Passengers departing, arriving or connecting in Sangster Airport in Montego Bay or Norman Manley Airport in Kingston will be pleasantly surprised by what they find inside the airports' doors.
Jamaica's two main airports have undergone capital improvements over the past several years that include expanded retail and restaurant space, additional ticket counters, comfortable seating at gate areas and face-lifts that make for a positive travel impression coming and going.
Two passenger perks include Club Mobay at Sangster Airport and Club Kingston at Norman Manley Airport, both operated and managed by Jamaican company VIP Attractions.
At its Lounge of the Year Awards, Priority Pass, the world's largest independent airport lounge access program, named Club Kingston the Global Lounge of the Year, from a nomination field of more than 700 airport lounges across more than 500 airports around the world.
Club Mobay took highest honors in the Best Staff category.
"We're pleased our airport lounges have been recognized by these awards," said Tabitha Athey, CEO of VIP Attractions. "We're always looking for new and creative ways to further enhance the Jamaican experience.
"The lounges showcase the best of Jamaica through cultural designs, local brands and a visual journey through displays, sports and music," she said.
A predeparture day pass for each lounge runs approximately $35 per adult, $17 for kids 12 and under.
The price includes WiFi access, a soundproof kids area called Pickney Place, shower facilities, premium bar drinks and snacks, including tapas, wraps, sushi, patties, sandwiches and a continental breakfast, depending upon the time of day.
On the fast track
The arrivals package features a VIP fast-track line where club representatives assist with immigration and customs and help with baggage, followed by refreshments in the arrivals lounge while passengers await transfers to the resorts.
"Our guests really appreciate this, especially first-time travelers," said Shelly-Ann Fung, director of international sales. "We work with travel agents, destination management companies, groups and all the hotels on the island,"
Commissions vary, depending on which packages are booked; agents also receive discounts or complimentary admission when visiting the lounges.
The lounges are open from 5 a.m. to 9 p.m. and remain open past the customary closing time if flights are delayed.
Bookings can be made online at www.vipattractions.com or can be purchased at booths at each airport.
Follow Gay Nagle Myers on Twitter @gnmtravelweekly.