LGW Lounges and Things to do?

Discussion in 'LHR/LGW/LCY/LTN/STN | London Area Airports' started by richinaz, May 2, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. richinaz
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    richinaz Silver Member

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    I'm flying from LGW to CLT on US Airways in Envoy (business) class on a Saturday morning (830am flight). I have a US Airways club membership and am Star Gold. Are there any lounges I can use?
    Are they after or before security?

    How is the airport? Any good places to grab a snack to eat on the plane?

    Thanks
    Rich
     
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  2. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Unless you need special food (kosher, strict vegetarian, etc. and you're worried about special meal orders being messed up), don't purchase food to bring on board. You will be well fed. From the time and distance, I would expect a full hot breakfast shortly after departure and a substantial snack or light meal before arrival, but I do not have experience with US Air. Similarly, if yo have a business class TATL ticket (not nonrev or an OPUP), I would expect US to arrange for lounge access for you before your flight at LGW (assuming that there are lounges at that airport; a few European airports such as Bergen don't have them). Star Gold should get you into any *A lounge you can get to before your flight--i.e., assuming no security checkpoints that you can't go through with your ticket in airports in which all airside areas aren't connected. There will also be snacks and beverages in the lounge. Remember than food from abroad generally cannot be brought into the US.
     
  3. TRAVELSIG
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    I fly out of Gatwick quite frequently, however always the North Terminal as I am on BA flights.

    Gatwick is very convenient for many locations in London and to head to the south of the UK, as, unlike Heathrow, it has a train station located in the South Terminal.

    Flying US Airways, you will be flying out of the South Terminal. There is no longer a US Airways lounge at Gatwick, however there are some pay lounges which you can get information about from gatwickairport.com. I don't know which lounge US offers service for- and if they ask you to pay or not.

    If you choose to stay at Gatwick because of your early departure, the Hilton Gatwick will be particularly convenient for you as it is connected by footbridge to the South Terminal. The Sofitel is also located at Gatwick, however at the North Terminal- so if you choose to stay there you will need to take the little (free) train they have between the two terminals.

    The airport is actually quite large, and has a number of services before and after security- the website I mentioned above can give you details on what there is to choose from.
     
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  4. richinaz
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    richinaz Silver Member

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    Thanks. While there were other options I did select the Hilton since I'm not a morning person and wanted to make the morning as easy and as stress free as possible.

    I'll give US Airways a call and see if they allow access to any lounges in the South Terminal. I'm not very optimistic but it won't hurt.

    Thanks.
     
  5. TRAVELSIG
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    TRAVELSIG Gold Member

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    You will be happy with the location of the Hilton. Also- IF you happen to be arriving from Central London- check to see if the train is a better option (First Capital Connect (FCC) service) than the Gatwick Express- it is also ~ 1/2 the price. I am usually in areas of London where the FCC is far more convenient than heading to Victoria Station to catch the (overpriced) Gatwick Express.

    Lastly- if you arrive early at the hotel and are hungry- the Asian restaurant at the Sofitel is pretty good.
     
  6. MSPeconomist
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    I don't know the US system well, but I expect a TATL business class ticket from a major departure airport to include some arrangement for lounge access. It's something that they should do and can reasonably be expected to do, not a random surprise benefit when it works.

    BTW, I find that sometimes I must ask at check in for a lounge invitation as it's not voluntarily offered, This is another situation where knowing your rights and entitlements can be priceless.
     
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  7. TRAVELSIG
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    I agree MSPeconomist- Gatwick is a bit of a funny airport now- has a very good Virgin lounge, an Emirates lounge that is passable but nothing to remember, a good (used to be great until the rennovations and downsizing) BA lounge, and pay lounges which do a very brisk business particularly with Easyjet clients. CO and US both closed their lounges at Gatwick. I am not sure why Gatwick is not more popular- from many areas of London it is easier to reach, is definitely far faster for security/check-in/etc, and is much easier to transit with only two terminals. Let's see if under its new ownership it does not grow significantly.

    I hope the OP can get lounge access without paying- but am not sure in this case.
     
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  8. Open Fly
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    Open Fly Silver Member

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    A business class ticket should universaly get you access to a lounge, this still applies even to US airlines.

    As for hotels, I used it quite often back in the days where Bermuda applied and I never had a bad experience with them.
     
  9. richinaz
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    richinaz Silver Member

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    I was told I would get an invite to the No. 1 Lounge at LGW. As far as staying in London I'm staying at base2stay in Kensington (not far from Earls Court station) and then moving to the Hyatt Churchill for a few days before heading back to Gatwick. Others have mentioned that it may be better to use transportation other than the Gatwick Express. I believe Victoria station is only 3 stops away from Earls Court. I guess it may depend when we arrive and how crowded the regular trains are.

    After a few long flights I might go for comfort over price. We plan to get a 7 day Travel card for our week stay. Most of which will be in London with a side trip possible to places such as Cambridge, Dover, York or Bath. The Cotswolds area looks nice but without a car it may be a bit too inconvenient to get to.
     
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