Review: Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport

Filed Under: Royal Jordanian

I took a taxi from the Grand Hyatt to the airport at around 9:30PM, plenty early for my 1:30AM flight to Kuala Lumpur. About a mile before we got to the actual terminal, there was a security check. They searched some cars, while others they let through after looking into the cars. In my case they asked to see my passport, and when they saw it was German, they waved us through.

Before entering the terminal, I had a bit of an odd exchange with the taxi driver. We agreed the price should be 25JOD before the ride, and I gave him 30JOD (since that’s the leftover currency I had).

“No tip?”

“You said it’s 25, and I gave you 30.”

“That’s okay.”


Anyway, the exterior of Amman Queen Alia Airport is beautiful.

Amman Airport exterior

There’s a full security check as soon as you enter the terminal, before even getting to check-in. Then there’s another passport check. Given that this is Royal Jordanian’s hub airport, I figured they’d continuously have check-in counters open, though it seems they have a different counter for every flight, and the one for Kuala Lumpur wasn’t yet open. I was informed it would open three hours before departure.

Amman Airport check-in hall

Fortunately I quickly realized that Royal Jordanian has a premium check-in facility, located at the far right of the terminal.

Royal Jordanian premium check-in Amman Airport

As you can see based on the signage, it’s available to business class passengers, as well as all oneworld elite members.

Royal Jordanian premium check-in Amman Airport

This area was really well done, and had sit-down check-in, couches, etc. When I walked in there actually wasn’t anyone visible. Only after I said “hello?” did someone emerge from a back room.

Royal Jordanian business class check-in Amman Airport

Royal Jordanian business class check-in Amman Airport

Royal Jordanian business class check-in Amman Airport

Within a minute I had my boarding pass to Kuala Lumpur, and was invited to use the dedicated premium security and immigration channel.

Business class immigration & security Amman Airport

This involved walking down a very long hallway along the window. Eventually I found myself at the immigration desk. The immigration officer seemed surprised to see me, as I imagine not a whole lot of people use this channel.

After that was a separate security channel, where once again they seemed startled when I approached. Apparently the actual security officers weren’t there, as they initially advised me to wait. But after waiting for a couple of minutes they took it upon themselves to screen me. I’m not sure they knew exactly what they were doing, as they struggled to use the baggage x-ray machine.

Walkway to business class immigration & security Amman Airport

Once through security I found myself in the heart of the airside terminal, right by the entrance to the lounge. Amman Airport really is beautiful, and also small and well designed. It reminds me a bit of the other major airports in the Middle East (like Doha and Dubai), except it isn’t nearly as big, so it’s actually easy and quick to navigate. I was surprised by how quiet everything was.

Amman Airport terminal

Like I said, the entrance to the Royal Jordanian lounge was just past the premium security checkpoint.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport signage

There was an elevator leading to the upper level, or otherwise you could take the stairs.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport entrance

Upon presenting my boarding pass I was given a Wi-Fi code for the lounge. I could never actually get it to work. Fortunately the airport’s Wi-Fi worked, though it was on the slow side.

The lounge was open air and one level above the main concourse, so you had a great view of the entire terminal from it.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport view

The lounge was massive, and spanned both sides of the terminal. Per Royal Jordanian’s website, here’s a map of the Crown Lounge:


First I checked out the left side of the lounge, nearest reception. This area seemed to be quietest, as the main food and drink area was on the other side of the lounge.

There was tons of seating (I’ll mostly let the pictures speak for themselves as far as that goes).

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport seating

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport seating

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport seating

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport seating

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport seating

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport seating

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport seating

Then there was a relaxation area with some daybeds (though no pillows or blankets).

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport relaxation area

There was a self serve drink area with coffee, soft drinks, water, etc.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport drink station

Then there was a bar with self serve wine.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport bar

There was also a small dining area with healthier options, including juice, while fruit, and sliced fruit salad.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport dining area

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport dining area

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport snacks

The fruit looked reasonably appetizing, and was significantly healthier than everything on the other side of the lounge.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport snacks

On the other side of the lounge, back near the entrance, was a massive TV that took up the whole wall. I’m not sure what exactly it was showing.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport massive monitor

Seating options were similar to what was available on the other side.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport seating

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport seating

The exception was the private entertainment areas. Personally I’d rather they have private quiet areas than private areas with TVs, but that’s just me.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport private areas

There was also a bar with wine and liquor.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport bar

Then there was the main buffet.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport buffet

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport buffet

There were several types of packaged sandwiches and other assorted carbs.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport buffet

Then there was an area with individual servings of hummus.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport buffet

Then there was a make-your-own-salad area.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport buffet

Then the hot options consisted of three Jordanian delicacies — chicken fajitas, mozzarella sticks, and mini-potatoes. 😉

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport buffet

Then there was a selection of sweets.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport buffet

There was also another coffee machine, as well as soft drinks and bottled water.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman Airport coffee machine & soft drinks

My boarding pass indicated that boarding was scheduled to start at 12:30AM, a full hour before departure. Of course I wanted to be the first aboard so I could get pictures, so I decided to head to the gate at around 12:15AM.

My flight was departing from gate 106, just a short walk from the lounge. Royal Jordanian’s livery is gorgeous, in my opinion, in particular on the 787. It looked like they were just catering the plane as I arrived.

Royal Jordanian 787 taking me to Kuala Lumpur

Go figure the 12:30AM boarding time wasn’t accurate, as there wasn’t even a gate agent at that time. Instead the crew only slowly wandered up to the gate at 12:45AM.

There was some interesting people watching in the gate area. I’ve taken a lot of flights to/from the Middle East, so over the years I’ve gotten pretty good at spotting people on their pilgrimage. Well, I don’t think I’ve ever seen a gate area with as many people on a pilgrimage as this… and that would lead to an interesting flight.

Finally at 1AM boarding started. While there wasn’t any sort of priority boarding (rather just a free-for-all), I was close enough to the gate so I could be among the first aboard.

Royal Jordanian Lounge Amman bottom line

Amman Airport impressed me, and might just be my favorite airport in the Middle East. It has a similar impressive design to Dubai and Doha, except it’s not nearly as big. The Royal Jordanian premium check-in is also really convenient, and they have a solid lounge. No, it’s not the most impressive lounge in the world, but the whole experience was more pleasant than I was expecting.

  1. If you are a white and don’t tip you are an #/:/#^^/:@$. But if you are a non white and don’t tip, no one expected any better from you.

    This is the downside of white previlege.

  2. I didn´t like that they charge about U$15 for a shower in the lounge. The airport is also not comfortable to wait landside for the check-in counter opening.

  3. Agreed about the shower and it was not even clean.

    @Ben was the lounge smoky. And how was the staff? I found them to be very unfriendly as were most of the folks I encountered at AMM and on RJ itself.

  4. I agree that Amman Airport is gorgeous. It is a breeze to use with polite, efficient staff from entrance to departure. This is regardless of travel class, in my experience. The toilets were super clean and far superior to many airports in Europe. It is my favourite airport in the Middle East. A credit to Jordan. I’m flying to Doha next month and don’t rate it as highly for non premium travel. Last time I used Amman for an economy flight to Cairo. The food at the airport was good with comfortable seating. Good value too for a sandwich and coffee or beer. I’m flying in and out first class so will be able to enjoy the comfort of Al Safwa.

    PS: You paid the driver a fair rate fir that trip. Dealing with it as you did is the best approach. In the ME, as you know, taxi negotiations can be a pain as often drivers will try to up the price before the journey ends.

    Your review of Cairo Airport Lounge made me laugh. It truly is terrible. Disinterested staff can’t even make a cup of tea. Food that is so bad that it is worth taking pics of to chuckle at the joke later. The hot food is all stone cold. Everything looks like it has been laid out two days earlier.

  5. I am a frequent flyer with RJ, and I can rate Amman Airport as one of the lovely airports in the region.

  6. I have read that there is a limit on how long you can stay in the lounge. Maybe three hours? Is that true? We are arriving on a flight from Tel Aviv at11:30 pm and leaving on an 8 am flight to Dubai. Can we use the lounge for as long as we want to hang out in between flights?

    Thanks for any information.

  7. Ben! Thank you again so much for this post. I re-read it this morning at the Marriott Amman, got an Uber to the airport and enjoyed this amazing experience. To be the sole passenger at a check-in (already had the boarding pass but wanted to enjoy the experience of sitting at the desk and chatting), the sole passenger going through security, the sole passenger going through Immigration and then heading directly to this wonderful lounge was an unforgettable and highly recommendable experience. I would advise others make sure to spend a few hours here when passing through Jordan. The hospitality I received all around on this 23-hour layover was truly memorable.

  8. I’m currently sat in this lounge and really struggle to believe you visited it. The food selection consist of pita bread, a few sad cucumbers, pickles, canned black olives and “hot dogs”.

    The bar has not been attended by a human for—I’ve been monitoring—over an hour and a half. Customers have taken to raiding it themselves.

    Needless to say, a glass of champagne is totally out of the question.

    Sorry but compared to any decent lounge, such as the Cathay Lounge in Heathrow T3 I just came from, or the Qatar lounge(s) in Doha, this place is a dump.

    The airport’s roof structure is architecturally pretty though, I’ll grant that. But I want a glass of bubbles.

  9. I’m also not sure I’m in the same place as these other readers with rose tinted glasses – the toilets here are disgusting and in the lounge, only 1 of the 3 is working (there’s 3 areas in each corner of the lounge – 2 are out of order).

    I don’t have anything good to say about this lounge and not sure how this could be considered to be better than QR or EK!

  10. My review of Amman airport (above) was based on an economy flight to Cairo. I didn’t use the lounge, just the main areas. I liked the design of the airport, friendly staff and cleanliness. It worked brilliantly for my flight and was a breeze to navigate. We all have different experiences and requirements. Also, things change and standards can deteriorate. Isn’t that why this forum is so useful? I agree that it doesn’t compete with Doha or Dubai for premium flights. Al Safwa is beautiful with the sweetest staff and comfortable sleeping rooms. The food is mediocre though. Dubai offers better food and easy access to the planes. Your experience of Amman airport was unsatisfactory. Maybe standards are slipping? The more reports the better.

  11. I transit through Amman Airport many times with an average time of about 4-5 hours in the Lounge. The lounge is comfortable but basic. Toilets are sometimes clean, but many times are smelly and hot, facilities are often broken or not stock (no toilet paper or soap). Food is basic, but normally there is plenty of it. The bar was only manned on one occasion (in about 10 visits over a 2 year period). Having to pay for a shower in the lounge is also poor. The major bonus for the RJ Lounge in Amman is that there is always plenty of space for a nap.

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