I have written a few pieces on Head for Points recommending Regus business lounges. (Although I also wrote a piece explaining how I get robbed in them once every 18 months …..) 70% of what you read on HFP is written in Regus.
For many years, to keep their centres busy during the recession, Regus was giving away free access (unlimited visits) to their lounges via a number of loyalty programmes. In late 2013 Regus started tightening up their access rules as I wrote here. Since then, the company has tightened the screw even further so I thought it was time to take another look.
For the last 18 months, the most generous Regus offer has been for elite members of Virgin Flying Club and Virgin Black credit card holders. This offer is ending on May 22nd, however, so you should jump in now if you qualify even if you don’t plan to use it immediately.
Let’s take a step back first.
The company Regus may or may not be familiar to you. They are the worlds leading provider of ‘serviced office space’. This is, fundamentally, treating office space like a hotel.
You want an office for a day / a week / a month / a year for 1 / 2 / 5 / 20 people? They can provide it. You don’t need to worry about furniture, IT, cleaning, receptionists etc – they provide it all. It is an effective route for start-ups or for businesses which are growing quickly.
However, it is the other side of the Regus operation that is the point of this post.
Almost all Regus centres feature a ‘business lounge’. They vary in size, but most feature open-plan seating areas, 1-4 Apple Mac computers available for free use and 1-10 ‘pods’, available on a first come, first served basis (for free) which provide a semi-private work area.
Free Wi-Fi and free tea and coffee are provided in all lounges. Here is a typical picture:
Last year Regus opened a lounge in the Terminal 5 arrivals hall at Heathrow. They have also launched at Gatwick South.
If your job takes you ‘out and about’ a lot, or you work for yourself but simply don’t like sitting in Starbucks or your house all day, then working out of Regus lounges is a very viable alternative. Regus also has a global network, so you can pop into centres pretty much wherever you are in the world.
Frankly, even if you buy an global pass for £49 + VAT per month, it is a bargain if you use it a lot.
Historically, though, you didn’t even have to pay that. There were numerous loyalty programmes that issued a FREE BusinessWorld Gold card to their members on request.
This has now, to all intents and purposes, dried up. Instead, Regus introduced a new card called ‘Regus BusinessWorld Preferred‘. You get 15 free visits per year to Regus business lounges, which is still very handy.
Over the last few months, free ‘Regus BusinessWorld Preferred’ cards have also become harder to find. As far I can tell, this is the current state of play:
Virgin Flying Club – Partnership ends on May 22nd. Gold still available to Flying Club Silver and Flying Club Gold members and Virgin Black credit card holders. Importantly, as you can see from the link, Virgin offers their base level Flying Black members the chance to buy a BusinessWorld Gold card (UK only) for half price at just over £200 for a year. You will also receive 3,000 Virgin Flying Club miles.
IHG Rewards Club – offer ended
Avis Preferred – offer ended
American Airlines – Gold still seems available to paying Admirals Club members but not elites
United MileagePlus – offers Regus BusinessWorld Preferred for free, it is not clear if all members qualify or only elites
Miles & More – offer ended
TripItPro – offer ended
National Car Rental – offer ended
RICS (UK Chartered Surveyors) – offers BusinessWorld Preferred although ironically the activation code remains MSREGUSBWGOLD as per an older offer
Delta – offer ended
If you know of any other Regus BusinessWorld promotions available via travel loyalty schemes, please let me know. Their days do seem to be numbered, however ….
(Want to earn more Virgin Flying Club miles? Click here to see recent articles on Virgin Atlantic, Little Red and Flying Club, and click here for the latest news on earning and spending other airline and hotel points.)