Review: Etihad US Premium Lounge Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi is one of the few airports outside of North America with a US Border Pre-clearance facility. While I initially thought that this would be more of an annoyance for Global Entry members such as myself (because of the long lines), I’ve actually come to enjoy arriving in the U.S and heading straight home without having to deal with immigration at all. My only goal after landing is usually to get home and sleep. It’s not that Global Entry takes much time, but I have time to spare for immigration during my connections anyway. 

We happened to clear immigration rather quickly in Abu Dhabi and arrived on the other side earlier than expected. As we were walking to the gate we saw the Etihad “U.S Premium Lounge” and decided to check it out. 

The lounge is basically a relatively large rectangular room with some seating, a bar, and a food counter with an abbreviated assortment of food. None of the food items on display here were hot so if you are looking for a larger meal, you should leave time for the larger Etihad lounge outside U.S Pre-clearance. 

The lounge feels hardly fit for an airline of Etihad’s size, which now has multiple departures to the U.S. And with their being a couple of A380s making there way to New York nowadays, this place can get to the point of a tin box full of sardines. Not the premium experience you want your passengers to have before a 17 hour flight. We must have lucked out with the bad weather in the Northeast, which was wreaking havoc with flights to Washington and New York. The place wasn’t packed when we arrived, but every seat was certainly taken by the time we were leaving. 

Bottom Line:

Anyway not much to write home about regarding this lounge. It is nice that Etihad has a lounge at this point, but it certainly didn’t feel any better than the gate area which is also very crowded. I suppose having food and drink makes it better?

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