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Guidelines for Finding a Minyan in an Airport


As a traveler and minyan seeker, you know only your own schedule, delays and time allowances for security clearance or re-clearance. You also know times of peak travel and the extent of systemic delays due to weather or other factors.

If you are looking for a minyan, head for the nearest newsstand. If you can tell that a minyan won’t be put together, and you have time, head for the next newsstand that’s closer to security. In the event of a particularly long wait, you may want to head for the newsstand in the central hub of the airport or station.

If you are already part of an obvious or self-contained minyan such as a tour group and you want to daven at your gate or platform, appoint someone to stand at the nearest newsstands to direct others to join you.

If you have a regular minyan established, appoint someone to direct newcomers from the newsstand(s)to your minyan. In deciding to establish a seasonal or permanent minyan location other than next to the newsstand, please have in mind the varied schedules of travelers who might not otherwise be able to participate. Also bear in mind that just like shul, an unfamiliar traveler who is anxious to find a minyan may be more in need of saying Kaddish.

If you cannot locate a minyan because of location, e.g. a small sub-terminal or a baggage claim area, think midpoint. You will have to use your imagination and that of other daveners here. Consider these two examples:

  1. After you clear security, the terminal splits into A and B sections, with no minyan in sight at A’s newsstand. You should head for the dividing point between A & B on the assumption that B’s newsstand is similarly unproductive.
  2. You are in baggage or car rental area, with no newsstand. Head for the middle position.

This will take some time to take root. But it will certainly be an improvement on calling out to passersby and getting blank stares. If you have any suggestions or other notes to share, please email Donald Hornstein.

In Memory of Ben