Review: Air France/KLM Business Lounge Bangkok Airport

In this review, we will visit the Air France/KLM business lounge at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport (BKK).

Getting to the airport

After a short overnight stopover in Bangkok it was time to head back to the airport the next morning for my onward Garuda flight to Jakarta. Just like on my arrival, I again opted to take public transport to the airport.

Being one of Asia’s biggest hubs, Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport is always teeming with activity and today was no difference. There were some massive crowds on all airport floors, with local businessmen, western backpackers and Chinese tour groups all mingling together.

The departure hall of Bangkok Airport is on the top floor and was fortunately a bit less crowded than the chaotic arrivals hall downstairs and the mezzanine level full of restaurants and cafes.

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Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport. ©Paliparan
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Going up towards the departures hall of Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport. ©Paliparan
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Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport consists of a lower arrivals hall, a mezzanine floor full of shops and cafes and the top floor departure hall with all check-in desks. ©Paliparan
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The check-in area of Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport. ©Paliparan
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The departures board – with basically all flights to China being cancelled due to the corona virus outbreak in Wuhan. ©Paliparan
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Traditional Thai statue in the departures hall. ©Paliparan
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Asian tour group mobbing the Lufthansa check-in desks. ©Paliparan

Check-in

The check-in desks for today’s sole Garuda flight to Jakarta were still being set up. At around two-and-a-half hours before departure did the five desks, including one separate business class counter and one Sky Priority check-in desk, finally open.

As I was the first in line, I had my boarding pass issued within seconds.

Business class passengers as well as frequent flyer elites can use the security and passport control fast track located underneath the escalators going up another floor, which is the route all other passengers have to use to reach the non-priority security check. As there were no lines at all at the fast track security check I was airside within a few minutes.

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The business class check-in desk for my Garuda flight to Jakarta. ©Paliparan
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The business class check-in desk for my Garuda flight to Jakarta. ©Paliparan
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At Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport ready to fly on to Jakarta! ©Paliparan

Reaching the Air France/KLM lounge

Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport is simply massive. Even if you do not have lounge access, there is enough to see and do at this beautifully designed airport to keep you occupied.

There are countless of shops, cafes and restaurants, as well as cultural Thai objects and artworks placed throughout the concourses. Once you are airside it really is one of the more pleasant airports in the world.

I was however heading for the Air France/KLM lounge, which is located at the F concourse near Gate F2 on level 3.

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Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport. ©Paliparan
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Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport. ©Paliparan
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Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport. ©Paliparan

Air France/KLM lounge entry requirements

The Air France/KLM lounge, which is officially known as the Air France/KLM SkyLounge, is located one level down from the main concourse. The lounge is open 24/7.

It is the designated lounge for a number of SkyTeam alliance members and partner airlines, among which Aeroflot, Air France, China Southern, Garuda Indonesia, Kenya Airways, Korean Air, Vietnam Airlines and Xiamen Air.

For the sake of full information, China Eastern currently uses a third party lounge while China Airlines has its own lounge at Bangkok Suvarnabhumi Airport. Even if you fly on both of these airlines you may well try your luck at the Air France/KLM lounge!

Other than business class passengers and SkyTeam elites, the Air France/KLM lounge is also open to Priority Pass holders. However, access to Priority Pass holders may be restricted during the peak hours between 9.30 and 11am as well as between 10.30pm and 00.30am when priority goes to actual business class passengers and airline elites.

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The entrance of the Air France/KLM lounge. ©Paliparan
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The reception of the Air France/KLM lounge with model planes of some SkyTeam member airlines. ©Paliparan

First impressions

I was welcomed in the lounge by a friendly lounge agent manning the nicely appointed reception desk, which included model aeroplanes of the SkyTeam airlines who call this lounge home.

My first impressions of the Air France/KLM lounge were good. The lounge was certainly bigger than I expected. The spacious lounge also had lots of natural light coming from the big glass windows overlooking the tarmac, which is always a feature I appreciate.

There were plenty of seating options throughout the lounge, ranging from dining tables to worktop tables to comfortable seats in front of the big windows. At almost every seat you can find a power socket, another feature which is unfortunately way too often overlooked by lounge designers. WiFi reception and internet speeds were great too throughout the lounge.

As the lounge was almost completely empty by the time I arrived, I opted to select a seat at the far end of the lounge overlooking both the concourse and the tarmac.

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Seats in the Air France/KLM lounge. ©Paliparan
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Seats in the Air France/KLM lounge. ©Paliparan
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Seats in the Air France/KLM lounge. ©Paliparan
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I ended up selecting a seat in one of the outer corners of the lounge, overlooking both the tarmac and the concourse. ©Paliparan
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View from the Air France/KLM lounge over the airport tarmac. ©Paliparan

Air France/KLM lounge buffet

At the time of my arrival in the lounge, the food at the buffet was changed from breakfast to lunch. The Air France/KLM lounge buffet is solid, with lots of food choices available. Whatever time of the day you visit, you can certainly grab a good meal here.

The extensive food buffet included both Asian and Western favourites, with some decent noodles and rice dishes available, as well as some sandwiches, chicken, potatoes, salads, pasta and some finger foods.

There was also a great choice in sweet options available, such as cakes and eclairs as well as fresh fruit. The quality of the food which I tried was all quite good!

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Air France/KLM lounge buffet. ©Paliparan
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Air France/KLM lounge buffet. ©Paliparan
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Air France/KLM lounge buffet. ©Paliparan
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Air France/KLM lounge buffet. ©Paliparan
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Air France/KLM lounge buffet. ©Paliparan
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Air France/KLM lounge buffet. ©Paliparan
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Air France/KLM lounge buffet. ©Paliparan

Beverages

There is also a decent choice in beverages at the Air France/KLM lounge. The coffee machines make a good brew, there are teas available, as well as juices and plenty of soft drinks from the fridges.

The alcohol selection is not bad either, with beer, wine as well as some hard booze available. Unfortunately, the Air France/KLM lounge did not live up to the ‘France’ part in its name as no champagne was available, although the South African sparkling wine was an acceptable alternative.

Also the wine selection could be a bit more extensive than just the single mid-shelf bottle of red and white available.

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Air France/KLM lounge coffee machine. ©Paliparan
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Fridges in the Air France/KLM lounge full of drinks. ©Paliparan
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Red, white and sparkling wine. ©Paliparan
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Booze selection at the Air France/KLM lounge. ©Paliparan

Other lounge facilities

The Air France/KLM lounge has clean restrooms available inside the lounge. There are also shower facilities inside the lounge, although given I just came straight from my hotel I did not try them out.

The lounge also features dedicated work stations and massage chairs.

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Lounge toilets. ©Paliparan
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The Air France/KLM lounge also features showers. ©Paliparan

Experience

As I did not have breakfast (or any other food at all) during the day I indulged quite a bit in the buffet despite knowing very well that on board of my Garuda flight some good food would await me too.

The time in the lounge went by faster than I thought, which is always a good sign. Besides enjoying some food and a few drinks, I also managed to get quite a bit of work done on my laptop.

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Drinking a glass of sparkling wine in the Air France/KLM lounge. ©Paliparan
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An early lunch at the Air France/KLM lounge. ©Paliparan
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Enjoying some sweets in the Air France/KLM lounge. ©Paliparan

In short

The Air France/KLM Bangkok lounge offers an overall excellent experience. The lounge has a pleasant interior, with lots of natural light shining into the premises from the large windows overlooking the tarmac and adjacent gates.

There are plenty of seating options available, ranging from proper work spaces to dining tables to comfortable chairs. With plenty of power sockets available and fast WiFi internet, the lounge is an outstanding space to get some work done before your flight.

It is also possible to have a good quality meal at the extensive lounge buffet, with lots of hot and cold favourites from both Asian and Western cuisines. There is also a decent selection of booze available, although unfortunately the wine selection is rather limited and I would have expected some champagne at a partly French lounge!

That said, the Air France/KLM lounge is definitely a solid lounge and is certainly worth a visit before your flight!

Trip report index

This article is part of the ‘Lazing in Laos and Gallivanting a Wee Bit Around Asia‘ trip report, which consists of the following chapters:

1. Review: Aegean Airlines Business Class Bucharest to Athens (Airbus A320)
2. Review: Goldair Handling Lounge (Non-Schengen) Athens Airport
3. Review: Saudia Business Class Athens to Jeddah (Airbus A320)
4. Review: Saudia Alfursan Lounge Jeddah Airport South Terminal
5. Review: Review: Saudia Business Class Jeddah to Kuala Lumpur (Boeing 787)
6. Review: CitizenM Hotel Kuala Lumpur Bukit Bintang
7. Kuala Lumpur in One Day: What to See and Do in 24 Hours
8. A Batu Caves Half Day Trip From Kuala Lumpur By Public Transport
9. Review: Plaza Premium Lounge Private Resting Suite Gateway KLIA2
10. Review: Air Asia Kuala Lumpur to Vientiane (Airbus A320)
11. Review: Hotel Khamvongsa, Vientiane, Laos
12. Destination Trip Report: A Day in Vientiane, Laos
13. Guide: Domestic Bus Travel in Laos and How to Book a Ticket
14. Review: Simon Riverside Hotel, Vang Vieng, Laos
15. Trip Report: Vang Vieng – Worth a Stop on Your Laos Itinerary?
16. Review: Villa Ban Phanluang, Luang Prabang, Laos
17. Luang Prabang: The Stunning Pearl of Indochina
18. Guide: Luang Prabang Morning, Food and Night Markets
19. Kuang Si Falls: A Gorgeous Luang Prabang Day Trip
20. Review: Thai Smile Economy Class Luang Prabang to Bangkok (Airbus A320)
21. Review: Ibis Styles Bangkok Sukhumvit 4
22. Review: Air France/KLM Business Lounge Bangkok Airport (current chapter)
23. Review: Garuda Indonesia Business Class Bangkok to Jakarta (Boeing 737-800)
24. Review: Sapphire Plaza Premium Lounge Terminal 3 Jakarta Airport
25. Review: Garuda Business Lounge Terminal 3 Jakarta Airport
26. Review: Review: Japan Airlines Business Class Jakarta to Tokyo Narita (Boeing 787-8)
27. Review: Capsule Hotel Transit Shinjuku, Tokyo, Japan
28. Tokyo Stopover: What to See and Do in the Capital of Japan for a Day
29. Review: ANA Business Lounge Tokyo Narita Airport
30. Review: United Club Tokyo Narita Airport
31. Review: Turkish Airlines Economy Class Tokyo Narita to Istanbul (Boeing 777)
32. Review: Turkish Airlines Miles&Smiles Lounge Istanbul Airport
33. Review: Turkish Airlines Economy Class Istanbul to Bucharest (Airbus A330)

Koen

Koen

Koen works as a freelance journalist covering south-eastern Europe and is the founding father and editor-in-chief of Paliparan. As a contributor to some major Fleet Street newspapers and some lesser known publications in the Balkans, he travels thousands of miles each year for work as well as on his personal holidays. Whether it is horse riding in Kyrgyzstan’s Tian Shan mountains, exploring the backstreets of Bogotá, or sipping a glass of moschofilero in a Greek beachside taverna, Koen loves to immerse himself into the local culture, explore new places and eat and drink himself around the world.

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