In October 2021, I was on a quick trip to Lucknow and flew back on Air India to Delhi after the trip. I tried to stretch my departure from the hotel in Lucknow only because I was under the impression that there was no lounge at Lucknow airport, which has been the case for a long time. However, as I passed the security check at the airport, I saw a direction board pointing towards The Lucknow Airport Domestic Lounge on the first floor of the airport’s domestic pier. I had almost approached a fast-food counter to get a grab-and-go meal packed for the flight since, this being a less than two-hour flight, there would have been no meal served on the plane.
The Lounge, Lucknow Airport (Domestic) Location and Access
The new lounge, literally known as “The Lounge”, has opened on the first floor of the Lucknow Airport’s Domestic pier in the first quarter of 2021. The Lounge is located next to the Ile bar, right opposite Gate 5, one of the only gates on the first floor.
The lounge is operated by Devyani International, which also owns and operates the various F&B concessions at Lucknow Airport. You can either enter the lounge via a relatively limited set of India-issued credit cards, or you can access the lounge on cash payment of INR 795 (USD 12 inclusive of taxes). The operating hours of the lounge are between 06:00 AM and 09:00 PM.
As we accessed the lounge’s reception to check the entry terms, we noticed that the lounge had tie-ups with various networks for complimentary lounge access. As I would later discover, the lounge is an extension of the Ile Bar and is staffed by the bar itself.
The Lounge reception stated that complimentary lounge access was available to Diners Club International, MasterCard, DreamFolks and Hettich customers. However, I don’t understand how Hettich, a home interiors supplies firm, had anything to do with lounge access.
However, the lounge access at this lounge comes with very confusing terms and conditions. In fact, at the first attempt, we were unable to enter the lounge since many products that qualify were also not accepted at this lounge. As you can see, Visa and American Express are not listed, neither is Priority Pass.
Some permutations and combinations were accepted, and some were not, even for the products listed. For instance, my first reaction was that I produced the DreamFolks Lounge Pass that came with my ICICI Bank Sapphiro card. Still, I was told it would not work (I forgot that India-issued Dreamfolks cards for ICICI are usually supposed to be used outside the country). Shipra was also unable to access the lounge with her HDFC Bank Infinia, which is issued on the MasterCard platform.
I pulled out my card wallet, and we ran through every card that could be a possible candidate for granting us lounge access. While the lounge receptionist was accommodating, and there was no queue to access the lounge, it would be better to put a printed list of the limited cards that they would be able to offer access to. Eventually, we accessed the lounge with one of us entering via my HDFC Bank Diners Club Black card and the other with a Yes First Exclusive MasterCard Credit Card.
The Lounge, Lucknow Airport Amenities
The Lucknow Airport “The Lounge” is pretty basic about what it offers. On the inside, there are about 20 seats in various configurations, some artwork on the wall, and a television screen, where they were playing a cricket match the day we visited.
There is a chiller display fridge in one corner of the lounge, with water and tetra pack juices on offer.
Also, a couple of loos were inside the lounge, which kind of ticked the box but were not lavish, just like the lounge.
The Lounge, Lucknow Airport F&B
As you would have already noticed, this lounge does not have any food on display because there is no buffet on offer. Instead, the lounge offers a menu of options, from which you can choose off a menu. The offer is for unlimited food and beverage, although we did not test their claim on this.
As we arrived past 7 pm, our options were a full dinner. However, we enquired if we could be offered something from the snack menu, and the lounge staff agreed. The lounge, a part of Devyani International itself, sources the meals from the various other F&B Concessions at the airport, which are also a part of the same organisation.
Shipra ordered a Veg Biryani for herself, while I went with a Rajma Chawal from the snack menu. I also requested a coffee. The food arrived in about ten minutes.
While my meal was pretty good, I found the Veg Biryani pretty spicy and nothing to write home about.
We spent about an hour and a half at the lounge, which was still better than waiting in the outside Waiting Area, given there was hardly anything to do at the airport. This Flight Information Display System got a lot of looks from me. However, the FIDS did not display as frequently as I’d have liked it to be. For instance, my Air India flight was delayed by over thirty minutes, but Air India did not send the update to the airport.
Overall, the Lounge was a good spot to wait for the flight and a pleasant surprise at an airport that did not have a good lounge for a long time before this one opened up.
The Lounge at Lucknow Domestic Airport is a good spot to wait it out for your flight when flying out of there. There is reasonable F&B, and it is quieter inside than outside. However, neither Air India nor Vistara, the two full-service airlines at the airport, have a tie-up with this lounge. Also, the lounge access options are very limited in terms of their tie-ups.
Have you been to the Lucknow Airport “The Lounge” at the Domestic Pier? How has been your experience?
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