Piece of paper lounge access debacle

Old May 18, 2024, 3:07 am
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Piece of paper lounge access debacle

OK, probably a tad overdramatic, but here it is.

I checked in online for my flight from Izmir back to LHR today. The usual scenario, mobile boarding pass, hand luggage only, straight through security and up to the shared lounge.

The dragons looked at my mobile pass like theyd just seen someone invent fire. Much confusion followed, including waving a photocopied paper pass at me and telling me this is what I needed. An excited call in Turkish followed, where she scribbled down various details from my pass, and eventually I was allowed access.

OK, I get that BA only fly here once a week. But its a contract lounge serving many airlines - they didnt even realise that Club Europe means business class. But craziest of all, is it really necessary to collect pieces of paper in an era where the entire travel documentation process happens online?

Not a major gripe, just seemed silly. If I was in Guatemala or Burundi maybe, but this is Turkey. They may even be in the EU in a few years
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Old May 18, 2024, 3:16 am
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Yes, this isn't actually unusual, there are quite a few lounge areas in Europe and Caribbean - probably about two dozen that I can think of - where the usual SOP is that you collect a ticket from the check-in staff. If you don't then they ring check-in and get the details, which is a bit of a charade, they are actually checking that the lounge will get paid for that passenger. Izmir has only recently rejoined the network hence it's probably less slick than other places. Also HBO isn't that common for obvious reasons.
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Old May 18, 2024, 3:19 am
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Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave
Yes, this isn't actually unusual, there are quite a few lounge areas in Europe and Caribbean - probably about two dozen that I can think of - where the usual SOP is that you collect a ticket from the check-in staff. If you don't then they ring check-in and get the details, which is a bit of a charade, they are actually checking that the lounge will get paid for that passenger. Izmir has only recently rejoined the network hence it's probably less slick than other places. Also HBO isn't that common for obvious reasons.
I figured something like this - I was just surprised that a mobile boarding pass caused such consternation, and that they couldnt tell at first glance that I was entitled to use the lounge. As I said, no biggie. Its a pretty bog standard lounge to be honest - reasonable coffee, food choice decent, comfy sofas. And theres only about 3 other people here.
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Old May 18, 2024, 3:33 am
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Originally Posted by Kevlondon
OK, probably a tad overdramatic, but here it is.

I checked in online for my flight from Izmir back to LHR today. The usual scenario, mobile boarding pass, hand luggage only, straight through security and up to the shared lounge.

The dragons looked at my mobile pass like theyd just seen someone invent fire. Much confusion followed, including waving a photocopied paper pass at me and telling me this is what I needed. An excited call in Turkish followed, where she scribbled down various details from my pass, and eventually I was allowed access.

OK, I get that BA only fly here once a week. But its a contract lounge serving many airlines - they didnt even realise that Club Europe means business class. But craziest of all, is it really necessary to collect pieces of paper in an era where the entire travel documentation process happens online?

Not a major gripe, just seemed silly. If I was in Guatemala or Burundi maybe, but this is Turkey. They may even be in the EU in a few years
fly qr in europe you will find this all over the place.

Lounges i do not need a paper invite for when flying ba i do need a paper invite for when flying qr
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Old May 18, 2024, 3:34 am
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As they are effectively a catering business handling passengers from multiple carriers operating different eligibility requirements and computer systems (plus perhaps CC members and pay on the door customers), I doubt they are particularly interested in your travel arrangements, if they have access to them. It most likely really is about having the physical chit to claim reimbursement against, similar to a meal voucher you might receive during a delay and redeem at any other outlet. Much of the world still works like this. It's not right or wrong, just different to what you hoped for
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Old May 18, 2024, 3:47 am
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I think one also needs to bear in mind that persons staffing third party lounges in places like Izmir are not going to have the same level of knowledge of, say, BA staff at T5 GF. So whilst I might be tempted to bristle at the lack of immediate recognition of my Gold status, the reality is that "Club Eaurope" and "Gold" probably mean very little to them (certainly the former) and, as indicated above, all they care about is not getting sacked and that means making sure the right people are allowed in and the wrong ones are not!

It can even happen in EU countries. I was once refused entry to the Fast Track in Schiphol becase I was not "Business".
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Old May 18, 2024, 3:48 am
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Originally Posted by Kevlondon


…………………………….

Not a major gripe, just seemed silly. If I was in Guatemala or Burundi maybe, but this is Turkey. They may even be in the EU in a few years…


Certainly agree that yes, it does seem silly, and somewhat outdated - not least the lack of awareness you mention.

I’d say that the scepticism from masmadrid wrt Turkey joining EU is fully justified. However (and regardless of whether they eventually gain membership or not), any notion that EU countries are by definition all characterised by a sense of efficiency and slick organisation ……. well a good number of current members spring to mind as notable exceptions, but I’d best stop there for fear of drifting way OT !
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Old May 18, 2024, 3:51 am
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My mobile boarding pass has been met with confusion at airports where BA has multiple flights per day. Similarly agents seemed unfamiliar with the words "Club Europe", but "Emerald" is usually understood and enough to convince them to scan and allow in. I have seen some that write down the flight details onto their own sheet of paper, amusing as you would think everything is computerised these days.
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Old May 18, 2024, 4:05 am
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Originally Posted by KingCanute
As they are effectively a catering business handling passengers from multiple carriers operating different eligibility requirements and computer systems (plus perhaps CC members and pay on the door customers), I doubt they are particularly interested in your travel arrangements, if they have access to them. It most likely really is about having the physical chit to claim reimbursement against, similar to a meal voucher you might receive during a delay and redeem at any other outlet. Much of the world still works like this. It's not right or wrong, just different to what you hoped for
indeed they are, and you can pay into this lounge too. But this is hardly a major global hub airport, there are maybe 10 or 12 airlines operating here, it doesnt seem like a major leap to understand what qualifying passengers on each of those airlines would have written on their docs - even digital docs.

But im now feeling like a bit of a pioneer - the dragon has just come over to take a photo of my mobile BP, I guess so that in future theyll be able to deal with other BA passengers who have the temerity to show up without the magic piece of paper
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Old May 18, 2024, 4:06 am
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Originally Posted by masmadrid
Turkey in the EU in a few years? That's a good one! Progress stalled 8 years ago. IIRC their application is still open but there is a billion mile wide gap between where they are and where they need to be, meaning you can say for the foreseeable future, it isn't going to happen
I did say may joinbut this is a whole other can of worms thats not really germane to the topic
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Old May 18, 2024, 4:12 am
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Originally Posted by Kevlondon
OK, probably a tad overdramatic
Maybe? More seriously, mobile bps are looked at with suspicion in quite a few airports still, and it even happens for airlines to generate them from airports where they themselves claim they are not available on the plus side, this is usually resolved with a touch of patience which is exactly what seems to have happened here
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Old May 18, 2024, 4:19 am
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Originally Posted by Kevlondon
indeed they are, and you can pay into this lounge too. But this is hardly a major global hub airport, there are maybe 10 or 12 airlines operating here, it doesnt seem like a major leap to understand what qualifying passengers on each of those airlines would have written on their docs - even digital docs.

But im now feeling like a bit of a pioneer - the dragon has just come over to take a photo of my mobile BP, I guess so that in future theyll be able to deal with other BA passengers who have the temerity to show up without the magic piece of paper
More likely that they forgot to take the photo during your lounge entry debacle. They will then use this to reconcile your entry in their bill back process to the airline / lounge access company providing entry. It's a frequent SOP in many third party lounges.
Spitfire Lounge at SOU included (or at least did a couple of years ago).

Less pinoneer, more getting to grips with the continuing importance of paper in some countries. You should try India sometime for a culture shock.... you cant rubber stamp a mobile! 😁
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Old May 18, 2024, 4:27 am
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BA really should just put Business Class on all documentation, they can add CE/CW if they like, but I bet a good proportion of passengers don't even know what Club Europe/World means.

I don't think the word "Club" is particularly indicative of a cabin, even if your first language is English... and what does being in the EU have to do with whether a generic airport staff member should know that BA chooses to use special names for its J class?
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Old May 18, 2024, 4:40 am
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Originally Posted by 1Aturnleft
More likely that they forgot to take the photo during your lounge entry debacle. They will then use this to reconcile your entry in their bill back process to the airline / lounge access company providing entry. It's a frequent SOP in many third party lounges.
Spitfire Lounge at SOU included (or at least did a couple of years ago).

Less pinoneer, more getting to grips with the continuing importance of paper in some countries. You should try India sometime for a culture shock.... you cant rubber stamp a mobile! 😁
That is what QR does at their BKK lounge too - photo copying BPs :/ Not sure how they would go about a mobile one as have yet to try. Maybe that is a quest for next time

As for India, you are spot on.. I had my first experience few weeks ago - stamps everywhere! I am sure that at some point, someone tried to stamp my hand too
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Old May 18, 2024, 4:48 am
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Originally Posted by orbitmic
Maybe? More seriously, mobile bps are looked at with suspicion in quite a few airports still, and it even happens for airlines to generate them from airports where they themselves claim they are not available on the plus side, this is usually resolved with a touch of patience which is exactly what seems to have happened here
totally what happened. I learned long ago that acting like a Karen gets you nowhere, especially in a computer says no situation. 2
minutes of patience and silence, and everything was resolved.
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