Dar es Salaam Airport: To Hotel Or Park Bench?


Dar es Salaam Airport is part of the South America & Africa Points Heist Trip Report.

Keep your Priority Pass card in your wallet. You do not need a VIP card to enjoy the outside lounge in Dar es Salaam airport. With 7 hours until my flight took off to JNB, I could either get a hotel or squat in the lounge. Unfortunately, the ticket counter does not open until three hours before departure. Instead of getting a hotel, I sat outside with a group of others like shoppers waiting to get into Best Buy for a Black Friday sale. The good news was the free WiFi. The bad news was the incessant mosquitoes. (Malaria anyone?)

Sitting outside the departure terminal is not devoid of all entertainment. I watched as a dozen workers washed the floor and mopped it vigorously. That wasn’t the entertaining part. The funny part was when they kicked out the Black Friday shoppers from their benches, moved the benches, and then hosed down that area. Just when we thought it was safe to relax, the workers kicked us out again and returned us to our original area. Overall
To hotel or not? I don’t regret not getting a hotel. The process of haggling with a taxi, checking in, and coming back was too much work. With the WiFi and on site entertainment, it’s better to tough it out.


  1. I recommend the transit hotel. They are ~$40 USD for a room for the night, are 5 min from the airport, and an airport transfer using them is $5. If we want a quick close night sleep, they are hard to beat.

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