Introduction: A Very Short Trip To Fiji
Review: Los Angeles International Lounge LAX Airport
Review: Fiji Airways Business Class A330 Los Angeles To Nadi
Review: Sheraton Fiji Resort
Review: Fiji Airways Lounge Nadi Airport
Review: Fiji Airways Business Class A330 Nadi To Los Angeles
My flight from Nadi back to Los Angeles was scheduled to depart at 9:40PM, and I made it to the airport at around 7PM. Even though Nadi Airport has a fair number of longhaul flights, the airport is quite small, and feels more like a regional airport.
I quickly found Fiji Airways’ check-in area, and the business class check-in counter was at the very right, next to the bag drop counter.
The friendly associate had me checked in very quickly, and within moments I was presented with my boarding passes all the way to New York.
She explained the location of the Fiji Airways lounge to me, and directed me towards the security checkpoint.
Nadi Airport is undergoing a huge renovation, so right now most of the airport looks like a construction zone, including the walkway to security.
I was shocked when I showed up at the security checkpoint, only to find no other passengers there. Like, not a single person.
The security officers were friendly and the whole process easy, with one exception. They told me I needed to put my liquids into a bag, and when I said I didn’t have one, they told me I needed to leave the security area and buy one at a shop at check-in.
While I know technically liquids have to be in bags, I don’t remember the last time I’ve actually had one. For those countries that require bags, they almost always have them at the security checkpoint. Fortunately I found a ziploc bag somewhere in my carry-on, so I was able to avoid that hassle.
Security basically lets out at the duty free shops, so after security I walked through that area.
The main airside part of the terminal is already quite nice, so I assume it has already been renovated. I love how many flowers it has, along with the wood panels on the roof, which creates a tropical feel.
Once through the duty free shops I turned right, and then on the right were the stairs and elevator to the Fiji Airways lounge.
I took the elevator down one level.
I almost laughed when the elevator door opened, as it was even more of a construction zone than the rest of the airport (which is saying a lot).
I turned right, and then turned left to follow the signage towards the Fiji Airways lounge.
That led me down another hallway…
Then I found myself in a room with a bizarre furniture setup. I’m not sure if the benches were intentionally placed there, or if the room was just being used as a storage facility of sorts while they renovated the airport.
At the end of the hallway was the entrance to the Fiji Airways lounge, with a prominent sign indicating that they’d be opening a new lounge soon. Well, at least they were doing a good job of managing expectations before entering the lounge. 😉
Once inside the lounge I was greeted by the friendly Fiji Airways representative, who informed that boarding for the flight would be announced in the lounge. She also gave me a small slip with the wifi password for the lounge.
The lounge was a decent size, at least when you consider that the airport is fairly small. The lounge consisted of one main room, with a fairly unoriginal seating design.
I think the pictures more or less speak for themselves in terms of the seating.
At the far end of the lounge on the left was the main buffet area.
Back near the entrance was a single chair with a phone and phone book, so I suppose that would probably be classified as the business center.
The lounge had two sets of bathrooms. The bathroom at one end of the lounge was fairly straightforward, with two sinks, a urinal, and a stall.
The bathroom at the other end of the lounge had a shower room inside of it, which looked decent enough.
In terms of the lounge’s food & drink selection, there was an area near reception with self serve drinks.
There was a selection of liquor, and they had fairly good brands, I thought, like Bombay Sapphire gin.
There was also self serve beer, wine, soft drinks, juice, and water.
Then there were Cheez-Its which I went to town on, since I was quite hungry at this point.
The other buffet was located at the far end of the lounge. When I first arrived in the lounge, the selection was fairly limited. I later figured out why. Air New Zealand also uses this lounge, and at first most passengers in the lounge were on the Auckland flight. However, as soon as boarding for the Auckland flight was called, they quickly brought out better food.
Initially the lounge only had a fairly tired looking fruit plate, pasta salad, soup, finger sandwiches, and mini-wraps.
Once the Air New Zealand passengers left, the spread began to look much better, including empanadas, noodles, chicken skewers, etc.
There were also rolls, a much better looking fruit plate, as well as a potato and pasta salad.
I had a couple of cups of coffee while in the lounge, as I was trying to get some work done but struggling to stay awake.
Boarding was scheduled for 8:55PM, about 45 minutes before departure. The flight to Los Angeles was departing from gate seven, just a short walk from the lounge. I walked up there about 15 minutes early, as I wanted to be sure I was among the first aboard in order to grab cabin pictures.
While I was standing there I got to talking to one of the Fiji Airways employees, who was extremely nice. He told me about the renovations going on at the airport, and how they were doing them because Emirates wanted to eventually start flying to Nadi. Something tells me that’s not quite true.
But he was so nice, and at the end gave me his email address and told me I should let him know the next time I’m in Fiji, because I could stay with his family (I don’t even think he meant it in a creepy way).
The crew showed up at 8:45PM, including the Australian captain and two Fijian first officers.
Finally at 9PM boarding was announced, starting with business class and those who needed extra time. On the jet bridge there was another security check where they focused on liquids, and a couple of minutes later I was on the plane.
Fiji Airways Lounge Nadi Airport bottom line
Nadi Airport is right in the middle of a huge construction project. I can’t even call the airport a dump, but rather it feels like an active construction zone. There are parts of the airport that are starting to look nice, like the airside seating. However, it’ll be at least another year before the renovations are complete.
The Fiji Airways lounge was very basic and bland. I know they’ll be opening a new lounge soon, and I hope they’ll add some flair to it. I almost felt like the airside seating was nicer than the Fiji Airways lounge.
Once the airport renovations are complete, I think this’ll be one of the nicer small island airports out there.
If you’ve passed through Nadi Airport, what was your experience like?