Trip Report – LOT Business Lounges Warsaw Prior to the 787 Flight & KBP-WAW 737 Flight

This is part nine of a twelve part trip and picture report from my travels to Kiev, Vienna, Tel Aviv, and Kraków. This trip report covers the LOT Business Lounge (pre-customs) as well as the shared Bolero Executive Lounge (post-customs) visited prior to my first ever 787 Dreamliner flight. This report also covers the LOT 737-400 connection from Kiev (KBP) to Warsaw (WAW).

I checked out both of the 1 1/2 year old business lounges in Warsaw before the 787 Dreamliner flight. The larger lounge, located prior to customs (and which is also the main lounge for intra-Europe Schengen flights) is the LOT Business Lounge:

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The lounge was packed with passengers waiting for their early evening European departures and there weren’t many empty seats at all. Food options included assorted cold meats and cheeses, apples, and candy bars.  Yea…not too much else.  The lounge has a modern Nordic design feel and is a huge improvement over the previous LOT offerings.

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Once you pass through customs into the non-Schengen zone, there is the shared Bolero Executive Lounge (maintained by LOT staffers).

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The lounge has a similar design as the LOT Business Lounge, but with extremely more daylight via a full wall of windows.  It was also extremely quiet and calm compared to the LOT lounge which was chaotic. I had my choice of seats and I counted all of six other people in the entire lounge.  Food offerings were similar with a few additional pre-made sandwiches, chips, yogurts, muffins, and fruit offerings.

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The leather chairs were comfortable, there were ample power ports, and the wifi was strong. The lounge was also located right below the 787 gate. Overall, pretty decent.

LOT Polish Kiev – Warsaw 737-400
Check-in was absolute chaos. There were 4 check-in areas for the LOT flight, but yet none of the staffed desks were accepting passengers. There was also no business class or priority check-in. The representatives said their computers weren’t working and they literally sat there on their phones while we waited…and waited…and waited until about 45 minutes prior to the flight.  When the computers were finally back up, two of the check-in workers had no idea what they were doing and it was taking them about 10-12 minutes on average per passenger. After waiting over an hour, I decided it would be faster to start all over at the back of another line…good move on my part.

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The business seats on the 737-400 were the same as economy, though the middle seat was blocked off. I had the whole row to myself as did the two other business passengers.

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More turkey rolls…surprisingly the meal on this short one hour flight was comparable to the food offerings in business on the 787.

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A Lexus shuttle was waiting for one of the other business passengers, but I was put on the bus. I’m not sure what the requirements were for the private pick-up. Anyway, 45 minutes of flying later we were getting ready for landing and arrived only a few minutes late, even with the check-in chaos.

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Comments

  1. Neither lounge is staffed by LOT employees. They just supply the logo, and PPL (the airport authority) stocks and operates it (thats why the design is similar, and the offerings are the same).

  2. Both lounges look far better than average and we’ve all seen a lot worse. As for lounges being operated by airport management or a contractor, this is the norm, world-wide. Very few (if any) airlines staff lounges with their own employees save the admitting clerk (gate agent?) at the reception desk. Lastly, before we get too critical of lounge options and services (per most blogs), let’s remember that their principal purpose is not to serve as a 3-star eatery, but a place to rest, compose and refresh before or after a flight. ‘ya know…

  3. WAW is the primary, and only hub of LO, so one or two employees behind the desk would be a very welcome in case of irrops, ticket changes and such. I doubt it’s LO’s call though.

    As for the principal purpose, Polonez (Schengen lounge) fails to deliver big time. It’s open ceiling corridor design makes it loud most of the day. Showers facilities also leave a lot to be desired when it comes to refreshments.

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