Helen and I recently upgraded from an American Express Gold card, to an American Express Platinum card. With this came a complimentary Priority Pass that provides us with access to hundreds of airport lounges around the world for free.
I’ve been wanting a priority pass for some time now but struggled to justify the cost. However, with the benefits of upgrading to the platinum card from American Express, we found it to be worth it for this year at least.
Which means we’re going to be doing A LOT of airport lounge reviews from different airports around the world. Airport lounges are in our opinion at least great value for money if you’re flying long haul or enjoy an alcoholic drink or two as a way to kick off your travels.
Access to an airport lounge usually retails between £15.00 and £25.00 depending on the lounge you visit and different lounges offer different facilities and services.
On our return journey from Orlando to Manchester, my parents flew first class. Included with their service was an entry into the Delta Sky Club MCO. As we’re flying together as a party, Helen and I were invited too.
This gave us a first-hand opportunity to check out the exclusive, often invite-only lounge.
You’ll find the Delta Sky Club MCO after you’ve at gates 70 – 99. Once you arrive on the airport tram keep left, and go around Starbucks. You should see a small entranceway, often promoted by a large banner signalling the Delta Sky Club.
You’ll need to either take the stairs of the elevator to the third floor (you’ll currently be located on the second floor) to gain access to the Delta Sky Club lounge.
There’s a number of ways you can gain access to the Delta Sky Club. This includes;
Being an American Express Platinum cardholder, and flying Delta (any class)
Being a Delta Member; Includes unlimited Club access for the member-only. Members may bring up to two guests to the Club at the rate of $29.00 per guest per visit. This membership is perfect if you typically travel alone and rarely need guest access.?One-Year Rate: $495.00, 47,000 miles or $45.00 for 12 monthly instalments.
Alternatively, you’ll be given an invite to the Delta Sky Club MCO if you’re flying upper class on; Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Australia or Delta.
This lounge may have been large, but judging by our difficulty of getting a seat to suit a family of four (on a Thursday around 1.00 pm) I’d suggest it needs to be bigger.
The lounge itself is set into four sections;
Firstly, you have the lounge section. It features a large TV, a water feature and sofas. It’s great for friends hanging out and is situated in the bar and snacks area.
The only downside, of course, is that it can get very noisy in this particular area with people coming through as they place orders at the bar or grab a snack.
The second area is in the middle of the lounge. It’s sort of the open-plan hall that really connects the other three sections of the lounge. Here’s where we managed to sit.
It was pretty much in the middle of the entire lounge with around 10 metres from the bar/snacks. 7 metres from reception. 10 metres from the window area and around 15 / 20 metres to the toilets.
Next, we have a window area. Here you’ll find decorative seating for two situated along the length of the window. It’s the perfect place to make the most of the daylight, glance a view of some of the planes etc.
Finally, you have the ‘telephone’ area, or what was I guess formally known as the telephone area. Instead, now it’s small blank desks with dividers used by those travelling on business to complete work on laptops.
Of course, in the past, you’d have found complimentary phones here to take and receive business calls (retro!)
There was a wonderful long curved window along one side of the lounge that offered in some daylight but very little in the terms of an actual view.
There were a range of different seating arrangements including;
Office seating within the ‘telephone’ area
Food & Drink
We had lunch/afternoon tea at the Delta Sky Club MCO – although I’m not sure you can say what we ate was either of those things. Instead, the variety of foods available we’re poor. There was a small selection of salads, an even smaller selection of pasta.
A couple of bread rolls and some cheese cubes. For dessert, you’d be looking at a cookie, muffin or some fruit. There was no menu’s available and we, therefore, concluded no access to any ‘proper food’ / ‘a full meal’. Somewhat disappointing.
The catering services at the Delta Sky Club MCO did redeem themselves slightly with the inclusion of two different blends of Starbucks Coffee. Available in the traditional Starbucks takeaway coffee cups. As well as on tap fruit infused water.
The bar served a range of soft drinks as well as alcoholic beverages with generous measurements. However, if you had a fine or perhaps specific taste certain beverages could be purchased at an additional cost.
We couldn’t find any newspapers, magazines or other physical media upon our arrival into the Delta Sky Club MCO. As we struggled to find a table to fit the four of us throughout the airport lounge we also had to make do with one without access to a USB or mains power socket.
I find that American airports make access to USB and mains power sockets throughout the terminal very easy when compared to those in Europe so making it difficult in a lounge where the vast majority are business professionals looking to work seemed strange.
TV’s of various sizes and displaying various different channels are located around the Delta Sky Club MCO and can be seen from the majority of seats, a small amount of volume is set however subtitles are also turned on.
At the back of the airport lounge, you’ll find both a men’s and women’s toilet. I can’t speak for the men but the ladies had three cubicals all of which were maintained to a high standard. Around the sinks, you found a variety of different soaps and moisturisers.
We found the open internet access here (no password) to be very good at both downloading and uploading content.
If you’re not too bothered about decor and instead focusing on getting some work done we’d recommend coming to this lounge over the alternative ‘The Club’ as the speeds here are much, much better!
During our three hour stay at the Delta Sky Club MCO, our small table that seated four wasn’t cleared of rubbish once. We had multiple half-finished and empty glasses as well as a number of small paper plates.
The table wasn’t designed for four people to start with, instead, it was better suited for two so the sheer amount of stuff made the table somewhat of a Tetris game.
Aside from this the bar staff and reception staff both of which we had interactions with multiple times throughout our visit were professional, courteous and friendly.
In conclusion, the Delta Sky Club MCO is average at best. Considering its somewhat Elite access I figured we’d be on route for a massage or even a complimentary haircut here. Instead, we couldn’t even get a meal, only snacks!
When you put this lounge next to many it’s “meh… ok…” but when you put it next to its a competitor within the same Terminal, The Club MCO which has a much easier access policy it’s pretty poor – at least in our opinion.
There was a banner by the lift of the Delta Sky Club MCO highlighting some refurbishments however we couldn’t assess whether they’d just been done or were being done during 2018 so we look forward to hearing more and perhaps checking out a newly refurbished lounge on our next visit to MCO.
The Delta Sky Club MCO
The lounge was generous in size and space which made the experience much more relaxing. Though the added noise of the TV was unnecessary.
With the update to the menu and range of food available I think this would easily be a much better lounge. Though if you do get it included in your flight, I was recommend using it for the space and facilities.