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No one plans on sleeping overnight in an airport. But, delays/cancellations happen, plans change and connecting flights often mean travelers have at least a few hours to kill. Especially if you’re a budget traveler, you might not be willing to shell out the high cost for an airport hotel room for such a short stay.

And, I’m talking from personal experience here. In our budget travels, my wife Katie and I have spent more than one night sleeping in an airport in the past.

TPG contributor (and my wife) Katie Genter sleeping in the Lima Airport food court.
TPG contributor (and my wife) Katie Genter sleeping in the Lima Airport food court in 2013.

Now, catching some shut eye is no longer an option in one London airport. Effective this week, London’s budget Stansted Airport is taking new steps to combat traveler homelessness in the airport. After the last flight of the night departs, the airport is closing airside terminals. Additionally, the airport has hung signs and employed terminal monitors to wake sleeping passengers every 10 minutes.

While the largest operator from London Stansted is Ryanair, I got to experience the airport for myself recently thanks to Primera Air. I found Stansted to be the worst part of my Primera Air experience. (Speaking of Primera Air, the airline’s only long-haul aircraft experienced extended mechanical issues shortly after my inaugural flight with the airline, likely resulting in quite a few airport terminal sleepers.)

A passenger sleeps in Stansted Airport before the ban went into effect. Image by Getty Images.
A passenger sleeps in Stansted Airport before the ban went into effect. Image by Getty Images.

Passengers in the same situation in the future will have a sleepless night in the airport thanks to the new “anti-snooze guards,” which are supposed to pass through the airport in “10-minute rounds.”

Avoid the fate of having to sleep in the airport altogether — whether it’s due to bomb cyclones, airline IT nightmares or fires that knock out an entire airport’s power system — by booking your flight with a credit card that offers trip delay protection.

While I can get 5x points by booking flights with my Platinum Card® from American Express, I currently use Citi Prestige for most of my flights due to the 3-hour trip delay protection (which paid out $1,000 when I got stuck in Japan due to a typhoon) and solid baggage delay protection. However, I’ll be booking with my Chase Sapphire Reserve starting July 29 due to Citi Prestige’s benefits devaluation.

H/T: View From The Wing

Featured image by SamuelBrownNG/Getty Images

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The American Express Platinum card has some of the best perks out there: cardholders enjoy the best domestic lounge access (Delta SkyClubs, Centurion Lounges, and Priority Pass), a $200 annual airline fee credit as well as up to $200 in Uber credits, and mid-tier elite status at SPG, Marriott, and Hilton. Combined with the 60,000 point welcome offer -- worth $1,140 based on TPG's valuations -- this card is a no-brainer for frequent travelers. Here are 5 reasons you should consider this card, as well as how you can figure out if the $550 annual fee makes sense for you.

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  • Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
  • Enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.
  • 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
  • 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on
  • Enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
  • Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
  • $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
  • Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required.
  • $550 annual fee.
  • Terms Apply.
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Editorial Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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