Lounge Act

The initial leg of our antiquities tour was supposed to be a flight from JFK airport to Cairo, then connecting to Amman for the first few days of this trip. When the flight to Cairo on Egyptair pushed away from the gate just shy of 7 PM it was already nearly nearly two hours behind schedule, imperiling our connection. (Scheduled departure was 5:15.) Yeah, we didn’t make it. The upside is that we opted to travel business class, which got us access to various airport lounges, and we have spent A LOT of time in lounges so far.

Egyptair lounge at Cairo International Airport.

At JFK our ticket got us into the lounge operated by Lufthansa. It is immediately past the TSA checkpoint in JFK Terminal One, so it had the benefit of convenience. The lounge was comfortable enough, but it was disappointing that the champagne option was Cook’s. Seriously, Lufthansa, you couldn’t even pay up for something like Frexinet? We also could have gotten into an Air France lounge as a benefit from our Amex account. It likely had better wine options, but I didn’t feel like wandering around to find it.

We landed in Cairo just about the time our connecting flight had probably finished boarding. The Egyptair transit desk rebooked us on a later flight, and pointed us to its airport lounge. Egyptair doesn’t serve any alcohol on its planes and also doesn’t stock any in the lounge, but after a long overnight flight, it’s not very important. Coffee was more appealing at that point.

The lounge is comfortable enough. Looking out the window you can see the effect of sticking an airport out in the middle of a desert. (Not that Egypt has much choice given it occupies considerable desert.) There is a low-lying haze that I’m guessing is partly the result of dust in air.

As for the flight itself, once we got in the air it was fine. We had read mixed reviews of Egyptair but setting aside the delay, which was never explained, the in-flight service was fine. The dinner was actually pretty good for an airline meal.

Don’t know if this haze is normal. Guess we will see.

Also, any regular flyer knows the pre-flight lecture about fastening your seatbelt and putting your seat back in the upright and locked position for takeoff. Not on our flight. Want to stretch out during takeoff? Have at it.

Next up, Amman, assuming no more flight issues. We’ve been doing this long enough to know that one can never assume anything when it comes to air travel. You just have to go with the flow.


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