It’s not often that you sleep soundly on a Boeing 747. Even less common is stretching out, relaxing, and enjoying a few beers, fresh cookies, and a satisfying shower while you're at it. But such homely comforts are exactly what you'll find at Jumbo Stay hostel, a converted 747 aircraft (formerly operated by TransJet) that now sits on a runway on the outskirts of Stockholm’s Arlanda Airport.
For my stay, I arrived as an overbooked passenger. I would have typically opted for the dorms, which at $70 per night were like most hotels: set of bunk beds, TV, some storage spots for your suitcases. But since none were free, Jumbo Stay offered me a single-bed suite at the back of the plane (normally $226 per night), close to where kosher meals are typically stocked. The room was narrow, running the length of 17 windows, but included free snacks like sparkling water and a Mars Bar as well as free continental breakfast in the morning.
Elsewhere onboard, there's a cozy cafe and gift shop. The cafe provides an assortment of warm snacks, sandwiches, beers, and coffee -- don’t worry, the selections taste better than your typical airline food. My favorite feature was a book and diagram that documented the history and outline of the jet.
Easily, the best perk of this hostel is its location. It’s a five-minute free shuttle ride from the Arlanda check-in counters, making it ideal for travelers who have either an early flight the following morning or a late-arrival. And I'd only recommend staying here for one night, anyway. The novelty and kitsch are worth experiencing briefly, but it's more than 30 minutes from downtown Stockholm -- not ideal for maximizing your time in the city. It’s a bit pricey for what you get, too (though that might be common to all of Sweden). As cool as it is to say that you're staying in a former Boeing aircraft, when it comes down to it, a plane is still somewhat claustrophobic, especially when it's been converted with relatively thin walls.