Our Finnair flight to Helsinki departs at 9:50am in the morning. We arrived at the airport with ample time to check out the lounge. Finnair operates out of Terminal 3 at Chongqing Jiangbei International Airport and uses check-in aisle C. There are no self-service check-in kiosks but there are separate lines for economy and business passengers/elite status holders.
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Getting to the Lounge
There is only a single lounge for international passengers at Chongqing Airport, and it is what Finnair offers to Business Class and Oneworld elite flyers: It is a contract lounge operated by the airport simply named “International First & Business Class Lounge”. The terminal is small and the lounge is easy to navigate to. Simply follow the escalator down after security and immigration, and the lounge is on the right side of the walkway to the international gate area after the duty-free stores.
Our fellow writer Chris R visited this lounge earlier this year as well, and he considers this an improvement over the old terminal 1 international lounge. Priority Pass and Dragon Pass holders can also access the lounge for free. With all international premium passengers sharing this lounge, I suspect it can get very crowded at times.
There is the dining area right after the entrance with only about 20 seats. The main buffet is on the left, with hot food selections during meal times. There is a noodle bar providing fresh Chongqing style noodle (although they say pasta on the wall) during lunch and dinner times.
Breakfast is served from 6:30am to 9:30am (when we were there). Lunch is served between 11:30am to 2pm and dinner from 5:30pm to 8pm.
For its breakfast spread, it consisted solely of Chinese breakfast options. The dishes are steamed buns, carrots, sausage and bacon, boiled salted eggs and fried rice noodles. I will let the pictures speak for themselves. Personally, I find the options to be better than an average Chinese contract lounge.
In the middle of the dining area is a big snack bar as well as alcohol. There is a selection of local beer and Chinese wine but nothing spectacular. Non-alcoholic drinks are under the counter or in the refrigerator scattered around the lounge area.
Walking further into the lounge is a hallway leading you to the main seating area.
Along with this hallway, you find a relaxation area with massage chairs, a “book bar” and a “media area” with a television. Both the book bar and media area offer more seating options.
There is a selection of books and newspaper at the book bar, however, most of it is in Chinese. While there is a TV playing loudly in the media area (Russian World Cup at my time of travel).
At the end of the hallway is a bigger seating area with a few dozen seats. There is also a smaller snack bar in this section of the lounge.
Although there is a business center, there is no printer, only two computers.
There is also a paid to use shower room that costs 50CNY(6USD). You have to inform the lounge associate and book the shower when you check in to enter the lounge.
The design of the lounge is rather Chinese oriented with all the wood finishes on the walls. My only complaint, however, is the lack of natural lighting. This is the same as what Chris R felt during his visit to this lounge earlier this year.
Overall, I would consider this one of the more solid international lounges from a secondary Chinese city. There are quite some food options and some useful amenities. Although It is not worth a special visit, nonetheless this is a nice lounge. I will recommend coming to this lounge during lunch/dinner mealtime when they serve the fresh noodles.