This year is the first year that I’ve actually buckled and purchased an annual pass into Northwest Airlines WorldClubs. With all of the traveling I was doing for work and on the side and the bucketsfull of hours I was wasting in airports, I figured that the 250$ was worth my productivity.
And now, I’m addicted. In Detroit‘s McNamara Terminal, the sprawling lounge includes free booze, snacks, wifi and showers, the perfect antidote for a long day of travel.
As airlines focus more on first and business class passengers, they too have noticed the importance of airport lounges. To keep our business, they’re constantly improving the lounge product to include amenities from fresh ramen noodles to automatic beer pouring machines to Smart Car sized espresso makers.
Now, as this New York Times article details, they’re also banding together to create uber lounges, each bent on dragging and retaining the high-value-flyer in their grasps. I suppose its a fair enough business model in the land of cutthroat competition.
If you ever do get a hankering for a little quiet productive time in an airline lounge though, consider stopping in for a visit; many lounges offer day passes for a modest fee. Sitting above the madness and looking down at the chaos unfolding is surprisingly peaceful.