Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

My first trip in Bangkok last July 2018 is such an amazing experience. I got to explore the city in the way that I like with less stress, and without doing something foolish.

The whole trip is quite long just to share in one blog post, so I decided to make it as per chapter.
So for today’s blog, I would like to share you a layover survival guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport.




The one of the busiest airport in the country and in Asia, Suvarnabhumi Airport got its name from H.M. King Bhumibol Adulyadej. It means the “Golden Land” which was the ancient name for the Thailand-Cambodia-Laos-Burma region. This is one of the two Thailand international airports serving Bangkok. The airport is located 30km east of Bangkok and operates all 24hours. It has 2 parallel runways and taxiways, making arrival and departure easy simultaneously. The airport also has a business class luxury lounge by Oman Air for the comfort of its travellers. A 600 room hotel, Novotel Suvarnabhumi is right in front of the passenger terminal building which makes it pretty convenient for travelers.
Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

I arrived at the airport at around 9:30AM (BKK time) after a 3-hour flight from Manila. My check-in time at my hotel in Sukhumvit is at 01:00PM so I still have plenty of time to roam around the airport.
Just in case you are not yet familiar with this airport, don’t worry because it got a lot to offer to their hundreds of thousands of guests 24/7. During the layover, you don’t need to go out of the airport. Just maximize the amenities they have and you’ll be fine. 




This airport have different floors, and each one are quite interesting. I didn’t take lots of photos for security purposes, but only manage to take some for basic tourists guide. It has an impressive security facility, well-trained security personnel and staffs, and 24/7 surveillance devices for everyone’s security.
Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

There is a friendly Tourist Assistance Office located at the 2nd floor of the airport. If you need to report any incident then this office will help you. At the ground floor, you will also see the airport’s information center for all your airport/travel related concern and they have English, Thai, Mandarin, Japanese, and French-speaking staffs. 

Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

If you are too tried to move around with your heavy luggage, this office will help you. For a corresponding fee, you can leave your luggage safe and sound. 



Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

If you need to make a phone calls both local and international, you can see these many phone booth inside the airport. This one is what I found at the lower level of the airport, when I had to visit a money changer shop to exchange my dollar.

Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

The airport is so huge, very clean and organized and lots of friendly airport staffs and guards. You can always ask them if you get confused. But I doubt you will because this airport is very tourist-friendly that they have many signs written in Thai, English, Mandarin and Japanese language combo, plus some image icons. 

Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

So I went to the lower ground of the airport and went to SupeRich Money Changerto exchange my dollar. This shop is famous to have a higher exchange rate, which is also recommended to me by my boyfriend. Don’t get confused about other SuperRich shops in blue, green, and orange shops – they are all the same (just maybe having a different manager, that’s all).




There’s also a money exchange shop on the ground and upper floor of the hotel, but you won’t get a decent exchange rate. SuperRich is your new BFF for money exchange.
Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

There are many restaurants and fast-foods joints inside the airport, and are open 24/7. When I arrived at the airport, I was quite hungry and decided to have a sandwich from the Subway, and save my Thai food cravings for the dinner. It is advisable that you have your money exchange to baht and have a few coins with you, but they also accept all kinds of credit cards. 

This airport is so modern you will feel so safe. If you are into no-cash payment, don’t worry because most of the stores and shops in this airport also accept e-payments! Just look for those QRcode and tap your payments, dear!
Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

They also have bookshops in the airport! You can get the latest travel guide here, or any books that will keep you occupied. 

Aside from a high-end hotel, they also have numbers of spa that you can enjoy. Have a relaxing body massage or even a foot massage for your tiring feet. Everything is worth it!


Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

If you are into shopping, there is a huge duty free shops inside the airport and many other shops for clothes, souvenirs, fashion accessories, fragrances and beauty, etc.

Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

You can get a local SIM card + WIFI selling inside the airport, just look for the sign for it. The whole airport is fully equipped with fast WIFI internet connection, and I admit that it was fantastic! I didn’t bought a local SIM card because most of the shops and malls and hotels in Bangkok have its own free WIFI access so, having a local SIM card is not practical, unless you will stay for most than a long weekend. 



Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

There are plenty of taxis going to the city, but to avoid getting confuse I recommend you use a GRAB app to book for your car going to your hotel. I paid 350baht for my private car from the airport to my hotel at Sukhumvit that took us an hour drive. Using GRAB is more safe, and you can charge the bill to your credit card – just don’t forget to connect it before your trip.

Layover Survival Guide in Suvarnabhumi Airport

I arrived during the weekend where Thailand celebrates their significant holiday and also the King’s birthday, and they had a celebration and ceremony inside the airport. I saw gorgeous installations just like this behind me all in color gold, and full of florals! On the far right was an elephant shaped statue which I haven’t took a photo because my feet are so tired. However, it was a gorgeous day when I arrived. 

Suvarnabhumi Airport is one of the very impressive airport I’ve been. Airport staffs and even those police in the Immigration office are very friendly and always smiling, making you feel so welcome to the city. 

Definitely I will come back and enjoy Thailand even more.


xoxo, Blair



120 LOVES AND COMMENTS:

  1. Thank you so much for providing all of this information - I am hoping to visit soon, and I now feel more prepared :) I like you can have your luggage stored easily!

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    1. Yeah so convenient especially if you bring huge luggage. Tourist police are helpful as well.

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  2. You've given some great tips for layovers! I've had my fair share of long layovers, and I wish I had read posts like this for those specific airports before I had left. It's nice to know that you can drop your luggage for fee here. I find that carrying around my carry-on luggage during layovers is very inconvenient!

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    1. Many travelers doesn't like layover, maybe because they don't know what to expect and to do and they are not prepared.

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  3. It sounds like you really maximized your time while on a layover! Thats always the hardest thing to do while traveling

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    1. That is true! I realized that airport is also a nice place to enjoy :D

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  4. Looks likes the whole airport is fully equipped. Would love to visit.

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    1. That's true and the wifi connection is impressive!

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  5. I remember running from the immigration to myboarding gate because my plane was about to leave! That's when I realized how big this airport is! HAHA #neverforget

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    1. Hahaha That's true! It is advisable that you come early like at least 2 hours before your flight because it is the busiest airport and tons of passengers everyday.

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  6. This airport sounds amazing with all the different areas

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    1. Yeah, there are more things to do inside the airport. I have a limited time, so I haven't explore the whole terminal :D

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  7. This is well and truly amazing. It would seem that they have thought of everything that a traveler would need while getting from point A to point B and possibly point C. I could have really used a guide like this last year.

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    1. When I travel, I make sure to have an ample time to explore the airport. I find it interesting coz many traveler wouldn't think that way. Airports shouldn't be a stressful place :D

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  8. These are great trips I will be travelling next month and I am still hoping I won't stay long at the airport but you never know.

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    1. That would be great and hope you enjoy Bangkok!
      This guide is very helpful to ease your worry and stress while in the airport. You don't need to sleep and stay sitting and waiting. You can enjoy too!

      Delete
  9. Very interesting. But mostly all the time, I get lost at the airports LOL. They are huge and indeed a lot of entertainment things and stores to spend the time there. However, I noticed that sometimes you don't have time for all of this while you are walking through to gate to gate and always things happen between that, for my experience. I just like to get to my gate and relax for a while if I CAN DO IT

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    1. I understand because most of us just go to the airport for entry and exist and as much as possible we want to get out of it. However, I make sure I have ample time so I wouldn't feel the rush and stress (good for my sanity). How I wish I explore it a lot during my stay, but I will very soon!

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  10. Layovers can be frustrating. However, I have learnt to carry a book to pass some time

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  11. Jane Dempster-SmithJanuary 26, 2019 at 4:28 AM

    Thanks for the information. I will be arriving into Bangkok airport in April and this is helpful information. Super Rich money exchange is a great tip because you are always wondering whether you are getting the best rate or not.

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    1. You can also get money exchange in the upper floor (if you have no time to go on the lowest ground), but they don't give a better rates. Superrich gives the best.

      Delete
  12. This looks like a very clean and nice airport! I bet staying there for a long layover wouldn't be a problem!

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    1. Yes! It is super organized, airport personnel are very nice and lots of food choices :D

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  13. this was so informative! :) great post

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  14. This layover sounds like it was a mini adventure by itself! That airport looks huge! :)

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    Replies
    1. Yes, I only explored the half of the airport! I need to go back and check the rest :D

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  15. This is a great guide I am sure it can be quite daunting to have a stop over somewhere and not quite knowing what you should / shouldn't do.

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    1. That's right. You don't need to go out of the airport.

      Delete
  16. I love their airport but it obviously look so busy! Somehow reminds me of my adventure in KL airport too where I could shop almost everything without leaving the airport.

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    1. Yes it is one of the busiest airport in Asia, and you need at least two hours to for the whole check-in / check-out, but very organized that it is impossible to get lost :D
      Wifi connection is soooo fast as well!

      Delete
  17. While I'm not sure I'll ever be in that particular airport, it's good to have some ideas as to what to do during a layover.

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    1. Hope I could make a layover guide of airports in Europe!

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  18. Oh wow, what a detailed information you shared here! I just came back from Bangkok few months ago but I flew from and to the other airport, Don Mueang, which is not exactly as modern as this one.

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    1. I haven't been to Don Mueang! Maybe for my next trip I will make a Don Mueang layover guide.

      Delete
  19. I hate layovers! You have given some great tips for them. Being able to drop your luggage off during a layover is super convenient and cool, because dragging your luggage around during a layover is a bummer. Great information that you have shared.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, layover shouldn't be stressful experience if you are prepared.

      Delete
  20. Wow the airport really looks huge, well-maintained and traveler-friendly. I like the idea of the luggage counter, so you're free to roam inside a nice airport and worry not about bringing the heavy stuff with you. Looks like a mall too! :)

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    1. Yeah that's true! How I wish the airports here in the Philippines are just like this.

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  21. These are some great tips for layovers. I am hopping to visit to once. Thanks for providing all these information.

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  22. What a helpful article many good tips specially for first timer visitors to the area. It is nerve racking arriving to a place you don't know and being this airport so big can lead to be late for next flight.

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    1. Yeah that is true, especially arriving in a super busy airport.

      Delete
  23. That airport is huge, and yet it's good that they didn't make it confusing for tourists, and it looks modern, layovers can be a stressful time, but I can see that they made sure that the tourists can do something while waiting for their connecting flight :D love the pictures that you took.

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  24. I'm very excited to hear more about your Bangkok adventure. I will be following your adventure. :)

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  25. This is an informative post and I can relate to it. I spend a lot of time in the airport when I go to pick my parents or visiting some other destination from here. My favorite spot to get a sleep is on the first floor. The seats are wide and like a bed. However the airport is too big and there are so many things to do too.

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    1. Yeah that is true. I only explore almost only half of it!

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  26. I've always loved how beautiful airports can be! If only we'd get more time to spend there..I'd take as much pictures. You had quite an experience at this airport.

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    1. Thank you Dalene. It is quite challenging because you can't take photos easily anywhere inside the airport, only to the places with shops, and info counters.

      Delete
  27. I actually really like this airport. There's plenty to do, plus I remember going for a massage and getting my nails done while waiting for my flight!

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    1. That's right! You can have the whole pampering while waiting your boarding time.

      Delete
  28. Wow! I would love to go to Bangkok soon! :) I hope this year makabook na din ako papunta dyan. thanks for sharing this esp. the "grab" one para credit ka nalang lahat. :)

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    1. Yeah and less stress using GRAB, because if you are not use to the place, you'll go crazy with BKK cabs.

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  29. I try to plan a trip with no layovers. Unfortunately, it couldn't always be avoided. I appreciate airports that have bookstores and signs in my language.

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    1. Yeah I find this airport tourist-friendly. It isn't perfect but still have lots of good things to appreciate.

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  30. wow the place looks really awesome :)

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  31. This airport is really busy.Thank you for sharing such great tips for layover. Now my time won't just go to waste the next time I travel.

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  32. Thank you sooo much for providing all these information šŸ˜Š... we are planning for a trip and we have a layover so this would really help šŸ˜ƒšŸ‘šŸ¼

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  33. It really helps the passengers when an airport has a lot to offer during a layover. The bookstore here is a nice place because you can spend hours in a bookstore and won't mind the long wait.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah that's true and they have lots of interesting books!

      Delete
  34. It always amazes me how airports have become more luxurious of late. So many travelers and so many things to do in one place!

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    1. Many businesses knew that airports are good places to sell and promote their products and services, which is also convenient to the travelers. How's the airport in your city?

      Delete
  35. Great tips! Airports can be daunting if you've never been to it.

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  36. This was so super helpful!!! We almost always have some bad experience at airports

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    Replies
    1. Sometimes airports are worst, but if we try to have an open minds, they also offer good perks :D

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  37. One thin I notice in these pictures is that the airport does look very clean.

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    Replies
    1. OMG that is true! hundreds of thousands are using this airport and I haven't seen one single trash!

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  38. What a fantastic post! You've provided so much good information. And I must say that airport DOES look spectacular. As you mentioned, it's so clean and organised! It also looks like there are quite a bit of very useful amenities.

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    1. Whenever I go to different places, I always check how clean their comfort rooms are. And Suvarnabhumi Airport is so clean!

      Delete
  39. I've done a layover in BKK airport once. It's a great airport with lots of facilities. But I didn't know I can leave my bag with them. that would have been convenient for me.

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    1. Yeah perfect for those who have many luggage to carry :D

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  40. Wow! Never thought Thailand’s airport would be that nice! Better than ours I think. Looking forward to be there soon

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    Replies
    1. hahaha yeah way better than NAIA, but NAIA Terminal 3 is slowly becoming progressive.

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  41. This was a great blog post. information like this can lessen the amount of anxiety a person can have in an airport. excited to read more of your post!

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  42. It is really beautiful inside and very efficient from my experience :) I wish NAIA would be like this someday....

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  43. Suvarnabhumi Airport looks great! It's good to know that there are many signs. Do the staff speak English? I had a hard time when I was in Incheon. LOL.

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    Replies
    1. Thai airport personnel speaks English! They also hired many Thai personnel who are fluent to any majority languages, like Mandarin, Japanese, Korean, French, etc.

      Delete
  44. Wow! Nice airport with lot of facilities. Bangkok is one of my dream destinations.Hope I can visit it someday. Pictures are amazing. Thank you for sharing.

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    1. OMG hope you can make it very soon! Thailand will always wait for you :D

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  45. My flight from India had dropped me at Swarnabhumi airport at 3 in the morning. I had to spend 4 hours sleeping and making sure that my luggage is not stolen. It was funny as I didn't know that there is so much do to at the airport itself.

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    1. You should have a body massage for an hour and eat breakfast!

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  46. Yes one time we have layover in Bangkok airport since the connecting flight times changes every other hour we can't go out. Remain in the airport and explored it. your post reminds that trip.

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  47. Thanks for this awesome survival guide for a layover at Suvarnabhumi Airport. Layovers often give you a chance to get a glimpse of the surrounding area and your experience that you shared helps. Keshia Richmond

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    1. Yeah that is true! Next time I will try to explore the other parts of this airport :D

      Delete
  48. I have friends who experienced Suvarnabhumi airport and they were so satisfied.

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  49. It looks like the airport there does have a lot for you to do if you are on a layover. I have been trapped in an airport overnight. So I definitely know what you mean.

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    1. Many of us hates layover especially if you don't know the place and not prepared. I don't want to experience that so I do my research and have an open mind to enjoy while waiting.

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  50. I've only been to the Phuket airport which was obviously much smaller with less to do. This is super handy for when I return to Thailand!

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  51. Wow! This airport is huge. Your guide is really informative. I'll be saving it, as I really hope to visit Thailand in the near future.

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    1. That's awesome Lindsey! This airport isn't the biggest in Asia. You should see the Changi Airport in Singapore that looks like a different/separate city!

      Delete
  52. I visited Suvarnabhumi Airport in November last year and I found it to be such a nice airport. I got to visit the other airport in Bangkok and it wasn't as nice as this one. I found there to be a lack of seats at places though!

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    1. Yeah, they lack of seats which made many travelers sitting on the floor or standing while waiting. But to avoid this, you can visit the spa or nearest restaurants. I guess its the way of the airport management to encourage travelers to enjoy other amenities of this airport.

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  53. One of my most favourite cities in the world and an equally modern and efficient airport I must say and agree with you. There is so much to do and see in swarnbhumi airport. A choice of restaurants if you need food and suiting all budgets. There is indeed some great bargains in the numerous tax free shops and some of the biggest brands on offer. Overall you can easily spend a few hours here

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    1. Yes, and sometimes if you so enjoying a lot you will not notice that time runs so fast!

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  54. Amazing this is Nice airport with lot of facilities. Thank you for share about this

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  55. Layovers can be a chore and knowing what to do at a particular airport is a great help. I enjoyed reading your recommendations.

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  56. This airport seems so clean and nice! Also great tips for passing the time during layovers.

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  57. Now that you have mentioned SuperRich Foreign Exchange, there is no other FOREX I would want to transact with but them. The greatest rate, very professional and safe too.

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    1. I tried the other FOREX outside the airport and I kinda disappointed. So now only use Superrich!!

      Delete
  58. Although I really dislike airports and even more so layovers, I always try to be prepared to pass time. Books and wi fi or internet sim card can do the trick though xD

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    1. Same here, and could be worst if you are not prepared for long layover.

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  59. I have not had much luck with my layovers, the last one I spent on a bench, for over twelve hours! Your recommendations have been of major help, thank you for sharing this.

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    1. OMG 12 hours?! That is awful. You should have stayed in a nearby hotel or have a spa treatment.

      Delete
  60. This looks like a pretty survivable airport :) Unlike many in Russia. I spend a lot of time in airports and value some guides.

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Editorial Note: Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any partner brands/company(s), beauty & lifestyle brands, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities, unless specified.

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