Picture this: it’s 4am, it’s raining and you’re about to drive for an hour to Gatwick airport to get a 7am flight to your holiday destination. After the long drive you will park in the long stay car park and get on a bus to the terminal, where your reward will be a coffee and pain au chocolat from Costa…
Now picture this: it’s 5am and you have just reached the airport short stay car park, where you have met a friendly and fully insured chauffeur who is going to drive your car to APH’s secure car park. Now you can begin your holiday in style, with a buffet breakfast in the Gatwick airport lounge!
I have been through the first scenario many times, until a few weeks ago when I discovered about valet parking and airport lounges and my life changed forever! Yes, it’s a treat and a little luxury, but it’s one of those things that makes travelling so much easier and less stressful! Especially if you have kids and / or big and heavy bags, the services offered by Gatwick Airport Parking will make a big difference to your trip.
My husband and I tried the APH service a few weeks ago before our long weekend in Amsterdam and were enthusiastic about it. Dropping off and collecting our car before and after our flights was convenient, easy and quick.
After leaving our car to the APH chaffeur and passing security in Gatwick’s north terminal, we headed straight to the No.1 Traveller to relax for an hour before our flight.
Spanning 10,000 sq ft of cool marble floors and gorgeous interiors, you can enjoy the best runway views, watch a film or enjoy meal from our Bistro Menu at No.1 Gatwick, our recently refurbished super-lounge. Waiting for your flight has never been this much fun.
The lounge features: access to Premium Lane Security, free WiFi, TVs, cinema and games room, daily newspapers and magazines, showers and a spa (which is best to book in advance).
The food and drinks options include a self-service buffet table, which was set up for breakfast at the time we visited with cereals, croissants, fruit salad, fresh fruit, yoghurt and porridge with toppings.
In addition to the buffet, you can also order one complimentary dish from the kitchen: bacon roll, waffle with berry compote, scrambled eggs on English muffin. I ordered a Full English breakfast for an additional £8 and yes I might have also had a cheeky glass of Champagne!
Unfortunately the batch-brew American-style coffee available in the lounge wasn’t up to the standards we are used to. As you know, I love good coffee! I was surprised they didn’t have an espresso machine to make cappuccino and latte, as I’d imagine these would be popular drinks for travellers, especially in the early morning. I am sure better coffee would make the lounge experience much more enjoyable to a lot of customers.
After breakfast we moved to the sofas, where read the papers and watched the action on the runaway until it was time to board the plane.
No.1 Traveller can be accessed three hours before your flight time and entry costs £25.00 per adult. For valet parking prices, check their Gatwick Airport Meet & Greet page.
Disclaimer: I was invited to review the APH service and N1 Lounge. All opinions are my own.