Doha Hamad international airport is one of the airports known for layovers, hence you can imagine that the lounges are fantastic. With priority pass, you can enter the Al Maha Transit Lounge.
Access: Priority Pass, Dragon Pass, Diner Club cardholders
The lounge is located near Gate A, so if your flight is from the other gates, do take the travel time into consideration. To enter the lounge, register at the counter (Level 1) than take the lift up (Level 2). For some reason, there is another registration counter just outside the lounge at Level 2.
Food and Drinks
The food selection is great. It also depends on your arrival time (breakfast, lunch, dinner). At around 3.30am, they clear all the dishes and prepare a fresh new spread for breakfast.
There is an assortment of bread available, from rolls to pita to toast.
For cold starters, there are salads available and other options like carrot/celery sticks, humus dips, yogurt muesli, and mozzarella sandwich rolls.
You have a mix of Asian food (Nasi goreng and stir-fry tofu with vegetables), European food (omelette, pasta, potatoes, grilled chicken, beef stroganoff) and Arabic food (lamb kebab, pita bread, couscous).
The cake stand includes lemon pound cake, pistachio pound cake, cookies, cupcakes and Arabic sweet dessert! I ate 2 large sweet dates.
You can be sure to find the usual things like coffee, tea, beer and wine. The wine is also not available between 12am and 2am. You have to ask them, if you want some wine.
Note: you have to ask for nuts if you want to eat them with your beer. They are not available for anyone to take them.
Bonus: Hot Shower
I have learnt that my favourite thing about lounges is a hot shower! I think Qatar partners with Rituals (best toiletries brand from Germany), so the shampoo, body wash, conditioner and body lotion are from Rituals!
Usual routine: enter the lounge, get a nice seat (either by the window or in front of the flight timings) and get my clothes for a nice warm shower. There is 1 shower in the women’s toilet, one in the men and 1 that is available for anyone. It comes with a towel on the floor and towel to dry yourself off.
If you are going to shower, I recommend taking a bag with your things inside. It’s not nice to shower everyone your undergarments as you walk to the toilets!
Best Time to Visit
If you prefer a quiet lounge experience, I recommend visiting the lounge between 12am to 1.30am, and 2.30am to 4.30am. That is the time when there is the least amount of guest. That means, look for flights that land around midnight and flights that take off at around sunrise.
Peak period I have seen so far is 1.30am (so full that people had to wait outside) and 5-6.30am (no seats available for people). So, the best is to enter earlier and grab a seat or schedule your flights before the peak period.
There are very little flights leaving Qatar between 2am and 6am.
Lounge Ratings (Out of 5)
- Food/Beverage: ✈️✈️✈️✈️
- Facilities: ✈️✈️✈️✈️
- Vibe: ✈️✈️✈️✈️
- Wifi: ✈️✈️✈️✈️ (runs out after 4 hours)
Things to Note
- They do not announce flight times, but there are 3 screens available to show you the time
- Wifi does not require password, but it is only available for 4h
- If wine and nuts are not there, you can ask for it and someone will bring them to you
- Newspapers are available. They are mainly in Arabic, but for English speaking ones, I found NYT and FT.
- No sleeping areas, but you can sit on the sofa and place your feet on the coffee table. I don’t recommend that, but hey, I get that flying can be really exhausting.
There is a “business booth” available with a printer. Great for getting work done.
Trevellers is my way to change the world. Through my stories, tips and lessons learnt, I truly hope to inspire you to get out of your comfort zone, see the world and see who you truly are. Travel is more than just taking a selfie. Travel is an adventure, where you can truly become who you are, give you the time to reflect and grow to become the person you’ve always wanted to be.