I was tempted to try the new “Uber X” to save some dough on the way to the airport, but the app told me that we’d be waiting 15 minutes, so I just went with a standard black car which arrived in about 3-4 minutes to our Arlington, VA apartment.
We got to Dulles about 2 hours before our scheduled departure after our horrible experience last time. We didn’t expect security would be as bad this time, and luckily it wasn’t, but you really never know with Dulles, and Lufthansa doesn’t participate in TSA Pre Check.
The Lufthansa first class check in counter was closed… Likely because they had only this one flight remaining the rest of the day, and all 3 first class passengers had already checked in online.
So while I would’ve preferred to add to my collection of first class ticket jackets (just accept that I’m weird), we made our way to the security checkpoint with our computer-printed boarding passes. There was no premium security lane…well more accurately everyone was being directed into the lane signed for premium passengers… but it only took about 10 minutes to get through and onto the train toward the B gates.
We arrived at a mostly quiet terminal B and had nearly 2 full hours to enjoy the Lufthansa Senator Lounge.
When we arrived, the agent recognized that we were in first class and offered to have us board before the rest of the passengers. We accepted and he told us that he would call us by name to the lobby area when we could pre-board. I asked on a whim if he had any first class ticket jackets, and he said he did! So we got conventional style boarding passes which are easier to carry as well.
He pointed us directly to the left into the Senator section which is for first class passengers, and Star Alliance gold members. The business lounge is downstairs and we didn’t visit.
I also wanted to check out the British Airways lounge next door with my Priority Pass membership.
However, I found out that it’s only open to Priority Pass members until 2:00PM.
Not a huge loss, I’m sure, as it seems they “turn over” the lounge for BA passengers at 3:30, and it’s probably much nicer for them than lowly Priority Pass members.
The Lufthansa lounge buffet was stocked with about a dozen cold options, five hot options a fancy coffee machine (I don’t drink coffee, so I have no idea what it was or what it makes), and one of the coolest soda fountains you’ll ever see.
Alcoholic beverages are available by order from the 3-4 members of lounge staff who regularly circulate and offer great service for a stateside lounge.
There was also a private area reserved with a table setting for one. I figured that the third first class passenger was some sort of VIP and was anxious to see who it was.
However nobody showed up to use it, and the lady in 1A had clearly not flown much international first class (and definitely not with Lufthansa) … more on this later… so I don’t think it was set for her.
One of the cool things about departing on an A330 from Dulles is that you can board directly from the lounge. And not directly from the lounge like a 747 (like last time) where you really just walk down a semi-private hallway to join regular boarding. In this case there’s actually a jetway that attaches essentially directly to the lounge and straight to door 1L.
On to Munich!