My flight on Cathay Pacific was a 5:20 AM flight, which basically meant a night without sleep to make it to the plane. So, instead of screwing up sleep totally, I decided to arrive at the airport early enough to be able to grab a bite at the airport for a late-night dinner, and then maybe get a few winks in the lounge itself.

With this plan in mind, I arrived at the airport about midnight with my younger brother accompanying me. We carried a printout of our ticket, since it is standard process at all Indian airports to have a printed itinerary which security personnel scan to let you in. We were let in, since it was about 4 hours for the flight and we proceeded directly to the Cathay Pacific counters. Here, I proceeded to check-in on the Business Class queue since Cathay Pacific operates a 2-class service on this route, and as a oneworld Emerald (via my AAdvantage EXP status), I was eligible to check-in via this queue.

The check-in queue was empty, and I could not take pictures since Mumbai Airport security was watching over nearby and they generally do not allow pictures inside the airport. The check-in agent took note of my ticket and status, and handed over the boarding passes for our pre-assigned seats (emergency exit row). Alongside, a lounge access coupon popped up as well, and I was given access to the Mumbai Clipper Lounge (First Class section) along with +1 under the oneworld rules.

Mumbai has a British Airways Galleries lounge as well, and I am surprised that British Airways does not encourage other oneworld airlines to use its facilities to defray the costs of running the lounge. However, I decided I wanted to use the British Airways Lounge, since I was denied an opportunity to check it out during my earlier venture at this lounge.

So, after clearing passport control and security checks, I arrived at the British Airways lounge, where I presented our Cathay Pacific boarding passes and my American Airlines EXP membership card. It was about 1 AM in the morning at this time and I was informed that while they would let us in, the lounge would close at about 2:30 AM since the British Airways flight from Mumbai took off at about 2:45 AM.

The reason I’d prefer any other lounge in Mumbai to the Clipper Lounge I had access to (via Cathay Pacific, or my MasterCard), is that it is usually very crowded. So, this was like an oasis in Mumbai, with a few passengers and lots of empty space.

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The entrance & the reception

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A look around the lounge

The lounge was very spacious and quite empty at this hour of the night, except for an English guy who was conducting business at the top of his voice. His aggressive language included, “We’ll go after them with all we got if we don’t get what we want”. Must have had a troubled long day.

The whole place looked like it could take in about 70-80 guests easily. Since dinner was my initial plan and it was already closing to 1:15 AM by now, I proceeded to check out the snack selection, which was reasonable for a midnight snack bar. They had vegetarian and non-vegetarian sandwiches, Pulao rice and Paneer gravy, Samosas (fried Indian snack full of potatoes), Kathi Rolls and some Penne pasta in Arabiatta sauce with chicken chunks.

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Midnight Food options

Around the other side of the lounge was the bar which was stocked well with some 10-15 kinds of alcohol, and a chiller full of beer and soft drinks. Wine and champagne was on offer as well, with figs, fruit and some cheese.

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The BA Lounge Bar

Around about there was also the coffee and crisps section nearby which was just about what I needed for a quick wake-up and get active mode.

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Coffee and crisps at the BA Lounge

I settled with a plateful of small bites and my coffee, and fired up my laptop to check on some final minute emails, but our shouting friend was sitting right behind me at this point of time so I was clearly not going to get any work done with him around. However, just so that you know, wifi was blazingly fast for airport internet, and I could download a couple of 15 MB attachments off my mailbox in under a minute flat each!

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I couldn’t help but notice that there is a big business centre inside this lounge as well, with about 10 computers, a laser printer and some nifty things you may need for a quick-fire work assignment while around here.

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The business centre area

The lounge was complete with a shower area, and British Airways provides toilets and amenities if you choose to use the showers.

At about 2:15 AM, the British Airways representatives started to escort all the British Airways guests out of the lounge to their flight. Me and my brother also started to pack up to leave, but we still had a few hours to kill, so we were going to head to the Clipper Lounge now, to be able to spend the next two hours by ourselves.

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Posted by Ajay Awtaney | 3 Comments

3 Responses to “A Thai Vacay: British Airways Galleries Lounge, Mumbai (BOM)”

  1. SuperFlyBoy says:

    If these are the facilities available to BA pax, I might consider switching from LH to BA!

    LH is cutting left and right, and just the drinks offering is worth it to switch – not that I would be partaking wholeheartedly – is just that they have them available!

  2. AJ says:

    @SuperFlyBoy I think i’ve loved oneworld more than star alliance and skyteam overall in terms of having some quality and hospitable airlines in there.

  3. Mike Sadler says:

    Thank you for posting such a comprehensive review. It is great to find out what facilities are available – in particular, it is often hard to find out whether there are showers available.

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