Airport Lounges – Are they Worth It?

For the weary business traveller, the prospect of a refuge to hideaway, put up your feet and enjoy an array of creature comforts while in transit to the next destination may seem too tempting to pass up. Except when the creature comforts aren’t really that comforting because the fact is that not all airport lounges are created equal. This means that depending on the lounge available, the price, and the facilities that are on offer in the main terminal building, airport lounges may offer little more than slightly more comfier chairs, tea and coffee and a magazine stand.

CitiCar operate executive airport transfers from all major Australian domestic and international airports including:

In the sections below we share some of the major things for business travellers to consider when deciding if airport lounge access is right for them.

How much is airport lounge access?

 

Airport lounge access is generally included free of charge for business and first class travellers on international flights, or for higher level (Gold and Platinum) frequent flyer members. Annual access cards may be purchased for between $350.00-700.00 per year (in addition to a one off joining fee) depending on the airline, and include access to international airport lounges in the airline’s alliance network (i.e. One World and Star Alliance)

There is no doubt that the privilege of lounge membership does not come cheap, so unless you fly regularly enough, it may be hard to justify, in any case it’s likely you will already have gold or platinum frequent flyer status.

One off entries to the airport lounge are also available depending on the airport and airline’s rules (usually a maximum time limit in the lounge) and range from around $65.00-100.00. For those wanting to relax and unwind in between a connecting or before a long flight, this could be the best option worth exploring.

How to determine if it’s right for you?

 

Assuming you don’t have automatic access as mentioned, paying for one off access generally depends on the lounge itself. This is why it’s always good to research and read some FourSquare or Facebook check in reviews to see what other people are saying about the lounge. It goes without saying that if the airport you most frequently depart from has limited or disappointing lounge access, it might be worth it. However the $75.00 may be money well spent if:

  • You need to get work done. With workstations, broadband access, and comfortable seating, getting work done in the peace, quiet and comfort an airport lounge is much more achievable than the main terminal. Time is money after all.
  • The time in transit. For a long stop internationally, lounge access may be worth it for the shower facilities and ability to have a dinner buffet as well as a nap on the reclining chair to recharge.
  • The food and beverage – For many people the open bar and snacks make it worth it.
  • Other amenities – As mentioned some lounges are just fancier rest stops than the rest of the terminal, while others will have spas, pool tables – even hair salons. As always do your research.

Airport lounges aside, sometimes the biggest comfort that is priceless is having someone collect you and take your destination in comfort, conveniently and on time with no queues and a flat fare. That’s where CitiCar come in.

Offering executive airport transfers across all major Australian cities we are driven to serve. To find out about our corporate travel plans, or other airport transfer services, call us today on 1300 661 119.