After arriving in Winnipeg on a flight from Vancouver, I had the opportunity to quickly visit the Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge. This lounge is available to passengers on domestic or international departures, but not on flights to the US.
This is one of the smaller Maple Leaf Lounges I’ve visited, but since I had complimentary access on arrival as an Aeroplan Super Elite member, I thought I’d at least check it out before heading into the city.
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Winnipeg – Access
Locating the Maple Leaf Lounge in the Winnipeg airport is relatively easy, given that the airport is also on the smaller side. After passing through security, simply head left, and the lounge is immediately opposite Gate 9.
You’ll notice the bright red maple leaf prominently protruding from above of the entrance, where you then head through a set of automatic glass doors.
The entrance of the lounge consists of a small white check-in counter, with a large white and red partition separating it from the remainder of the lounge. This Maple Leaf Lounge is open to passengers from 4:30am to 6:45pm daily.
There are a variety of means by which you can access the lounge.
Passengers flying in business class on Air Canada or a Star Alliance partner airline automatically have Maple Leaf Lounge access, and if you hold a premium Aeroplan credit card, such as the American Express Aeroplan Reserve Card, Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge access is an included benefit.
Currently, having Aeroplan 35K or higher status will grant you entry, although 35Ks will lose that benefit as of June 1, 2023.
Furthermore, Aeroplan 50K members and above may enter Maple Leaf Lounges upon arrival, which is what granted me access on this occasion. On-arrival lounge access is one of my favourite perks of higher-tier Aeroplan Elite Status, and my intention was to grab a light lunch before heading into town.
Lastly, if you’re in possession of a Maple Leaf Lounge One-Time Guest Pass, you can access this lounge.
After verifying your eligibility with the associate at the front, you’ll pass by the ubiquitous Air Canada model airplane, as well as a flight information screen, prior to entering the main part of the lounge.
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Winnipeg – Seating
The lounge is a light-filled area with large windows affording direct views of the tarmac. Since Winnipeg isn’t quite as busy as a larger hub airport, such as Toronto Pearson, there isn’t all too much activity to see.
With just 80 seats, the Winnipeg lounge is also considerably smaller than many other Maple Leaf Lounges in Canada.
Exiting the check-in area, the majority of seating is positioned along the windows down a long hallway. Of course, these are also the most popular seats.
At the end of the carpeted section of the lounge, there’s a high-top table with seating for six, which serves as a quasi-communal work station.
Continuing all the way down the windows are spaces for two and four in the form of vibrant red dining chairs, which serves as the primary dining area. The seating then changes to sets of black leather armchairs.
At the far end of the right side of the lounge, there are three single seats overlooking the apron, as well as a small nook off to the side from the primary seating area, which has four electric-blue armchairs.
Nestled at the far end to the left are four comfortable leather chairs, centred around a flat-screen TV mounted to the wall.
Next to this area is a modest business centre, where there are two computer desks, a printing station, and a few partitioned work desks available for guests.
The restrooms in the lounge are small but quite nice, with a sleek and clean aesthetic. The vanity consists of just two sinks and a single large mirror, which is reflective of the overall size of the lounge.
Overall, despite the limited space of the lounge, I thought it was a pleasant enough place to pass the time for departures out of Winnipeg.
Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Winnipeg – Dining
Aside from soup, the buffet consisted mostly of cold food items, which is a similar spread to what you’ll find at many Maple Leaf Lounges.
In the middle of the dining room is a round counter with a selection of wraps and cold pasta salad, as well as some fresh vegetables and fruit.
Along the back wall was a coffee machine, soft drink dispenser, soup, and some snacks. In this area, you can also find a fridge with grab-and-go beverages.
The Plaza Premium Lounge Winnipeg, which is just down the hallway, has a larger selection of hot food, so I opted to only try a few bites here in the Maple Leaf Lounge and wrapped up my lunch over in the Plaza Premium Lounge instead.
Aside from the beverages in the main dining area, off to the side, the lounge here also offers a self-serve bar area. There’s a selection of wines, spirits, and liqueurs, as well as self-serve draft beer.
The Air Canada Maple Leaf Lounge Winnipeg is a basic but comfortable space to relax or grab a quick bite. Compared to the Maple Leaf Lounges at larger hubs, this one has only the essentials, as it’s a fairly compact space without too many amenities to offer.
This likely won’t make it to your list of aspirational lounges, but instead is simply an airy and bright section of the airport with just enough of a selection to make yourself a snack and fix up a drink.