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What's so great about the F lounges (no buffet)?

What's so great about the F lounges (no buffet)?

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Old Aug 13, 19, 1:45 am
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What's so great about the F lounges (no buffet)?

Somewhat heretical and rhetorical. I've been to the QF F lounges in LAX and SYD; the restaurant, while great, seems to be the only attraction. As I recall, the only self-service food in the lounge is a couple bowls of cookies/nuts/etc. -- less than what you'd find in an ordinary USA domestic airline lounge.

The complimentary table-service dining is fantastic if that is what I am in the mood for and have time for. But it means to eat anything substantial I have to wait for a table, wait to have my order taken, and wait for the food/drink (and hope they get the order right). And if I do still have time after finishing at the table, I feel like the lounge experience is over and there's nothing else to do (except maybe take a shower).

Am I supposed to go the J lounge instead, if I want to assemble my own plate right away? For shorter stays, or for people who like to graze and try small servings of several things, is it too much to ask to have a decent hot buffet option in an international F lounge? I'm interested if I'm missing something.
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Old Aug 13, 19, 1:56 am
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You are welcome to use the business lounge if you want a buffet that can be easily be beaten by buying something in the terminal

You do not have to wait for a table you can eat elsewhere in the lounge
Is it really that common for the order to be incorrect?

If it is time to go to the aeroplane by time have finished eating, that seems to me that the timing is about perfect - the lounge is just a waiting room for a flight
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Old Aug 13, 19, 3:14 am
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Completely agree. First class lounges where table dining is the only way to get food are irritating.
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Old Aug 13, 19, 3:42 am
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If travelling on a route that is subject to agreement, and the EK lounge is open, best option for a QF WP wanting a quick, high quality buffet is to pay a visit to the EK lounge. I know in MEL the quality of the food in EK lounge is excellent for a buffet. IIRC though QF routes between US & Australia are excluded from this agreement, would apply only to Asia/Europe routes.
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Old Aug 13, 19, 2:54 pm
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Originally Posted by lokijuh View Post
If travelling on a route that is subject to agreement, and the EK lounge is open, best option for a QF WP wanting a quick, high quality buffet is to pay a visit to the EK lounge. I know in MEL the quality of the food in EK lounge is excellent for a buffet. IIRC though QF routes between US & Australia are excluded from this agreement, would apply only to Asia/Europe routes.
EK lounge access for QF pax is only for routes where EK and QF both operate ... so it excludes trans-pacific but also much of Asia fwiw.

As Dave pointed out, you don't have to wait for a table, they do bring food from the restaurant to you anywhere in the lounge. Also the wine & spirits selection is way better than J lounge (or the EK lounge which is joint J/F lounge in Oz, so better than J but less than F).

There are a bunch of other services in the F lounge beyond the showers and restaurant, but if you don't value them then by all means use the J lounges
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Old Aug 13, 19, 4:05 pm
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Originally Posted by number_6 View Post
EK lounge access for QF pax is only for routes where EK and QF both operate ... so it excludes trans-pacific but also much of Asia fwiw. ...
Actually SE Asia is generally included.

In any case, this is about Qantas First Lounges, so with the USA being excluded taking LAX* out, that only leaves only SYD and MEL in relation to this thread. (Personally I tend to find the T4 AA F/L better than the Qantas First lounge at LAX anyway.)

(*Of course, if flying VA from LAX one may have the opportunity for the EK lounge there. )

Last edited by serfty; Aug 13, 19 at 11:41 pm
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Old Aug 13, 19, 7:09 pm
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Agree 100% - the F Lounges are crap and to be avoided.

In order to enable you to enjoy the full benefits of a buffet, inferior wines, and to ensure 1 more seat for you, I volunteer to continue to suffer in the F Lounges.

Enjoy!

Regards,

BD
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Old Aug 13, 19, 8:29 pm
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Originally Posted by BD1959 View Post
Agree 100% - the F Lounges are crap and to be avoided.

In order to enable you to enjoy the full benefits of a buffet, inferior wines, and to ensure 1 more seat for you, I volunteer to continue to suffer in the F Lounges.

Enjoy!

Regards,

BD
I think the point of the OP, is not that the F lounges are bad, but if you've got 20 mins or so, you will struggle to enjoy a meal, as the wait for food to be cooked and brought to the table can be long at busy times (even if you elect to dine in the seating area rather than the dining area). Which is a fair point. However, when I used to visit F lounge (when my partner or I were platinum), usually pointing out to staff impending departure would accelerate service.

Also, the time factor is more of an issue for those who are obsessed with being at the plane for the start of boarding than end of boarding. For me, ideal situation is a seamless transition from whatever lounge I am in to the plane and then the doors close behind either me or at the very least after one of the 5-10 passengers behind me I wish!
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Old Aug 13, 19, 8:33 pm
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My last 5 or 6 trips I’ve used the J lounge in Sydney and Melbourne, preferring the reasonable buffet to the table service in F. For the mid/late afternoon flights I take, the J lounge is perfectly ok ( edible food and uncrowded, decent bathrooms).
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Old Aug 13, 19, 10:24 pm
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Out of all the times I've used the F Lounge (which is many) only once have I received poor service and incorrect orders and it was purely because of a surly waiter. He no longer works there.
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Old Aug 14, 19, 6:24 am
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Originally Posted by m0hamed View Post
Out of all the times I've used the F Lounge (which is many) only once have I received poor service and incorrect orders and it was purely because of a surly waiter. He no longer works there.
And I do not recall long wait for the food, even during the peak times...
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Old Aug 14, 19, 8:25 pm
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Originally Posted by lokijuh View Post
I think the point of the OP, is not that the F lounges are bad, but if you've got 20 mins or so, you will struggle to enjoy a meal, as the wait for food to be cooked and brought to the table can be long at busy times (even if you elect to dine in the seating area rather than the dining area). Which is a fair point. However, when I used to visit F lounge (when my partner or I were platinum), usually pointing out to staff impending departure would accelerate service.
Hi lokijuh,

I understand the point you're making and if it was purely about the fact there's not a quick-serve option, I'd agree with it. However the OP stated:
(the restaurant service) "seems to be the only attraction".

My point was that the wines and (usually) greater availability of seating of the F Lounge are also attractions they'd be missing - of course I could have also added the more attentive service (rarely have I had to sit in F in a sea of half-empty plates and glasses from previous occupants as I have in the SYD J Lounge), usually available workstations, etc etc.

Back to the point of table service being slow, unlike yourself I can't remember the last time I've had to prompt for quicker service; usually the wait-person asks which flight I'm taking and adjusts the speed accordingly ... back to the generally attentive service.

Regards,

BD
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Old Aug 14, 19, 10:21 pm
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Originally Posted by BD1959 View Post
Hi lokijuh,

I understand the point you're making and if it was purely about the fact there's not a quick-serve option, I'd agree with it. However the OP stated:
(the restaurant service) "seems to be the only attraction".
Well yes, and in one of my two "home" ports (MEL), it's dungeon (QF J) vs tarmac views (QF F). Even without the restaurant (or the massages, which don't interest me), the F lounge has a lot more going for it than the dark J lounge. If I was a vampire , I might appreciate the J lounge more though . (nb: comparing the QF F to the EK J lounge at MEL, FWIW, the difference is less dramatic though, back in the day, when my partner was OWE we actually used both lounges, QF for the meal, and EK for relaxing + dessert).
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Old Aug 14, 19, 11:54 pm
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Originally Posted by lokijuh View Post
Well yes, and in one of my two "home" ports (MEL), it's dungeon (QF J) vs tarmac views (QF F). Even without the restaurant (or the massages, which don't interest me), the F lounge has a lot more going for it than the dark J lounge. If I was a vampire , I might appreciate the J lounge more though .
I, too, am based in MEL so can identify with your points!

Originally Posted by lokijuh View Post
(nb: comparing the QF F to the EK J lounge at MEL, FWIW, the difference is less dramatic though, back in the day, when my partner was OWE we actually used both lounges, QF for the meal, and EK for relaxing + dessert).
I enjoy the MEL EK Lounge although - depending on where you're sitting - it too can feel claustrophobic. However there's one aspect I don't enjoy in EK Lounges ... the Moet - I'm not a fan so relax (not a dessert fan!) in the QF F Lounge.

Each to their own - and I'll wave down on those enjoying the buffet!

Regards,

BD
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Old Aug 14, 19, 11:57 pm
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I'm in the LAX F lounge on average twice a month. Never have had an issue with service. There are instances where I don't have enough time to enjoy sit a down meal, especially if I'm flying out of T4/5/Eagle, so I will hit up the AA Flagship lounge. I find it to have more varied options than the LAX OW J lounge.

In MEL, I'd definitely avoid the windowless Business lounge.

That said, it would be nice for the F lounges to have a few more self serve options out all of the time. LAX does put out cheese/charcuterie on busy nights, but wish they did a bit more regularly.
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