Big but not that good at SFO…

Author: Nick  |  Category: Red Carpet, San Francisco [SFO], United Airlines

The United Airlines Red Carpet lounge at San Francisco airport is big, but I wouldn’t say that it’s good because of that. I guess my feeling is based on the fact that I’m used with European and Asian lounges, which is offering a lot more then North American lounges.

The lounge in Terminal 3 is a quite nice looking big lounge, and it has a bar. But it doesn’t offer any real food, the only thing you can get here is some light snacks, as well as coffee and non-alchoholic beverages. If you like to have something stronger you have to buy it, and a beer cost from 5 dollar. So it is a little bit disappointing when you are used to lounges in other parts of the world where everything is free.

United Airlines seems to have a strange policy for Star Alliance members. Normally a gold member would be allowed to bring one guest to the lounge, but United states that they have a non-guest policy. So don’t be supprised if you can’t bring a guest into their lounge even if you think you should be allowed. But it is one thing this lounge have, and it is a good view over what is happening at the airport, everything, even a single bag they drop, can be seen from the windows here.

If you still like to get to this lounge you will find it here.

One of the best places for food…

Author: Nick  |  Category: Frankfurt [FRA], Lounges, Lufthansa Lounges

The Lufthansa lounge in Terminal A, Frankfurt, is one of the best places if you’re really hungry. The Senior lounge there is always well equiped with food, but a little depending on the time of the day. At evening they have things like pasta and hotdogs, not only the light snack which is nothing if you are looking for food at days when you haven’t had a single meal. They even have staff cooking the pasta in the lounge, and not only heating food, as they do in a lof of other lounges. What you also can find here is a smoothie bar. So what ever you might think about Lufthansa, one thing is for sure, they know how to satisfy your hunger.

Lufthansa Lounges

Author: Tom  |  Category: Lufthansa, Lufthansa Lounges

Looking for Lufthansa lounges? Check out this link

Lufthansa Lounge Search

Security check – quick guide, ehh…quicker guide

Author: Tom  |  Category: Airports

Spending too much time in line for the security check? The tightened security checks do take time, but there are ways to speed things up, even in fast-track. Here are some guidelines to get you and your co-travellers through quickly.

Liquids: You probably know this by know, but it happens all too often so I’ll repeat it: No liquids in containers bigger than 100ml (3.5 fl oz) are allowed. Also, there’s a maximum of 1l (35 fl oz) in total. The containers need to be placed in a clear transparent bag and shown to the personell. If it’s inside your carry-on luggage, you have to take it out and everyone will get delayed.  Want to play it safe and do not need any medications and such? Then just drink up and proceed.

Metal objects: prepare yourself by removing all metallic items from yourself prior to entering security check. This includes wristwatch, belt, mobile phone, change etc. If you carry a jacket, put the stuff in your pockets or put it in a small plastic bag for your convenience. Just throwing all the stuff in a tray means it takes time to retreive later on.

Shoes: Most often, security personell instists on removing your shoes, especially if you wear boots or bigger shoes. The fastest way to get through is to just remove them prior to entering the metal detector.

Laptop: Well ahead of putting your stuff in the X-Ray, remove your laptop and put it in a separate tray.

Other: Remove your Jacket/hood/cap and anything that could possible conceal a weapon or similar. Use your imaginiation.

After X-Ray: Remove your items as soon as your allowed to. Clear the area and repackwhen your not obstructing your fellow passengers behind. Too many times people start dressing at the end of the X-Ray belt and is causing delays. Often there is a area nearby where you can put on your shoes and pack your bags. Use it.

Finally, arguing with the security personell does not get you or anyone else through quicker. Just do as your told and everyone will be on their way to the lounge in no time.

Not-so-pleasent trip to Madrid

Author: Tom  |  Category: Travel Stories

Some time ago, I had an unfortunate business trip to wonderful Madrid, that I feel an urge to share. My plan was to take a direct train from Linköping to Copenhagen airport, Kastrup, and then a  Spanair flight to Madrid. I could spend some time working on the train, have lunch and  arrive and check in at Kastrup. Nice and convenient… I thought. Before I got on the train, there was four announced delays, first 2 minutes, then 2 more,  then 5 minutes etc etc. Eventually my X2 shows up and I got on. On board, the internet conection was intermittent and I could not complete my mail syncronization, it kept on timing out. Complaints was disregarded and my PC was blamed. In the middle of my lunch, getting close to Malmö. Another announcement was made that I had to switch train at Malmö. I had to send the rest of my lunch in the bin, quickly shut down my computer and collect my things. Since there had been additional dealays along the trip, I was now short on time and had to rush to catch the commuter to Kastrup. Shame on you, SJ! I do prefer by going by train, but with this treatment of customer I see no benifit.

Getting on to the Spanair flight, I soon find out that I was double booked. Ending up in a middle seat in Economy, i.e. nothing to eat and no drinks except lukewarm coffee I tried to get some sleep. The thing with Spanair is that their seats seems to be designed to fit midgets. There is no way to get a sleep without breaking the neck. Ouch!

Finally, arrived at Barajas. I followed the signs to baggage claim and waited… and waited..and waited. No bags for me. I turned to the missing baggage counter and was told that there had been a problem with the electric signs, but there was a guy at the gate, telling people where to go, she added. Unfortunately, it turned out that guy spoke only Spanish. So here I was, at the wrong terminal, I had to exit the security zone and get back into the other terminal. Aarrgh.

Eventually, I got my bag and after asking around for an ATM and Taxi stand, I escaped the airport.  BTW, I had an very nice stay in Madrid with yummy Tapas.