The Ottawa Macdonald–Cartier International Airport (YOW) only really has one lounge (minus the Porter lounge), which is the Maple Leaf Lounge. Today, I would like to share with you my recent experience in the lounge, which turned out to be very pleasant.
The lounge was very spacious. I went in at around 4:00pm. Initially it was quiet and then it got busier as it approach 5:00pm. It has a pretty standard lobby area, with a fair selection of newspapers and magazines.
The lounge is located at the corner of the airport terminal, so it offers a nice view of the runway and planes taking off. I wanted to take a better picture, but someone was constantly sitting at those seats. As soon as they got up for food, I managed to snap a quick picture.
Food and drinks
The food and drink section is always my favourite part about an airport lounge. There was a decent selection of drinks:
The food selection was limited. Some salad, nachos, hummus, chips, etc.
After 5:00pm, they came out with some pasta. I definitely filled up on food before leaving the lounge for our red eye flight:
The lounge offered great service all across the board, which is amazing to me considering that it is an Air Canada product. Also, service from some of the other Maple Leaf Lounges have been less friendly. For Ottawa, between the service desk agents and lounge attendants, they were all friendly and helpful. Definitely a big thumbs up here!
Seeing as the Ottawa airport does not have a Priority Pass lounge, with the only choice being Maple Leaf Lounge, I had to use my CIBC Infinite Aeroplan Visa. Unfortunately, this credit card only allows for lounge access when you redeem for an Aeroplan reward on an Air Canada operated flight. I rarely redeem my Aeroplan for an Air Canada flight, because of the well-known high taxes and fuel surcharges. However, a change to my flight itinerary one week before I flew opened up this opportunity and I took it!