Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

British Airways Gatwick Arrivals Lounge to close on October 31st

Links on Head for Points may support the site by paying a commission.  See here for all partner links.

If you are flying into Heathrow in First or Club World, and land before 2pm, the Terminal 5 Arrivals Lounge is not a bad place to have a shower, grab some food and catch up on your emails.

The Gatwick alternative, though, has never appealed to me.  I have never even visited it, despite doing a few long-haul flights into Gatwick over the years.  Perhaps it was the effort of going over to the Sofitel hotel, where it is based, or perhaps it was just the fact that I doubted it could have much to offer.

I’ll never get to find out, though, as British Airways is closing the Arrivals Lounge in the Gatwick Airport Sofitel on 31st October.  It was apparently used by fewer than 5% of the passengers who were eligible to use it and, with the Sofitel contract up for renewal, BA has decided to spend its money elsewhere.

There is no word yet as to whether a replacement facility will emerge, but there will definitely be nothing available in the short term.


How to earn Avios from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (February 2024)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

Get 25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher at £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the famous annual 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points. These points convert at 1:1 into Avios.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

The Platinum Card from American Express

40,000 bonus points and a huge range of valuable benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Run your own business?

We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,500 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

Get a 10,000 points bonus plus an extra 500 points for our readers Read our full review

You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.

American Express Business Platinum

Crazy 120,000 points bonus (to 9th April) and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

Huge 60,000 points sign-up bonus (until 9th April) and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

Comments (9)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • Alan says:

    Damn, this is quite disappointing 🙁 I appreciate for those in the SE this was probably too much hassle to go to, but for us folk from the regions who normally have a couple of hours to kill it was a really nice facility to use after an overnight TATL! I used it every time and always found the staff to be friendly, the showers very well kept, with no wait and a perfectly reasonable breakfast offering! It was always nice and quiet too, but I guess that isn’t surprising with only 5% using it!

    Priority Pass used to allow access but this has now stopped. IIRC the LGW Galleries lounge may have showers?? (I’m sure I remember seeing towels in the bit between the two lounges). If not then the No 1 lounge definitely does.

  • don says:

    Galleries definitely has showers!

  • Thunderbirds says:

    Let’s hope that the money they save they spend on the existing Galaries and particularly the F lounge. The F lounge is currently dire.

    • Alan says:

      100% agree – that the extent of their all day hot food appears to be a bacon roll kinda sums it up! I’ve taken to just going to the main Galleries Club as there’s more space there. In fact last time I was so bored of their food options on a longer layover I went to the No 1 lounge downstairs too!

  • Scott says:

    Presumably Galleries First or Galleries Club will have shower facilities? Never used Gatwick for anything besides a day trip to London! Everything else goes via Heathrow for me – too many great planespotting opportunities there!

  • Thunderbirds says:

    Yes the Gatwick Galleries have showers. I haven’t used them as I’ve only flown long haul once from Gatwick. I haven’t used the arrivals lounge either. Not surprised to hear they will close the arrivals lounge I’m more concerned with the roumors of the ending of BA flights through to Sydney!

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

The UK's biggest frequent flyer website uses cookies, which you can block via your browser settings. Continuing implies your consent to this policy. Our privacy policy is here.