Lanseria’s Fluent lounge helps lift anxiety of travelling
Smaller airports offer relaxed atmosphere
I love an uncomplicated experience, especially when travelling. Oftentimes big airports leave me feeling anxious and make travelling an ordeal.
I have of course learnt some tips and tricks over the years to take the anxiety out of travelling. However, once in a while I appreciate travelling out of a smaller airport like Lanseria international airport.
The less busy atmosphere appeals to the leisure lover in me. I was recently at the airport again to take a look at the newly established Standard Bank Fluent lounge. The lounge has been in operation for close to two months now.
The space was the former Dirco lounge and it is an impressive space, with giant windows that look out onto the tarmac. If you’re lucky like me you’ll spot your favourite private jet. I was treated to the sight of one of the jets from the Qatar Executive fleet. There were other jets and light aircraft as well.
It’s a 45-seater establishment, boasting a privacy phone call booth and a modest kid’s corner equipped with iPad stations and a book nook. Clients of the bank can access the lounge depending on tiers that the bank has.
If the capacity for seated persons is exceeded, clients are able to get their food on the go.
I was invited to spend a morning there, to see how the place operates and of course to have a taste of the menu. I was impressed with the professionalism of the staff; they were friendly and helpful.
The manager, Chris Mushwana, says that foot traffic is slowly picking up as the lounge is relatively new and there are only a certain number of flights that leave from Lanseria. When they first opened, he says that they would see about 10 guests a day but now it’s a number that ranges from 30 to 40.
“We have a breakfast, lunch and dessert menu here. Our food comes prepackaged from our head office. What we do here normally is to plate for seated clients. Guests come in and tell us how they want their food, warmed and plated or in a takeaway etc,” he says. Mushwana worked for another lounge at OR Tambo before this job and says he’s getting used to the relaxed atmosphere at Lanseria. “This space is very nice; compared to OR Tambo it’s very quiet.”
Though prepackaged, the food was pleasantly fresh. A varied menu ranges from filled croissants, to healthy yoghurt cups, artisanal wraps, platters for one, salads and sushi mix packs.
Do go for the slow-braised oxtail pot pie served with mash and gravy for a nice hearty meal before your flight.
If you’re looking for something filling and refreshing, opt for smoked salmon poke bowl, not only is it tasty, it’s pretty too! There is also a range of desserts to choose from such as red velvet cake, lemon drizzle slice loaf, jumbo topped muffins and assorted dried fruit, meat and nut snacks.
Hot beverages and cool drinks are also on offer.
Survey shows what SA travellers are looking for in trips
The self-care benefits of travelling are very important to travellers, according to findings in the Travel Value index report. Wellness and a change of scenery are top travel reasons in 2022.
This is perfectly understandable as the coronavirus pandemic has left people the world over recovering from the emotional, financial and physical toll. We have also mentioned before about the other travel phenomenon called revenge travel.
This research conducted by Expedia Group was sourced from the company’s first-party data, and from custom research of thousands of travellers and industry professionals across 17 countries, including SA. “We’re seeing a surge in trips to culture capitals, a new wave of interest in wellness retreats, and a spike in demand for outdoor destinations beyond just beaches and mountains – not a new normal
but people branching out to unexpected trends in what we’re calling the ‘no normal’,” says Jon Gieselman, Expedia Brands president.
The Expedia research deep dives into what is important to South Africans when it comes to travel. These are some of the findings that stand out:
● Drivable destinations are the top choice in most countries, with experiences or tours popular in SA (46%), Brazil (45%), and Mexico (36%).
● Marketing (19%) and sustainability (19%) are the top investment priorities for travel professionals in 2023.
● South Africans prioritise sustainability more than Americans (10%).
● Latin American, SA, and Korean travellers value customer reviews when making a booking decision with 69% of SA travel professionals acting on negative reviews.