Other posts on the business class trip to Bangkok, Thailand (BKK):
Almost all of my arrivals and departures at PVG have been at remote stands. This trip was no exception. Business class passengers deplaned through the second door on the port side.
A bus with comfortable seating but little room for luggage was waiting to drive business-class passengers to the terminal.
After a five minute ride, we were deposited at Terminal 2. Those transferring to another flight were directed to a passport and boarding pass control. I presented my passport and boarding pass to an agent and went through with no problem. There are transfer desks prior to security if one needs to get a boarding pass for the next flight.
Once through the initial screening, transferring passengers must go through an additional, official passport check. There was only one official checking passports and there were many people in line. My flight was scheduled to board in about 15 minutes and I wanted to visit the China Eastern VIP lounge before boarding.
Then I noticed six or seven automated passport screening devices but only a couple of people were using them. I went over thinking this was the answer to my problems. These machines, however, were exceedingly difficult to use. Everyone was having problems. After five minutes and 10 or so frustrating attempts, I finally got the machine to recognize my passport and boarding pass and take a photo which then opened the gate.
Update: Several additional trips through PVG have shown that the automated system is working better. Make sure your face is centered in the screen at all times as the photo is taken with little notice.
China Eastern VIP lounge
After passport control, take the escalator up one level and proceed through the capricious China security process. In addition to laptops take out phones, Ipads, chargers, cables basically anything having to do with electrical power.
It was 8:20pm when I got through security. My 9:15pm flight to BKK was scheduled to board at 8:30. Fortunately, it’s a short walk to the VIP Lounge.
An attendant checks credentials before allowing anyone to take the escalator up to the lounge.
This is a large business-class lounge encompassing two levels. Lockers are installed near the reception desk.
Next to the lockers is a small seating area.
All seats have access to electrical power. I needed no adapter. Logging into wifi was easy. I checked email quickly before walking around.
The dining area is to the right as one enters.
Continuing through the dining area I found the food service area. This lounge has a buffet and noodle bar. The buffet had good food options for a business class lounge.
Chinese cabbage and other vegetables
The buffet also has salads and beverages.
One can also order dishes from the noodle bar.
It appeared that there was no food for purchase.
The upper level of the lounge has additional seating and amenities.
A desk with representatives for flight assistance and other information is at the top of the escalator. Immediately to the left of the desk is a room with four chairs that provide a full-body massage.
The seating on this level offers the same great electrical connections and comfort as on the lower level.
Unfortunately, time prevented checking out the showers and restrooms before going to the boarding gate.
Unlike the flight from JFK, I was impressed with China Eastern’s VIP Lounge. It compares well to other international business class lounges. The seating is very comfortable and there is plenty of it. Power is readily available. Wifi is good. The buffet and noodle bar are superior to what is found in other SkyTeam lounges. I commend the staff for the appearance of the lounge. It was immaculate as is evident from the photos. Even the buffet was in perfect shape. I had trouble communicating with some staff, but all of them seemed concerned with ensuring my needs were met.