the number one thing i could say about flying long distance with Emirates is that i am baffled about how anyone uses anything but Emirates these days. not only are they cheaper, but they are nicer - the staff of Emirates thank you for using them instead of treating you like you are lucky to be allowed on the plane, the seats are way better and the food is excellent.
and when i say cheaper, i recently had reason to get to the UK in a hurry. the nearest cheapest flight to Emirates was more than double, and unlike Emirates got me nowhere near where i needed to be. for less than the price of an economy flight on Virgin or British Airways (assuming no sane or indeed insane person would use SAA), i could have flown business class on Emirates.
many get put off by the idea of using Emirates as it involves a stop off in Dubai, and on paper makes your journey longer. well, for me to get to North Yorkshire, flying Emirates to Newcastle and stopping in Dubai was quicker than flying to London and getting north from there. it's also not like a stop in Dubai is a miserable experience - far from it. yes, i will try and do a "proper" post on Dubai airport later, but this one will be of importance for a few. for now, though, let it be said that the airport is an amazing place, and a stop over there for a connecting flight is hardly a burden.
a big bonus about stopping in Dubai is that they recognize that smoking is a bad habit, but accept that smokers are still human beings and thus treat them decently. there are at least four smoking areas, and here is a review of 3 of them. and, after starting off with singing the praises of the place, let us have a look at the worst of them first!
this is, if you can, the smoking lounge to avoid.
it's located by the higher number B gates, near the Costa Coffee shop as you can see. just, sadly, steer clear of all of this if you can.
this particular smoking lounge seems to attract all the worst kind of smokers - quite possibly as it is also near the Heineken lounge thing. it rarely, in my experience, gets cleaned, and is usually full of obnoxious and rude people. it is better to go walkies, then, and find another one.
Costa Coffee should also be avoided, to be honest. the coffee and that from them is actually good, but they do not give you change, ever, in the currency you use. if you shop anywhere else in Dubai or buy food and drink in US Dollars or UK Pounds they will give you most of your change back in that currency, but not Costa Coffee.
on to a much nicer smoking place, this one located near the lower B number gates is very busy but much nicer than the one above. it's located near the Burger King, Boots and indeed as you can sort of see the Starbucks coffee place.
it's usually really busy in this one, but you seem to get a better class of smoker here than in the one near the Heineken bar and Costa Coffee. that's probably because neither of those two places are anywhere near this one, i suppose.
on the note of Starbucks, whereas the coffee from there is ace, the tea is awful. i know, not everyone would be of a mind to drink tea from a coffee place, but after a few hours i had pretty much had my fill of coffee.
the best smoking areas in Dubai airport, and perhaps the world, are located near the A gates. that's a mega fast train ride away from the B and C gates. if you are not flying from an A gate but have a bit of time, it's well worth a trip over there anyway.
in all honesty both of the smoking areas that i found over by the A gates were superb, but this one, right next to gate A23, is my favourite. lovely chairs, frequently cleaned and for the most part - in fact only in my experience - nice, decent people use it.
it really is lovely to sit in there and engage in our really stupid and dangerous habit.
i am not at all sure if people google to find out where and when they can smoke in Dubai airport, but if this information has been of some use to you, well then nice one! and, indeed, happy travels!
be excellent to each other!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!