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The Airport Lounge Crisis

In Ask the Pilot: The Airport Lounge Crisis. Crowds, kids, noise... has the premium class lounge hit a breaking point? ( More...

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Gerald Buxton 11
It seems that this is just another extension of general public behavior (at least in the U.S.) these days. No responsibility for anything not your own, no manners or consideration for anyone else because you are the only one that matters to you, no effort to impart any of those to your children as you let them do as they wish as well with no consequences and no guidance. I see it everywhere from the restaurant to shopping and even in church. Not to mention language, do you really talk like that to your kids?
And other people tolerate it! I have gained more than a few nasty looks or scoldings from my lovely wife when I quietly tell someone to please rein their kids in at the restaurant, or sometimes not quite as politely tell people to shut up when they are talking during a movie at the theater. If everyone accepts this type of conduce, then it is the norm.
Unfortunately, this means that everyone has to pay whether through suffering or fees in order to find another lounge or restaurant where you can have an enjoyable time as others are as well, by hopefully outpricing those with less manners. And then you are often considered a snob.
Manners and politeness are really all it takes. But I'm preaching (more like lamenting) to the choir here...
dee9bee 3
Unfortunately, most of your comments now apply to airline lounges, I guess. I'd expand your comments to the usage of cell phones in restaurants and such.

At the risk of hijacking the thread, people in different countries do different things. I spent many a night having dinner at a favorite restaurant in France. The French seem to enjoy bringing their pets with them when they go out to eat and one night, I found myself sitting next to a small dog. The dog was well behaved until I stood up to leave, when he started to bark loudly. Did the locals stare at the dog? No they were starting at me!
a bit off the subject,but your comment reminds me of an old episode of "sex and the city"where the main character carrie has briefly moved to paris and is sitting alone in a beautiful restaurant in some wall/bench to her ,instead of her boyfriend who does not show up, is seated a very large bull mastiff type dog!interesting cultural concept!
Ric Wernicke 1
First, reserve lounges only for paid members. Separate lounges for members with family under 12. Then rope off an area near the gate with a spa water station for credit card and mileage entitlements.

Allow only paid 1st and business ticket holders to purchase a day pass. A $10 fee will encourage proper deportment in the lounge.

Enforce a dress code. No one in athletic or county fair attire allowed. Sorry. Neat professional clothing is a requirement to maintain decorum of any private club.

Put staff in the room to bus tables, offer snacks and beverages, and enforce the rules, including excessive cell phone use, and loud talking.

That is how I remember it, and one actually looked forward to a journey.
sparkie624 9
I can certainly understand that one... I remember I actually had an interview in a Terminal. During my Interview 2 very Loud and obnoxious kids took balled up wads of paper and running past us and throwing them at me... Parents were sitting watching them and didn't say a word... I wanted to strangle them both... Somehow I survived that and actually got the Job however.

Some parents will let their kids do anything and not call them down. Many do not seem to care and that is a lot of the problem.
Don Gillies 4
Started flying for business back in '60's. Fun to fly... about 5 years later I got to fly in business class. Sat behind lady & small child. At 5000 ft child decided to make a "deposit" Lady simply turned air nozzle away and toward me. She could not change child's clothes ...or child. After 15 minutes I went back to std coach seat. Hate smell and flies. Over the years things got worse. I wonder if the kid still flies ... think I smelled him several times. I hate flying, especially airports. Civility is almost non-existent.
jet4ang 4
Sorry, but I was brought up with some sort of dignity and I'll be damned if I put up with rude manners, vulgarity and maniacal children. I speak my word and loudly at that! It has worked every single time.
dee9bee 4
As a long time (now retired) airline employee, my exposure to airline lounges has been limited. The very best experience was in 1983, at the tender age of 28, when I won a round trip on BA on Concorde. The lounges at both IAD and LHR were pristine. I thought I was in heaven.

My next lounge opportunity was ten years later at NRT in a very crowded Cathay Pacific lounge on my way on my way from Japan to the old Hong Kong airport. What I didn't know was a typhoon was passing by Hong Kong and a 747 had overrun runway 13 and had messed things up a bit. Ignorance is bliss.
Matt Collins 3
Getting to the point you may as well stay in the gatehouse.
I remember the old "presidents club" that continental had..members only..clean and classy..dont know if it is that way now.."admirals club"i was told no longer accepts amex entry..must have paid opened its own version of lounges for first class/business at some airports..the paid memberships are expensive for these airline clubs,and for airlines offering "premium" lounges for first class and business only travellers,they should restrict children,as airports and airlines would not want to hire "babysitters" for a different room,nor be responsible for possible accidents or children getting lost!!
Ben Deneweth 2
The United Club requires:
Premium Cabin Long Haul travel that day on United or a Star Alliance codeshare flight
Annual Membership
A day pass (either purchased or received as part of your allotment from the credit cards or your corporate travel account).

AFAIK, United Clubs don't accept any third party lounge programs nor do they serve as supplementary lounges for any non-Star Alliance carriers.
sharon bias 3
The problem is that "no" doesn't mean no any longer, in many situations. My dad just had to give me "the look" and I'd behave 90% of the time. I once misbehaved in a restaurant, and my mom took me outside and made me eat my meal in the car while the rest of the family enjoyed the restaurant. There were consequences to my actions. That was over 50 years ago, and I can still remember what I ate.
sparkie624 2
I know that look, and when I got it, If I didn't pick up on it... The next message was a swat to you know where... Today they are too scared to hurt their little feelings... UGH... Some of those feelings needs some adjustment.
chuck berlin 5
this is a sore point with me - ranks up there with screaming LAP babies in business class

I am at a loss to understand why the airlines don't have a written CODE OF CONDUCT for everyone - children and pax who act worse than children. It should be written and clear so no one will claim that their are being discriminated against .

maybe a limited dress code too - like No Bare Feet!!
Ben Deneweth -1
If you didn't pay for the business class/first class seat, you have no right to complain about someone with a lap baby who did. I brought my baby on a first class domestic flight last year (only about 2 hour flight) because I wanted the meal. From looking at the upgrade list it appears that pretty much everyone other than us in the F cabin on that flight was an upgrade, and we were the only people who paid for our F seats. I think that gives you the right to bring a lap infant. I agree that lap infants shouldn't be eligible for upgrades.
chuck berlin 6
No, the issue was that I paid for F/C and this infant was out of control in the boarding area!!

Bottom line, if there is an overall "code of conduct" and are procedures for people who break them, it will eventually make it easier for passengers like you who seem to be responsible!
BEN..the article was basically complaining about unsupervised children in premium lounges,left to run around , and do basically what small (and sometimes older)children do when not told to sit,or read,or be respectful of others..even in churches there are generally day care spots with supervision for small children,or bible study /reading groups for older ones who might not appreciate a sermon!the age limit for a "lap child" with no confirmed seat,is up to 2 years of age..having worked literally thousands of flights through the years,i can attest to the fact that the majority of f/c passengers do not bring a lap child along,and those with a family generally prefer coach and pre reserved seating together,or bulk head seats..i understand your viewpoint,however..i might add that small children are not allowed to run around or up and down aisles,in first or coach, while onboard an airplane,and infants stay with their mothers..toddler aged children and those old enough to be told sit down and read or play with that game,should not be causing problems in a lounge..its not discriminatory,its a matter of courtesy and respect for others..adults are supposed to know better..children need to be told no on occasion..
AAaviator -1
Outside of receiving a necessary medical procedure, or a sudden emergency, or an adoption / household relocation situation, why do infants NEED to fly anywhere?
tmflint 4
I’ll get the popcorn.
stardog01 0
Seriously? So a family takes a vacation... I guess the infant doesn't need to fly... Just leave the infant at home.
jet4ang 2
There's a difference between an infant and a screaming 2-12-year-old running and fighting everyone and everything because the parent is doing what they normally do, drinking, fighting and ignoring the kids just like they do at home!
AAaviator 1
Yes! "seriously". So you view vacation as a NEED! Classic! Entitlement minded people (perhaps like yourself?) might believe that vacations are somehow (A) a birth right? - typical attitude of so many gluttons self-indulged Americans living in excess. So, how about if you "check your privlage"? (by the way I'm an American myself, but not an "entitled American). (B) Vacations don't require air travel by default. There are many vacations accessible by car. And when that little screaming, crumb crunching ankle biter is old enough to behave, then the privileged entitlement class can jet away with their special darling angel to the Caribbean, Europe, or wherever you believe they DESERVE to go on their entitled vacation. By the way, do you know how many families in the world are fortunate enough to even have vacation time, let alone enough money to spend on a vacation? You might want to research that.
jena weber -1
Yes. Leave the offspring at home.
Gary Watson 6
Go girl! My hero. Don't even get me started on "Comfort animals"!!!

Ship the kids FedEx!
jena weber 1
Ah yes, Snowflake companions. No age limit on that.
sparkie624 1
I disagree with you, but the responsible adults should make them behave as they should and not just let them run around like crazy idiots.
Gary Watson 1
Everyone is spot on. It was not this way in the 50s or 60s. Men dressed like men, white shirts and narrow black ties, women dressed like ladies, dresses, hats and gloves. Children were seen and not heard. Now, no matter where you go, it's hard to tell the men from the women, and an airport lounge is just like a trip to Walmart on a rainy Saturday.

At one time, I could relax at a Residence Inn after a day on the road. Now, wit Millennial families and entitlements, it's like a feeding frenzy on Shark Week.
Nolan Wehr 2
Back when “men were men.” Barf
jena weber -3
These behaviors and acceptance of is what happens when a society has had “tolerance” shoved down their throats for years.
I applaud Mr. Buxton.
chuck berlin 2
that makes at least 2 of us - the utter disrespect that some people show for others is disgusting.

it's disgusting that too many feckless service providers are more afraid of someone being "insulted" and "going viral" than doing the right thing. is just wrong and penalizes the people who do care..

The only other point that i would make re Mr Buxton's comments is that sadly, these behaviors are not limited to the US - Bringing this thread a little back on topic - the experience that i had in the CX HKG lounge last December was just appalling and the offenders were multinational.

Bottom line to this I wrote to CX and when i got a "FU very much" reply - i got so disgusted that I haven't flown on a revenue CX ticket since - not that they care...


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