Airport Lounges

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BeatRaven
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Airport Lounges

Post by BeatRaven » Tue Jul 17, 2018 9:53 pm

Truly, I could give two shits. I wouldn't use them if it cost $5.

But here's an entertaining NY Times piece:



https://www.nytimes.com/2018/07/16/trav ... icle-click

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GayTurk_Izmir
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by GayTurk_Izmir » Tue Jul 17, 2018 10:27 pm

I use them a lot.Some are ordinary some are spectacular.The business lounge of Turkish Airlines in Istanbul is second to none.
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cummy
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by cummy » Wed Jul 18, 2018 4:15 am

BeatRaven wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 9:53 pm
Truly, I could give two shits. I wouldn't use them if it cost $5.
well, that's good to hear. some of the lounges are so overcrowded as it is.

i am a lounge whore. i always do at least one lounge at an airport. sometimes i do 5 different lounges in the same airport. why? why not!

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leela
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Wed Jul 18, 2018 10:01 am

I've started using 'turn up and pay' lounges if I have long layovers. And on the whole it's been well worth it. Of course they're not like the fancy airline ones for business/first class travelers, but they get you out of the hellish terminal and you get your money's worth and more out of the free drink and food.

The bidvest one at Johannesburg was good, and great value. The one at Istanbul, which cost half as much again was crap. It seems to be aimed at families so there were loads of little kids running around and taking over the work areas. Still better then the terminal though, which was chaotic and loud, and I had a looooong time to kill.
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mad hatter
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by mad hatter » Wed Jul 18, 2018 10:20 am

cummy wrote:
BeatRaven wrote:
Tue Jul 17, 2018 9:53 pm
Truly, I could give two shits. I wouldn't use them if it cost $5.
well, that's good to hear. some of the lounges are so overcrowded as it is.

i am a lounge whore. i always do at least one lounge at an airport. sometimes i do 5 different lounges in the same airport. why? why not!
thats a lot of coffee or beers to get through at breakfast time!
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by polardude1 » Wed Jul 18, 2018 11:28 am

sometimes i do 5 different lounges in the same airport.
why?


I used one lounge in Doha after a 13 hr. flight. Access to a good shower made the expense well worth it
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by EMG » Wed Jul 18, 2018 11:59 am

I've never been in an airport lounge in my life.

Unless you count the free lounges available to everyone at Incheon, which are really just couches with TVs.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by strife » Wed Jul 18, 2018 2:12 pm

I always use lounges when I'm traveling for work (maybe once or twice a year). Other than that, sometimes I'll roll up and pay on the spot if a) I feel like Drinking Heavily, or b) I need a shower, or c) long layover (see also a)).
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by Homerj » Wed Jul 18, 2018 3:33 pm

GTI is right the one in IST is ace!
Use them all the time.
Really like ones that have little sleep pods, like the Korean Airlines one in Incheon.
Got a nice 5 hr. sleep in one, then took a shower.
I hate the US ones most as they employ bartenders instead of self pours which inhibits my natural desire to over drink.
Also like cool things like the noodle stations in the ANA lounges.
Worse was getting shit from the lounge dragon at the Alitalia lounge in Rome for having the termacity to put my feet on the table while sitting on a couch....god forbid!
I'm going to the back seat of my car, with the woman I love, and I won't be back for ten minutes!

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by strife » Wed Jul 18, 2018 3:38 pm

Homerj wrote:
Wed Jul 18, 2018 3:33 pm

Worse was getting shit from the lounge dragon at the Alitalia lounge in Rome for having the termacity to put my feet on the table while sitting on a couch....god forbid!
You put your feet on tables in public spaces? The Italians will scold you for oafish behavior, true. I once saw a conductor swat a backpacker's legs on an Italian train, because he had his feet on the opposite seat. I chortled.
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Homerj
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by Homerj » Wed Jul 18, 2018 3:50 pm

Yup ...it's like Ma and Pa Kettle (Marge was with me) had somehow snuck into the lounge.
I'm going to the back seat of my car, with the woman I love, and I won't be back for ten minutes!

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by GayTurk_Izmir » Wed Jul 18, 2018 4:19 pm

Plus the lounges usually have better maintained cleaner toilets.
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by dragon » Thu Jul 19, 2018 6:21 pm

i could be a lounge dragon.
She is a great-kneed person.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by BeatRaven » Thu Jul 19, 2018 6:54 pm

Having the $4,000 lounge pass card is the same as having the black American Express Card -it's like dailing 1-800 take me hostage if you ever have a gun held to your head in quaint poverty-land.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by cummy » Fri Jul 20, 2018 4:22 am

mad hatter wrote:
Wed Jul 18, 2018 10:20 am
thats a lot of coffee or beers to get through at breakfast time!
oh my god. methinks i might have a problem. but, it's a good problem to have, no?

last week i did 5 delta skyclub lounges at atlanta/ATL in the same afternoon: 2 in terminal A, 1 in B, 1 in E, and i hung out on the patio in F.

a few weeks before that at washington dulles/IAD: lufthansa/LH lounge, turkish/TK lounge ... and then to 2 sad united lounges.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by Cyllarus » Fri Jul 20, 2018 1:26 pm

last week i did 5 delta skyclub lounges at atlanta/ATL in the same afternoon: 2 in terminal A, 1 in B, 1 in E, and i hung out on the patio in F.
Cummy, Atlanta airport is huge! Those lounges must be miles apart....why put yourself through the hassle of checking them all out?? Heey, wait a minute....are you Lucky?

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by polardude1 » Fri Jul 20, 2018 1:38 pm

I may use the Maple Leaf lounge in Montreal's airport since I have a 6 hour layover
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by cummy » Fri Jul 20, 2018 3:48 pm

Cyllarus wrote:
Fri Jul 20, 2018 1:26 pm
last week i did 5 delta skyclub lounges at atlanta/ATL in the same afternoon: 2 in terminal A, 1 in B, 1 in E, and i hung out on the patio in F.
Cummy, Atlanta airport is huge! Those lounges must be miles apart....why put yourself through the hassle of checking them all out?? Heey, wait a minute....are you Lucky?
ha! yes, ATL is huge, but it is a very very very manageable and functional airport. to go from terminal to terminal (and thus lounge to lounge) takes a mere 5 minutes or less. for a domestic connection, you only really need 20 mins to deplane and change terminals ... whereas that would be 1.5 hours in sh!tholes such as houston or newark. and, ATL terminals actually look good and function well. ATL is very customer friendly.

during my last visit, i did pass up on the delta skyclubs in terminal c, and the two in terminal d. why? those are my least fave DL lounges @ ATL. they are not bad; they're just so-so. oh, and, i could have hopped over to terminal T and done the united club. but, then again, united clubs are never worth the hassle to even visit.

and, no, i am not Lucky. i could only wish i were Lucky. ;)

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cummy
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by cummy » Sat Jul 21, 2018 4:57 am

here is a list of the best airport lounges in the world that cost less than 55 usd to use...

http://www.businessinsider.com/best-air ... sit-2018-7

Image

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leela
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Sat Jul 21, 2018 4:34 pm

Cool. The Bidvest one at Johannesburg makes the list. My first ever lounge experience.
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by Andrea1 » Sat Jul 21, 2018 5:29 pm

I have never been in an exclusive airport lounge in my life but, inspired by Cummy's list, I am going to. I will choose (one) selectively/maximum value. If I happen to be flying somewhere close-ish. Obviously.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Sun Jul 22, 2018 9:03 am

Andrea, my first was just a couple of years ago. And I was ridiculously excited about it! And given how much I've paid for long haul flights with longish connections, I was kicking myself for not having spent that relatively small amount of money before. I don't think I quite realised that these places existed. You only need to buy a coffee, sandwich and a cake at a busy, poxy terminal cafe and you're almost at the same price that gives you free food, drink, showers, magazines, wifi and an easy chair in a peaceful environment
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by DCComic » Sun Jul 22, 2018 9:57 am

There used to be a lounge at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport Mumbai whose only entry requirement was possession of a master card but was a bottomless well of free imported booze and half decent Indian food.
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by Andrea1 » Sun Jul 22, 2018 10:30 am

Leela, my deputy head asked me what time the flight was when I flew from Manchester to Hamburg, last year. It was really early morning and it turned out that she wanted to buy a lounge pass so I could enjoy the facilities before the flight. I was relieved that she didn't get it - managed to convince her that there was no benefit at that time of the day, didn't know then what I know now.

I'm not kicking myself exactly - the time meant it really wasn't a good option - but I'm definitely going to do it. And yes, the prospect is exciting.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by Chip_Oatley » Sun Jul 22, 2018 12:18 pm

Would it be possible for someone to copy and paste the contents of cmmy's article?

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leela
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:23 pm

Unfortunately it's full of big photos. But I'll see if there's a way of just getting the text.
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Sun Jul 22, 2018 1:24 pm

Can you see this link? It's where cummy's source got the list.

https://www.netflights.com/c/airport-hu ... 3dc6dee708
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by mishmish » Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:53 pm

For some reason I have never been able to locate a lounge that was open (for a fee) to the flying public when I needed one. Is there such thing as an efficient list for these things? And if not, why?? cummy? The only lounges I have ever been able to access on the spur of the moment were no improvement on the airport environment comfort-wise, and I am never in the market for free crappy coffee and pretzels.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:57 pm

Pass the wine...

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by mishmish » Sun Jul 22, 2018 5:28 pm

leela wrote:
Sun Jul 22, 2018 4:57 pm
https://www.loungebuddy.co.uk
thank you!

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by cummy » Mon Jul 23, 2018 12:30 am

Andrea1 wrote:
Sat Jul 21, 2018 5:29 pm
I have never been in an exclusive airport lounge in my life but, inspired by Cummy's list, I am going to. I will choose (one) selectively/maximum value. If I happen to be flying somewhere close-ish. Obviously.
here are some lounge tips ... off the top of my head.

keep your expectations LOW. not all lounges look like the fancy schmancy pictures. only a limited handful actually are nice … and those are usually the ones that do not sell day passes.

read reviews of lounges before you enter. you do not want to pay to enter a small room with no windows and only has crackers and blocks of cheese to offer you.

your lounge visit may be affected by: how many flights your airline currently has and thus explains the massive crowds in the lounge. massive crowds mean no seats, slower wifi, little or no food left, etc. this will make your stay very unhappy. or, if there are many flight delays and cancellations, and then a ton of pax run to the lounge for rebooking assistance and just to hang out due to delays.

your strategy should then be this. show up several hours earlier than the massive crowds. this could be between breakfast and lunch. thus, you can sample the breakfast offering and the lunch offering.

all USA airlines allow you to pay about 50 USD to enter their lounges. the lounges vary. some serve hot food, but most do not. some only serve crackers and blocks of cheese. sometimes the wifi sucks. take for example, united. their united clubs are just so-so, and you can buy a day pass to enter (and is a total waste of money, if you ask me). united also has their new polaris clubs, which do not sell day passes. delta’s clubs are really good and are quite consistent across the USA. same for American Airlines. DL and AA both sell day passes.

airlines have their own lounges. some lounges are lounges that multiple airlines use. some lounges (like the american express centurion lounges) are only for certain amex card holders; these lounges are super fab.

pick a big massive lounge. you can move to another section in case “mr or miss LOUD mobile phone user” sits next to you.

the airline’s lounge at the airline’s hub is not always the best lounge. it generally is but not always. case in point is austrian airlines. their schengen and non-schengen lounges at VIE are not very nice. they are both small, old and in dire need of refurbishment. but, their food is good. their caterer is DO&CO which is really really good.

with a day pass you may not be allowed re-entry into the lounge. so once you’re in, you’re in. if the lounge sucks, then it’s your choice as what you want to do.

not all lounges have showers. if you want a shower, then you need to find the correct lounge. and even when you do find a lounge with a shower, sometimes the showers are "out of order". fark. many times i plan my flights and connections knowing that during transit i can grab a shower before continuing on.

you’re a UK’er, yes? if yes, then LHR has some fab lounges: LH/Lufthansa, AC/Air Canada, SQ/Singapore, and even the UA/United Airlines lounge is good there (that's the only good UA lounge in the world). the BA lounges in T5 are good too. go early so you spend a lot of time in the lounge. you gotta get your money's worth, right?

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cummy
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by cummy » Mon Jul 23, 2018 12:32 am

i will add: i have never paid for an airline lounge ever. i think 50 usd is a rip off anyway. but i am a big lounge whore :o :lol: :lol:

my boarding pass and/or airline status gets me in for free.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:31 am

Airline lounges aren't usually Pay at the Door though, are they Cummy? I've never seen one available to economy passengers with a bit of money to spare. So all the ones you mentioned at Heathrow aren't an option for us.
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by Homerj » Mon Jul 23, 2018 3:57 pm

polardude1 wrote:
Fri Jul 20, 2018 1:38 pm
I may use the Maple Leaf lounge in Montreal's airport since I have a 6 hour layover
You have to have a flex fare to buy entry, if you are on a lower fare you cannot pay to get in.
I'm going to the back seat of my car, with the woman I love, and I won't be back for ten minutes!

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by GLimpet » Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:20 pm

leela wrote:
Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:31 am
Airline lounges aren't usually Pay at the Door though, are they Cummy? I've never seen one available to economy passengers with a bit of money to spare. So all the ones you mentioned at Heathrow aren't an option for us.
No, yeah.

Although Priority Pass lists a Skyteam lounge at LHR T5:
https://www.prioritypass.com/en/lounges ... c2db3c85d2

I presume that means AF/KLM Skyteam ... ?

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by GLimpet » Mon Jul 23, 2018 4:21 pm

We sometimes put our techs in a paid lounge if they have a series of long flights and a long wait in between.

Most have Priority Pass cards by now anyway.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by cummy » Mon Jul 23, 2018 7:48 pm

leela wrote:
Mon Jul 23, 2018 10:31 am
Airline lounges aren't usually Pay at the Door though, are they Cummy? I've never seen one available to economy passengers with a bit of money to spare. So all the ones you mentioned at Heathrow aren't an option for us.
i cannot say whether the actual lounge will allow you to enter by purchasing a day pass. some lounges, when full, prohibit day pass folks from entering. but:

UA sells day passes for 59USD. the lounge @ LHR is the best UA lounge in the world. so, it would be worth it ... if they let you in. this will get you into their united club but not their new swank polaris club (which isn't open yet @ LHR). buy at the door.
AA sells day passes for 59USD. T3. buy at the door.
DL sells day passes for 59USD. they don't have their own lounge @ LHR. buy at the door of DL skyclubs.
LH says 25€ for a day pass in european lounges. $35 for a day pass to USA lounges. this sounds too good to be true. but if it is really only 25€, do this one. this will give you admittance to their business lounge only (and not to their better senator lounge). their business and senator lounges @ LHR are really good. however, i think (not sure?) that you have to buy the voucher first (online?).
SQ doesn't seem to sell day passes. they're stuck-up like that.
AC doesn't seem to sell day passes for LHR.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Mon Jul 23, 2018 7:51 pm

Maybe it's just the US airlines that do it then. Maybe even just within the US. I've never seen airlines lounges offered. I'd have loved to use the Turkish Airlines lounge in Istanbul, but I was a lowly economy passenger with them. Instead, I had to share the pay lounge with loads of screaming kids.
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by Andrea1 » Tue Jul 24, 2018 6:25 am

Great Tip List, Cummy, thanks so much. Am definitely going to try one out, and, with all your expertise on the subject to guide me, Leela's too, I know it is going to be a great experience.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by GLimpet » Tue Jul 24, 2018 8:14 am

SIN and AMS are two airports where I'm almost as happy to sit in the general area than use a lounge.

You know the best thing about a lounge for the frazzled lone business traveller?

You can (accepting a slight amount of thievery risk) leave your stuff sitting , charging, whatever, while you go to toilet/shower/get drinks etc - unencumbered!

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by DCComic » Tue Jul 24, 2018 8:49 am

Lounges?
Really?

No fucking lounge is going to right the horrors of Luton.
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Tue Jul 24, 2018 9:08 am

It's somewhere like Luton where you really need a lounge, surely? Gawd, the last few times I've used that airport have been horrific. I, like many others, had to sit on the floor with my coffee and sandwich.
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by DCComic » Tue Jul 24, 2018 9:22 am

Oh. Once I was airside it wasn’t too bad. I found a quiet corner in a coffee place. But the queue of traffic to get to the long walk over cracked concrete with erratic people in the way to zig zag for ages to drop bags, to wade through crowds to zigzag to be X-rayed to do the Ikea shuffle through duty free scent, booze and chocolate....
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Tue Jul 24, 2018 9:28 am

True, there's not much one can do to avoid that. Luton has to have the most manic and bad tempered baggage security area I've come across. Horrible staff, crowded, and it's almost as if they spray high stress pheremones in the air.
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by DCComic » Tue Jul 24, 2018 10:00 am

Vilnius arrivals was worse. Utter chaos. One of the drunks off the plane face-planted getting off the shuttle bus and just lay there. The doors at the top of a moving escalator were locked, our bags were mixed on the belt with some from another flight, but ours wasn’t posted.
Nuts.
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by GLimpet » Tue Jul 24, 2018 10:08 am

easyJet at (now all-but-finished its upgrade) EDI last month let you drop your bags anytime, all automated. Hardly even a queue.

That was a big improvement on a year or two ago when you couldn't check-in until minimum two hours before your flight so were stuck with your bags.

That's how I remember LTN from 10+ years ago. 7 hrs to wait between easyJet flights, can't check bags in and nowhere to put anything , hardly any seats, crowded ...

Surely it's improved by now?

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by GLimpet » Tue Jul 24, 2018 10:09 am

DCComic wrote:
Tue Jul 24, 2018 10:00 am
Vilnius arrivals was worse. Utter chaos. One of the drunks off the plane face-planted getting off the shuttle bus and just lay there. The doors at the top of a moving escalator were locked, our bags were mixed on the belt with some from another flight, but ours wasn’t posted.
Nuts.
Gads.

Riga airport's quite nice. Tallin/Vilnius are on the agenda for next year.

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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by DCComic » Tue Jul 24, 2018 10:12 am

Maybe the early flight on Mondsy morning is worse than usual?
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Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Tue Jul 24, 2018 4:53 pm

I don't remember anything about Vilnius airport. Which makes me think it can't have been that bad.
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leela
Stew Ingredient
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Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:46 pm

Re: Airport Lounges

Post by leela » Tue Jul 24, 2018 4:59 pm

The problem with Luton is the attempt to make it better Glimpet. The upgrading has taken/is taking forever, and involves half the departure lounge being boarded up, and building work going on everywhere.

Oh, and the approach road is affected by a new car park being built, which adds hugely to the time and stress involved in getting there. Which is already painful as the station is miles away and involves shuttle buses (which are also caught up in the traffic).

But yeah, there's no excuse for the bad tempered staff, who make it even worse.
I actually got shouted at (at length) by one of the security staff for walking through the scanner just as he turned his head to talk to a colleague.
Pass the wine...

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