Media has not reported this in any news but I saw the slow trend coming in quietly and creating an effect.
Jet Airways has started cutting down lounge access from multiple cities. One of the key selling points for any loyalty program is lounge access to it’s prominent members. They offer free lounge access to their top end clients. Jet Airways provides lounge access to it’s Gold and Platinum members.
Jet Airways has withdrawn lounge contracts from multiple cities – Indore, Kochi, Ahmedabad, Vadodara, Chandigarh, Amritsar, and Jaipur. There may be other cities too where you would not have lounge access.
In Jet Airways defense, the quality of lounges was horrible, yet they were charging money equivalent to any 2nd tier cities. Customers would never give the lounge good rating in the survey and Jet Airways couldn’t pressure the lounge/restaurant to provide better service or food.
Normally, airlines don’t own the lounges but rather provides a contract to the airport restaurant. Some airport provides ala-carte option whereas other create designated area for airlines customer and provide buffet to Airline customers.
I feel slowly we would have no lounges except metros and few tier 2 cities that have International Airports. However, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, and Kochi are an International gateway and even their lounge contract has been canceled.
Do you think it is fair to have lounge completely removed from so many cities or Jet Airways could still provide some other benefit to their top members in those cities?