It is a busy time of the year, not due to work, but due to the level of sales and offers going on various e-portals and credit cards which we have been writing about. But just to take a break from the monotony, I had the chance to travel to UK recently and thus I made it a point to review a few lounges. We chose our itinerary in such a way that we could visit multiple lounges while on our way to London. We reached Abu Dhabi International Airport where our layover was for around 4 hrs.
So we headed to Al Reem Lounge in the Terminal 1 after walking for about 15 mins from our landing terminal which was I guess Terminal 3.
Al Reem Lounge at Abu Dhabi Review:
We had two options of getting complimentary entry in this lounge. One was Priority Pass and the other was HDFC Diners Club Cards (HDFC Diners ClubMiles, Premium and Black gives access to this lounge). When we reached at the counter, I was asked that what medium will I use get access. I showed them our priority pass. On seeing the PP, he asked me that this lounge is a little mediocre one in comparison to the other lounge (They were talking about Al Dhabi Lounge) they have and that we will have a better experience going to the other lounge instead.
While what he did was perfectly fine considering the fact that for each non-complimentary lounge visit, PP charges you, $27/entry. So he tried to save me some quick bucks. Little did he know that we had unlimited access to any PP Lounge. So we insisted that it doesn’t matter, we will take a look at the arrangements. relax a bit and then move on to the other lounge. He gave a baffled look to which I smiled and he smiled back.
Seating and Interiors:
The lounge was beautiful. It was a relatively small lounge but was very neat and smelled great. The interiors had seating facilities for families as well as individuals. There were tables near the food section area as well as couches to nap off for those long layover flights. We got comfortable after looking around for a bit. There were plenty of room to sit and very few people around.
Food and Drinks:
The Lounge had a moderate spread of buffet. You have pretty much anything starting from many kinds of non alcoholic beverages to starters to main course and desert.
The drinks had a range of tea, coffee (espresso, cappuccino, machiato etc), detox water, fruit juices and aerated cold drinks. The lounge also had a bar where one could pay for alcoholic drinks. The only time lounge doesn’t serve alcohol was around the month of Ramadan (Ramzaan).
Food consisted of soup- One Non Veg and One Veg. The starters had options of lots of kebabs. The choice was for chicken, lamb and steak. The main course had Biryani, Rice, Naan along with various dishes both veg and Non Veg.
Desert: The menu for the desert was quite elaborate. Various kind of sweets and cakes were available. To top it all, there was option of 3 choices of ice cream.
Over all the experience was nice. The staff members could easily be approached and were ready to help you with any information you needed. They were courteous and always smiling. They had 2 toilets and and option to take a shower.
Overall Experience at Al Reem Lounge:
- CardExpert Lounge Rating: 4/5 [yasr_overall_rating]
- Wi-Fi: Yes
- Food: Complimentary Buffet except alcoholic drinks which are chargeable.
- Ambience: Good
- Service: Courteous, Television, Shower Facilities, Newspapers/Magazines, Fax etc
- Complimentary Access: Priority Pass, HDFC Diners Cards, Dragonpass etc.
Have you been to this lounge? Is it good enough? Please share your likes or dislikes in the comment section below.
He gave a baffled look to which I smiled and he smiled back.😂😂
I had a similar experience when i was trying to access Arrivals lounge in Delhi T3. The guy was sounding like “our lounge is not a great lounge to use your precious lounge visits” 😀
These days i got to lounge even if it is for 15 minutes -) ..looking forward to my lounge visits in hongkong and delhi. Will be using both arrival and departure lounges. Hong Kong arrival lounge has shower facility which i will be using.
Everytime i visit using my diners add on cards i have that fear i might get charged because the diners club black faqs say that only primary gets free lounge access is it happened with anyone that a lounge denied entry to add on card holder for free visit specially with diners club black?
See, there is no way to charge. Whenever, you enter your Primary DCB or Add On DCB in the PoS terminal, it immediately detects Complimentary visit and accordingly charges only Rs2. But yes, there have been many instances where some readers wrote that their Diners Card was denied in the PoS terminals in some city and then was accepted at PoS at Delhi. Later questioning the CC they said it was a Diners Network issue. So it helps if you have an alternative access. For 99% of the time Diners won’t create a problem for you.
Abhishek, in general do DCB add-on card holders also get complimentary lounge access? What’s your experience?
Yes. I have used both DC Premium and DC Black. All Add On Cards get lounge access. Flawlessly. No problem till date anywhere in India.
I recently visited there, a small lounge as you said. That day most food options were non-veg. I was having a drink, when they asked me for feedback and i told them that they should have at least one veg curry with rice. To my surprise, the guy went to kitchen and got us one veg curry specially made for us.
Now, that is what you call a service.
Great review. I guess you were travelling in Etihad .
Through which card did you get unlimited PP ?
HDFC Infinia ? Yes First Exclusive ?
Awaiting Al Dhabi Lounge Review @Roy 🙂
Dr Roy, did you use the DC primary and add on at the same lounge at the same time? I picked up somewhere that you can use either the primary OR the add on at the same lounge on the same day.
I am yet to test it together. I have separately checked for Diners Premium and Diners Black Add on cards. But haven’t checked it together. If I do, will let you know.
I have used it together in multiple places. In domestic it worked with out any issue. In Kuala Lumpur the machine gave a warning(swpied add on first & primary second)that its already checked in. So the guy there used ‘re check-in ‘ option. So everything went smoothly. But in Bali airport when the machine showed same message, the guys there didn’t agree to use ‘recheck-in option’. Had to use priority pass for me. So cant rely on DCB for lounge if both primary & add on card holders are traveling together.
While traveling alone addon card had been used in many airports & was working (thailand, malasia, Vietnam…..)
Hows the weather in UK? Work or Leisure?
Did you use any lounge in the UK?
Hope you had a wonderful trip…
Just took off from the normal work schedule and had some family reasons to visit UK. Yes we used Arrivals Lounge in London. I’ll update slowly as things go by.
Will this all brinks and buffet is free includes in priority pass.
Yes. Except alcohol everything is free once you get entry.
Alcohol also was free when i was there (November 2017). May be they have changed the policy
After knowing that i was sipping champagne for free at bangkok lounge with a lot of personal attention and food coming right on my table from beautiful watresses maybe you should revise star rating to 2 😉
Was that a priority pass lounge? I have been to a few of late and newer saw champagne in the liquor menu.
Yes.Miracle lounge first class on concourse d bangkok departure
Liquor was also free in this lounge
I have a HDFC Regalia First Credit Card.Recently, I got a message from HDFC saying “PP usage at airport lounges in India is charged at $27+ tax per visit per member.
Regalia Wesbsite says both:
1. For Lounge visits within India, Regalia First Customers can avail 2 complimentary lounge access per quarter through Regalia First Visa/Master Credit Card Lounge program.
2. All Lounge visits within India using priority pass will be charged at US $27 + GST per person per visit as applicable w.e.f. 25th May 2017
Can you please tell me which one is correct?
Don’t use PP card for lounge visits in India. In India PP (That came with regalia card) use is not free. Use it only when you are outside India. In India, if you want to use lounge access, use the Regalia Credit card directly. If you have a Visa Regalia card then you have complimentary access to Visa lounges and if you have a MasterCard Regalia Credit Card, then free access to MC lounges.
Have a connecting flight at AUH on my return from US.. Will reach AUH by 8pm and the connection is only at 2Am local time. There are 6 of us traveling together. All hoping to get access to Al reem or Al dhabi lounge with priority pass. Does anyone know if the lounges will be crowded at that time?
Last year I visited Ahlan business class lounge in terminal – 1 dxb. It is covered under priority pass. I spent roughly 2 hrs there. They had good collection of premium wines and drinks. They are among few lounges who offers ala-carte menu at the live section. I had some special burger and pasta. It wasn’t very crowdy, Ambience of Lounge and Quality of food was awesome.
Which cards work at Kuwait Terminal 4 lounge for transit tourists. It is between my delhi to paris return flights. I have HDFC regalia, IDFC select, Indusind legend credit cards.
Outside of India, most countries do not offer lounge access directly on payment cards. There are a few exceptions like diners and Amex, but none of your cards will work abroad.
But I believe regalia has PP access, so you can access the lounge using that. I see that there is a PP lounge in T4.