free drinks

When travel gives you lemons, drink free airport lemonade

To help travelers relax, many airports offer some form of summertime entertainment. For example, San Francisco International Airport has a You Are Hear summer concert series, Dulles International Airport hosts a Jazz Series and Vancouver International Airport offers DJs, live entertainment, free samples of treats and sweets, and $10 lunch specials all summer long during its popular, pre-security Take-Off Fridays celebrations.

Philadelphia International Airport’s summer-long Just Plane Fun program has been treating travelers to everything from free makeovers to live music and a chance to chill out and relax in one of the airport’s two Chillin’ Zones, which are outfitted with sofas, tables and plants.

Now Philadelphia International Airport is going a step further and offering complimentary cool beverages, serving 600 to 700 passengers daily.

“We were thinking of what we could do for people before they get to the security checkpoint, because there’s not much retail before security and all our entertainment is post-security,” said airport spokeswoman Victoria Lupica.

“It’s been a very warm summer and we know that people waiting in line can’t take a beverage with them through the security line,” said Lupica, “So we decided to offer passengers a refreshing complimentary glass of lemonade or iced tea. They can sip that in line and then dump the cup before going through the checkpoint.”

Lupica says the airport staff is monitoring the checkpoint lines, noting the busiest times in each terminal and dispatching the five rolling carts to areas where lines are longest.

“This isn’t something we’re going to stop doing when summer is over,” said Lupica. “When the weather turns cool, we plan to offer travelers hot chocolate to keep them warm and toasty.”

(My story about Philadelphia International Airport’s complimentary lemonade program first appeared on NBC News Travel.)

(Photo courtesy Philadelphia International Airport)

Free drinks at Changi; free shades at LGA

It’s got the largest slide in an airport, a butterfly garden, free karaoke and movie theaters. Now there’s one more reason to love Singapore’s Changi Airport: free drinks!

Changi Sinagpore Free Drinks

Photo courtesy: Changi Airport Group

“The Mix-it Bar” inside DFS Liquor & Tobacco shops at Terminals 1, 2 and 3 offers complimentary liquor and mixed cocktail drinks. “The brand of liquor featured changes bi-monthly,” says an airport spokesperson, “But over the past few month brands of liquor featured recently included Bacardi, Bombay Gin and Belverdere vodka.”

Worried you’ll have one too many? You may need to wear your sunglasses at the airport.

Sunglass Hut and the Food and Shops at New York’s LaGuardia Airport are hosting a Twitter sunglass contest.

They’ll be giving away two pair of Ray Bay Sunglasses each Friday through March 25.  Here are the rules.