Singapore’s Changi Airport routinely makes and sometimes tops those “World’s best airport lists.” The airport has great shopping and dining options, leisure choices including a spa, gym and pool, and rest options that include hourly “transit hotels” and napping lounges (special cubicles with “snooze chairs.”)
Travelers can even get a free tour of Singapore with any layover of more than five hours. But the latest attraction is on a whole new level, or rather, several levels – The Slide @T3
Billed as the tallest indoor slide in Singapore, The Slide@T3, the four-story twisty slide is free to anyone who spends some amount, currently 30 Singapore Dollars, at the airport. In fact for that amount you get two rides. Additional tokens may be purchased.
The slide apparently gets riders going about 20 feet a second, and there are height and age restrictions. (Children younger than 7, and more timid travelers, have the option of a smaller 1 1/2 story slide.)
While the slide probably is at least as good as a shower for waking up groggy travelers, you have to wonder, what’s next? Will any airport challenge Changi for “ride supremacy.”
There are certainly enough unused baggage carousels at some airports that could potentially be turned into rides, and Steven Slater may well have whetted traveler’s appetites for a chance to ride on something like an airline emergency chute. (Maybe they could be purchased and retrofitted from retired planes.)
For real thrill seekers, why not a zip line? Personally, there are times I’d love to have one just to zip from one end of the terminal to another… (Denver International Airport, are you listening?) But many airports are huge cavernous place, and particularly in the current economy, many of them have empty space.
The potential list goes on, and could be limited only by imagination. With so many fees attached now to travel, any new airport attractions that were actually fun might make it a little less painful for passengers to part with their money.
What do you think, Consumer Traveler readers? No airport in the U.S. has yet announced plans to match Singapore’s slide, but no doubt they are watching how it is received, (and especially if it stimulates retail and dining sales.) Do you have any other ideas for an airport diversion? Serious or tongue-in-cheek.
And you never know, your tongue-in-cheek idea could become some airport executive’s reality.
Janice Hough is a California-based travel agent a travel blogger and a part-time comedy writer. A frequent flier herself, she’s been doing battle with airlines, hotels, and other travel companies for over three decades. Besides writing for Consumer Traveler, Janice has a humor blog at Leftcoastsportsbabe.com (Warning, the political and sports humor therein does not represent the views of anyone but herself.)