There are many people who may disagree that John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) is one of the best airports to sleep in but there are many passenger-friendly qualities that make it a good place to get stuck in. For starters, JFK Airport is an extremely busy facility with 8 terminals to handle the nearly 48 million passengers it sees each year. At first glance JFK isn’t the best place to have a long layover at but if you know the right places to go you can easily catch a decent nap, get free Internet, and grab a cup of coffee around the clock.
Finding a good seat to sleep in around JFK Aiport isn’t easy. You’ll find that most of the lounge chairs and free seats not directly outside of any gates are along the busy corridors. Your best bet is to make your way near on of the larger cafes with large seats. Order a drink and you won’t be bothered if you sleep for an hour or two. In particular the area around the British Airways gates in Terminal 7 has both free wired Internet (for customers but nobody will check) and there are a nice set of sofa-type chairs with a nice view of the tarmac. Electrical outlets are also easy to find around the British Airways main gates so you can recharge your electrical gadgets while you recharge yourself at the same time.
Make sure to give yourself plenty of time to get to your gate by setting your alarm early enough. The internal train at the airport will shuttle you around but during peak times it can be slow going. Keep this in mind if you decide to catch a nap at the far end of the airport. Also, gates tend to change rather frequently due to late flights or other congestion issues so make sure if you have to bolt in a hurry, you do so towards the right gate.
Even though it’s not technically being in the airport, the JFK AirTrain will also take you to the Jamaica station (part of the New York subway system) and you might be able to get a cheap hotel room for longer than normal stays. The seats within the airport aren’t too comfortable though and JFK Airport is designed to move passengers through. If you do end up getting stuck there due to a canceled or delayed flight talk to your airline and see if you can spend a few hours in their lounge. The lounges are littered throughout each of the terminals and a nice alternative to sleeping elsewhere within the airport.
Security is plentiful within JFK Airport and if you want some added security make sure to take a nap within eye sight of the guard booths you’ll find around the peripheries of the airport.