Tips and ideas on how to best spend a layover at Houston Intercontinental airport. Got a favorite quiet place to connect to wifi? A great bar or restaurant? Maybe an exhibit or a walk? Share your IAH Airport layover experiences with others, or post a question and get notified when there is a response.


Hello, I will be traveling to Austin at the end of this month. I will have a 3 hour and 5 minute layover at IAH. I wanted to inquire, will it be easy enough to go outside of airport for awhile just to take a peak of Houston outside airport? Is there anything nearby to walk to? Also will I be able to easily access establishments bw terminals to explore inside? Thanks!
May 26th: SJO to IAH arriving at 8:25 pm - flying United
May 27th: IAH to YYC leaving at 7:50 am - also United

July 2nd: YYC to IAH - arriving at 10:30 pm - flying Air Canada
July 3rd: IAH to SJO leaving at 9:30 am - flying United

Last year I flew with American but each layover was over 24 hours and I did have to pick up my checked luggage. Can you tell me if I have to pick up my luggage with the above flights?

You will have to pick up your bags both ways as both are overnight connections.
I thought I might! Thanks so much for your quick response!! Much appreciated!
We arrive at IAH, 4:30 am. We have no where to go at that time, and need to wait on the rest of our party who is arriving 5 hours later. My question is....if we do not claim out luggage at 5 am, will the airline hold it for us for 5 hours? Will they store it? Can we request this? If we go claim our luggage at 5 am, we will be outside security and unable to get back in. There is no where to sit for 5 hours outside security.
Are you on a domestic flight or an international flight? There are a fair amount of places to sit outside security at IAH.
Thanks for your reply. We are flying on Alaska Air....domestic.
Since Alaska only has a few flights per day to Houston, you will probably have to claim it soon after arriving as their baggage office may be unstaffed at various points of the day.
Yeah, that's what I was thinking too. So, after we claim our luggage, at 4:30am, we aren't sure what we can do until the rest of the family arrives. I thought about going to a hotel...
My wife and I have a 10hr layover but don't want to leave the airport (too much luggage). Options re shower, meals etc.
What airlines are you flying? The airport has lots of restaurants inside security if you are already checked in.
I arrive on United from Trinidad at 5am on Sunday 21st January. My connecting flight to NZ on air NZ is not until 8pm. Question is what to do I do with my luggage for that period?
Just curious.....what did you do for 10 hours?
My brother is flying in from California and connecting to a flight to Belize. How can I connect with them for a quick breakfast?
US Citizen returning from Panama w/a 10 hr layover on New Yrs Eve...and a child. Can I leave Houston airport with carry ons to check into a hotel for the night?
Yes, you can leave the airport and go wherever you want.
Is there a lounge for sleeping? We have a 12 hour layover.
Nope. That's what hotels are for.
Fuck u bitch
Flying from RTB on United to IAH, then need to switch to Air Canada to fly to Calgary. Will 3 and a half hours be long enough to do this? Do I need to go through security/customs before getting on Air Canada?
Yes, that should be enough time. Yes, you will have to go through US Immigration, customs, and security.
I am flying from LGA airport in NYC to Santa Ana, California with a 50 minute layover in Houston airport in March. Is this enough time?
Yes, that is enough time. All you have to do is walk from your arrival gate to your departure gate.
If my first flight is delayed, does united put you on the next available flight? is there a charge for that if it does happen?