I don’t make a habit of sleeping in airports. I also don’t make a habit of sleeping there for the good of my blog, I was actually leaving on a trip. Now that we’re clear on that here’s how it all happened.
My conspirator, Olivia, and I were heading to the Feis in Shanghai. So, as a result of not wanted to get up at ridiculous o clock to catch a bus, to the train to get to the airport, we decided to give Spa On Air, the jimjilbang in Incheon Airport a go.
It was a Thursday night at midnight by the time we arrived. The airport was eerily quiet and we set off on the journey to find Spa on Air. Signage for the place is a joke. Couple this with the fact that I can’t read those ridiculous “you are here” maps and the whole thing was a special experience. Eventually, we found 2 adjummas having a break and we were grateful to find signs of human life. We thought we left it behind when we got off the AREX. They were good enough to point us in the right direction and we headed further into a land of nobodies. Eventually, we stumbled onto an area with flags for the much sought Spa on Air and with great relief approached the nice lady at reception. The only thought was that, with this many people not in the airport, there couldn’t possibly be too many people wanting to sleep in Incheon on a random Thursday night in March. I was wrong. No private rooms left (although at that random hour, I wasn’t surprised) but it would cost me 20,000 for a sleep over. This is definitely more expensive that regular jimjilbangs. (It is possible to ring ahead and get a reservation. Here is a link to their number http://www.airport.kr/airport/facility/efalicityInfo.iia?carId=39)
As we changed into our uniforms (the shorts and t-shirt provided at reception, mine could have fit a small family), it was clear that you were paying for quality. The dressing room was beautiful, lockers were large and the toilets were clean and new, ( No squatters here). We also had cleanser and cotton wool to remove makeup and hair dryers and all the usual things to make you look normal. There were mirrors everywhere (possibly so you could enjoy how great you looked in your uniform?) and it was all nicely decorated with signs in English and Japanese.
Next task, find somewhere to sleep. They have a lounge room with reclining chairs that look super comfortable, I wouldn’t know since everyone else had taken them and we had to make do with mats on the floor. Not to worry, sleep is sleep. Until someone leans too far back on their recliner and the entire chair falls with the loudest crash, just centimetres away from your head at 4am. There’s the usual coughing, snoring, talking, walking etc. going on during the night so although I caught a few hours shut eye, Olivia didn’t.
Next morning, up, shower, ready and what do you know, you’re already in the airport so it took us about 5 minutes to stroll to the check in desk.
All in all, I definitely would stay here again if, 1) I arrived back too late to take public transport and 2) I arrived early enough to get either a private room or a recliner. It’s the small things in life.
*Update- August 2013.
I’ve just stayed at Spa on Air before my trip to Malaysia. I rocked up around 7pm and there was loads of space. Although the recliners are very comfortable I just couldn’t sleep so I found a small sleeping room and slept on a mat on the floor. It was a surprisingly great nights sleep. Quiet, peaceful, and comfortable. The showers and baths here are lovely. They keep your suitcases at the front where they are safe and supervised until you leave.
What I liked;
- The place is super clean and new
- The staff speak English
- The lockers are big enough to fit a small suitcase.
- The showers and baths are great
- The changing room is spacious, quiet and well stocked with beauty products.
- There are loads of places to sleep. The lounge chairs, the public sleeping rooms and the private but public sleeping rooms.
What I didn’t like
- If you arrive really late, you might have to sleep on the floor in the lounge area which can be a little noisy with people coming and going and snoring etc
- The signage for the place is really bad.