Flying Today Horrific -- Airline Clubs Dirty and Crowded

Anyone who flies today knows how unpleasant, crowded, and irritating the whole experience is.  Delays are measured in hours, not minutes, and people’s tempers are almost always at the breaking point.  Above all, the people who work in airports have become inured to the problems and have ceased trying to solve them or to communicate civilly.  The whole experience feels like a war zone with each person simply trying to stay alive.  The crowds, the smells, the filth, and the lack of human courtesy are now familiar backdrops to the air traveling public.


Airline clubs used to be the one place to go to get away from the madness.  They were worth the cost of membership.  But even these have become far less desirable, and are less and less comfortable with every passing day.  To make more money from these operations, airlines now sell daily passes to non members (in addition to selling as many memberships as the public will bear).  The result is the hoards of people now fill these spaces, making them look, feel and smell like the rest of the airports.  Even staffs have become as hostile and uncooperative as other airline and airport employees.  It is actually, in fairness, very hard for anyone to remain pleasant in the midst of these or any other places in airports – so many are the people and so irritating and unpleasant are most people’s flying experience.


The Wall Street Journal today reports on a comparison study of airline clubs, finding some better than others.


That may be true (and UAL should be ashamed of itself for calling a tiny, airless room in Atlanta a club), but they all are a far cry from what they used to be and they are getting worse, increasingly worn, and more inhospitable by the day.  There really is no oasis in an airport anymore.  It is a dog eat dog setting. 

Ari Socolow
Ari Socolow: Ari Socolow is the Chief Economist and Editor-in-Chief at BestCashCow. He is particularly interested in issues relating to bank transparency and the climate crisis. Since co-founding this website in 2005, Ari has been frequently cited in the media as an expert on local and national savings accounts, CD products, mortgage and loan products and credit card rewards products.

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  • DanS

    August 31, 2007

    My experience is exactly the same. The airline clubs used to be good places to get away from it all. But like the rest of airports and airlines, customer service is no longer the name of the game. Instead, all have tried to focus on numbers not people.

  • David Gersh

    September 04, 2007

    These places are not worth the money - they are dirty and unpleasant just like the other places in the airport.

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