Sleeping in Airports

Christchurch Airport Guide

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

They are charging folks 5 dollars to sit in a chair and don’t allow blankets.
– Alexander

CHC 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 Christchurch International Airport.

What to Expect

Christchurch Airport (Code: CHC) has a single terminal with a combined check-in hall for domestic and international flights. There are more than 34 retail stores and a dozen or so eateries, though most eateries are located in the landside food court. Some reviewers found the food expensive and of poor quality. Free WiFi is available to help pass the time. For added comfort, economy class passengers can pay to enter one of the airport lounges. See Airport Lounges below for locations and rates.

Sleeping in Christchurch Airport

christchurch airport guideThe terminal currently opens at 3:00 AM daily and closes after the final scheduled flight. The airport’s rules state that there is “no sleeping at the airport” and that “there are no sleeping facilities at the terminal and visitors are not permitted to set up bedding or lie on the floor or furniture. Staff may ask you to provide your flight booking details. If you can prove that you have arrived after 10:30 PM and will depart before 8:30 AM, you will be allowed to sit (not sleep!) in a chair for the duration of your wait. Otherwise, you will be asked to leave the airport. Should you be granted a stay, seating is said to be cold metal chairs near the automatic doors, which allow exposure to the elements all night.

Furthermore, air-conditioning is set to “Arctic,” making the terminal frigid. Come prepared with warm clothes and a travel blanket! Those not wishing to face such restrictions may want to consider one of the nearby airport hotels. There are hotels within a 5-minute walk away and nearby hotels with shuttles. See Airport Hotels in the guide below or read 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 Christchurch 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 loungeAirport 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 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!

  • Air New Zealand Lounges – Multiple Locations – (1) Domestic Landside, (1) Domestic Departures and (1) International Departures.
  • Manaia Lounge – Location: International Departures, Airside, opposite Gate 29. Showers are available. Lounge Access: Prepaid lounge passes • Lounge membership programs.

Related Pages: Christchurch Airport Lounges

airport hotelsAirport Hotels & Sleep Pods

If sleeping in the airport sounds like a nightmare, there are hotels near Christchurch Airport:

  • Sudima Hotel Christchurch Airport – Within walking distance from the terminal. Free 24-hour airport shuttle is available on demand. For airport pick-up, call from the Freephone (dial 27) at the Accommodation Directory Board.  » Check Rates
  • Novotel Christchurch Airport – Located outside International Departures.    » Check Rates
  • Commodore Airport Hotel – Free 24-hour airport shuttle is available on demand. For airport pick-up, call from the Freephone (dial 59) at the Accommodation Directory Board.  » Check Rates
  • Airport Palms Motel – Free airport shuttle is available from 7:00AM – 8:00PM (Mon-Fri) and 8:00AM – 8:00PM (Sat, Sun& public holidays). Outside of these times, the hotel can arrange a taxi at a discounted price.  » Check Rates
  • Airport Christchurch Luxury Motel & Apartments – Free airport shuttle is available from 7:00AM to 9:00PM (Monday through Friday) and 8:00AM to 9:00PM (Sat, Sun, and public holidays).   » Check Rates
  • Airport Gateway Motor Lodge -Free 24-hour airport shuttle is available. For airport pick-up, call from the Freephone (dial 26) in the International Arrivals Hall.  » Check Rates
  • Lylo Christchurch – Accommodations include sleep pods with shared facilities or Twin, Queen and Family rooms with private ensuite. The pods can be rented by the hour or overnight. » Check Rates

An Accommodation Directory Board is located in the International Arrivals area.  Shuttles pick-up by the flagpoles in the Courtesy Shuttle collection area of the International Terminal.

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

wifiAirport WiFi/Internet

Free unlimited WiFi is available at Christchurch airport. Connect to the “ FREE Unlimited Airport WiFi” network.

more airport infoMore Services, Facilities & Things To Do On A Layover At The Airport


  • Post Office – Drop off your last-minute postcards to friends and family from the airport’s mailboxes in the Food Court and International Departures. Stamps can be purchased from Relay – Locations: Food Court • Domestic Departures • International Departures, Hours: 4:00 AM – 8:00 PM.
  • SIM Cards – Local SIM cards are available at the One NZ and Spark kiosks. Location: Arrival hall.
  • WiFi – see “Airport WiFi/Internet” above.

Family Services

  • Baby Care Facilities – Change and feed your baby in privacy and comfort in the Parent Rooms, located in both Domestic and International areas of the airport.
  • Family Entertainment – Make the pre-flight wait time pass with the following family-friendly activities:
    • Giant Puzzle – If you want a fun challenge, attempt to solve the Canterbury Planes giant puzzle. Location: Domestic Arrivals, Level 1.
    • Mini Explorer Passport Activity Book – Pick up an activity book and pencil crayons from one of the information desks. The book has drawings to colour in, fun facts and a postcard, all of which will help keep your little one preoccupied while waiting for a flight!


  • Gym – Anytime Fitness operates 24/7. Location: Spitfire Square.

Food & Drinks

  • Food & Drinks – Food concessions throughout the airport operate with varying schedules, but many are open from 4:00AM.
  • Water Stations – Thirsty? Drinking water fountains are free of charge on the landside and airside throughout the airport.


  • Information Desk – If you have any questions, information desks are available. Locations: Landside, Ground Floor, Check-In Hall • Landside, First Floor, next to Food Court • International Arrivals, Ground Floor. Hours: 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM.


  • Baggage Trolleys – Need a hand with your luggage? Baggage trolleys are available free of charge.
  • Luggage Storage & Lockers – Luggage, keys, bikes, sports equipment and other travel-related items can be stored at Luggage Solutions, located on the ground floor. Sample Rates: Small item (Keys, etc.) for $8.00/4 hours or $12.00/day • Carry-on bag for $10.00/4 hours or $12.00/day.Hours: 4:00 AM – 4:00 PM.
  • Luggage Wrapping – Protect your luggage with services provided at Luggage Solutions (see above). Rates: Standard bag for $15.00 • Oversized item for $20.00.

Medical Services

  • Pharmacy – Unichem Pharmacy can assist with prescription needs. Location: Spitfire Square. Hours: 9:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Mon-Sat) • 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Sun).

Mobile Charging

  • Mobile Charging – USB ports and power outlets can be found at charging stations throughout the terminal. Additionally, wireless charging is available in the airport Digital Innovation Zone, located in the Domestic Arrivals Hall, Level 1.


  • ATMs / Cash Machines – Need cash? ATMs are available. Machines are operated by ANZ and BNZ. 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. Location: Food Court, Level 1. Foreign currency ATMs are also available (see Currency Exchange below).
  • Currency Exchange – Travelex kiosks are available in these locations: Check-in Hall (landside) • International Departures (before Customs & Security Screening Area, 1st floor) • International Departures lounge (airside) • International Arrivals (airside, after Customs & Security Screening) • International Arrivals Hall (landside). Hours: Open for all International flights. Travelex ATMs dispense AUD, NZD, USD, and Euro 24 hours a day from these locations: Check-in Hall • International Departure Hall • International Arrivals Hall.

Prayer Rooms

  • Multi-Faith Prayer Room – Prayer rooms are available for visitors of any faith. Location: Ground Floor, next to the domestic baggage collection point. Hours: First flight of the day to last domestic flight.

Rest & Relaxation


  • Duty-Free & Shopping – Duty-free shopping is available to departing and arriving passengers in the International Terminal.
  • Spitfire Square – Located on Memorial Avenue at the entrance to the airport, this retail hub offers a variety of dining options (some open late at night!), a pharmacy, a supermarket, a 24-hour fitness centre and limited shopping.

Showers, Salon & Spa

  • Hair Salon – Astonish Hair and Beauty offers hair and beauty treatments. Location: Spitfire Square. Hours: 9:00 AM – 3:00 PM (Mon) • 9:00 AM – 8:00 PM (Tues-Thurs) • 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM (Fri) • 9:00 AM – 4:00 PM (Sat).
  • Showers – Free showers are available. You need to provide your own toiletries. Location: International Departures, International Arrivals, Domestic Departures and Check-in Hall. Additionally, there are showers in the Manaia Lounge [see Airport Lounges above]

Things to do & see

  • Antarctic Attraction – Travel to Antarctica without hopping on a plane! Real snow and ice, Hagglund rides, and a simulated 4D cruise are a few fun and interactive experiences at the International Antarctic Centre. Location: 8 minutes walk from the International Arrivals Hall. Follow the blue footprints! Hours: 9:00 AM – 5:30 PM.
  • Art in the Airport – Christchurch Airport features many murals and sculptures, so be sure to keep an eye out for these stunning pieces. Additionally, the airport has many themed air bridges, which are covered from floor to ceiling with an image to immerse passengers in a unique landscape.
  • Digital Innovation Zone – Discover new forms of technology at the airport! The zone allows travellers to interact with unique touchscreen flight trackers, 3D holograms and robots. Location: Domestic Arrivals, Level 1.
  • Ping Pong Table – A game of ping pong is a great way to pass the time before a flight. The table is accessible 24 hours a day and is free to use! Location: Landside, outside the airport’s entrance/exit.
  • Play Me Piano – For all the piano virtuosos, or even novices, a piano is moved to various locations in and outside the airport. With the words “Play Me” painted on it, travellers are welcome to play a piece.

airport hoursAirport Hours

The airport terminal is open from 3:00 AM until the day’s last flight.


Christchurch airport is served by the following airlines: Air Chathams • Air New Zealand • Cathay Pacific • China Southern Airlines • Emirates • Fiji Airways • Jetstar • Qantas • Singapore Airlines • Sounds Air • Virgin Australia.

transportationAirport Transportation: Getting To/From The Airport


Metro Red Bus services connect the airport to the city centre and other Christchurch locations using three lines:

  • Number 3 travels from the airport to Sumner via Avonhead and back, every 30 minutes, seven days a week.
  • Number 29 travels from the airport to the city via Fendalton and back, every 30 minutes, seven days a week.
  • Number 125 travels from Redmond to Westlake via Christchurch Airport, seven days a week.
  • Number 8 travels to Lyttelton, seven days a week.

For route maps, schedules, fares and more, visit the Metro website.

Car Rentals

The following car rental companies are available at Christchurch Airport in the International Arrivals area: Avis • Budget • Europcar • Enterprise • Ezi Car rental • Hertz • Sixt.

Hotel Shuttles

Several hotels near Christchurch Airport offer shuttle service: Aarburg Airport Motel   •   Airport Birches Motel   •   Airport Delta Motel   •   Airport Gateway Motor Lodge   •   Airport Lodge Motel   •   Airport Palms Motel   •  Airways Motel   •   Commodore Airport Hotel Christchurch   •   Quality Hotel Elms   •   Sudima Hotel Christchurch Airport.

See also Airport Hotels above.


Shuttles provide a door-to-door service to all parts of Christchurch using multi-passenger vans. Prices vary based on the provider, so check the rates before beginning your journey. While a shuttle service will likely be cheaper than a taxi, you will share it with other passengers, so expect additional stops. Travel time from the airport to the city centre is approx. 15-20 minutes. Shuttle services can be pre-booked online at the Super Shuttle website.


Taxis are outside the International Arrivals Hall (exit through door 7). Travel time from the airport to the city centre is 15-20 minutes. It is recommended that you ask for the rate before beginning your journey. If you are taking a taxi to/from the airport, the fare will be an additional $5.50.

Regional transport

Regional transport companies, such as Great Sights and Knight Rider, provide various transportation options to extend your journey to South Island cities and towns. Christchurch Airport’s Regional Transport Hub is located at the northern end of the International Arrivals Hall.


Rideshare apps Uber, Ola and Zoomy can be used for pick up and drop off at Christchurch Airport. The rideshare pick-up and drop-off zone is signposted and located behind the Express Park building.

Last updated: 2024-01-31

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.