TAKEOFFS AND LAND­INGS

You don’t have to waste your time just wast­ing time at the air­port, thanks to imag­i­na­tive stopover pro­grams

Business Traveler (USA) - - CONTENTS -

Stay Awhile Longer In­spired city stopovers mean you don’t have to waste time just wast­ing time

In 1927, Charles Lind­bergh elec­tri­fied the world with his dar­ing 33-plus-hour non­stop flight from New York to Paris. The award-win­ning feat set the avi­a­tion in­dus­try on a seem­ingly never-end­ing quest for flight plans with ever-longer “legs” – skip­ping from ori­gin to des­ti­na­tion and avoid­ing over those pesky stopovers along the way.

While some im­pa­tient pas­sen­gers are mostly look­ing for the fastest, most di­rect con­nec­tions, many of the world’s air­lines – and the coun­tries they serve – have re­dis­cov­ered the old fash­ion stopover. And with so-called ‘bleisure’ travel on the up­swing, busi­ness trav­el­ers are in­creas­ingly look­ing for­ward to the de­lights of ex­plor­ing a des­ti­na­tion some­where be­tween where they came from and where they’re go­ing.

Long lay­overs can be a drag, even if you get to hang out in a lux­u­ri­ous air­port lounge. How­ever, in­stead of a time-wast­ing in­con­ve­nience, here are some of the many tran­sit hubs which have turned the stopover into a bonus for ad­ven­ture-hun­gry fliers. Air­lines, fre­quently team­ing with lo­cal tourism boards, are mar­ket­ing these oft-hid­den gems as de­sir­able and some­times even free pack­ages to boost travel to the stopover des­ti­na­tion.

A stopover is a break in a round-trip jour­ney that lasts over 24 hours, al­low­ing an overnight or multi-day stay in the con­nect­ing city. Stopovers and long lay­overs give trav­el­ers the op­por­tu­nity to ex­plore two cities for the cost of one round-trip air­fare. As an added in­cen­tive, many of­fer free stopover pack­ages and tours.

FROM TOP: A view of the North­ern Lights from Reyk­javik; Sul­tanah­met Mosque in Is­tan­bul

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