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While most airport lounges buzz with boarding announcements – something which I find quite enjoyable, with each flight whisking fellow travellers on their way – every now and again you stumble into a 'silent lounge'.
That's a lounge where no flight announcements are made.
The upside is blissful silence, without the constant barrage of boarding calls and notification of of delayed flights
The downside: it's your responsibility to be at the boarding gate on time.
You can't rely on that "final boarding call" or even the "personal boarding call" (also known as "Would Mr so-and-so please proceed immediately to gate number such-and-such").
Here are five simple tips to avoid being that person frantically dashing through the airport to make their flight.
1. On your first visit to a new lounge, ask at the service desk if they make boarding calls. It doesn't get any easier than that.
2. Also ask how long it will take to get from the lounge to the boarding gate for your flight. Allow extra time if you've got to wheel a trolley bag through the crowds, and if you'll need to take a ride on people-mover shuttle (as is often the case at Hong Kong International Airport, for example).
3. Now that you know how much time it'll take to get to the gate, set an alarm on your smartphone for the appropriate time to leave the lounge.
4. As an added precaution, download the smartphone app for the airline or airport and use the lounge's WiFi network to sign up for boarding alerts as well as keeping tabs on changes to the gate or departure time.
5. A more low-tech approach is to sit near one of the video monitors which list each departure and keep an eye on it as your flight gets nearer.
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