Airport lounges used to be the exclusive domain of first class passengers and elite frequent flyers. Where they used to very quietly consider charging a fee for access, the practice has become commonplace. For a nominal fee, the airport lounge oasis is available to us all. Now, let’s discuss the fee.
Airport lounges either affiliated with specific airlines or not are opening at large and small airports. The average range is about $40 to $75 per person per day. What does that money buy? Magazines, drinks, snacks, and even full meals can be available. Considering the price of airport food and reading material, it may be a cost-saving proposition.
Although terminals have stepped up their game in terms of free Wi-Fi, power outlets, charging stations, and tables or counters, you are still amidst the madness of a terminal. Lounges offer a variety of environments for quiet work, meditation, conversation, and even conference rooms. If you actually have to get work done while waiting in airport, a lounge encourages productivity.
In larger international airports, independent family-oriented lounges cater to the needs of children to play. Clean, uncrowded restrooms, eating areas, and play spaces allow families to make the airport part of the vacation, not just an endurance test. Especially when past security, families can relax and prepare for their flight without worrying about liquids and pocket contents. Airlines are now charging for food, which has increased its quality, but lounge food and drinks may save those costs as well. If lucky, the kids may have spent energy and full tummies to lull them to sleep on the plane.
Lounges affiliated with airlines also have service personnel to assist with flight information and changes. When a flight is cancelled, delayed, or missed, it is better to be in a lounge than the terminal when you need quick assistance.
The next time that you are facing an hour or more at an airport, consider an airport lounge. You may be able to get a pass at the ticket counter, lounge entrance, or even the airline’s mobile app. Perhaps business travel will be more productive and the vacation will not have to wait until the destination to begin.