Sure, I’ll Take A Massage With My Day Room!

There’s no denying that I’m getting old. I may only be in my mid-20s, but the number of “butt-in-seat” miles I’ve flown suggests otherwise. I’ve flown well over four million miles, and there are some things I just won’t do to myself anymore, which I would have done without thinking about twice a decade ago.

For example I don’t take domestic redeyes anymore, and I don’t do super-long layovers between longhaul flights without getting a day room.

As I’ve mentioned a countless number of times before, I’m soon headed to the Maldives, and decided to fly back on Cathay Pacific via Hong Kong in business class.

It’s tough to beat the $1,460 business class fare on Cathay Pacific via Hong Kong.

Cathay-Fare-1

But as you can see, it does involve a 10 hour layover in Hong Kong. Back when I was a young whipper-snapper I would have just visited every lounge during that time and had Diet Coke with lime and food all day, though nowadays I can’t do that quite as easily.

Also, after being on vacation for a week I’m not really interested in sightseeing for the day in Hong Kong, since I’ll have work to catch up on and will likely be tired… not to mention I’m very familiar with Hong Kong already.

So I instead looked at options for transit hotels. The Regal Airport Hotel Hong Kong is connected to the terminal and sells day rooms. When it comes to day rooms with short layovers, I far prefer a hotel that’s connected to the airport and doesn’t require a shuttle bus.

Regal-Hotel

Rates are ~1,150HKD (~$150) for a 10 hour block during the day. While that’s not a bargain, it’s what I would expect to pay in a city like Hong Kong.

But then I looked at the rate description, which indicated that the day room included a complimentary 55 minute body massage in their spa.

Regal-Airport-Hotel

The day room rate seems to be the same for most days I checked, and it always seems to include that 55 minute massage. That’s a pretty cool hidden “perk,” since it’s not something they’re actively promoting on their website.

Realistically with a 10 hour layover I’ll be spending seven hours at the hotel at most. Being able to go to the gym, get a massage, nap for a few hours, and get some work done in a non-airport environment is something I value at a lot more than the room cost.

Bottom line

Given that the ~55 minute massage goes for close to $100 at retail, that’s quite a value. In the future I might even consider booking a day room on even shorter layovers, factoring in the value of the massage.

I love finding hidden “values” like this.

What’s your threshold for getting a day room during a long layover?

Comments

  1. Glad to hear about the massage, since I’ve got a long layover coming up in Hong Kong later this year. But you better toughen up. If you can’t take domestic red eyes (in 1st) at your age, you’re gonna have to retire before you’re 30 ;-).

  2. Lucky
    I’ve done this exact same day stay at the Regal when traveling between LAX and SIN. Massage wasn’t included, or I missed it, but the regal is a good bare bones business relaxation spot. Windows in my room didn’t have black out curtains so sleeping was rough. I remember about a $125 rate for half day. Interested in the spa review.

  3. I’m only 15, but most layovers +12 hours get a day room at FRA because there are $55 rooms for 10 hours including lunch.

  4. I’m 32 and when I fly international my main goal is still to take advantage of the lounge. After enough Krug a chair works perfectly fine to sleep in!

  5. I wish I thought about a day room last year when we had about a 14 hour layover in Bangkok. We flew Thai Airways from CDG-BKK arriving in BKK at 5:15 am with our connecting flight to Sydney departing at 7:20 pm. We ended up staying the entire time at the First Class lounge. It was really long but Thai has a great First Class lounge plus the Royal Orchid Spa.

  6. If this perk is included with all reservations, the demand must be high. Can you reserve a spa time in advance so you don’t get disappointed?

  7. Lucky,

    What dates will you actually be at the PH Maldives? You might have some overlap with readers!

  8. You can also have time to access a hot spring spa, which is included with your flight on certain transatlantic flights operated by Japan Air Lines when purchasing a ticket for a seat in the premium class cabin, Ben…

    http://thegate.boardingarea.com/free-hot-spring-experience-purchase-round-trip-ticket/

    …and although that article I wrote claims that the offer ends today, I clicked on the link and found out that it has been extended into October of 2015 — meaning that if you have not already done so, you can enjoy that hot spring spa experience in Japan before jetting off to somewhere else.

    Knowing you, though, you probably found out about that offer long before I had and already experienced it…

  9. As much as the G16, the Pier and the Cabin are pretty crap, would be great if you checked them out. (No, not for ten hours, take the hotel stay and spend the last three lounge running at Hong Kong Airport.)

    I know you checked out the Arrival, but in case it’s changed…

  10. I stayed at the Regal Hong Kong in January and really enjoyed my stay. Especially the views of the airport, it worked perfectly for my 9 hour layover.

  11. As life evolves, you’ll find yourself surprised what you’ll do. I’m a little north of 40, and I do a lot of domestic red-eyes. Not because my employer won’t pay for a hotel, but because I want to maximize putting my kids to bed, so I’ll go home, do the bath/bedtime ritual and then head to the airport for a late-night west coast departure.

    Rough on me, but we all make sacrifices for our families.

    Greg

  12. No access to the First Class lounge at the Wing there (is it the Wing or Pier ..the main lounge with the First Lounge near gates 1 – 4)? The private cabannas are a nice chill out …they generally say limit time to about 1.5 hours, but I’ve gone in a few times over a 6 hour layover and it fit the bill.

  13. If the layover is over 7 hours and the room would cost me under $15 per hour, I’ll take it.

  14. At this rate it will just be a matter of time before you give in and get a 4 wheel carry on, because your arm hurts from dragging 2 wheeler at an angle.

  15. I didn’t know about that day room at HKG! Sounds like an awesome deal! However, between two longhaul economy class flights, I understand the need for a dayroom, but when flying business or first, I’d imagine if you weren’t reviewing a product that you’d be more well rested since that’s the point of flying in premium cabins.
    I grew up in HKG for 3 years so I tend to grab lunch or tea or dim sum with childhood friends whenever I connect in HKG (connection time of at least 6 hours between flights of course.)

  16. @ km — The Cabanas are nice for a shower, but I couldn’t imagine spending an extended amount of time there. Not really anywhere there to sleep.

  17. @ Seattle Eric — Seems that’s recommended, so I guess I should do that. My guess is not that many people are booking day rooms, though.

  18. I really like the concept of hourly rooms with wifi, a bed, and ideally a shower and bathroom: places like Yotel in LHR and AMS, or the MinuteSuites at PHL, ATL, and DFW. I wish they were a bit more common.

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