About Ajay

Ajay Awtaney is the Founder and Editor of Live From A Lounge (LFAL), a pioneering digital platform renowned for publishing news and views about aviation, hotels, passenger experience, loyalty programs, travel trends and frequent travel tips for the Global Indian. He is considered the Indian authority on business travel, luxury travel, frequent flyer miles, loyalty credit cards and travel for Indians around the globe. Ajay is a frequent contributor and commentator on the media as well, including ET Now, BBC, CNBC TV18, NDTV, Conde Nast Traveller and many other outlets.

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Lufthansa now offers in-flight wifi on flights from Chennai & Mumbai

The mailbox had a sweet piece of news this afternoon from Lufthansa. Lufthansa clearly looks at India as a valuable market, as has been signified by their introduction of the Boeing 747-8i in India at an early stage, their investment in a lounge in Delhi and the upgrade of the business class in flights from Mumbai. Today, I spotted an interesting piece of news tucked away in a corner of a mailer from LH. FlyNet is the Lufthansa wifi internet offering, and LH has been trying to get as many planes equipped with on-board wifi as fast as possible. LH flies the Boeing 747-400 with the new First Class on-board from Mumbai to Frankfurt, the Airbus 330-300 with new Business…

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Why I am not too hopeful with the Air India 787 induction?!

The Air India B787 take off from Charleston I’ve been sounding negative all along about Air India being actually able to make some difference with the cutting edge 787 being added to their fleet. After a comedy of errors all these months, as the plane took off from Charlseton yesterday to be flown to Delhi, I know a lot of India is feeling like this plane is going to change the fortunes of Air India. I can’t support that view, because I’ve seen Air India go down and down over the months and years from the sidelines. Here are some things that point to them being clueless about the whole airline business maybe. Perhaps one of India’s respectable aviation journalist,…

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Mumbai airport finally has internet check-in!

Almost all airlines offer web check-in for travel, domestic as well as international. However, security regulations in India are slightly funny, which means when travelling domestic, you need to get the boarding pass validated by an airline official who cross checks with your ID and stamps the BP, and the proceed for security check. However, a reader Pranay brought my attention to this news article today, published in a national daily, which states that the airport operator has simplified the process: From September 1, the Mumbai airport operator has scrapped the procedure wherein passengers, who had opted for a web check-in, had to get printouts of their boarding cards stamped at the airline check-in counters. I’ll be taking a few…

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The Jinx is broken. Air India has been delivered a Boeing 787-8!

Oh lord, this was not deemed to have happen, but it finally did. I first crossed roads with an Air India colors Boeing 787 at the Indian Aviation 2012 event in March 2012. For the record, I was not impressed with how Air India was planning to use these planes, because they were clueless themselves. At that point of time, Air India was supposed to be the second carrier to have the plane, and perhaps the first one with the GEnx-1B engines, picking them up in May 2012. That was the plan even when I visited the Boeing factory in January 2012 and talked to some people there. And then, Air India and the Government of India got greedy and…

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Reminder: Free stay+spa giveaway at Park Hyatt Goa ends Sept 9,2012

If you haven’t noticed, I put out a free night giveaway which includes a room night (paid for, along with taxes and breakfast for 2) and a trip to the spa at the Park Hyatt Goa Resort & Spa last week. The giveaway runs through till Sunday 9th September 2012, 23:59 India Standard Time. You can enter (repeatedly!) and via two different methods. Read on: You can participate via Twitter: Follow @LiveFromALounge on Twitter. Tweet which bit of the Park Hyatt Goa Experience are you looking forward to enjoy the most. Do include @LiveFromALounge and the hashtag #HYATTGOA in the Tweet. You can tweet me once per calendar day (00:00 Hours India Standard Time to 23:59 India Standard Time). To…

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How to get the Jet Airways HDFC Bank / ICICI Bank Credit Cards?

The Jet Airways co-branded credit cards were much looked forward to by me, because these are perhaps going to be the only Indian co-branded cards for a while ahead. I wrote about the Jet Airways HDFC Bank Credit Card about a month back. While I am not very impressed by the card and decided not to apply initially, to inform all of my readers about the “Wheel of Fortune” contest outcome,  I tweeted to Jet Airways to ask what was the outcome going to be. Have a look at our exchange here: Now Jet Airways passed on my details to HDFC Bank who subsequently called me, but claimed ignorance of the fee waiver. If you picked HDFC Bank as your…

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GoIbibo.com offering free cabs on booking flight tickets

GoIbibo.com, one of the many travel portals out there, recently launched a promotional offer called the GoIbibo VIP service, where they are offering a free cab transfer service at the arrival airport (in Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore) for those who book domestic flight tickets with them. On using the promotion code FLYVIP while making your reservations, you will be eligible for a cab pickup at your destination airport (if it is BOM, DEL, BLR) where a representative of the company will provide you with your cab details. To avail of the promotion, you need to: Make a reservation to fly to DEL, BOM or BLR Book before 30 Sep 2012  31 October 2012 (make sure to book at least 24…

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And I picked up a new Standard Chartered Platinum Credit Card

I am not so much of a card churner, as you all know. I don’t actively seek new lines of credit from banks. The best I usually do is to call the bank to switch me to a new product by moving my existing line of credit to the new card. That is how I got rid of my Citibank Jet Airways Credit Card and got myself the PremierMiles Credit Card last year. However, a few weeks back, before the whole ICICI/HDFC Jet-cobranding effort was revealed, I was quietly beginning to like a new credit card product. It is an innocent looking ‘Platinum’ credit card in today’s era when perhaps I only carry more premium cards in my wallet and…

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Win a free stay at the Park Hyatt Goa Resort & Spa here!

Like I just posted, the Park Hyatt Goa is picking the tab for one reader to come over and experience their hospitality and spa treatments. Simply leave a comment on this post, and post a comment on which bit of the Park Hyatt Goa Experience are you looking forward to enjoy the most. You can participate once per calendar day (00:00 Hours India Standard Time to 23:59 India Standard Time). An example of an eligible comment would be: I’d love to visit the award-winning Sereno Spa at the Park Hyatt Goa You can check out the other post for ways to participate via Twitter and the fineprint. Good Luck! Live From A Lounge is present on Facebook, Twitter & available…

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We’re giving away a stay at the Park Hyatt Goa Resort & Spa

Two good things happened over the last few weeks. One, we completed a year of bringing Live From A Lounge in July, and two, I had a fabulous weekend, unwinding by the poolside with friends at the Park Hyatt Goa Resort & Spa. You can read all about my experience at the Park Hyatt Goa here. A gorgeous pool and the view from the pool at the Park Hyatt Goa.   What are we giving away? Now, while I’d pay any day to come back to this resort for a stay, the Park Hyatt Goa has generously invited for one reader of the blog to come over and stay at the hotel in a Park Room to experience their hospitality.…

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Jet Airways ICICI Bank Credit Card is better than the Jet Airways HDFC Bank CC

I wrote a couple of hours back about the ICICI Bank Jet Airways credit card being available. I jumped the gun in calling it is a boring card. Have a look. Sapphiro version: Highest end card offered has a bonus of 10,000 JPMiles on your Jet Airways ICICI Bank Credit Card + 5,000 JP Miles if you apply before September 30, 2012. (Better than HDFC Bank) A Jet Airways Complimentary Domestic Air Ticket as a joining benefit. (same as HDFC Bank) Get 5,000 bonus JPMiles + Complimentary Domestic Air Ticket as a renewal benefit. (Better than HDFC Bank) Enjoy premier check-in for all domestic flights of JetAirways. (same as HDFC Bank) Enjoy a 10 kg additional baggage allowance on all…

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