Since I was booked on an Etihad Airways Diamond First Class ticket from Los Angeles to Abu Dhabi (LAX-AUH), complimentary chauffeur services were provided to and from the airport at both airports. I’ve previously written about my experience with the Etihad Airways Chauffeur Service to LAX Airport.
Introduction to the Middle East
Etihad Airways Chauffeur Service to LAX Airport
LAX Airport Star Alliance First Class Lounge
LAX Airport Star Alliance Business Class Lounge
Etihad Airways LAX-AUH 777-200LR Diamond First Class
Etihad Airways Chauffeur Service at Abu Dhabi Airport
Ajman Saray Resort Hotel Review
The Sights and Sounds of Ajman United Arab Emirates
Le Meridien Fairway Dubai Hotel Review
Sheraton Deira Dubai Hotel Review
The Sights and Sounds of Downtown Dubai
The Sights and Sounds of Deira in Dubai
The Sights and Sounds of the Gold Souk in Dubai
The Sights and Sounds of the Spice Souk in Dubai
The Sights and Sounds of Deira Creek in Dubai
The Sights and Sounds of Jumeirah Road in Dubai
Le Royal Meridien Abu Dhabi Hotel Review
The Sights and Sounds of Ferrari World in Abu Dhabi
The Sights and Sounds of the Sheikh Zayed Mosque
Hilton Al Ain Hotel Review
The Sights and Sounds of the Al Ain Souk
The Sights and Sounds of Al Ain United Arab Emirates
The Sights and Sounds of Hili Fun City in Al Ain
Driving Across the United Arab Emirates Border to Oman
Crowne Plaza Sohar Oman Hotel Review
The Sights and Sounds of the Sohar Market in Oman
The Sights and Sounds of Sohar in Oman
Le Meridien Al Aqah Beach Resort Hotel Review
The Sights and Sounds of Fujairah United Arab Emirates
The Sights and Sounds of Sharjah United Arab Emirates
The Sights and Sounds of the Souk Al-Arsa in Sharjah
The Various Eats in the United Arab Emirates
Dubai Airport Terminal 1 Marhaba Lounge
Dubai Airport T1 International Business Class Lounge
Turkish Airlines DXB-IST Economy Class
The Sights and Sounds of the Bosphorus in Istanbul
The Sights and Sounds of the Spice Market in Istanbul
The Sights and Sounds of Old City Istanbul
The Sights and Sounds of the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul
Istanbul Airport HSBC Premier Lounge
Turkish Airlines IST-FRA Economy Class
Le Meridien Parkhotel Frankfurt Hotel Review
The Sights and Sounds of Frankfurt Germany
Lufthansa FRA-LAX 747-8 Economy Class
According to Etihad Airways’ website, chauffeur service is also available complimentary when arriving at Abu Dhabi and will take you anywhere in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). When most people think of the UAE, it’s automatically Abu Dhabi or Dubai, but my first night’s hotel was at another emirate, Ajman.
Surely enough, I called and told the Etihad Airways agent on the phone that I needed a ride to the Ajman Saray Hotel, a Starwood Luxury Collection property and provided the address. I didn’t receive an e-mail confirmation, but the agent assured me that my chauffeur confirmed to the hotel. I was still skeptical at this point, because it’s a 1 hour and 45 minute drive from Abu Dhabi Airport to the Ajman Saray Hotel.
After my flight, Etihad Airways 170 landed in Abu Dhabi at 7:30pm, I went through customs and immigration using the Fast Track lanes at Abu Dhabi International Airport (AUH). The Fast Track immigration card was provided onboard the flight before landing for Diamond First Class customers.
At the arrivals hall at AUH Airport, I swung by the Etihad Chauffeur services desk.
I was given a Chauffeur Voucher which read as follows:
Welcome to Abu Dhabi!
We welcome you to use the chauffeur lounge where our staff will arrange your car.
- Please remember to always book your chauffeur service at the time of booking your flight.
2. Etihad Chauffeur is currently available at many key destinations in Europe, North America, Asia and Australia. For latest updates on where the service is available, please visit www.etihadairways.com or contact your nearest Etihad Airways office.
3. Please take a few minutes to fill out the Guest Comment card in your car seat pocket in order to share your chauffeur experience with us.
Thank you for flying Etihad Airways
I noticed that under Ticket # was Ajman City and Zone was Diamond Zone. Under Destination, the address of the Ajman Saray Hotel was written.
The Etihad Airways Chauffeur desk agent told me to present the voucher outside where I would be taken to my hotel. I advised the agent that I needed to buy a SIM Card really quick from ‘Du’ mobile services at the arrivals hall. I needed a prepaid SIM Card with data in the UAE and it only took 20 minutes.
I went outside the arrivals hall where there was a fleet of Audi’s waiting for me. One of the drivers took a look at my voucher and asked where I was going and I said, “The Ajman Saray Hotel” and he told me he wouldn’t drive that far. He consulted with the other drivers who were chit chatting outside and finally, one of them agreed to take us to Ajman.
The ride was quite smooth from Abu Dhabi to Dubai, but when the driver started to head in the direction of Ajman, he didn’t have any clue where the hotel was. The driver spoke little English and he even had a GPS unit in the car which I thought he had mapped all along.
Since I had data on my phone, I had been tracking the entire journey in real time with Google Maps and even tried to guide the driver to the hotel, but he still didn’t understand. He had to radio in for help in a foreign language, but we finally made it to the hotel 2 hours later around 11pm.
We left a 70AED tip which was equivalent of $20 USD tip for the entire journey. I’m sure he will be reimbursed for the ride by Etihad Airways, but it does suck to return to back to Abu Dhabi airport without a paying passenger. I think that’s why some of the drivers were hesitant on going to Ajman on such a late night.
So yes, when Etihad Airways mentions ‘anywhere in the UAE’, they really mean anywhere, even the furthest two emirates, Fujairah and Ras Al-Khaimah (RAK).