The days of trying to catch a nap in between flights on an uncomfortable airport chair or bench are quickly becoming a thing of the past.
According to a new Bloomberg report, at least four companies are now competing for space at airports to offer a variety of unique sleeping accommodations ranging from cabins and capsules to sleeping pods.
Among the major players in the market are Minute Suites LLC, which already has retail sleep locations at airports in Atlanta, Dallas-Fort Worth, and Philadelphia; izZzleep, which began offering sleep capsules in the Mexico City airport in August; and Yotel Ltd, which operates YotelAir in four European airports and has plans to open a new location in Singapore’s Changi in 2019.
Yotel hopes to expand to the U.S. market as does a fourth company, NapCity Americas, which acquired U.S. rights to Napcabs, a German-based sleep pod company currently operating at the Munich airport.
Minute Suites already has plans to open more locations in this country, with a location set to open in Charlotte, North Carolina this December.
But as welcome as it may be by travelers, this proliferating industry will face somewhat of an uphill battle.
Revenue generation is a big consideration when it comes to space allotment at airports. A busy bar, restaurant or McDonald’s brings in far more cash than a napping pod, which is why you still don’t see such offerings at some major flight hubs such New York or Los Angeles.
“One seat in an airport restaurant can generate $20,000 in revenue in a single year,” Peter Chambers, co-founder of Sleepbox, a Boston-based startup, told Bloomberg.
Additionally, airports have long had a cozy relationship with surrounding hotels and may be hesitant to engage in business that’s viewed as competition to area accommodations.
Still, for those who remain unfamiliar with this new airport pod or cabin sleeping concept, the spaces offer a welcome retreat from the noise and hassle of a long layover.
In Mexico City, for instance, izZzsleep pods come with a bed, a high-definition TV, safe, Wi-Fi and USB charging ports, as TravelPulse's Monica Poling reported in August. The pods, located in Terminal 1, can be rented for about $8 an hour (140 pesos) with a two-hour minimum.
Guests can also rent the pod for the entire night starting from about $30 per night (640 pesos.) Access to a private shower is available but costs an additional 130 pesos.
izZzsleep has already announced plans to expand the concept to Terminal 2 in Mexico City, as well as to open locations at other Mexican airports, including those in Guadalajara, Monterrey, Tijuana, and Cancun.