Admirals Club No Longer Showing National News At Bar

One of my major lounge pet peeves (both in airline lounges and hotel lounges) is when they have TVs on with the volume on loud.

Personally I watch very little TV, and for matter watch very little “news” (I’d rather read online). I far prefer a lounge having ambient music (like what United has in their Polaris Lounges) rather than the sound of some news station in the background.


Lack of TVs and ambient noise is something United gets right with their Polaris Lounges

It’s one thing if they have a dedicated TV room, but rarely is that the case.

Admirals Club Sao Paulo TV room

Anyway, our country is about as divided as ever before, and there are strong opinions on both sides of the aisle. JonNYC points to a thread on FlyerTalk, which mentions that the Admirals Club at Chicago O’Hare is allegedly no longer playing the national news at the bar due to fights that occurred between people with different opinions.


Admirals Club Los Angeles bar

Instead they’ll just play the local news and other less controversial shows, like cooking shows and organized sports (though people also seem to get in fights over sports, which to me is mind-blowing, but I’ve never understood the concept of watching any organized sports other than curling, the spelling bee, or table tennis).

They’ll continue to play national news at the other TVs, with the assumption being that people don’t get as rowdy/drunk away from the bar.

I’m curious if this is just an Admirals Club Chicago policy, or if it’s going to spread to other lounges as well (I’ll ask American).


Admirals Club Toronto

Selfishly I’d love to see them completely eliminate TV use outside of dedicated TV rooms, but I realize that’s unlikely to happen.

If you’re passing through an Admirals Club today, please report back on what you see on TV by the bars!

What’s your take on this — not whether you think we should build a beautiful wall that Mexico will pay for or not — but rather whether national news (or any TV, for that matter) should be broadcast in airline lounges?

Comments

  1. What? I frequent this Admiral’s Club and love watching the Clinton News Network at the bar. It really makes the deplorables go crazy.

  2. It’s a smart move. Having CNN/Fox/MSNBC/etc. on is just asking for trouble in a bar where there will be people with all sorts of political opinions. Sports would be fine, although I suppose a massive game in the playoffs or something could get tense. But the average sports game doesn’t get that hostile really, at least not in the US.

    I’d prefer no TVs at any lounge, just music. People can read or watch the news on their own device (with headphones!) if they are so inclined.

  3. I’d think CNBC would be the best option….generally doesn’t get too political and would cater to the business traveler. My dentist puts it on for me to calm me when I’m terrified of getting work done, so maybe it would have a similar calming effect on drunk travelers!

  4. I’d prefer No TV’s. I remember being in the private room for Singapore airlines and seeing a giant TV blasting news and the whole experience feeling downscale like I was in some crappy Sheraton.

    It’s always annoying because rarely is the news pleasant and the last thing I want before heading on a plane is some anxiety-inducing story about Trump abolishing the national park system or something or having to listen to some bow-tie jerkface tell me the brown people are out to get our daughters.

  5. Only Fox news with Sean Hannity can be counted on for accuracy
    and fair reporting in and out of Clubs
    All others should be banned or fully censored
    Signed The White House

  6. I use my universal TV remote app on my iPad to change the TV’s to Fox News. I love it when they show clips of Obama, Pelosi, Schumer and Clinton talking abut the need for border security and railing against illegal immigrants. The libs in the Club all of a suddenly pretend they are deaf and blind. LOL!

  7. Airports need to stop showing CNN at the gates. Back in the day, that channel was a neutral news source for the mainstream, but now… I believe airports provide their largest audience.

  8. Have you ever written about CNN’s monopoly at US airports? Fascinating given how partisan they’ve become over time. I can only imagine the uproar if it was partisan Fox News instead.

    Lounge music is the way to go – I hate the silence in some of the lounges!

  9. +1 for eliminating TVs (showing anything) from supposedly “sophisticated” retreats like lounges.

    Unfortunately, while in the old days some European lounges still managed without TVs, the trend seems to go very much towards screens everywhere.

    Especially in a time where everybody carries their own screen in their pocket, I really don’t see the need for that.

  10. Wonderful idea! I haven’t watched the news or looked at it online for a month and feel better than ever! Try it!

  11. Great idea. So tired of everywhere you go having a tv blaring. If anything, they run things like Gane Show Network. That’s pretty neutral.

  12. CNN/FOX/MSNBC all stopped being news a long time ago. I have lost count of how many times I had to change the channel on CNN because their commentators started screaming at each other. It’s an embarrassment. Lounges should run something like BBC/PBS. In terms of the idea that there should be no televisions outside designated rooms that is quite selfish. Maybe you don’t rely on them but many people do especially those making connections etc. Last thing people want to be doing is burning their phone battery to check out what is happening in the world and then have to worry about recharging the phone etc especially if they are going from plane to plane and will want to use the phone on the plane. I agree with not having the news on at the bar because some blowhards can’t control themselves apparently, but if people can’t control themselves the simple answer is to ban them from the lounge.

  13. Some airports have Fox News on the TVs. But I’ve been to no airports that have MSNBC on the airport TVs. Way more have CNN on, and that’s fine by me even as I don’t like the way CNN has gone in becoming a version of Fox News.

    What’s up with all the snowflakes upset so easily by CNN or even MSNBC? Unlike ethno-religious-hatred-peddling Fox News, no one’s ethnic or religious existence is being threatened daily by CNN and MSNBC. So why the complaints?

    If people are getting into fights at airline lounges over what’s on TV or anything else, there are ways to deal with that beside banning news channels at the bar.

  14. I support this decision. Not only do I not want to look at the orange maniac on TV when I’m trying to enjoy my cocktail, I also think the airport is frought and tense enough without forcing everyone to deal with our deep societal decisions over the edimame hummus and cheese cubes. Good job AA. Of course, when there is an emergency, that would warrant some live news, but on an average day, everyone has a device and can update themselves if they want. Sports, animal and nature shows, even business news sounds fine to me.

  15. +1 Stephan

    I’d prefer to have a peaceful environment. As others mentioned, I carry my own entertainment (with headphones).

  16. The premium travel crowd skews quite conservative. You would think being exposed to other cultures and foreign countries would change some people, but unfortunately not… I guess they’re just holed up in Hyatts.

  17. I’m 100% for the removal of TV’s from lounges altogether. While we’re at it, let’s remove all the annoying TV’s at the gates blaring CNN nonstop. These days, if folks want to watch something they can do it on their own devices. The focus should be to create the most peaceful, pleasant and relaxing atmosphere possible.

  18. I’d rather watch sports (but not curling, ping pong or spelling bees) than listen to news in the club. I switched dentists last year because my longtime dentist installed overhead TVs in his treatment rooms and had them tuned Fox News which he would not switch off. Not interested in political propaganda from either side of the spectrum, especially when I’m a captive audience having dental work done. As for the fights at the bar, people need to keep their political opinions to themselves in public places. I don’t care to hear anyone’s views, even if they are consistent with my own.

  19. American will start rolling out plastic holders in all admiral clubs so you can stream whatever you want on your own device.

  20. Sometimes news is interesting and don’t always want to stare at the phone. I think CNN with the captions on is the best for the airport. Too bad the repetitive 30 minutes of news on CNN Headline News channel is no more.

  21. Since most of the clubs are likely to show CNN, this is damn good news. Last thing I want to see or hear in any airport or lounge is more BS.

  22. CNN Fake News monopoly at airports is pretty frustrating. I make a point to complain and request Fox News when I visit the lounges. Sounds like some places are finally starting to listen. I’d be fine if they just showed sports or financial news.

  23. Back when the network news shows aired events around the world – showing on TV in the lounge made sense. If there was a major event – people want to be able to get status as they pass through the airport – like when 911 happened. A major sporting event – like SuperBowl – is popular in the lounge. Keep TVs – maybe keep them turned off unless there is a major item / disaster / war event going on.

    When Traveling internationally, CNN International isn’t too bad, nor is SkyNews. They tend to report on things happening around the world. Otherwise the current news stations are just continue to repeat over and over the networks political views.

    Many people are cancelling their cable set and just using Broadcast channels and internet TV.

  24. @Debit – last time I was in Chicago AC – two weeks ago – Victoria Secret’s was exactly what they had on the TV. It was a video with Taylor Swift with runway models in the act. Now – not everyone likes Taylor Swift – but that is another issue.

  25. I hate TVs playing audibly, but honestly, I hate music far more. I can’t work at all if there’s music (and no, noise-cancelling headphones don’t magically make music go away), so a lounge playing music is basically worthless to me.

    I feel like everyone I know abhors piped-in music, and yet, it seems more and more omnipresent. I don’t get it. We all literally carry around hundreds of hours of music in our pockets these days; if you want music, put it in headphones and let fly! Just leave the rest of us in peace.

  26. “Personally I watch very little TV, and for matter watch very little “news” (I’d rather read online). ”

    What news sites online presence (e.g. newspapers like The New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal or Miami Herald) do you subscribe (paying) and read on a regular basis, regardless of where you are traveling and/or en route?

  27. CLT Admiral’s Club In the main room has CNN on one end and Fox on the other. Sports in the bar.

  28. Reminds me of my local gym. They used to have at least 2-3 TVs tuned to very partisan news sites (almost exclusively on the right). I turned on parental controls and blocked ALL the news stations.

  29. Cooking channels whet the appetite and are bad for those trying to cut back on overeating. Ban cooking channels at the AA lounges.

    Sports channels encourage too much physical competition and that can cause the physically-challenged to be uncomfortable. Ban sports channels at the AA lounges.

    News channels that don’t mirror one’s own view of the world cause fights. Ban news channels at the AA lounges.

    ____ channels bother someone? Ban all channels at the AA lounges?

  30. @derek My thought exactly “Too bad the repetitive 30 minutes of news on CNN Headline News channel is no more.”

    Between planes I do want news. Just wished more lounges used closed captions too as often cannot hear the sound from a distance.

    If you travel overseas (from the US) generally you get CNN and/or BBC and maybe a local news channel which is fine. Sometimes Bloomberg. Not sure if I ever (maybe once or twice) ever saw Fox on a screen outside of the US.

  31. This is long overdue. CNN needs to be out of the terminals, too, although I read once that they’ve made payments to airports for the TV’s that give them the right to be broadcast there. If people want to watch something, do it on your own device. I just got back from an international trip and I love all of the “quiet terminals” with no endless announcements, etc. It’s so much more enjoyable and relaxing.

  32. I prefer no TV. Ambient music is great. What about the idea of a DJ for a lounge? I’m just saying…

  33. @Ethflyer—Only the far-right nutjobs are violent, the rest of us Americans are well educated, law abiding people. Look who has committed all the unfortunate, horrific mass shootings in our country recently.

  34. My gym (Lifetime Fitness) recently banned all political news from the TVs and it has been awesome.

    The absolute last thing I care about is whatever Trump said.

  35. Looks like the ‘traveling public ‘ has
    morphed to the Soviet Era of Reality Denial…may be a nice place to live..after the upheaval…..

  36. Clinton News Network-Fake News- is everywhere brainwashing decent americans just trying to commute. They should take away all TVs or stick it to something neutral like Sports. Or E!.

  37. @shar well spoken…by a ‘decent’ American, depriving the ‘rest’ of us from ‘Fist Amendment’ freedoms…or E! A case of virtual reality has definitely set in….

  38. This is terrible news for CNN. If they remove them from all the public TVs in airports and lounges, their ratings will decline dramatically.

  39. I agree, no TVs, or just airline info monitors. When I flew out of Jakarta the day after the Lion Air crash, the news about the incident was on every TV in the airport with the volume on. I was shocked.

  40. @John S Lol let’s be honest here. Who is most likely to talk to you at a lounge in an airport? Excluding drunk people, you have old Americans. If they’re an old white couple you know that conversation is going to religion/politics very quickly. I think it comes down to the fact that the older generation does not understand how to act in public. I can’t be the only one who notices this.

  41. “but I’ve never understood the concept of watching any organized sports other than curling, the spelling bee, or table tennis.”

    That’s cool but don’t patronize those who do, it’s terribly unbecoming.

  42. Flying is uncomfortable for most people and having to listen to CNN in airports makes it all the worse. I agree with a lot said above regarding CNN monopolizing the airports. The concourses, especially Detroit and Atlanta airports are just terrible. I do anything i can to get away from a TV blaring CNN.

  43. Wait…who fights over the news at an airline lounge bar…?

    Unreal. All the time I have spent in Admirals clubs, it seems like the only things I have seen on TVs are ESPN or something local. Rarely have I seen national news actually broadcast *inside* the lounge. Maybe I’m just lucky? Or perhaps since I tend to get my news online anymore, I just havent paid attention to it?

  44. I agree the priority should be to instill calm.
    So If they have to have screens they should put on wildlife channels or somesuch.

    When there are not enough departure board screens they should use the big screen for that!

  45. I judge a hotel by what news channel they play. Fox news gets 1 star, only because I cannot leave zero stars. I make a point to never have a repeat stay at a Fox news hotel and always leave a terrible review on TripAdvisor.

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