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The Royal Palm Lounge, Sanford International Airport - Orlando / Florida Guide

Florida Guide > Travelling

Whenever you fly to Orlando on a charter airline you will land at Sanford International Airport, rather than Orlando International Airport (MCO). This small airport was built to accommodate the British charter airlines and is located just north of the main Orlando airport, but close to the 417, a fast road which will lead you to all the main tourist areas.

Although Sanford International Airport is much smaller than Orlando International, with just two small terminals, it is a great little airport to travel through. Immigration is usually quicker, and car hire is onsite, making a fast getaway possible.

Inside the airport there are the usual facilities, restaurants, bars, shops, duty free and seating areas. However, these can get quite crowded, but there is an alternative to the hustle and bustle – the Royal Palm Lounge.

At Sanford International Airport there is a special departure lounge called the Royal Palm Lounge which you can take advantage of if you book in advance. Located in the international departure area of Terminal 1 this lounge can be found upstairs, after you go through security.

As you enter the main reception area of the Royal Palm Lounge you will see two seating areas with tables and chairs with satellite televisions for entertainment. You can sit here and order food and drink, although as part of your admission fee you are entitled to free soft drinks, tea or coffee. As well as this there are cookies and snack mix available, and with each adult admission you are allowed two free drinks of wine or beer.

If you prefer to relax in peace and quiet there is a reading room where magazines and newspapers are provided, and there are comfortable chairs available. Of course you may want to keep in touch by email or on your laptop and there are two ways you can do this. First you can use the 11 computer stations which have internet access, or you can use the free wireless internet access to log on with your own laptop. Either way you can surf the net or send emails to pass the time.

Children of all ages have not been forgotten and there is a playroom with toys for younger children plus a youth entertainment centre with 14 Sony Playstation 2 consoles to keep them amused. The whole family may enjoy the 2 small home theatres with surround sound and a wide screen TV which plays DVD movies during the day.

Don’t worry about all your hand luggage as there is a secure baggage room where you can store them out of the way. For smokers there is a dedicated Smoking Lounge which features satellite TV.

If you should want to re-enter the main terminal lounge and perhaps do some last minute shopping or buy your duty free, then you can do so as they give you wristbands to enable you to come and go as you please. There is also flight information to ensure that you don’t miss your ‘plane.

For many people, check out at either their hotel or their villa can be quite early in the morning, around 10. 00 am, which means that you may have a very long day at the airport. Using the Royal Palm Lounge at Sanford Airport will cost you around $20 for adults and $15 for children, but it could be a real life-saver if you have a long wait for your flight. If you fly Premium with Thomson then you will be given a voucher on check in, or if you book your holiday with them you will have vouchers with your tickets, but showing your boarding cards should gain entry.

I would suggest that you pre-book to ensure that you are able to access this comfortable facility, so give the Guest Services desk a call on 001-407-585-4000 before you go, as spaces are limited, and if you just turn up you may be disappointed.

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