THumbs Up for the T5B Lounge

Old Oct 19, 08, 5:08 am
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Thumbs up THumbs Up for the T5B Lounge

Wow! Night and day compared to the F Lounge at T5...

Currently transiting from LHR to HAM arriving from YYZ. Went to the F Lounge and it was a total zoo:
1) Ask for a shower, and was told the wait would be 40-50mins - and the watiing list was around 45 people
2) Tried booking a massage, and was told the first available massage would be in 3 hours
3) Went to the magazine rack to get either the Financial Times or the Herald Tribune, and none was available. Asked the lady who was collecting the newspapers, and she said there are none left.
4) Went to the washroom to pee, and every one of the rooms was booked.. Why don't they just have urinal stalls (it would save lots of room).

So in purely frustration, I decided to head over to the T5B Gallery Lounge.. what a great place...
a) Very peaceful.. and not a lot of people in the lounge
b) Asked for a shower and was given one right away.. There seemed to be no one using the showers (They only have 4 showers)
c) The showers and toilets do not use the suction system, and so there is no loud sunction/burping sound... and... the room temperature was perfect (and not steaming).
d) Asked for a massage, and was given immediately
e) Went to the newspaper stand in the lounge, and was able to pick up both the Herald Tribune and the Financial Times.

Now it was a bit of a treck to the T5B Lounge, but it was well worth it...

Only potential problem is that I am betting that my flight leaves from T5B, otherwise, I will need to go through security again to get back to the main terminal.
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Old Oct 19, 08, 5:44 am
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Hi ACfly,

Thanks for the report.

I do not think you need to go back through security ( I think there might be a "super secret" walkway back to T5A- the " super secret" being it is not publicised- I think there is a post here detailing it.

I was able to get a shower with no waiting in Galleries F on a Monday afternoon but on my outbound in August the only time available was just when I was due to head to T5B .

Regards

TBS
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Old Oct 19, 08, 5:53 am
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Originally Posted by The _Banking_Scot View Post

I was able to get a shower with no waiting in Galleries F on a Monday afternoon but on my outbound in August the only time available was just when I was due to head to T5B .

TBS
Are there showers in Galleries F? I have only seen/used the ones by the spa next to the CCR, good to know if that's the case.
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Old Oct 19, 08, 6:01 am
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Hi Dan72,

Sorry for any confusion, the showers I used were the spa ones ( in the hall between Galleries F and the Concorde Room)

Regards

TBS
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Old Oct 19, 08, 7:52 am
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Originally Posted by The _Banking_Scot View Post
Hi ACfly,

Thanks for the report.

I do not think you need to go back through security ( I think there might be a "super secret" walkway back to T5A- the " super secret" being it is not publicised- I think there is a post here detailing it.
When I went through T5B a month ago, I noticed the lift down to the transit had a button for the train level and another button for the walkway below - so it's not that secret.
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Old Oct 19, 08, 7:53 am
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Is the walkway below the transit trains? I think I ended up there by mistake 2 weeks ago. If I recall, at T5B, you can take the lift to Level -3, where the trains are, OR -5, which is a walkway that I have not been in. With our copious photographers on here, a photo would be good!
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Old Oct 19, 08, 8:43 am
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OK, i've made it back to the Main terminal (Gates A) from the T5B... It was actually quite simple.. and no need to secretive about it. There's a big sign pointing the way to GATE A... which is behind the elevators.. There's a security guy manning the entry way, and he escorts you downstairs to the basement and takes you (by golf cart) from the Terminal 5B to the main terminal (about 1 mile) and you take the elevator.

I asked him if this happens a lot, and he says "plenty, and it only gets worse next week when more flights are moved to Terminal 5."

I asked him why BA doesnt install moving elevators for people to move back and forth between the terminal, and his simple response is " we've got no more money."

So there it is....
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Old Oct 19, 08, 10:15 am
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Originally Posted by dmahon View Post
When I went through T5B a month ago, I noticed the lift down to the transit had a button for the train level and another button for the walkway below - so it's not that secret.
A month ago, going in the other direction (i.e. from main T5 to T5B) I wanted to walk for a change. Pressed the button for the walkway, however the lift refused to go there So I would not definitely count on the lifts in T5B going there either.
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Old Oct 19, 08, 12:28 pm
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It is not in BA's power to install moving walkways there. Many of us, BA staff have been suggesting this from the time we knew of the walkway, but in the end it's up to BAA, as owners of T5. I think that it would be sensible and then we can allow customers to move freely. It would need to be a series of moving walkways and not one continuous one, as they underground passage is also designed to be used in emergency situations and has security doors that can be closed in various sections.

As for access, you can't press the button on the lifts to get there, unless with staff who have access. The buggy is available to take customers back to T5A, but only if there are 3 or less. If there is a larger group, then they will have to walk, which in reality takes about 5-10mins depending on the individual.

The signage showing the way back to T5A has been increased as people are regularly ignoring the signs in T5A about not going to T5B until the gate is confirmed and therefore need to be directed back to the A gates where their flight is.
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Old Oct 19, 08, 12:30 pm
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Originally Posted by SpeedbirdLHR View Post
It is not in BA's power to install moving walkways there. Many of us, BA staff have been suggesting this from the time we knew of the walkway, but in the end it's up to BAA, as owners of T5. I think that it would be sensible and then we can allow customers to move freely. It would need to be a series of moving walkways and not one continuous one, as they underground passage is also designed to be used in emergency situations and has security doors that can be closed in various sections.

As for access, you can't press the button on the lifts to get there, unless with staff who have access. The buggy is available to take customers back to T5A, but only if there are 3 or less. If there is a larger group, then they will have to walk, which in reality takes about 5-10mins depending on the individual.

The signage showing the way back to T5A has been increased as people are regularly ignoring the signs in T5A about not going to T5B until the gate is confirmed and therefore need to be directed back to the A gates where their flight is.
Might be way off the mark here, but would it have been that hard to make the train a two way affair, like HKG? After all, it needs to get back somehow.
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Old Oct 19, 08, 12:35 pm
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Originally Posted by Gaz View Post
Might be way off the mark here, but would it have been that hard to make the train a two way affair, like HKG? After all, it needs to get back somehow.
It goes from T5A to T5B sterile, but comes back to T5A unclean.

So if you were to provide a sterile train from T5B to T5A, it would have to be segregated from the normal train. All this for a handful of people who can't read signs, or who want to cherry pick their lounge. Not very cost-effective.
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Old Oct 19, 08, 12:35 pm
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Originally Posted by Gaz View Post
Might be way off the mark here, but would it have been that hard to make the train a two way affair, like HKG? After all, it needs to get back somehow.
No, not to my knowledge, but then you would need to have one train dedicated to departures and one to arrivals, so as to maintain the seperation. Don't think they will do this as they want to keep people moving as quickly as possible and having dedicated trains would mean longer waits, esp when T5C is up operational.
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Old Oct 19, 08, 12:37 pm
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Oh yeah, the segregation. Why does the UK segregate anyway? Is it down to using central security rather than gate security (where you still get to screen connecting pax at gate)?
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Old Oct 19, 08, 1:36 pm
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Originally Posted by Gaz View Post
Why does the UK segregate anyway? Is it down to using central security rather than gate security (where you still get to screen connecting pax at gate)?
Central security, indeed. Just like most other places in the world. It is now quite uncommon for international arriving passengers at any airport not to be segregated from departing passengers.

This was perhaps best demonstrated in the old T1 layout. Although there was no immigration or customs control for arriving passengers either from UK domestic flights or Ireland flights, the terminal was set up so that UK domestic arrivals could go straight to their next flight (either domestic or international), but Ireland arrivals would have to clear security before boarding another aircraft.

You don't need to do this if you have security at the gate. But that must be very much more expensive.
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Old Oct 19, 08, 1:39 pm
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Originally Posted by Globaliser View Post
So if you were to provide a sterile train from T5B to T5A, it would have to be segregated from the normal train. All this for a handful of people who can't read signs, or who want to cherry pick their lounge. Not very cost-effective.
Glad to see someone talking sense for once !
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