Emirates has one of the best lounges in the world. From quality food in out station lounges, to their amazing Dubai lounges, Emirates knows how to do it. For a very long time, these lounges were restricted to Skywards Elite members and premium passengers. This is going to change, as Emirates Lounge Access is now available for purchase. The airline has announced that they will begin offering lounge access to those who wish to purchase it. It will not, however, be in the same model that US carriers offer lounge access. They will offer only day passes for those who are traveling the same day on Emirates.
As mentioned above, you will only be able to access the lounges if you have a ticket on Emirates for that day. It will only be available for those who are Skywards Members. If you have access to their business class lounge, you will be able to upgrade to a First Class lounge for a fee. Traveller.co.au reports that costs will be between $100-$200 USD. This is a very hefty cost, as for US lounges, a day pass is $50 USD.
Emirates’ First Class lounge in Dubai is basically its own terminal. It has duty-free shops, a cigar room, quiet area, full service dining and a spa. The lounge is one of the most empty I have ever seen, given that it is so large. The business class lounge is the same size, but more crowded, as there are more passengers. I have not had a chance to try their business class lounge, but I can imagine it is one of the best in its class. Emirates offers a great ground product, although it is not that over the top.
It makes sense that the airline is selling access to their lounges. Gulf Carriers have been hard hit by the slump in oil prices. I find this to be an effective way to try to make more revenue. Their first class lounge is all but deserted, and the ratio between passengers and staff is close to 1:1. The airline’s business class lounge is slightly more crowded, but it is still easy to find a seat. I expect them to add more purchase options, such as allowing passengers to fly in a business class seat, without the amenities. It will take time to see if this decision becomes a profitable endeavor but for now, it seems like a step in the right direction.
What do you think? Are you willing to pay to use Emirates’ lounges? Have you ever been to one? Do you think it’s worth the price? Let us know!
All images from Wikimedia Commons or the Author’s.