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United reveals its impressive lounges for Heathrow Terminal 2

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We are now getting very close to the grand opening on Heathrow Terminal 2 on June 4th.

You will hardly notice it at the time because – learning lessons from Terminal 5 – the airport is taking it very steady.  United Airlines will be the first to move and will have exclusive use of the terminal for two weeks.  I wrote about the timetable for moving in here.

The first short haul airline, assuming you discount Turkish, is Aer Lingus on July 9th.  I will try to book myself on an Aer Lingus flight soon afterwards and file a report!

United Lounge Terminal 2

If we’re honest, US airlines are not known for having great lounges – especially domestically.  United does seem to be pushing the boat out here with two impressive looking spaces – the ‘United Global First Lounge’ and the ‘United Club’.  The ‘Global First’ lounge will be the de facto choice for ALL First Class passengers using Terminal 2.

To quote from the press release:

Lounges Location

Together, the two lounges occupy 22,000 square feet (2,043 square meters) of space and are located near the airline’s gates in Terminal 2’s satellite concourse. Both facilities feature floor-to-ceiling windows with views of the airfield, luxurious décor and vintage aviation-themed artwork. Both will offer complimentary food, beverages (including alcoholic beverages) and Wi-Fi. Seating areas and furnishings are conducive to either relaxing or getting work done, with abundant power outlets.

United Global First Lounge

The United Global First Lounge, for customers travelling in United Global First (first class), is an oasis of privacy and personalized service. The centerpiece of the lounge’s dramatic design is an oversized Big Ben-style clock in the tea lounge section. Other features include a buffet area, a wine room, private phone booths and a quiet zone with couches and privacy drapes. Customers using the lounge will have the option of pre-flight dining from an à-la-carte menu.

Customers holding boarding passes for same-day travel in first class on flights operated by other Star Alliance carriers departing from Heathrow will be able to visit the United Global First Lounge.

United Club

The United Club, for United Club members and customers travelling in United BusinessFirst (business class), is the first facility outside the U.S. to feature the new United Club design concept. Its open layout has a variety of seating for over 280 guests. Amenities include a 25-seat full service bar, two buffet areas, a TV lounge and seven private phone booths.

Adjacent to the United Club are eight spacious shower suites for the use of customers using either the Global First Lounge or the United Club, offering complimentary toiletries and valet service with garment pressing and steaming.

Star Alliance Gold members and business-class customers holding boarding passes for same-day travel on flights operated by other Star Alliance carriers departing from Heathrow will be able to visit the United Club.

There will also be an arrivals lounge in the Arrivals Hall which appears to be a generic Star Alliance facility.

The teaser photograph above does look impressive.  There will also be another potentially worthy Priority Pass lounge – apart from United Club – in the form of the Plaza Premium lounge which I wrote about last year.

Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (February 2024)

Here are the four options to get FREE airport lounge access via a UK credit card.

The Platinum Card from American Express comes with two free Priority Pass cards, one for you and one for a supplementary cardholder. Each card admits two so a family of four gets in free. You get access to all 1,300 lounges in the Priority Pass network – search it here.

You also get access to Eurostar, Lufthansa and Delta Air Lines lounges.  Our American Express Platinum review is here. You can apply here.

The Platinum Card from American Express

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

If you have a small business, consider American Express Business Platinum instead.

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 Preferred Rewards Gold is FREE for the first year. It comes with a Priority Pass card loaded with four free visits to any Priority Pass lounge – see the list here.

Additional lounge visits are charged at £24.  You get four more free visits for every year you keep the card.  

There is no annual fee for Amex Gold in Year 1 and you get a 20,000 points sign-up bonus.  Full details are in our American Express Preferred Rewards Gold review here.

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

HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard gets you get a free Priority Pass card, allowing you access to the Priority Pass network.  Guests are charged at £24 although it may be cheaper to pay £60 for a supplementary credit card for your partner.

The card has a fee of £195 and there are strict financial requirements to become a HSBC Premier customer.  Full details are in my HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard review.

HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard

A huge bonus, but only available to HSBC Premier clients Read our full review

PS. You can find all of HfP’s UK airport lounge reviews – and we’ve been to most of them – indexed here.

Comments (17)

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

  • wayne phillips says:

    Hi Rob I took part in the trials last weekend, pretending to be Benjamin Hobbes travelling to Cairo. They’ve got most things right I think, the arrivals process especially will be very smooth.

    I’ll look forward to your report, any idea when Lufthansa will start operations and open their lounge?

    • Fenny says:

      I was Norman Baratti, traveling to Berne, connecting to Dublin and arriving from Shannon. It’s a nice place and the staff on the trials day were excellent.

  • Geoff Richards says:

    The question is: can we gain access via Priority Pass / Platinum AMEX?

  • SimonSchus says:

    Hi all,

    I emailed Priority Pass a few weeks ago and asked them about lounge access in Terminal 2. They confirmed that

    “We can confirm that Priority Pass card holders will be allowed access into the United Club Lounge at London Heathrow in Terminal 2B from the lounge’s official opening on the 4th of June 2014.

    The lounge however will not accept Priority Pass Select card holders.”

    I also asked about the Plaza Premium lounge because I had expected that this would have been the lounge of choice for Priority Pass. I was told “At this point we have not received feedback or confirmation from the Lounge Operator for the Plaza Premium Lounge, that is to be built at Heathrow Terminal 2, that they will be joining our program.

    If confirmation is provided it will be communicated through our e-newsletter to all our members.”

    Hope that helps and turns out to be accurate.


    • Rob says:

      Cheers Simon, that is good news – even the ‘standard’ United lounge looks pretty good.

      2B may be an issue though depending on how easy it is to get from 2A to 2B and back ….

    • Stephen says:

      Will Lounge Club (Amex Gold) cardholders get anything in the new T2?

    • Robert says:

      Excuse my ignorance, but what is “Priority Pass Select “? (I’m a regular PP member through Amex Plat).

      • Alan says:

        It’s something given our by US credit cards and excludes most (all?) US lounges – not something to worry about if you get your PP here! 🙂

  • Lady London says:

    Wondering is it normal for Star Alliance lounges to restrict Gold Star Alliance members to the “Silver” lounge? How crowded can the lounge be expected to be if it’s covering all the Star Alliance airlines that will be in this terminal, with the addition of Priority Pass holders which seems unusual?

  • Dave says:

    You can walk from T2B to T2A as the standard way of going between the satellites is a walkway. The travelators only go from A to B, so the return walk will feel longer.

    T1 and T2 are connected airside. So if you want to review the terminal before EI moves in then book a BA/EI/VS/etc shorthaul from T1 and have a wander over. There’s clear signage for T1 inside of T2 so once T2 opens presumably it’ll be well signed there too.

    There’s a number of lounges

    In A:
    – The plaza premium lounge (which I just sorta assumed would be priority pass)
    – Aer Lingus (+ Little Red)
    – Lufthansa (I bet was originally going to be bmi)

    In B:
    – United
    – Air Canada
    – Singapore Airlines

  • Andy says:

    Sorry for the off topic question but which lounges at Gatwick are better, the ‘No. 1’ or the ‘Aspire’?

    • Alan says:

      Personally where there’s a choice of these two (which I think is now the case in Gatwick, Birmingham and Edinburgh) I’ve tended to find the No 1 slightly better.

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

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