Bits: Qantas T3 lounge ‘soft opening’ this week, Virgin Trains closing lounges?, REAL Transfers winner

News in brief:

New Qantas lounge in Terminal 3 ‘soft opening’ due this week

If you are heading through Heathrow Terminal 3 soon, you will be spoilt for choice for good lounges.

The new Qantas lounge, which we previewed in this article last year, is due to have a soft opening in the next few days ahead of the official opening next week.

The lounge will be available to any British Airways passengers departing Terminal 3 who are flying in Club World, Club Europe or First Class or who have a Silver or Gold Executive Club card.

The choice for British Airways passengers in Terminal 3 is now laughably good.   You also have the excellent Cathay Pacific lounge which we reviewed here, the ‘OK’ British Airways Galleries lounge (review) and the ‘OK’ American Airlines lounge (review).  If you’ve got a Priority Pass you can add in the No 1 Lounge reviewed here and the Club Aspire lounge reviewed here – they are both very good as well.

Qantas has its work cut out if it wants to top the Cathay Pacific lounge – will it manage it?  We will find out very soon.

Is Virgin Trains culling its smaller lounges?

A reader dropped me a note to say that Virgin Trains is closing its lounge at Wolverhampton on 11th December.

The company hasn’t put it like that, of course.

A sign outside the lounge says:

“GREAT NEWS!  From Monday 11th December 2017 this lounge will be open to all our customers providing a warm and welcoming waiting area for everyone using the station.”

….. which, as a piece of spin, is pretty impressive.

I think Virgin West Coast has outstation lounges in Glasgow, Manchester, Crewe, Wolverhampton, Birmingham New Street, Birmingham International, Runcorn, Liverpool and Coventry.  I doubt the big cities on that list are at risk but I can think of a couple that could disappear if penny pinching was underway.  Thanks to John for this.

Virgin Trains Wolverhampton lounge

REAL Transfers competition winner

We have a confirmed winner of our competition last week in association with REAL Transfers

Chris C has won a return Mercedes E-Class transfer from anywhere inside the M25 to Heathrow or Gatwick.

Well done Chris.  If you are not Chris, you might be interested in one of REAL’s current promotions for a discount on your next booking.

For new customers:  new customers get 10% off bookings to any destination when they create an account online. The promo code will be sent to you via email once you have registered.

For existing customers:  if you’ve used REAL in the past you can get 15% off all transfers by using the promo code RT15LUX on the REAL Transfers website.  This offer expires on 31st December.

If you come to the Head for Points Christmas Party on 12th December (tickets on sale later this week) there will be another chance to win a transfer from REAL Transfers in our raffle.  We now have over £3,000-worth of prizes to give away …..

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Comments

  1. Flying out of T3 on BA in first (no status) – I assumed the BA First lounge would be my only option. Just read the review of the CX lounge – would folk say this is a better choice?

    • the real harry1 says:

      just about everybody says exactly that though sadly not had a chance to experience it for myself

      you always go to both!

      • So it’s OK to visit more than one lounge, even if access is via your class of flight (I understand that status holders can visit multiple lounges) ?

    • Yes the CX lounge is easily the best lounge in T3 at the moment, until we see what Quantas have to offer.

    • Alan Wan says:

      Scott: I’d say the CX First lounge is superior to the BA First lounge at T3 in every way except for booze. But as others suggest, try both. I have accessed multiple OW First class lounges per trip, this was based on my BA Gold Status rather than flying First. According to the Oneworld website you should be able to visit the CX First lounge based on flying 1st https://www.oneworld.com/ffp/lounge-access/-/loungeaccess/LHR/-1

  2. Scallder says:

    OT – Just announced in the budget that long haul APD for Premium classes will increase from April 2019, although short haul APD and long haul economy APD will be frozen.

    So those BA ‘taxes and charges’ will be increasing further for using the 2 for 1 (exc INV and JER of course)

  3. I’ll be flying from T3 on Saturday, crossing my fingers that it’ll be open that day!

  4. the real harry1 says:

    up by £16 per person (Premium)

    Air Passenger Duty (APD) – Short-haul APD rates for 2019-20 will remain frozen as they have been since 2012. The long-haul rate for economy passengers will be frozen at the 2018-19 rates while the rates for premium economy, business and first class will increase by £16 and for those travelling by private jet by £47.

  5. OT: did anyone receive the hidden IHG bonuses? http://www.headforpoints.com/2017/08/30/easyjet-hands-free/

    • No. I know someone who complained (as he had hit the hidden targets) and who got the points. I don’t know anyone who actually got the offers to show in Accelerate ‘officially’.

  6. Sorry for the off-topic, but need to book a Qatar airlines fare somewhere TODAY. Does anyone know of any good deals going from London or anywhere else in Europe (economy or business). Are there any Qatar Airways deals on at the moment?

  7. I have a voucher that was issued to me a year ago for $150 discount off any Qatar airlines fare, due to an operational issue. It cannot be extended and expires today. So I was seeing whether there were any decent deals that anyone knew of, otherwise I’ll just let the voucher expire. As long as it’s booked today, the flights can be anytime through to the 2018 year.

  8. Bits OT: Anyone that signed up for the Club Carlson promos advertised on LL and discussed in the comments on here a few weeks ago…

    Heard from CC membership queries, it looks v unlikely that they will post unless you were directly targetted via email.

  9. I am wondering can I do airside transfer from T4 to T3 and then go back to T4 if I don’t have any carryon luggage? Many thanks for advise!

    • When you come off the airside buses you go through a boarding pass check and security at T3. Very much doubt you would be allowed airside at a terminal you’re not flying out of.

      It takes about 30-45 mins to get between terminals so not quite sure why you would want to do this anyway…

      • the real harry1 says:

        @ Matt presumably wants to go T3 lounge walkabout 🙂

      • Thanks for your prompt reply. Well, just because I would like to visit the new QF lounge at T3 before my mileage run as LHR-KUL which departing at T4… :p I’m thinking about to buy a refundable ticket to allow me to access T3….

        • I recall that this is possible as long as you have a few hours before your flight. You say to the Heathrow reps that you want to go shopping in T3. As Heathrow is basically a very big shopping centre, you get escorted into T3. Formally, you are supposed to get out in the same way but T3 > T4 transfer works. Whether you will get into the lounges though I am unsure. Technically you should. I suspect BA will not be a problem, AA will be more of a problem, Cathay will be fine with a bit of sweet talk, QF probably won’t have a clue you’re not flying to a non-T3 destination.

        • It can be done but as you need an escort both ways I get a feeling the escort may stay with you. Whenever I go airside in Heathrow without a boarding pass, which I do quite often (and am doing again next week to see the Qantas lounge) I need to be accompanied at all times.

    • Bizarrely, yes you can ‘terminal hop’, but only if you’re using the personal shopper service. It’s 10-20 mins between terminals and the assistants know when the buses run to time it well. But you can’t do it on your own.

  10. O/T cancelled a BA Miles booking 16 days ago and Avios have been returned but cash element £1,000 has not been on credit card. BA said they sent it and AMEX say they haven’t! Ideas?

    • I have had issues with this in the past but the BA call centre has always been able to see that the money was not triggered and release it.

      • Thanks Rob/Harry BA are investigating second call seemed to think there was an issue so we will see. AMEX suggested chargeback if BA can’t sort. Poor from BA though.

  11. the real harry1 says:

    chargeback? ie ask Amex to get it back for you – you can do it online

  12. apparently Alan Joyce, the Qantas ceo, is officially opening their new lounge tomorrow.

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