Sleeping in Airports

Sleeping in Madrid Barajas Airport

sleeping in madrid barajas airport

If you’re dealing with a long layover or an early morning flight departure at Madrid Barajas airport, you might be wondering if it is possible to sleep in the airport. Our guide to sleeping in Madrid airport provides essential information for seasoned airport sleepers and newbies to help travellers arrive prepared for the experience.

We keep this guide up-to-date with the help of airport sleepers who have generously shared their experiences and airport reviews. If you have any tips or photos to contribute, please take a moment to write a review. Your feedback will help us stay informed about the latest advice for future sleepy travellers.

Sleeping in Madrid Barajas Airport

Locations & Seating

The airport has a modern design, which means there are plenty of seating options, but they are often wooden or metal, not the most comfortable. Keep your eyes peeled for the few benches that are armrest-free. Terminals 2, 3, 4, and 4S are comparable, but Terminal 1 services low-cost carriers, so expect far fewer seats. The airport layout is simple and straightforward, making private corners and nooks few and far between. In case you need to spread out on the floor, bring an extra layer because the ground is mostly cold, unforgiving tile.

Here are good sleep spots that travellers have reported:

  • Terminal 1’s Mahoudrid cafe is probably your best bet for some comfort.
  • Terminal 3, Gate E82, may have some armrest-free benches.
  • Terminal 4’s McDonald’s has soft seating.
  • Terminal 4, airside, head to the top floor. Behind the Iberia lounge is a small, private corner on the floor.
  • Terminal 4’s K boarding area has some sofas, and the children’s play area offers a softer floor surface.

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Rest Zones

Madrid Barajas Airport offers a few comfortable rest areas in Terminal 4S, just past Gate 17. Two islands have six padded reclining chairs each, fitted with lamps, power outlets, and USB ports. The spot has a little barrier wall to provide some privacy.


madrid airport hotelsPrefer some privacy and comfort? If you would like a good, solid sleep between flights without the stress of leaving the airport, check out Air Rooms. Located landside in Terminal 4, Air Rooms rents private rooms overnight and in blocks of 3-6 hours during the day. Shower facilities are available, too. See the hotel section in our Airport Guide for locations, or visit Tripadvisor to find hotel deals at Barajas Airport.


madrid airport loungesWhile Madrid Barajas Airport has several lounges, including some 24-hour options, none have designated sleep rooms or rest areas. If you only want to relax in a comfortable seat for a few hours before your flight, check out this list of lounges in our Madrid Barajas Airport Guide that you can pay to access.

More Airport Services & Facilities

For information about drinking water, 24-hour food & drink options, luggage storage, showers, mobile charging and WiFi, visit our Madrid Barajas Airport Guide.

Airport Conditions

If you plan to spend the night at the airport, here are a few things to keep in mind:

  • Temperature – Expect the airport to cool down at night, as air conditioning continues to run and the overall environment doesn’t offer many warm touches. Arrive prepared with a blanket or even a sleeping bag. A hoodie provides extra warmth if the terminal gets even colder.
  • Lighting – Bright lights seem to be the norm here, even overnight. Arrive prepared with eyeshades or something else to cover your eyes, such as a shirt or towel.
  • Noise – A few travellers reported announcements running frequently, even overnight, but others said there was a generally quiet nighttime vibe. Still, we always recommend bringing earplugs or noise-cancelling headphones.

Security & Safety

Airport staff seem to tolerate airport sleepers. Overnight travellers should expect checks or wake-ups around 11:00 PM-midnight, as security guards confirm IDs and tickets. Anyone without a ticket won’t be able to stay in the airport. There may be processes regarding where overnight travellers can spend the night, varying in each terminal.

At the time of this update, we have no reports from travellers commenting on safety issues at Madrid Barajas Airport. However,

sleeping in any airport can include a certain level of risk, especially when travelling alone. It’s important to take certain precautions to ensure your safety and the security of your valuables. Here are a few tips:

  • Safety First. It’s a good idea to know where the security office is located and look for video cameras where you plan to sleep. You can also ask the security personnel for advice on the safest places to spend the night.
  • Don’t Seclude Yourself. If you’re travelling alone, we recommend you stay near other travellers or close to security. This will help you feel more secure and deter potential thieves.
  • Hide Your Valuables. It’s also important to hide your valuables. Don’t leave them out in plain view, as this could make you a target for theft. Additionally, if you are a deep sleeper, you may want to padlock your bag to something or sleep with your bag up against a wall to make it harder for someone to access zippers and pockets. We have received reports of sleepers who woke up without their phones and laptop bags. The travellers were left with just their headphones and laptop bag strap.
  • Stay Alert. It’s best to stay alert and awake if you feel unsafe or uncomfortable. Drink coffee or other caffeinated beverages to help you stay awake, and remember that you can always catch up on sleep during your flight. These simple precautions can help you enjoy a safe night at the airport.

Pro-tip: If you sleep 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 arrive for morning flights.

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Airport Photo Gallery

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