Traveling can be stressful. There's so much to think about between choosing the best flight that matches your budget and schedule and making your way through several layers of airport security. The last thing that you need to think of is the horror of being on a delayed - or worse, canceled - flight. Especially during peak seasons, airports can get extremely crowded packed with stranded and disappointed passengers.
Airport lounges can provide a cozy and quiet place to rest in the midst of a chaotic airport situation. They used to be just for those with airline status and for business and first class passengers. But recently, a number of nonairline-affiliated airport lounges have taken off to cater to everyone, even those traveling in coach. Lucky for me, on my most recent trip departing from Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Manila, I found one of these havens after my flight got moved to a later schedule giving me two extra hours to loiter.
The Wings Transit Lounge at NAIA Terminal 3 is a 24-hour facility offering not only lounge seats but also sleeping capsules and rooms if you need to stay in for the night. The lounge is located in the mall area on the 4th floor of the terminal building making it accessible to the general public. It may be slightly hidden near McDonald's; but with the help of any airport staff, you'll surely find it in no time.
Should you need a quick nap before you depart, or even after you arrive, the comfortable reclining lounge seats are your best bet to recharge. The padded stool in front of the seat definitely helps to stretch your legs. From a 90-degree upright position down to a 180-degree flatbed, these lounge seats have your back - literally and figuratively. There are also power outlets underneath each seat so you can charge your electronic devices as you rest. The lounge areas are dimmed for a more relaxing ambiance.
Lounge seats come with complimentary food and beverage, luggage storage, Wi-Fi access, and use of the Business Center. For just PHP700 (USD14), you can get rested for 7 1/2 hours.
If privacy is a priority and you don't mind being in an enclosed space, you may opt for the capsule rooms. Originated from Japan and becoming increasingly popular around Asia, the capsule rooms are an affordable accommodation option for budget and solo travelers. Apart from a good mattress, the capsule rooms are also equipped with security boxes allowing you to have a worry-free rest. Bath towel and basic shower amenities are provided for you to freshen up before your flight.
Sleeping capsules also come with complimentary food and beverage, luggage storage, Wi-Fi access, and use of the Business Center. A 7 1/2-hour access would set you at PHP1,000 (USD20).
Twin and Family Rooms
If the confinement on a capsule is not your cup of tea, you and your companions can book the twin or family rooms. The rooms are furnished with bunk beds to give you a good sleep with much more space. The rooms also have security boxes and reading lights just like the sleeping capsules. Bath towel and basic shower amenities are also provided. Apparently, The Wings are not going for anything fancy in these rooms; instead, they only provide the basic necessities to get you rested which actually does the part.
Like access to the other facilities, twin and family rooms come with complimentary food and beverage, luggage storage, Wi-Fi access, and use of the Business Center. A 7 1/2-hour access would cost PHP1,800 (USD36) for a twin room and PHP3,200 (USD64) for a family room.
Food and Beverage
The pantry situation at The Wings is rather basic and simple, unlike the usual airport lounges that you may be used to. The selection of light snacks includes soup, sandwich, macaroons, bread, and cereals. Likewise, the beverage section just has the basics with a coffee vending machine, iced tea dispenser, and bottled water.
If you're feeling the need for a fuller meal, food may be ordered from The Wings' partner restaurants at the mall area, Let's Chow Rice and Noodle Haus and Kaishu Japanese Restaurant, which will be delivered straight to the lounge.
After taking a much-needed rest, you'd want to freshen up before boarding your flight. Shower facilities are complimentary for the sleeping capsule and room guests, while guests availing lounge seats may pay for it for PHP300. Each is provided with a shower kit consisting of a yukata, bath towel and toiletries.
You may also want to treat your worn out body with a complete hour of full-body massage, a head, neck, and shoulders massage or a relaxing foot massage. The lounge even went the extra mile with a manicure, pedicure, and foot scrub services.
Also, should you find yourself needing to print important documents, the Business Center will come to your rescue. The lounge is equipped with two desktop computers and a printer. Print materials such as magazines and newspapers are also available for everyone's reading pleasure.
With the lounge access also comes a decent Wi-Fi connection and a good number of power outlets. It would have certainly been a major plus to have a flight monitoring screen within the lounge itself; though one is available a few meters away at the nearby McDonald's.
The Corporate Lounge is packed with comfy and spacious seats for guests waiting for their flight. Despite the compact layout of the space, this segment of the lounge has excellent dim lights and relaxing music.
If you happen to be one of the privileged few listed below, you can access the exclusive Corporate Lounge of The Wings:
- By just presenting your BDO Diamond Rewards Card, you will be welcomed with up to 10 hours of free access to the Corporate Lounge with unlimited finger food buffet with hot and cold drinks, luggage storage, use of shower amenities and the Business Center, Wi-Fi, and unlimited wine. Yes, unlimited wine!
- Dragon Pass members can also access the Corporate Lounge for 3 hours with unlimited finger food buffet with hot and cold drinks, luggage storage, use of the Business Center, Wi-Fi, and unlimited wine.
- All Volvo owners, plus a maximum of 4 companions, are entitled to the Corporate Lounge for up to 10 hours upon presenting their Volvo keys and a valid ID. Access includes unlimited food and beverage, luggage storage, and use of shower amenities.
- Samsung S8 and S8+ users can also enjoy the benefits of the Corporate Lounge.
- UnionPay cardholders who can present a charge slip worth more than PHP620 (USD12.40) can access the Corporate Lounge for just a minimal amount of PHP62 (USD1.24).
Whichever of the amenities at The Wings Transit Lounge suit your taste and budget, you can be confident that you will get your money's worth with the rest and relaxation you will have. Just always be mindful of your flight schedule and you're off to a breezy trip wherever your destination is.
For reservations, contact +63 2 886-9464 or visit their website at jipang-group.com/thewings.
I was kindly hosted by The Wings Transit Lounge to a complimentary Corporate Lounge access. All opinions are my own.