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The new A-380 only concourse A at Dubai airport

For the first time since the new T-3 lounge opened at Dubai airport, its empty at 6 am in the morning. Historically come 6 am and the lounge becomes a portrait of weary travelers in search of available space to crash, land, change, shower and chill. But the only problem with that portrait before 1st of January 2013 was that there simply wasn’t enough space.

Earlier last week when I headed out to Singapore on the A380, the new A380 only business class and skywards lounge was a pleasant surprise. You could board directly from the lounge and it had enough hidden corners and quiet areas to service passengers from 6 – 7 early morning flights (New York, SFO, Heathrow, Narita, Singapore and Bangkok). And there wasn’t a shortage of bathrooms or loungers to crash on.

Depending on where you landed you had to go all the way down to the old immigration section and then board the underground shuttle train that would whisk you away to the new concourse A. Then look for the elevators to take you to the new lounge on the upper floors. (I couldn’t find a way to get onto the escalators since they were still working on them).

This morning when I checked in on my way back from Singapore at the now “old” T-3 lounge, the lounge is deserted. Which was great, there were no queues for bathroom and hardly a soul around in some of the more quieter areas.

Emirates also changed the invitation language on your boarding card. You can now use the lounge closest to your departure gate. Not sure if that means as a non A380 passenger I would be able to gate crash at the concourse A lounge or not. Will try that out on the next trip.

Now I only wish that the Saudi’s would get their act together and figure out a way to fix Riyadh and Jeddah airport and bring them into this century from the 1970’s. Which is possibly when both the airports were done. They could also learn a thing or two from the relatively super efficient way Dubai immigration operates.

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