Is Club Mobay Jamaica worth it? Everything you need to know
How to Decide if Club Mobay Jamaica is Worth the Price – Updated 2023
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Is Club Mobay Jamaica worth the price?
If you had asked me before the COVID-19 pandemic if you should use Club Mobay, I would have told you to do it only if your budget allowed it and you want to go first-class all the way.
I had used it before and did enjoy the experience but I was in and out in 30 minutes. Plus, my ride came on time so I didn’t even have time to enjoy a drink in the lounge. Additionally, unlike the experience reported by others on TripAdvisor, it has been uncommon for it to take me more than an hour to get out of the airport.
But that was before the expansion of Montego Bay’s airport and since then the question is a little harder to answer.
I made the mistake of traveling over the Easter weekend and I certainly wished I had sprung for it as I waited an hour and a half in line to clear immigration.
Over Thanksgiving week, I used Club Mobay and would have been out of the airport in under an hour anyway.
Based on my recent experience, it’s hard to predict if you will be delayed in immigration. So, read on to see whether it makes sense for you.
What is Club Mobay?
Club Mobay is a concierge service to help you breeze past the lines at Montego Bay’s Donald Sangster International Airport in Jamaica either on arrival, departure, or both.
Club Mobay arrival service – What’s it like?
The arrival experience is often referred to as Club Mobay VIP Meet and Greet Service or Fast Track Service because it is designed to expedite you through immigration and customs and provide you will access to a lounge where you can wait for your transportation to your villa or hotel.
How does Club Mobay Arrival work?
Once you deplane, a Club MoBay agent will be waiting for you at the end of the gateway with a sign bearing your name.
After making sure that your paperwork is in order, you will join the dedicated line for Club Mobay ticket holders to get through Immigration.
Baggage claim is next. While your agent will help you to locate your luggage, realize that the Club Mobay experience does not speed up the process for getting your checked luggage. Your luggage will come off the plane at the same time as everyone else’s.
Note that the Club Mobay flyer does say assistance with luggage retrieval but they usually do not get or carry your bags for you. There are baggage handlers there who can assist if you would like.
From here, you will proceed to Customs where there is a dedicated line for Club Mobay. Tourists generally use the Nothing to Declare line which moves quickly but can be fairly long so the Club Mobay line will save you time here as well.
Once you leave Customs, you will be taken to the Club Mobay Arrival lounge area where you can leave your luggage and wait for your ride. One nice feature is that they will go outside and/or phone to check to see if your ride is ready for you while you enjoy the lounge. The lounge has free food, drinks, and Wi-fi.
How does Club Mobay departure work?
The departure service is quite different from the arrival procedure. Club Mobay’s service starts after you have checked in for your flight. You then make your way towards security where there is a separate Club MoBay check-in desk.
From there, you will use their dedicated line to clear Immigration and security prior to proceeding to Club Mobay’s private departure lounge.
There you will find excellent displays of posters and artwork depicting Jamaican culture and life, which is definitely worth seeing.
There is a children’s play area, family lounge, quiet lounge, adult lounge, and a business center. Wi-Fi is free.
There is complimentary food and drink. This is not fine dining. Expect finger or snack foods. Also, realize that the offerings have changed given the COVID pandemic.
Spa services are available at an additional charge. You can almost make yourself at home except there is no bed.
How much does Club Mobay cost?
How much does it cost to book Club Mobay?
As of the last update of this blog post (2/21/2023), the fees are as follows:
Arrival only: US$50 per adult (age >=13), US$25 for children ages 2 to 12
Departure only: US$33 per adult if prebooked (age >=13) and US$38 if booked at the airport, US$23 for children ages 2 to 12
Club Mobay Arrival and Departure Package: US$83 per adult (age >=13), US$48 for children ages 2 to 12
Fees are subject to change and should be confirmed at the time of booking.
5 Reasons Why You Should Use Club MoBay on Your Next Trip to Jamaica
The airport was designed to handle 500 arriving passengers per hour.
The wait time in line for immigration and customs depends on the number of flights that have landed while you are in the airport, how full the flights are, as well as staffing levels at the airport for primarily Immigration and customs. The number of people using Club MoBay can also affect your wait time. As a result, the wait in immigration could be fairly lengthy.
Here are 5 reasons to consider using the Club Mobay arrival service
1. They start taking care of you just after you get off the plane.
The Club Mobay agent will be there waiting for you when you get off the airplane. It is nice to be greeted by a smiling face accompanied by a sign bearing your name. It’s nice to feel special.
2. They check your paperwork before you get to Immigration and customs to make sure that everything is filled out properly.
Improperly completed forms are a top reason for delays in Immigration.
3. Generally, you will spend less time waiting in Immigration and Customs with this service.
The regular line goes fairly fast about 7-10 minutes per row but there are potentially 12- 14 rows. If there are many planes that land at around the same time and if the flights are full, you could wait 1 ½ hour or more in line.
A relatively small percentage of passengers use Club Mobay so it is unlikely that the service won’t save you any time.
That said, it’s a gamble. If it is a very light travel day, you could easily breeze through the regular line without needing Club Mobay.
4. You have a comfortable space to wait for your ground transfer.
If you have to wait for others to join you before you head off to your villa or hotel, it is a Godsend to have a nice, clean, comfortable place to stay, especially if you have been traveling all day.
The Club Mobay lounge has seating where you can get a drink and or a snack.
5. Dedicated lines for Immigration and Customs and reduced time in the airport means reduced time around other people and some separation from the crowd, a worthwhile strategy to help reduce the risk for exposure and spread of COVID-19.
You might want to use Club Mobay’s arrival services if
- you are arriving between noon and 3 pm since most airplanes land during this window
- you are traveling at a traditionally busy time of year for arrivals in Jamaica – Easter weekend, Independence Week (1st week of August), Christmas, New Years.
- you have medical conditions, for example, low blood sugar or low blood pressure, that would make waiting in line difficult. If you have a reason to use wheelchair service, there isn’t a special need for Club Mobay because you will be expedited anyway.
- you are celebrating a special occasion, such as an anniversary or honeymoon. The welcome will make you feel special.
- you are traveling with very young kids who might have a meltdown in the long line
- you are traveling as a group and arriving on separate flights that are close enough where it makes sense to wait for each other at the airport, then Club MoBay is a nice place to hang out.
Consider using Club Mobay’s departure service if
- You plan on getting to the airport well before your departure flight and want a comfortable place to wait, especially if you want to get in some work.
- You want to avoid being in the general waiting area and be around fewer people
- You want to be sure to grab a bite to eat before your board. Their departure lounge snacks are great replacements for what they’re no longer serving on the airplane!
Are there any potential drawbacks to using Club Mobay? Who might not benefit from Club Mobay?
- It does come at a cost so you have to see if it works with your budget.
- If you have private transportation and your driver is on time, you won’t get as much time to take advantage of the lounge. Still, it’s perfect for a bathroom break before you head off to where you’re staying.
- If not many other passengers arrive when you do the savings in terms of time might not be that great.
Club Mobay reviews
Club Mobay has a 4.4 score on Google out of 1141 reviews (as of 2/26/2023).
One review from January 2023 stated:
Great experience both ways and a must for Jamaica. Glad I read the reviews about how busy the immigration area is. Greeter met us off the plane and took us straight through security/immigration. Felt like proper VIPs whisked passed the massive queues.
Luggage took a while to come through so we didn’t get much time in the arrivals lounge. Managed to have our first (of many) rum punches and a sandwich while our greeter went to find our coach transfer.
My only niggle was the greeter, she wasn’t particularly friendly and didn’t engage in any real conversation with us.
The departure experience was fantastic. Once we’d checked in our suitcases it was straight through with fast track security, a quick look at duty free and other vendors before heading to the lounge.
We were shown to a table, drinks order taken and helped ourselves to the hot buffet. Jamaican patties, spicy wedges, fried chicken, pasta. There were also a variety of sandwiches and fruit as well as tea and coffee.
After eating, we settled in a quiet lounge area with more drinks until our flight was called around 90 minutes later.
There were a few complaints related to the quality of the food not being the greatest on departure. It seems that Priority Pass was not consistently accepted at the airport without notice. Since CLub Mobay requires booking in advance, it makes sense to book ahead even if you are a Priority Pass holder.
Summary: Is Club Mobay Jamaica worth it?
Looking at the reviews on TripAdvisor (accessed 2/21/2023), 90% of almost 10,500 users gave a rating of excellent or very good while 2.3% gave a rating of terrible.
So should you use Club MoBay Jamaica?
The best answer is it depends.
For some, it is a great time saver and an expected service. For others, it is a waste of money. Think about your particular situation and needs then decide if Club MoBay is worth it to you.
There is no way of knowing for sure what airport conditions will be like but here is some info to help.
The five busiest months for arrivals at Montego Bay’s airport are March, June, July, August, and December, with July being especially busy. …
The busiest time of day with flight arrivals is between 11am and 2pm.
Click here to see how many airplanes will be landing on the same day of the week and time as your flight.
Based on the time of year, day of the week, and arrival time, make your best guess as to how crowded the lines will be and hedge your bets accordingly.
The good thing is this isn’t a life or death decision. Thanks to COVD-19, we know there are a whole lot more things to worry about.
Frequently Asked Questions about Club Mobay
What are Club Mobay’s hours?
The arrival lounge is open from 6 am to 8 pm. The departure lounge is open from 6 am to 10 pm.
Are children free?
Children age 13 and over require an adult ticket. Children between 2 and 12, pay the discounted rate.
Kids under 2 are free.
Do you have to book both arrival and departure?
No. You can choose to book either arrival, departure, or both.
Do you have to purchase Club Mobay to have access to the lounge?
Club Mobay comes with lounge access but lounge access does not necessarily come with Club Mobay.
You don’t have to use the arrival or departure service to have access to the lounge. Walk-ins requesting access to the lounge can pay with cash or credit card subject to availability.
Some travel cards such as Priority Pass and Diners Club allow access as does comfort or first-class passengers on partner airlines such as Virgin Atlantic and Caribbean Airlines are allowed access.
Just remember that lounge access and the fast track service are two different services.
Can you purchase Club Mobay at the airport or do you have to book in advance? How far in advance should you book Club Mobay?
Club Mobay must be booked at least 48 hours in advance for arrival service. There is a limit as to the number of tickets that are sold for each day. I was not able to use Club Mobay during my last two trips to Jamaica because I did not heed my own advice and tried to book the day before. Yes, they can be that busy. Book ahead.
Pre-booking is preferred for departure service; however, the service can be purchased at the airport for a higher cost than booking online.
While the service must be booked at least 48 hours in advance of arrival, it may be booked any time after you have received your flight information.
Does Club Mobay include transportation?
Club Mobay neither includes nor handles transportation. Arrange transportation from the Montego Bay airport to your villa or hotel separately. Club Mobay can help you contact your driver once you are in the lounge.
Can you smoke in Club Mobay?
Smoking is not allowed in Club Mobay.
Do you have to pay for food in Club Mobay? Is food at Club Mobay free?
Yes, food at Club Mobay is free. Light food items such as sandwiches, Jamaican patties, soup, and pasta are available. There is also a menu from which you can order.
Are drinks free at Club Mobay?
Yes, drinks are free at Club Mobay. Complimentary beverages, both alcoholic and non-alcoholic, are available.
Does Club Mobay offer free Wi-Fi?
Yes, there is free Wi-Fi in the lounges.
What type of food do they serve in the lounge?
The food is primarily finger-food or snack food but you can eat enough to make it a meal. This is not fine dining so do not go with that expectation. In fact, there is no fine dining in the departure terminal. The closest you can get to upscale food is perhaps Margaritaville.
Does Club Mobay speed up the process to get checked luggage?
No, it doesn’t. Checked luggage comes off the airplane at the same time and goes to the same area.
Can I wait in the lounge until my friends arrive on a different flight?
Yes, this is one of the most common reasons that people use Club Mobay – to have a comfortable area where they can wait for their friends and get free food and drink in the process.
Is Priority Pass accepted at Club Mobay?
Yes, Priority Pass is accepted at Club Mobay. Club Mobay’s departure lounge is a part of the Priority Pass global network. That said, unless you have purchased a Club Mobay pass, access to the lounge using your Priority Pass is based on availability or occupancy. If you want to be guaranteed access, you must purchase the Club Mobay service
Is there a service similar to Club Mobay at the other airports in Jamaica?
Yes, Sangster’s airport in Kingston has Club Kingston, which is a similar concept.
How do I Book Club Mobay?
So there you have it – everything you need to know to decide if you should book Club Mobay Jamaica. Feel free to share your experience with me. Did you use the service? Did you like it? Let me know!
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Til next time.
Think and dream Jamaica!
Sherry, Darrell, and Darrian
Considering a visit to Jamaica with a group? Contact us today for more information about, Mais Oui Tennis & Spa Villa, our boutique 8-BR ocean view Jamaica villa rental experience in beautiful Discovery Bay, Jamaica. Perfect for multi-generational families and groups, retreats, and intimate destination weddings and vow renewals.
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