Whether you are an experienced airport sleeper or new to the game, this sleep guide will give you the essential information to better prepare you for sleeping in Berlin Schönefeld Airport.
Our guide is updated with the help of airport sleepers who tell us about their experiences at Berlin Schönefeld Airport. IIf you have a tip or photos to share, please take a moment to write a review to help us keep this sleep guide up-to-date!
Coronavirus Update: As of this update, we have not received any reviews from post-Covid travellers, so the information may have changed. If you have visited this airport since March 2020, please write a review, send a tip or share photos to help future travellers.
This guide was last updated: 27 August 2019. Read the latest traveller reviews.
Sleeping in Berlin Schönefeld Airport
Locations & Seating
If you are able to grab a seat, let alone a full bench, consider yourself lucky. This airport has been slated for complete demolition and overhaul for years, so much of the airport feels old and bare bones. The seating is not sufficient for the amount of travellers that move through the terminals. The few seating areas that do exist are comprised of metal seats and benches (that, surprisingly, don’t have armrests). The airport’s layout is such that there’s more seating and sleeping options in the pre-Security areas than inside Security. If you are opting for the floor, you’ll mostly find linoleum and tile, so an extra layer or a sleep mat will provide some cushion.
Here are a few sleep spots that travellers have reported:
- Terminal A, inside Security: try pushing together the chairs or tables at night.
- Terminal B, Floor 3 is mostly used only during the day, so it quiets down significantly at night. The benches here have tables between them, so you can sprawl across them.
- The entrance of Terminal D has some metal, armrest-free benches, and a nearby cafe has some couches. Keep your eyes peeled in case any open up.
- Overnight sleepers arrive early to snag a bench in the pre-Security eateries just as they close for the evening.
At the time of this update, there are no rest zones within the airport.
Terminal temperatures range widely, from hot and stuffy to cold and drafty. Dress in layers for optimum comfort. Arrive prepared with a blanket or even a sleeping bag. A hoodie provides extra warmth if the terminal gets even colder.
At the time of this update, we have not received reports from travellers related to terminal brightness. Come prepared with eyeshades or something else to cover your eyes, such as a shirt or towel.
The noise depends on where you’re sleeping. If you’re pre-Security, there’s likely to be ambient noise from nearby cafes that are 24-hours and the other travellers. If you’re in a smaller corner, you may get lucky with little to no disturbance. Cleaning crews are very occasional, and it seems that general airport announcements cease around 12:00 AM and don’t start back up until 5:00 AM or so. Still, come prepared with earplugs or noise-cancelling headphones.
Pro-tip: If you chose a spot near any eateries, keep in mind that the staff arrive early and they can get pretty loud in the kitchen.
Unfortunately, there are no showers available to freshen up.
Food & Drink
When you get the midnight munchies or give up trying to sleep and need a coffee to stay awake, 24-hour food concessions are available. Check out these vendors: Marche Bistro (Terminal A, pre-Security), Marche Bakery (Terminal 1, inside Security), and Marche Arabica Bar (Terminal D, pre-Security)
Rather spend some cash for privacy and comfort? There are no hotels directly at the airport, but there are a few nearby. See the hotel section in our Airport Guide for locations or visit Tripadvisor to find hotels deals at Schönefeld Airport.
While Berlin Schönefeld Airport has a pay-to-use lounge, it does not offer designated sleep rooms or rest areas. If you just want to relax in a comfortable seat, check out this list of lounges in our Berlin Schönefeld Airport Guide that you can pay to access.
Security & Safety
In general, airport staff and security tolerate the many overnight sleepers, leaving most alone for the whole night. Staff may check for your ID and ticket, though it does seem rare.
If you are sleeping in the pre-Security area, pay attention to the other people milling about – they may not all be fellow travellers. Still, no reports to us describe any unsafe feelings.
As a precaution, here are a few tips to ensure you have a safe airport sleeping experience:
- Know Where Security is Located. Whether you are sleeping in the airport by yourself or with friends, it is good to know where security is. Know where their office is located and look for video cameras in the spot you decide to stay the night. Ask security where it is safe to spend the night. They’ve probably seen many airport sleepers before you and they will direct you to a safe spot.
- Don’t Seclude Yourself. If you are travelling alone we recommend that you sleep near other travellers. If you are sleeping in the public zone, make sure they are actual travellers and not homeless people – it is sometimes hard to tell in certain airports.
- Hide Your Valuables. Don’t leave all your mobile devices out in plain view. We have received reports from people who woke up with earphones and no ipod and a laptop bag strap and no laptop bag (or laptop). Same goes with important documents and money. Keep these secure on your body, so that no one can get them without waking you up.
- Secure Your Bags. If you are a deep sleeper, you may want to padlock your bag to something. If your bags have zippers turn the bag upside down (zippers to the floor) or sleep with your bag up against the wall, so that it would be hard for someone to access.
- Choose to Stay Alert. If you don’t feel safe, drink coffee and stay awake and be alert. You can always sleep on the plane!
Pro-tip: If you are sleeping in the public zone, don’t be surprised if you receive an early morning wake-up call. Security is known to make the rounds waking people up as travellers begin to arrive for morning flights.
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