I was returning from a trip to Montreal for work and play. This was a week of hard labour that left me with a long-term injury that I would still be suffering from 5 months after.
As a reward for my devotion to the job, and pushing to complete the shift and the week, one of the regional managers gifted me an Air Canada lounge pass. This is a transferable pass that gave any traveler flying with Air Canada access to their exclusive waiting area. A ticket that comes with plenty of perks, once you clear the security check.
Not only was this a treat, but it came at an opportune time as I unknowingly missed my flight back to Vancouver and was set to wait 3+ hours for the next one. This set back would serve as the perfect opportunity to take advantage of this gift.
Any pass gives you access to any of Air Canada’s lounges, in any airport, so long as you are flying with an Air Canada. You simply locate the entrance, provide the pass for scanning, and then walk right through.
Ticket holders are able to enjoy this space before an after their flight for however long they choose. Not only is there a more comfortable seating area, but depending on the airports televisions, recliners, and even office workspaces with a photocopier.
The goal is a confined and comfortable waiting area away from the general public. Our reward and incentive for flying with Air Canada. Honestly, this was well worth it and I will definitely be looking into purchasing my own passes for the future.
Instead of spending money at the airport’s cafés and restaurants, it is all you can eat and drink in the lounge. I’ve been told that the food available is different depending on the terminal, date of visit, and the time.
When I visited it was lunch with a savoury spread that included soups, salads, pastas, and rice. Not gourmet or anything special by any means, but plentiful and filling, it did the trick and I found it great quality for premade and kept warm food.
I dressed fresh salad greens with a tangy citrus vinaigrette and fresh Mandarin orange slices. I had salsa with a side of couscous and got some vegetables in with dip. Then followed it with a warming bowl of cream of mushroom soup alongside a dinner roll and some croutons. And all this was just appetizers.
For my main I filled the plate with steamed herbed carrots, a spicy chicken masala-like dish with onions over basmati rice, and chicken penne with plenty of self-serve Parmesan. I won’t be going into detail on exactly how it all tasted, as it seems moot given that you will not get the exact same experience. Instead, let me go into detail about their beverage program.
The Air Canada lounge is an open bar. Like the food component, the drinks are based on time and location. At the Montreal airport. They were beers on tap with the appropriate glasses to pour them into, and wines by the bottle that you could help yourselves to, an appropriate glasses of course.
Plus a well-stocked spirit bar with tequila, vodka, gin, bourbon, Brandy, and various flavoured liqueurs. Adjacent to it is a mini fridge stocked with juices and soft drinks, so that any highball is within your reach.
During my three hours stay, I perched up by the buffet and bar area, enjoying my window-ed view of the tarmac and planes moving about. Here, I begin to see how many creative cocktails I could concoct.
I made a Bloody Mary with tomato juice and was even able to salt the rim and add Worcester and Tabasco sauce into the mix.
I made up fruity cocktail with a sugar rim, utilizing the fresh Minute Maid juice dispenser.
As a mid day pick me up, I made espresso boozy with a shot of Bailey’s and Brandy.
I also had my whiskey on the rocks and my bourbon clean. And took a shot before I boarded the plane.
And best of all there were wrapped sandwiches, bags of chips, cookies, and fruit. These were easy snacks to packed to go. I would later have this as my five-hour in-flight meal. With this option, the Air Canada lounge ticket paid for itself.
I left the lounge feeling like I made the most of everything, trying all the available food stuffs and majority of the drinks. And I highly recommend taking on this experience for yourself.