Unless you’re completely jaded from a lifetime of eating from silver spoons, you can’t help but feel a slight thrill when you realize that you’ll get to relax in a luxurious lounge while waiting for your flight to depart. Travel can be stressful, but nothing puts air under the wings of an eager flyer like plopping into a leather chair and munching on free snacks tens of feet above the hoi polloi. That is, until you get to the lounge and realize you won’t be getting a seat anywhere, because everyone else already beat you there. Welcome to the CIP Lounge Review – Lahore (LHE): if you want to sit, go to the gate. This is one of the most miserably crowded lounges we’ve ever been to, topping even the chaos in Jamaica.
The Facts – CIP Lounge Review – Lahore (LHE)
The CIP lounge in Lahore is located airside in the international terminal. It can be accessed with an airline invitation, priority pass or a small-ish payoff. To get there, you first need to pass through immigration and security. As you exit, turn to your left and head for the escalator, which will not be working. As you climb the stairs, you’ll be asked airport staff will ask if you’d like to visit the lounge – they’ll offer to get you in for rs. 2000…or 1000…500? If you already have access, from PriorityPass, say, push past them, and at the top of the stairs turn left, then at the wall left again.
The services in the lounge are minimal. There are two sitting areas, both of which will be packed if you are flying during the early morning rush. The first area will feature sandwiches, a tea stand and a fridge with soda. The second has chairs and the bathrooms. You will likely not want to eat the sandwiches, but after a harrowing check-in process, a chai might be just the thing. Have your chai, and then, if you can’t find seating, head back downstairs to the boarding area, which is far more spacious.
The Positives – CIP Lounge Review – Lahore (LHE)
If you visit outside the wee morning hours, the lounge is not half bad. You’ll find yourself with a comfortable leather chair or couch, and access to light snacks and beverages. There is also wifi, which tends to work. You won’t be downloading a Netflix show before your flight, but its good enough to check your email with.
Another plus might be that this lounge is by far the superior of the two non-PIA lounges available.
The lounge is spacious in theory – again, there’s simply an issue with crowding. One plus is that there is a restroom within the lounge, though getting in and out can be a little tricky since the space is small and the attendants hang out inside. The design of the main lounge leaves a lot to be desired, but there is a nice enough design on the back wall of the second sitting area.
The Negatives – CIP Lounge Review – Lahore (LHE)
The internet is slow, but usually functional. The main airport waiting area does not have wifi, so if you need to connect, you’ll be glad for this lounge.
Light snacks (mayonnaise sandwiches, cookies) and beverages (chai, water, soda.)
The lounge is very noisy, even chaotic, when the Gulf flights are leaving in the wee hours. You may find it more relaxing to sit elsewhere, unless you manage to get a seat in the corner.
Connectivity: 1/5 (at least there’s internet)
Workability: 1/5 (you wont get a seat, much less a table)
Catering: 2/5 (chai makes everything better)
Alcohol: 0/5 (nonexistent)
Ambiance: 1/5 (it exists.)
Overall Rating: 6/30