Are airports the new travel destinations?

I have always thought of airports as places of transit, but ever since Edward Snowden spent six weeks at Moscow airport, I have been wondering what it might be like to live long term at an airport. Has the modern-day airport evolved enough to provide all the creature comforts—roti, kapda, makaan—to carry on life as usual, without ever having to step outside? Indeed, are airports becoming destinations in their own right, with a slew of attractions and facilities that might tempt the traveller to linger longer of his own volition, as against Snowden who was forced to stay put. And what of the future—in this age of relentless travel, could airports morph into mini-cities where people choose to spend a few days whether to work, shop, play, or just rest and restore?

While I can’t comment on Snowden’s experience at Sheremetyevo Airport—never been to Moscow—I happened to transit through Dubai’s Terminal 3 this morning and looked at its offering through a “stay longer” lens. I was pleasantly surprised to conclude that it has plenty in the roti-kapda-makaan department to keep you not just comfortable, but in relative luxury—fine dining, great wines, excellent lounges, 5-star hotel, business centre, spa, and loads of shopping options. No kidding.

Full report here Mint 


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