10 Totally Legal Ways To Get Access To An Airport Lounge

Woman drinking coffee

1.38min read

Published 8 February 2018


Airport lounges undoubtedly add comfort, ease and luxury to modern air travel. Yet many travellers have not even yet experienced what it's all about. Entry to this world of privilege is open to regular travellers who have the means... and the smarts.

Here's a glimpse at the many ways to get access to an airport lounge.

1. Membership

It's perhaps the most obvious and straightforward way to gain access. Buy an annual membership, like Qantas Club. The only downside? It will cost you.

2. Points Status

Frequent flyers who amass either the required points or status credits and attain one of the top tiers in their respective programs can either gain individual visits or permanent access while they retain that status. This is ideal for business travellers. 

There are so many ways to earn points every single day - and now you can even clock up Qantas Points with Uber!

3. Credit Cards

Some credit card companies, notably American Express, now operate their own lounges for holders of premium cards. Just be sure to do your research!

4. Vouchers

Some levels of credit cards will include lounge vouchers with annual membership. Keep your eyes open on member updates and benefits so you don't miss out.

5. Pay As You Go

Many airport lounges (and even some airlines like Virgin Australia) allow visits on a pay‑per-use basis, including Loungebuddy, Plaza Premium and Marhaba Lounge, which recently opened Australia's newest pay-as-you-go lounge at Melbourne Airport. It's very conveient, and also a great way to look into the benefits of lounge access before deciding to commit to a lounge program.

6. Fly Business Class

For many airlines, flying Business Class means you automatically get lounge access with your chosen airline too. Simply present your boarding pass to gain access.

Need to do work on the go? Many airport lounges can be work areas too, with state-of-the-art facilities and work-friendly features.

7. Upgrade 

When you upgrade a paid economy ticket with points, that upgrade will usually include lounge access commensurate with the class you fly.

8. Annual Pass

If you travel frequently but not always in the premium seats, you can buy an inexpensive annual pass for third-party lounges like that offered by Priority Pass.

9. As A Guest

If your travel partner or colleague has membership, they'll often be able to admit you as their guest so you can enter together.

10. Special Circumstances

If your flight is cancelled or delayed, a customer service representative may allow you temporary lounge access. 

Don't miss our list of brand new airport lounges to check out in 2018!

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