Fifteen bucks for business

with 2 comments

Swift service in the business lounge I have Frequent Traveller status with the German carrier Lufthansa and Star Alliance. That means I can get into the business lounge at any German airport, even if I only have an economy ticket.

The sad thing is that this doesn’t work at airports abroad, where I often have long waits for connecting flights.

If I wanted to get into a business lounge in Bangkok, Hanoi or Beijing without actually having booked a business flight, I’d have to have a gold card – unfortunately, my frequent traveller card is just silver.

Always hoping to get lucky

Nevertheless, I always try to get into the lounges with my silver card, hoping that somewhere, some time the locals might not know or care and just let me sit in those plush chairs and enjoy the free booze they serve in business lounges…

When I got to the lounge at the airport in an unnamed Asian city today, I was the only guest. The lady at the reception politely informed me that my silver card wasn’t enough to enter the lounge. As if I hadn’t known…

But then she suggested that I could talk to her boss – there might be a chance I could pay some money to get into the lounge.cushy chairs in the airport\'s business lounge

I thought that sounded like a good idea since I had more than one and a half hours to kill before my plane was due to depart.

The supervisor suggested I pay fifteen US Dollars.

That’s a sizeable sum in this unnamed Asian country.

After I gave her the cash, she happily put it into her wallet. Or was it the company wallet? Anyway: there were no witnesses. And I didn’t get a receipt.

Am I being too suspicious?

So let’s think of a more positive version of this episode. Who am I to suspect these people of any wrongdoing anyway?!

Let’s just look at this story from another point of view: the lady bent the rules to make my last hour in her country as pleasant as possible. She was friendly and helpful.

And for me it was nice to sit in a cushy chair and have access to the internet, instead of having to sit on the metal chairs in the general waiting area at the flight gate.

And who really cares about the fifteen bucks…

Written by Thorsten

June 8, 2008 at 4:19 am

2 Responses

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  1. Might I suggest you look at an alternate *A carrier to earn your miles with? UA, BD or AC will give you *A Gold status at less miles than needed for Silver with M&M! Of course LH will not upgrade you quite as often, but then again, LH’s upgrades are not too frequent to start off with.


    June 9, 2008 at 8:45 am

  2. Thanks for the info. I’ll check it out. I often fly Thai, so let’s see if their conditions are better. I really wouldn’t mind getting that gold status… 😉


    June 10, 2008 at 11:29 am

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