|Great Wall Tour|
This last trip to Japan I booked a flight with an intentional long layover in Beijing. The purpose was that my son had never been to mainland China before and I wanted him to see some Chinese history. We flew on Air China from SFO to Tokyo with a 23 hour layover in Beijing on the way there and a 21 hour layover on the way back.
By doing this I was able to enter China on a 72 hour transit visa at no cost. Getting a normal visa into China can cost over $300. Since we had a long layover I contacted the airline to see what they offered for the long layover. To my surprise I was given a free night at a transit hotel away from the airport. If I didn't ask I would not have known.
The point of this post is if you have a long layover check with the airline if they will accommodate you for the inconvenience of the layover. Also, if you have the time, plan a long layover and take a short tour of the city you are in. We were able to see the Forbidden City, Temple of Heaven and the Great Wall on this trip.
I also know from experience that several airports offer free tours of the city when you have a long enough layover. Singapore has a very nice tour with a boat ride on the Singapore River. The layover also breaks up a long flight.