Addis Ababa Airport Gets In-Terminal Transit Hotel

Addis Ababa Airport Gets In-Terminal Transit Hotel

25

Here’s a fantastic development for those passengers with long connections at Africa’s largest international airport hub…

Ethiopian Airlines opens in-terminal hotel

Ethiopian Airlines has just opened the Ethiopian Skylight In-Terminal Hotel, located inside Addis Ababa Bole International Airport (ADD). The hotel is located inside the departures hall of Terminal 2, just a short walking distance to departure gates.

Construction on the hotel started in December 2020, and this is just the first phase of the hotel, with the second phase expected to be completed by October 2022. Once complete, the hotel will feature 97 rooms.

The hotel features a variety of room categories, including executive suites, twin rooms, double rooms, connecting rooms, and more. The hotel also has a restaurant and other amenities. This hotel is intended to cater to passengers and crews who don’t wish to leave the airport.

The new in-terminal hotel is managed by Ethiopian Skylight Hotel, which is one of the largest hotels in Ethiopia, and it’s located just a short walk from the airport. For those simply connecting, it’s of course much easier to not have to leave the airport.

Here’s how Ethiopian Airlines’ CEO, Mesfin Tasew, describes this development:

“The extensive Ethiopian network brings millions of passengers through Addis Ababa each year. As a customer-focused airline, we want our passengers to enjoy every minute they spend with us, even their transit hours at the airport. The construction of an In-Terminal Hotel takes transit at Addis Ababa to the next level. It addresses the industry’s demand and leads us to plan and create efficient and seamless connectivity to enhance the comfort of passengers. We want passengers to depart from their origin city without a single worry about their transit time at Addis Ababa Airport should they choose to stay there as we are waiting for them with a comfortable space where they can freshen up before boarding their next flight.”

The hotel can now be reserved by emailing [email protected], or via online travel agencies, including Expedia, Booking.com, Trip.com, etc. The hotel is also bookable via the Ethiopian Airlines transfer desk at the airport.

Addis Ababa Airport now has a transit hotel

Ethiopian Airlines offers free transit hotel stays

Ethiopian Airlines is Africa’s most global airline, and Addis Ababa Airport is Africa’s biggest global hub. Flights at the airport are heavily banked, and in some cases passengers may find themselves with a very long layover at the airport.

For passengers with a connection time of eight to 24 hours, the airline offers complimentary hotel accommodations, ground transportation, and transit & entry visas as needed. This applies in situations where you take the next available flight (in other words, you can’t intentionally plan a longer layover to get a free hotel).

This is a very nice feature that takes some of the sting out of a long connection. The airline doesn’t guarantee where you’ll be put up, but rather you find out when you go to the stopover desk. I’m curious to see if at least some premium passengers are offered accommodation in the transit hotel, or if this is only available to those paying outright.

Even if this isn’t included as part of the complimentary stopover program, some might find it worthwhile to just outright pay for the in-terminal transit hotel, since I’ve heard the whole process of getting your hotel voucher, getting transported to & from the hotel, etc., can take a couple of hours roundtrip.

It sure would be much more convenient to not even have to leave the terminal.

Ethiopian Airlines passengers can get a free transit hotel

Bottom line

Ethiopian Airlines has opened an in-terminal transit hotel at Addis Ababa Airport. For those who have a long connection and value convenience, you can’t beat getting some rest while not even having to leave the airport. Personally I’m a huge fan of in-terminal transit hotels, and if I need to have a long connection, I’ll go out of my way to connect at an airport that has one of these.

Here’s to hoping that Ethiopian Airlines occasionally uses this hotel for transit passengers as part of its complimentary stopover program.

What do you make of Addis Ababa Airport’s new in-terminal hotel?

Conversations (25)
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  1. Jhon Guest

    Ethiopian custom at airport always stealing passengers foreign currency wich unfair

  2. Amanuel mengistu Guest

    Its abreak throughout for EAL couse as a citizen always wish 2c these kind of achievement in my country Airline especially when i pass by Egypt terminal that fascinate me the most was a hotel accommodation in side the airport now i am proudly address about it 2anyone.Bravo!!

  3. iamhere Guest

    If you are just changing planes this is an excellent option because it is in the terminal. Ethiopian is known for having long connections especially if connecting to flights to/from Asia.

    1. M.ismail Guest

      Its great day for Ethiopian airlines to open a transit Hotel i am so delighted and sending congratulations to Ethiopian airlines.

  4. Ahmed Guest

    Good to hear the hotel, enjoyed the hotels outside before, however, the bathrooms in the Airport are so unclean and not usable. Isn't it about the time they do something about it rather than spending that much of money to build in-terminal hotel? Because the majority will spend their time in the transit area.

  5. Denis Guest

    Do award tickets qualify for a complimentary stopover hotel? I need to fly ZNZ-CPT and the shortest connection is overnight, more than 8 hours.
    Didn't want to deal with immigration and heading to a hotel in a country I have no idea about (taxi/uber/immigration lines), but if a complimentary hotel across the street is offered...

    1. Sean M. Diamond

      Yes. Award tickets absolutely do qualify for the STPC as long as inbound and outbound flights are both operated by Ethiopian.

      It should be clarified that the new airside transit hotel is not being used for STPC, so you would need to go through immigration. However transit visa, ground transport, hotel room and meals are covered for free. If the lines are short, you can be in the hotel within 30 minutes of touchdown.

    2. Denis Guest

      Sean, thanks a lot, very helpful.
      I didn't expect a new hotel to be offered, considering it has so few rooms. I mean I didn't know STPC existed and didn't want to get myself into overnight transfer with arranging transport and so on in an unfamiliar environment. If everything is taken care, then great I would go for it.
      Is STPC desk prior to Immigration?

    3. Sean M. Diamond

      You will get your voucher at check-in at your originating station. The voucher covers visa, hotel, transfers and meals. Once you have that, just proceed directly to immigration on arrival in Addis. Then proceed downstairs through customs (they may X-ray your carryon bags) and to the ET hotels desk just after the X-ray machines. The hotel desk will stamp your voucher and direct you either to the car park for the hotel shuttle, or to...

      You will get your voucher at check-in at your originating station. The voucher covers visa, hotel, transfers and meals. Once you have that, just proceed directly to immigration on arrival in Addis. Then proceed downstairs through customs (they may X-ray your carryon bags) and to the ET hotels desk just after the X-ray machines. The hotel desk will stamp your voucher and direct you either to the car park for the hotel shuttle, or to the seating area if you need to wait a bit. You must get the voucher stamped or the hotel won't accept it.

      Alternatively, you can check your hotel assignment using the "Feel Addis" tab on the mobile app (not available on the website) AFTER completing online check-in. You will still need to get the paper voucher however, so it is more of an informational thing than any real value. I find most of their Economy hotels quite dire, so depending on what I am assigned to I will book the Best Western or Ramada instead (both decent properties within 5 minutes of the airport that you can get for <$100). Business Class will always get Skylight unless that is full, in which case it would be the Radisson Blu most likely.

      If for whatever reason you don't get your STPC voucher at checkin (very rare), there is a help desk located on the arrivals concourse BEFORE immigration. If arriving at the Northern end of the terminal (bus gates and most jetways), proceed past both the immigration and transfer security areas and you will find it next to the decommissioned escalators that used to lead down to the old arrivals. Or ask one of the many staff that are usually in the arrivals concourse directing passengers and they will show you the way.

  6. Kamesh Guest

    My layover is 7 hours 45 min. 15 min shorter than 8 hours. Would I get this transit hotel?

    1. Sean M. Diamond

      No. Less than 8 hours and you are on your own.

  7. Hiro Gold

    Lucky, you should try out the renovated Cloud 9 Lounge in Addis. Quite spectacular and impressive. Maybe because Sean M might have supervised it?

    1. Sean M. Diamond

      I've spent too many hours in that lounge to enjoy it any more. It's worth the stop for a quick bite, drink and clean bathroom. And also the faster WiFi relative to the regular free WiFi in the terminal. But it's a world of difference versus the old lounges.

    2. David Guest

      I too have spent many hours there, including this past Sunday night. It is much nicer than what they had in the older terminal.

    3. Bruno Guest

      Last March they had Coca Cola cans from at least 4 different countries in the Cloud9 lounge fridge! (Brazil, US, Canada, China).
      Was nice to do some Coca Cola tasting.

      Wondering how these cans got there.

  8. Sean M. Diamond

    This has actually been open for a number of months already (since around April or May) but patronage has been really low so I guess that is why they are redoing the PR blitz.

    As for the transit STPC, you can absolutely plan a longer layover (>=8h and =<23h59m) if you want to take advantage of the Addis stopover. However, most fares will impose a $70 surcharge if you choose one of those options when...

    This has actually been open for a number of months already (since around April or May) but patronage has been really low so I guess that is why they are redoing the PR blitz.

    As for the transit STPC, you can absolutely plan a longer layover (>=8h and =<23h59m) if you want to take advantage of the Addis stopover. However, most fares will impose a $70 surcharge if you choose one of those options when a shorter connection is available (some don't though if they are trying to encourage pax to book the less convenient connections to drive traffic - eg. out of Mumbai, choosing ET641 with the overnight stay when connecting to Africa has no surcharge relative to ET611 with a shorter connection).

    If in Economy class, some of the transit hotels can be quite dire, but Business Class is usually sent to the Skylight which is just across the street and is absolutely international standard (or else to Radisson Blu, Hilton or Ramada - I've had each of those multiple times).

    1. Kamesh Guest

      My layover is 7 hours 45 min. 15 min shorter than 8 hours. Would I get this transit hotel?

  9. David Guest

    The new terminal has some nice sitdown restaurants too, and even a Burger King.

    1. Sean M. Diamond

      World's most expensive Burger King though.

      $24.78 for a Whopper combo meal. Extra if you want large fries.

    2. Hiro Gold

      Burger King in Ethiopia!? Prices aside, I have never expected to see international fast food chain opening up in Ethiopia.

    3. Sean M. Diamond

      There is Burger King AND Pizza Hut at the airport now.

    4. David Guest

      Woohh...that's nuts. I've never eaten there as I have access to the ET lounge, which has a decent selection

    5. Sean M. Diamond

      There is a limit to how much injera, rice and oily chicken curry I can stomach. Sometimes you just want some flame grilled beef. For $24.78.

Featured Comments Most helpful comments ( as chosen by the OMAAT community ).

The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

Sean M. Diamond

There is a limit to how much injera, rice and oily chicken curry I can stomach. Sometimes you just want some flame grilled beef. For $24.78.

2
Sean M. Diamond

You will get your voucher at check-in at your originating station. The voucher covers visa, hotel, transfers and meals. Once you have that, just proceed directly to immigration on arrival in Addis. Then proceed downstairs through customs (they may X-ray your carryon bags) and to the ET hotels desk just after the X-ray machines. The hotel desk will stamp your voucher and direct you either to the car park for the hotel shuttle, or to the seating area if you need to wait a bit. You must get the voucher stamped or the hotel won't accept it. Alternatively, you can check your hotel assignment using the "Feel Addis" tab on the mobile app (not available on the website) AFTER completing online check-in. You will still need to get the paper voucher however, so it is more of an informational thing than any real value. I find most of their Economy hotels quite dire, so depending on what I am assigned to I will book the Best Western or Ramada instead (both decent properties within 5 minutes of the airport that you can get for <$100). Business Class will always get Skylight unless that is full, in which case it would be the Radisson Blu most likely. If for whatever reason you don't get your STPC voucher at checkin (very rare), there is a help desk located on the arrivals concourse BEFORE immigration. If arriving at the Northern end of the terminal (bus gates and most jetways), proceed past both the immigration and transfer security areas and you will find it next to the decommissioned escalators that used to lead down to the old arrivals. Or ask one of the many staff that are usually in the arrivals concourse directing passengers and they will show you the way.

2
Sean M. Diamond

This has actually been open for a number of months already (since around April or May) but patronage has been really low so I guess that is why they are redoing the PR blitz. As for the transit STPC, you can absolutely plan a longer layover (>=8h and =<23h59m) if you want to take advantage of the Addis stopover. However, most fares will impose a $70 surcharge if you choose one of those options when a shorter connection is available (some don't though if they are trying to encourage pax to book the less convenient connections to drive traffic - eg. out of Mumbai, choosing ET641 with the overnight stay when connecting to Africa has no surcharge relative to ET611 with a shorter connection). If in Economy class, some of the transit hotels can be quite dire, but Business Class is usually sent to the Skylight which is just across the street and is absolutely international standard (or else to Radisson Blu, Hilton or Ramada - I've had each of those multiple times).

2
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