Viva Las BAcon! Dublin Airport, The Aer Lingus Gold Circle Lounge.
- Viva Las BACon! The second spin of the roulette wheel
- Heading to Birmingham Airport, EI277 Birmingham Airport – Dublin Airport
- HOTEL: Bewleys Hotel, Dublin Airport
- The DAA Lounge, Dublin Airport
- BA831 Dublin Airport – London Heathrow Terminal 1
- An Easy Heathrow Transit and the British Airways Galleries First Lounge
- BA295 London Heathrow Terminal 5 to Chicago O’Hare International
- Tick Tock, Tick Tock – an express connection in Chicago
- AA55 Chicago O’Hare International T3 to Las Vegas McCarran International
- HOTEL: MGM Grand
- HOTEL: Mandalay Bay and BAcon
- One Time Exception: The High Roller
- HOTEL: Luxor
- One Time Exception: A Nighttime walk down an every changing strip
- Back to McCarran Airport, The American Express Centurion Lounge
- AA1239 Las Vegas McCarran International – Dallas Fort Worth
- A quick rush across Dallas Fort Worth
- AA78 Dallas Fort Worth – London Heathrow Terminal 3
- Transit again, The British Airways Terminal 1 Domestic Lounge
- BA831 London Heathrow Terminal 1 – Dublin Airport
- Irish Transit, The Aer Lingus Gold Circle Lounge
- EI276 Dublin Airport to Birmingham Airport
- Another lovely slice of BAcon
After getting off the plane, it was time to head to Irish Immigration and deal with any formalities that need to be completed.
Immigration was handled with typical Irish efficiency, and it was time to head to the luggage belt.
My next stop was the joy of the luggage belt. Thankfully, 1) the wait was short and 2) my bag was delivered
Even Ryanair has customer service here.
With the bag delivered, it was time to clear customs… which was done with the minimum of fuss.
Now this… is interesting. How does Dublin Airport stack up to customer feedback? They stick the results on a plasma screen as you exit. It also shows that they’re trying to improve one step at a time.
Soon, I was spat out at Dublin T1 arrivals, and it was time to hike back over to Terminal 2. Thankfully, with the architecture used, this isn’t a painful walk at all – rather a nice chance to stretch my legs and get some fresh air. Considering the last time I had stepped outside a covered area was in Las Vegas, it had been some time.
…and the views aren’t bad either.
A very short walk, and I was in the confines of Terminal 2… which someone was drunk when designing. Who in their right mind has Level 2 for check in, Level 1 for arrivals and the Ground floor for check in. Who? Who?
Oh yes, The Dublin Airport Authority.
Check-in below. For pity’s sake. Airport design? We’ve heard of it.
I descended and queued up for check in, utilising the last of 3 years of my Gold Circle Membership. Well, it was a good run wasn’t it after getting it through a status match with British Midland.
But first, I had to repack, de-trash and find space for this “small” bottle.
Yes. It’s a “small” bottle of Jack Daniels. Don’t ask. I’m still questioning it myself.
Thankfully, everything squeezed in (even if the boxed product bulging out of the case), with stuff switched over from the suitcase to the rucksack. With that, it was time to check in.
The queue moved along reasonably quickly, and soon it was my turn to be checked in. My baggage was accepted with the minimal fuss as I said a quiet prayer that when I got to the other end, the bottle would be intact.
That done, it was time to run the risk of Irish security, who raised an eyebrow over the weight of my bag, but other than that – it was plain sailing.
Exiting in the airside area was the array of shops that could keep people happy. I participated, adding another Guinness mug to the collection.
Even that sometimes underwear seller – more interested in selling bags and perfumes – has made it to Dublin.
Some people collect things as they travel. One of the rules of travel is when I’m going through Dublin Airport on a return leg, I must get a Guinness mug for my coffee drinking needs. The fact I gave it away to a co-worker is besides the point.
That done and out-of-the-way, I decided to check if my Aer Lingus Gold Circle status was good for anything still. This involved heading downstairs and to the Gold Circle Lounge
I was welcomed to the lounge, and my details were checked. A warm smile, and I was directed indoors to the haven of the lounge.
So how does it look? For a flagship lounge, rather nice.
For starters, there’s a small model plane hanging in the lounge.
Dear Aer Lingus. When you want to get shot of this, please sent it to Kevin, Economy Class and Beyond, Birmingham, United Kingdom. Thanks in advance.
Ground floor seating
Food and drinks items were present too, with the emphasis on afternoon tea.
Service area – nice and presented.
Scones, Crossiants, and other things
Big water feature? Check Check check. And a rather nice looking one too.
The lounge also had a mezzanine quiet area – which suited me quite nicely. As well as power at seat, WiFi was provided free of charge.
Plus it was the only place to get a really good look at the A350 model.
There were also showers and such here, as well as coffee-making facilities – which for the amount of travel and lag that was starting to build, was not a bad thing.
Needless to say, double shots of espresso are good. Triple shots wake you up. It also gave me a chance to reflect on the travel and the experiences I had the past 6 days… with the enormity and variation in what is called an “economy class product”.
As there were no announcements in the lounge, I headed off to the gate a bit early to join in the fun that’s an evening flight back to Birmingham.
Overall: Aer Lingus again deliver on the ground as well as in the air with their home lounge. A very different space to some flagship lounges – and that’s not a bad thing in the least. It shows Aer Lingus aren’t following the cookie cutter idea and are trying different things… and in this case – it works.
Out into the public area, it was a right turn as I headed for the gate area. With the plane departing from the 400 gates, it was a nice walk down
That way to the gates!
Entering the 400 area, it was busy with people heading off to different destinations. I headed down to the back of the pier where my plane was waiting
Moving as one
I arrived at the gate with a few minutes to go before boarding.
There comes a time when I travel when I see a plane and think… and this is it for this trip…
Boarding was done in strict zones, with agents booting people who weren’t in the right group. Heck, I haven’t seen that in ages. None the less, I was in the last boarding group (near the front of the plane), so I used the airport free wi-fi to finally wrap up some things.
Zone 4 was called… and it was time to catch the last flight home.
Next: EI276 Dublin Airport to Birmingham Airport
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