation: Getting To/From The Airport

Bus

Several CTA public bus routes serve O’Hare Airport from points all over Chicago. For more information on routes and fares, visit the Chicago Transit Authority website.

PACE suburban public bus system serves the Chicago area suburbs. Two PACE bus routes serve the airport directly: Routes 250 and 330. Other PACE bus routes connect to the airport via stops at Blue Line train stations. For fares and information, go to the PACE bus website.

O’Hare Airport is served by several regional bus companies, transporting passengers between the airport and destinations in Illinois, Wisconsin, and Indiana. Contact your service provider of choice for further information.

Car Rentals

The following car rental agencies serve O’Hare: Alamo • Avis • Budget • Dollar • Enterprise • Fox • Hertz • National • Payless • Routes • Sixt • Thrifty. Each agency offers its own 24-hour courtesy shuttle service, picking up passengers at designated areas outside baggage claim on the Arrivals lower level.

Hotel Shuttles

Several hotels near Chicago O’Hare Airport offer complimentary airport shuttle service: Aloft Chicago O’Hare •   Best Western at O’Hare •   Candlewood Suites   •   Crowne Plaza   •   Doubletree Hotel   •   Embassy Suites by Hilton   •    Four Points by Sheraton   •   Hampton Inn   •   Hilton Chicago O’Hare Airport   •   Hilton Rosemont / Chicago O’Hare •   Holiday Inn & Suites   •   Hyatt Place Chicago/O’Hare Airport   •   LoewsHotel   •   Quality Inn O’Hare Airport   •   Residence Inn   •   Sheraton Suites   •   Sonesta Chicago O’Hare Airport   •    The Rose Hotel   •   Wyndham Hotel.

Shuttles depart from the “Bus/Shuttle Center,” located on the main level of the parking garage between elevator centres 3 and 4.

See also Airport Hotels above.

Inter-Airport Transportation

For connections between O’Hare and Midway, you can take the CTA with one transfer downtown. This is your most economical option, but it is a time-consuming 2-hour journey. For more information visit the CTA website.

Taxi is probably your best bet, although you will pay more (approx. $37).

Inter-Terminal Transportation

Passengers can get around the airport complex using the ATS, a free 24-hour automated train service. Trains run frequently every 3-5 minutes during peak times and travel a 10-minute circuit between all terminals, the Multi-Modal Facility for rental cars, airport parking lot F, the PACE bus stop, the Kiss’ N Fly drop-off point, and Metra. Trains and stations are wheelchair-accessible.

Ride Share Apps

If you have ordered a car via a Ride Share app, the waiting area location is Terminal 2 (Upper Level, between Door 2A and Door 2D). The pick-up locations are: Black Zone A, outside vestibule 2A • Blue Zone B, outside vestibule 2A • Orange Zone C, outside vestibule 2B, and Green Zone D, outside vestibule. A lift to Downtown Chicago will cost you from $28 to $38.

Shared Ride Shuttle

Go Airport Express provides door-to-door shared ride or exclusive ride service between the airport, the Chicago metropolitan area, and the Chicago Midway Airport. Shuttles depart every 15 minutes from Arrivals, Lower Level outside of all Terminals. Exit Doors: Terminal 1 (Door 1E), Terminal 2 (Door 2E), Terminal 3 (Door 3E) and Terminal 5 (Door 5E).
Wheelchair-accessible shuttles are available, but advanced reservation is strongly suggested.

Taxi

O’Hare Airport is served by licensed, metered taxis, with an average fare of $30 – $40 (as of September 2023) to downtown Chicago. Taxi stands are located curb front on the lower level of the terminals. Wheelchair-accessible taxis (WAV) can be requested by calling Open Taxis central dispatch. For safety reasons, do not accept airport rides from a cab not operating from the designated taxi stands.

Trains

The CTA Blue Line, or “L” train, offers 24-hour train service between O’Hare Blue Line station to Forest Park via downtown Chicago. O’Hare’s Blue Line station is located on the lower level of the parking garage and can be reached on foot or by ATS (Airport Transit System). Fares can be purchased with cash or credit cards from the vending machines outside the station. For information on schedules and fares, go to the CTA website.

Metra offers commuter trains throughout the Chicago area. The North Central Service connects Union Station in downtown Chicago to the North Central suburbs, terminating at Antioch. To access the Metra from the airport, take the shuttle bus to the Multi-Modal Facility and walk across the street to the Metra station. Tickets can be purchased on the train. Fares are determined by the zones travelled. For more information, visit the Metra website.

Chicago O'Hare Airport Photos

Here are a few photos of Chicago O’Hare Airport that travellers have sent to us or included in their reviews. If you would like to include your airport photos, use our review form.

Related Pages: Chicago O’Hare 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.