But now, even if you fly Economy, that problem has been solved by Plaza Premium Lounges in major airport hubs worldwide.
There is nothing better than coming into a welcoming, peaceful retreat away from the crowds and being able to either catch up on your emails, those pending phone calls, that missed breakfast or have a snooze to compensate for an early start.
On my last trip to India, I experienced the comfort of both the Sydney Lounge and the Plaza Premium Lounge Delhi and vowed never again to troll the Duty-Free shops listlessly as I used to do to kill time.
Plaza Premium Lounge Sydney
In Sydney, just walking into a well-lit space overlooking the takeoff and landing strips, was enough to calm the unavoidable anxiety that comes with an early morning start after a sleepless night.
Thinking about what you had forgotten to pack is a common thing. Yes, even seasoned travellers experience this whether it is a business trip or a holiday.
The Sky Team exclusive Sydney lounge – operated by Plaza Premium Lounges – has welcoming leather chairs, a business area with computers, free wifi, USB recharging station, showers with all the toiletries and a generous food area with an appetising spread. What else can one ask for?
The morning I was there, a few passengers were quietly enjoying the facilities. There aren’t any bright lights or loud sounds here, a welcome respite from the aggressive selling techniques of the Duty-Free area where you cannot walk in a straight line to your departures’ gate.
I mainly treasure the quiet space and the opportunity to unwind with a glass of champagne in my hand. It makes me feel relaxed and takes away any worries I might have.
I love the showers area and check the facilities for future use. A re-invigorating shower can do wonders to make you feel ready to face a long flight.
Plaza Premium facilities
There are no loudspeaker announcements here, so as not to disturb passengers. Instead, electronic boards with up to the second flight information are conveniently located throughout the Plaza Premium Lounge.
With a capacity for about 140 guests, this 784 square meters of restful space feels intimate and exclusive, a privilege only Business Class passengers were able to enjoy before the advent of Plaza Premium Lounges.
A comprehensive set of shelves containing top luxury travel magazines and international newspapers complete the feeling of being pampered. After a delicious coffee and breakfast, I am ready to board my flight, all anxieties dissipated…
The Plaza Premium Sydney Lounge is open from 0530 to 2300 hrs every day. Tariffs for a five-hour stay can be found on the website under the Service Menu. At the moment of writing the walk-in price is AUD$77.
Maria Visconti was a guest of Plaza Premium Lounge Sydney
More travel tips
If you’re travelling on a long-haul Economy flight, such as Qantas Economy to Los Angeles or Air Canada to Vancouver, checking into a Plaza Premium could help make the entire experience more comfortable.