By LINDA LACINA
Not Bad: Independent Lounges
Airport lounges have long been known as road warrior retreats, but now even everyday vacationers can get past the velvet rope. Independent lounges, like ReLAX in Los Angeles and The Club at DFW in Dallas-Fort Worth, let travelers unwind for around $35 to $50 a day. Inside, vacationers will find everything from free snacks and nap spots to spas and movie-screening rooms.
Getting Fancy Now: Travel Concierges
Travel outfitter Abercrombie & Kent is best known for escorting travelers to exotic locales, but its new offering tackles the most daunting destination yet: airport security. This concierge service, starting at about $200, offers to shepherd vacationers through express check-in and security lines. The deluxe option ($2,790) includes a private room at London Heathrow's VIP terminal, where travelers can fulfill customs and security requirements without waiting in a single queue.
Life-Changing: Private Jet Travel
But really, who flies commercial anymore? Jet charter firms provide everything from rides to and from the airport (in a luxury vehicle, natch) to personal escorts straight to the waiting plane. And private fliers don't go to customs; customs comes to private fliers -- officials often bring the paperwork straight to arriving jets. Privacy has its price, of course: Some jets from New York to Los Angeles start at around $21,000.