Sleeping in Airports

Sleeping in Los Angeles Airport

sleeping in los angeles airportWhether 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 Los Angeles Airport.

Our guide is updated with the help of airport sleepers who tell us about their experiences at Los Angeles Airport. If you have a tip to share, write a review to help us keep this sleep guide up-to-date!

This guide was last updated: 2 July 2018. Read the latest traveller reviews.

Sleeping inside Los Angeles Airport

While the Los Angeles Airport stays open 24-hours, the Security checkpoints do close in the middle of the night in accordance with the terminal’s flight schedules. If you arrive the night before an early-morning departure, they may allow you through to the Secure zone, but if not, you’ll likely have to stay in the less comfortable pre-Secure areas. Be safe by having a backup plan ready!

Locations & Seating
Los Angeles Airport
These leather padded seats make for a comfortable few hours sleep. (Photo courtesy of Claire$$$ – 27Jan2013)

In general, the inside Security areas are more comfortable than the pre-Secure areas. There’s a decent amount of seating, but the quality and locations vary from terminal to terminal. Most seating is equipped with armrests, so try sprawling out on the carpeted floor for rest. Travellers recommend the bigger, more modern Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT), with more amenities and eateries than other terminals. Only a few terminals actually connect inside of Security, so you may have to exit and re-enter your Secure zone as you move around.  [ update ]

Here are good sleep spots that travellers have reported:

  • Terminal 1, just inside Security, there’s a long couch at the top of the stairs.
  • Terminal 3, near baggage claim 6, there may be 1-2 wooden benches.
  • Terminals 4 and 7 have chairs set up in triangle configurations, which may offer some privacy.
  • Terminal 6, armrest-free benches are in the Arrivals Hall, just around from the baggage claim area.
  • Terminal, Gate 64B, there’s a small patch of carpet between a column and a moveable gate desk, which can offer some privacy if you can squeeze in.
  • Terminal 7, Gates 70s-80s may have some armrest-free benches, but as the airport updates facilities, these may be (or already are) replaced with less sleep-friendly seating.
  • International Terminal, Gate 148 may have some comfortable couches behind the Starbucks.
  • Connector Hallway between Terminal 6 and 7 (close to Gate 71A) is reportedly a great place (carpeted and quiet!) to catch some undisturbed overnight sleep.
Rest Zones

At the time of this update, there are no designated rest zones within the airport.  [ update ]

Temperature

Expect the airport to cool down at night, as air conditioning continues to run and fewer people are inside.  Arrive prepared with a blanket or even a sleeping bag. A hoodie provides extra warmth if the terminal gets even colder.  [ update ]

Lighting
Los Angeles Airport
(Photo courtesy of Gabriel / 23Apr2009)

A few travellers have commented on bright lights, particularly overnight.  Arrive prepared with eyeshades or something else to cover your eyes, such as a shirt or towel.  [ update ]

Noise

This is a busy airport, so do anticipate noise no matter the time of day. Expect to hear frequent airport announcements, music and TVs blaring, and the rush of other travellers. At night, the noise level will depend on your location – the pre-Secure zones are likely louder and have more foot traffic than inside Security. The airport is often doing construction in one or more areas, which can get noisy. As always, come prepared with earplugs or noise-cancelling headphones.  [ update ]

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.

Flight Delays & Cancellations

When mass cancellations happen at Los Angeles Airport, a limited supply of cots are available for stranded passengers who opt against getting a hotel room. To find them, ask an airline or airport employee or use a courtesy phone to reach someone who has access to this information. These locations have been sent to us in the past: Terminal 4, Gate 42.

Importantly, you cannot reserve cots in advance and they are only available when major cancellations occur – not simply because you’re sleeping in the airport overnight.

Showers

Freshen up (and loosen those stiff muscles) with a shower before your flight at these pay to enter lounges (a corresponding airline ticket may be required at some locations). Locations: KAL Lounge in the Tom Bradley International Terminal • American Airlines Admiral Club (multiple locations) • Delta Sky Club at Terminal 2 • United Club at Terminal 7 • and the USO Lounge for active military and their families.  See our Los Angeles Airport Guide for details.  [ update ]

Food & Drink

With no 24-hour food concessions available, stock up on food and water before the food concessions close for the night. In Terminal 7, there are vending machines for last-minute snacks and hydration.  [ update ]

Security & Safety

Airport staff in general seem to tolerate overnight sleepers, as long as you understand the Security checkpoints hours, which means you may have to stay in the pre-Security zones.

A few travellers have reported seeing homeless people wandering the pre-Security areas at night. 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.

Lounges

While Los Angeles Airport has several lounges, none have designated sleep rooms or rest areas. If you just want to relax in a comfortable seat, check out this list of lounges in our Los Angeles Airport Guide that you can pay to access.  [ update ]

Hotels

If you prefer privacy and comfort and are willing to pay for a hotel room, you’ve got a few options nearby, but you will have to leave the airport. Luckily, most hotels run free shuttle service and some offer day rooms, too. See our Los Angeles Airport Guide for details and locations on nearby hotels.  [ update ]

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