Review: Air India Lounge Delhi Airport

Introduction
Review: Finnair Business Class A350 New York To Helsinki
Review: Holiday Inn Helsinki Airport
Review: Almost@Home Lounge Helsinki Airport
Review: Finnair Lounge Helsinki Airport
Review: Finnair Business Class A340 Helsinki To London
Review: Hilton London Heathrow Terminal 4
Review: Air India Lounge London Heathrow Airport
Review: Plaza Premium Lounge London Heathrow Airport Terminal 4
Review: Air India First Class 777 London To Delhi
Review: Air India’s AMAZING First Class Ground Experience In Delhi
Review: Air India Lounge Delhi Airport
Review: Air India First Class 777 Delhi To San Francisco


In the last installment I shared my experience with Air India’s first class ground services in Delhi, so in this installment I’ll share my experience with the actual lounge, located in Terminal 3. This is Air India’s international lounge, and it’s located one level up from the main concourse, near the center of the terminal, and above a lot of duty free shopping.

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Delhi Airport Terminal 3

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Delhi Airport Terminal 3

The entire terminal is only a few years old, so even from the outside of the lounge you can tell that it’s fairly modern. There’s a pretty cool faux-wood exterior, with small “see through” sections.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport exterior

As is the norm at Air India lounges, there was a Maharaja cutout waiting at the entrance.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport entrance

The reception desk is located right as you walk into the lounge, with the first class section to the right and the business class section to the left.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section

The first class section consists of one fairly large room. While it’s not a huge space, it’s more than sufficient given how few first class passengers Air India has. There are only a few flights with first class, and most of those planes have just four first class seats, which are rarely full.

The first class section is nice and private thanks to the partitions between the various seats.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section

I was impressed by the variety of furniture they had. On one hand it sort of looked mis-matched, while on the other hand it meant you really had your choice of seating, from couches to leather chairs to recliner seats. There were tons of options.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section

In the very front of the first class section near the entrance were three computers available for guest use.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class section business center

There are vouchers they give you for the wifi, with a unique code for each device. It connects to a third party service, though unfortunately the connection was terrible. The wifi would be dial-up speed for a few minutes, and then for the next 30 minutes it would be completely unusable. And then it would work at dial-up speeds again for a short amount of time. So don’t count on having a functioning wifi connection at the lounge.

The first class section doesn’t have a dedicated food or drink selection, though you do have a couple of guys working in the lounge who exclusively look after that section, and take great care of you, as I explained in the last installment. The service in the first class section was extremely attentive.

Of course you can go to the business class lounge and get snacks for yourself, or otherwise they’re happy to bring you just about anything.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport first class snacks

The first class section does also have two nap rooms, which I believe are exclusively for first class passengers. On one hand they look like prison cells, while on the other hand there aren’t many lounges out there with anything resembling a “real” bed, so I was impressed. The Qatar Airways Al Safwa Lounge Doha still wins the prize for having the best nap rooms of any lounge.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport nap rooms

You can go to the business class lounge either via the hallway on the back side of the lounge, or otherwise by walking past the reception desk.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport hallway

The business class section also consisted of one large room, though it had a unique shape and different “sections,” which added a sense of privacy to the lounge. Despite being peak hours at the airport, the lounge wasn’t very well.

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport

The food & drink spread was in the far corner of the lounge.

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport buffet

There was a fridge with self serve beer and soft drinks, and then liquor and wine served by a bartender.

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport bar

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport drinks

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport drinks

There was also a Nescafe espresso machine, which made surprisingly decent beverages.

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport coffee machine

While the food spread wasn’t too extensive, the quality looked decent enough. There was a mix of cold items, packaged snacks, and some hot food as well.

The cold items consisted mostly of veggies.

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport snacks

Then there were packaged snacks, including croissants, muffins, cookies, etc.

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport snacks

The labelling at the buffet left a bit to be desired, as the food was described as “soup,” “snacks,” “veg,” or “non-veg.” So I’ll let the pictures speak for themselves, since I can’t even label Indian dishes correctly if I’m given a menu with descriptions. 😉

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport soup

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport food spread

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport food spread

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport food spread

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Air India Business Class Lounge Delhi Airport food spread

The shower rooms were shared between the first and business class section, and there seemed to be several of them. While not world class, they were quite nice, each consisting of a shower, sink, and toilet. Frankly they were nicer than I was expecting.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport shower room

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport shower room

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport shower room

The shampoo and conditioner were wall mounted, though there were several amenities on the counter, which exceeded my expectations.

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport shower room

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Air India Lounge Delhi Airport shower room amenities

Air India Lounge Delhi bottom line

I was pleasantly surprised by the Air India Lounge in Delhi, minus the non-existent/terrible wifi. While it’s not a lounge I’d plan a long layover in order to visit, it was fairly modern, clean, and the food looked better than I was expecting. So while it’s nothing like a Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse, it’s nice enough.

If you’ve visited the Air India Lounge Delhi, what was your experience like?

Enjoy this review? Check out hundreds of other reports on airlines, hotels, and airport lounges worldwide!

About lucky

Ben Schlappig (aka Lucky) is a travel consultant, blogger, and avid points collector. He travels about 400,000 miles a year, primarily using miles and points to fund his first class experiences. He chronicles his adventures, along with industry news, here at One Mile At A Time.

More articles by lucky »

Comments

  1. Can you please Review the new SWISS Lounge at the Dock E in ZRH?
    I think they have some Nap Rooms with great Tamrac View.

  2. It looks like the only difference between the two lounges is the wall separating them. If anything, the business class side looks better!

    Definitely not one of the better first or business class loungers you’ll find…

  3. Loving this on-going trip report, they’ve all been very interesting, looking forward to your write up of the last leg.

    > Despite being peak hours at the airport, the lounge wasn’t very well.

    Unless the lounge was actually ill, you may have missed a word.

  4. Great review. As you say, it’s not going to win any awards, but it’s certainly better than many lounges I’ve been to in many parts of the world and would beat most US and Canadian domestic – and most US and Canadian international – lounges by miles.

    Did you try any of the food? I know you said that the attendants were very, um, proactive in offering things, but did you eat any of it? If so, how was it?

  5. Although I don’t spend a lot of time in lounges, I always do use the shower. In this instance, I will say that the shower rooms looked nicer than the ones I have used at the MapleLeaf in YYZ and the tiny thing I used at the CX lounge in Hong Kong. I especially dislike the MapleLeaf Lounge’s shower facilities in YYZ, since they literally provide no additional amenities except for towels and the three dispensers containing shampoo, conditioner and body wash. So, actually, I thought the lounge looks nice, although again, I spend a max of 30-60 min in lounges and never ever eat in them. I generally find better dining establishments within airports.

  6. The question is this. Would you fly air India again without hesitation or reservation if you weren’t trying to review a product and trying to generate more clicks on your blog or please everyone with a balanced review.

    Are you comfortable with other cultures and not just when you are flying in a sterilized, sanitized cocoon called first class. I don’t think you have lot of exposure to the “real” cultures of most these places. Maybe you will actually spend time in places you visit in the future.

  7. @ Credit,

    I assume your post is directed to Ben and not Jared.

    I know Jared personally and he travels to and actually experiences the cultures of more places than anyone that I know or read of (including Ben).

  8. Glad to see they carry High Life, the Champagne of beers. All kidding aside, that’s my favorite “bottom of the barrel” beer to drink that’s widely available.

  9. @lucky

    The new LX ZRH dock E lounges are open.
    Did you see the pictures Sven posted?

    Man, the new F lounge has bedrooms complete with alpine views.
    And there is a whiskey bar too!
    Besides that the new 777-300ER F cabin now has a new amenity kit by Zimmerli with La pairie.

  10. Just passed through this lounge last Thursday. Had to overnight in this lounge a couple of years ago and the wifi was much better back then. I spent most of my time streaming videos and it only had to buffer a few times. It’s ironic that the free Tata Docomo wifi accessible from the rest of the terminal was much more usable than the one in the lounge. However, that involved having to get a code sent to your phone and was only valid for 60 minutes.

  11. Great report so far, Lucky — I think you’re capturing what AI really is like: great when they want to be, although just a bit behind in the presentation department. Eagerly awaiting the DEL-SFO part.

    Also, for the ZRH lounge, sounds like you could easily go there with a same day LH F flight departing FRA or MUC, no? I’ve done the FCT with a same-day LX F flight departing ZRH so I hope it would be the other way around as well.

  12. @Joop
    There’s no smoking section in the lounge. However, there is a separate smoking room on the same level as the lounge, halfway between the lounge and the escalators to go downstairs.

    @wwk5d
    You are right. Pretty much the only differences between the two sides are the color of the seats (same furniture otherwise) and higher seat density in the business section.

    Incidentally, I saw there was a new ‘flight simulator experience’ in the terminal. I had some time to kill so inquired about prices. 30 minutes for 5000 Rupees…no thanks.

  13. OFF TOPIC

    Lucky, I am in desperate ( 😉 ) need of your review of the Crowne Plaza in Auckland…! Have to make reservations soon, and I am still torn between the Holiday Inn at the Airport, the CP, or the Langham (for a completely different experience). Price wise, the CP and HI are basically the same, so pleeeeeease…… 😉

  14. How do you set your standards for lounges? You say that this is ‘nice enough’ yet you slate the BA lounge in Heathrow despite it being infineately better

  15. @Kyle:

    I would tend to agree with your line of questioning. At this point I read the review for the pictures and descriptions more than the commentary on whether it’s nice or not. While I love Ben for his many thorough trip reports, trying to get a handle on any sort of ranking (outside of LH, EK, and CX being the best of everything) is nearly impossible. All the reviews are littered with “while such-and-such was shitty, this-and-that was decent” with glaring flaws being constantly redeemed by one or two positive things so that you’ll rarely be able to get real sense of whether something’s to be avoided. It’s a very milquetoast approach to critiquing and leaves a lot to be desired when trying to determine whether an airline/lounge should be utilized. I’d recommend looking at these trip reports as more as more a story and less a subjective assessment on a quality-point scale.

  16. Thanks for reviewing Air India & the T3 Lounge Lucky. Am sure you enjoyed Indian Hospitality. Am looking to a trip to Australia. Choosing between Air India, SQ & MAS. My vote goes to MAS, which allows to bid for upgrades. I have upgraded Mum-Kul for $100 one way. Cool ain’t it?

  17. A good number of lounges in the third world including Air India’s Delhi lounge is for Senior Gov officials , Ministers and Senior Executives of Gov organisations. The odd Fortune 500 CEO and top diplomats pass through these portals ocassionally. Not designed to WOW the world at large. Only in Sin Hkg the gulf and some places in Japan and Korea and ANZ do you have top quality First Class. These gov owned carriers right round the world buy new planes for balance of payment, trading and safety reasons and transpirtation purposes.. As long as the attendents are attentive and the lounge is clean, there is little to complain about. If you have a shit picking attitude suggest you get your own BBJ or ACJ

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