Airport lounges: Flying in comfort

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My last journey ended badly before the world suddenly shut down. Five hours after take off, the plane had to turn back and we ended up right where we left off. Re-boarding the flight was made even worse as we scrambled to find a seat on the overbooked flight. In addition, two years of upheaval, uncertainty and evolving regulations required me to find ways to make flying as smooth as possible. Airport lounge access is key to that.

To get back in the air, I chose Fiji – the friendliest and most welcoming destination for my first international trip this year. I checked-in for my flight the night before and arrived at the airport with plenty of time.

As I walked around the terminal, I thought of ways to make the waiting experience more enjoyable — and perfect it from now on. I put this into practice upon my return and even made a plan for how to make my upcoming flight experience as smooth as possible.

Make the flight more comfortable

I was reacquainted with economy size seats. I ensure a comfortable flight by choosing an aisle seat, wearing loose clothing and roomy sneakers, reviewing my day-to-day itinerary, drinking plenty of water (easy to drink and including air) and making a list of activities to pass the time. drinks), exercised with foot twirls and shoulder stretches and adjusted my watch to the new time zone when I left.

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Lounge access

On return, check-in is easy as Fiji Airways offers a check-in desk at many resorts. I simply walked up to the desk, checked my bags in early, and then enjoyed the extra time for one last swim while sipping a refreshing smoothie. Once I reached Nadi airport, it was stress free as I had to proceed through security and immigration.

Before the flight, I enjoyed two hours in the Premier Lounge, which is free to Business Class passengers, Tabua Club members, Premier Guests of partner airlines or by paying the AUD$66 entry fee. The lounge offers a wide variety of hot and savory dishes, salads, desserts and hot and cold beverages.

For my next international holiday, I’m off to Turkey, flying with one of my favourites, Singapore Airlines. While traveling through Singapore, I accessed the KrisFlyer Gold Lounge, which is available to travelers with the appropriate frequent flyer status. While traveling for long hours, I am grateful to be able to enjoy a wide selection of juices, smoothies and food. The lounge is still luxurious for business and first class.

Singapore Airlines, Source: Supplied

With a total of 19 hours in the air to Turkey, a visit to the lounge made the trip easier. For the second leg, I slept most of the way, in an aisle seat with extra legroom, which is fine for paying the extra charge.

I’m totally in the travel groove and just got back from the Middle East. This time I flew direct from Etihad to Abu Dhabi. In Sydney, using my Etihad Boarding Pass, I received complimentary access to the House Lounge, a lounge available to travelers who pre-book online for a fee, are traveling with a guest of appropriate flyer status, or are doing travel business. or first class.

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As I was ending my trip in Dubai, Etihad was offering a complimentary transfer service to Abu Dhabi International Airport and I spent several hours in the Etihad lounge.

Etihad, Source: Supplied

The lounge has a wide selection of Middle Eastern and Indian food, which is outstanding. Their shower room is the most beautiful I’ve ever seen, with green tiles and floor-to-ceiling mirrors, and the big, fluffy warm towels provided give it a special touch. Choose from different spaces and quiet corners, such as dining areas, dedicated areas for business, and comfortable lounge chairs where you can sink into while watching planes take off.

There are many reasons why you might enter an airport lounge before your flight. It gives you something to look forward to before your destination. Beyond check-in, immigration and security clearance, you can enjoy and relax. This is the best place to dine and dine before your flight and if your flight is delayed, you are in a pleasant place. Even better, if you’re in transit, you can refresh, recharge, and be ready when you arrive at your destination.

Compare that to testing for tight seats at the gate, wandering aimlessly through the passing parade of other travelers through duty free, and facing expensive prices at airport cafes.

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The lounges also offer baby changing facilities, a children’s playroom, concierge service, a business center to recharge all your devices and a steam press to freshen your clothes. Travel in first class and you can treat yourself to the wellness and fitness centre, spa and hair salon. Etihad also offers a global meet and assist service to assist with check-in and fast tracking from the airport to the lounge.

Getting to the next level

I wanted to start and end my Middle East trip on a high note. I indulged and flew in business class – and it was exceptional, luxurious in comfort and looked after by attentive staff. With the push of a button, the seat reclines into a bed and the blanket is cozy and snug, and I’m asleep in no time. After waking up, I requested granola, fresh berries and yogurt, pastries, and freshly brewed coffee, served on a crisp linen tablecloth. It was a real treat and allowed me to finish 2022 on a high.

Nadi Airport
Premier Lounge, Nadi Airport, Fiji, Source: Supplied

For me airport lounges are a treat, something to look forward to and a perfect way to start and end a trip. And for all of us, why not start the fun at the beginning, before takeoff, instead of waiting until we reach our destination.

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