Edinburgh Airport lounge reviews: British Airways Galleries

This is my review of the British Airways Lounge at Edinburgh Airport.

A long layover at Edinburgh Airport last week gave me a chance to take a look at three of the lounges – No 1 Lounge, Aspire and the British Airways Galleries.

My review of the No 1 Lounge is here and my review of the Aspire lounge is here.

The British Airways lounge is located next to the Aspire lounge at the far end of the shopping precinct.  The No 1 Lounge is more central, although you shouldn’t pick a lounge on this basis as they are only a minute or so apart.

The BA lounge operates under standard BA lounge access rules.  You will need Silver or higher Executive Club status, be travelling in Club Europe or be connecting to a long-haul Club World or First flight at Heathrow to gain access.

You cannot get in by paying or by showing any lounge access card.  You can access the No 1 Lounge and Aspire lounges for cash, or with a Priority Pass (free with American Express Platinum or you can buy one) or Lounge Club card (free with the free American Express Gold).

I had mixed feelings about the British Airways Galleries lounge.  The Aspire lounge was, to my mind, the weakest of the three Edinburgh lounges – but still more than satisfactory – whilst the BA and No 1 lounges each have their strong points.

What you get with the British Airways lounge is scale.  This is a big lounge, surprisingly big actually.

It is also a busy lounge.  My flight back was operated by a two-aisle Boeing 767.  The Club Europe cabin was virtually full and there would have been lots of Silver and Gold status card holders, or connecting passengers, in Euro Traveller.  There were a lot of people with lounge access rights, and BA has so many flights from Edinburgh that you will often get passengers from two or more flights overlapping.

The lounge sticks very much to the standard British Airways design.  The food and drink layout here:

Review British Airways Galleries Lounge Edinburgh Airport

and here:

Review British Airways Galleries Lounge Edinburgh Airport

….. will be familiar to most of you even if you’ve never been to Edinburgh.

When I said the lounge was big, this is what I meant:

Review British Airways Galleries Lounge Edinburgh Airport

and

and

Review British Airways Galleries Lounge Edinburgh Airport

This was the key selling point for me.  Lots of space and lots of variety.  Whether you wanted a desk to work at, a communal eating table or sofa style seating, you are going to be OK.  The No 1 Lounge also offers all of this, but on a smaller scale.

The newspaper and magazine selection was good.  Drinks are self service, whilst Aspire and No 1 have a staffed bar.

What lets the lounge down, at least mid afternoon, was the lack of hot food – or any decent food at all.  British Airways never seems to make a success of feeding people at its lounges outside London.  If you’re hungry, and you’ve got a Priority Pass, I would make a detour via No 1 or Aspire before heading here.

If you are reading this and will be able to access the BA lounge but do not have access to No 1 or Aspire, the question isn’t really ‘which Edinburgh Airport lounge is best?’.  Your question will be ‘is it worth getting to the airport early to enjoy the BA lounge?’.  Food-wise, the answer is ‘No’.  Drinks-wise, I’d say yes.  Space-wise and comfort-wise, I’d say yes.

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Comments

  1. Optimus Prime says:

    Did you see anybody without shoes or putting their feet on the chairs? Quite a few here in LAX oneworld lounge at the moment…

  2. What you really get in the BA EDI lounge is service… I’ve seen the lounge ladies (no dragons here…) rebook half a dozen people onto other flights when things go wrong. And at least once – on a quiet day – I talked in a friend who had been left stranded by Easyjet…. Edinburgh’s lounge ladies are terrific. And the lounge isn’t bad either – much better than previously…

    • I’d agree with this, the kind lady on the front desk (37 years service) that spoke just just after we’d learnt of my CW–>WTP downgrade was a credit to BA. Those customer service reps on duty at LGW dishing out paltry compo and attempting to fob off pax with misleading false info should take note.

    • Totally agree, they’re excellent 🙂

  3. I’m flying from EDI next week on QR in J. Don’t have BA/oneworld status (should be Silver soon after I get back though thanks to this blog). I see that QR ‘invite’ passengers to the No1 Lounge but presume I’ll also be allowed into the BA Lounge as per oneworld rules?

    • Yes you can use the BA lounge if you prefer.

    • Don’t waste your time with BA lounge. Go directly to No1 and enjoy getting some service and some decent food. The BA offers better booze, lovely lounge staff and nothing else. Food on QR superb as is service and hard product. Enjoy

  4. Yep this used to be the old bmi lounge, which had two sections to it. BA combined them both and enlarged it a little more. The Edinburgh-London route apparently has the highest number of Gold cardholders on the route network so it was a sensible decision on their part making it so big. The BA lounge used to be what is now the No 1 Lounge, so this was a big step up when it opened.

    Totally agree re food – I tend to stop at Aspire next door first for something hot (and an entry stamp on their loyalty scheme) before going to the BA one.

  5. On a similar note, EDI is great place for a back to back if you are doing a “minimum 4 a flights for status run”.

    And champagne is on request. Don’t forget to ask!

  6. Crapgolfer says:

    Food is truly awful. I was there 2 weeks ago at 0830. Poor breakfast choice and no protein whatsoever. Followed by a Club Europe flight to LHRon a very dirty 767 with the toilet seat hanging off.

    • Here here, BAvexploting their dominance and using clapped out equipment and offer nothing. Food in most out station waiting rooms is now extremely poor.

  7. I like the Aspire lounge particularly in the morning. Breakfast bap style rolls with plenty of sausage, bacon and egg. Definitely sets you up for the day and no need to buy ridiculously high priced paninis on Easyjet or BOB on BA.

  8. No.1 lounge do a good bacon roll in the morning, just as good as one from the van near my office which costs £1.50.

    The BA lounge would be a great place to get drunk, but food no.

  9. The staff are all really friendly and helpful, drinks selection is pretty good and theres never a problem getting champagne…

    Usually pop into Aspire for hot breakfast if I want that then onto BA to wait for the flight. Often cereal and some fruit does the trick for me though.

  10. I tend to agree that the lounge staff at EDI are the stand out feature. Otherwise it’s a glorified waiting room with sandwhichesvthat would embarrass a motorway service station or the old British Rail.
    However in the modern travel world the service they offer is of limited use. I would genuinely swap the servicevthe provide for decent food, table service as offered by No1. I did have an issue but they could help me and frankly I can’t see me needing their help more than I want decent catering.

    Horses for courses etc

  11. Lewis Watson says:

    Have the rules changed? Does it need to be long haul? When I was bronze I got access when starting in Edinburgh and joining a club Europe flight at Heathrow. This was in days before domestic club

  12. Spent 6 months commuting weekly to a client up there about 6-7 years ago and used the BA lounge a lot. I don’t remember much about the food, but if I recall we only really utilised the gin supplies…

    More seriously, we did get stuck there for hours one evening with a series of delays. The team in the lounge were very good, albeit there was nothing they could do as nothing was moving.

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