Maximise your Avios, air miles and hotel points

Review of Swissport lounge, Heathrow Terminal 3

Links on Head for Points may pay us an affiliate commission. A list of partners is here.

This is my review of the Swissport lounge in Heathrow Terminal 3.

I flew to Helsinki last week to test drive the new Airbus A350.  As Finnair fly from Heathrow Terminal 3, I had five lounge options:

I decided to visit them all.

EDIT:  The Swissport lounge closed down in 2016 and was replaced by the new impressive Club Aspire lounge which is reviewed here

Yesterday I reviewed the No 1 Lounge lounge. After my visit I walked next door to the Swissport lounge.  You can access this with a Priority Pass (via Amex Platinum, or you can buy one) or Lounge Club card (via Amex Gold). You also pre-book access to the Swissport lounge for cash via their website.

This could actually have been a very short review – don’t go there.

Given the discerning nature of Head for Points readers, I will provide some additional photographic evidence of why you shouldn’t go there.  Remember that next door is No 1 Traveller with its cinema, games room, library, buffet, full bar and cooked to order bistro options ….

This is the main seating area (look, no guests!):

Swissport lounge Heathrow Terminal 3 review

Here is a side area:

Swissport lounge Heathrow Terminal 3 review

Here is food selection – crisps or cheese and crackers (as I wanted to test something from each lounge, I had my little pre-packed bit of cheese with my pre-packed crackers):

Swissport food review Heathrow Terminal 3 lounge

Here is what I assume someone once thought would pass for a funky seating area:

Swissport lounge Heathrow Terminal 3 review

I didn’t get a picture of the bar.  To be fair, there is no shortage of alcohol – which is good, because you would want to pour yourself a stiff one if you’d paid to come here.  The alcohol is also self-pour, whilst No 1 Traveller insist on pouring for you.

I should also say that Aspire / Swissport / Servisair lounges usually come with a good range of reading material and this was no exception.  It was the only place I found an Economist, for example.  The rest of it is just dismal and depressing, frankly, and you would be better off in the main terminal.

If you have a Priority Pass card, head for No 1 Traveller.  End of discussion.

No 1 Traveller is not in Lounge Club.  If you have a Lounge Club card via Amex Gold with two free lounge visits loaded, please do not use them here unless they are about to expire.  There are far nicer lounges out there.

Next time, I begin my tour of the three oneworld lounges in Heathrow Terminal 3 …..


Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (August 2021)

As a reminder, here are the three options to get FREE airport lounge access via a credit or charge card:

American Express Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

30,000 points and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

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 Plaza Premium, Delta and Eurostar lounges. The card has a sign-up bonus of 30,000 points.  Our American Express Platinum review is here. You can apply here.

Nectar American Express

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

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

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

Additional lounge visits are charged at £20.  You get two more free visits for every year you keep the card.  

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

HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard

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

HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard gets you get a free LoungeKey card, allowing you access to the LoungeKey network.  Guests are charged at £20 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.

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

Comments (28)

  • Alan Wan says:

    I came here once. Was flying Virgin Premium Economy and had Lounge Club card from my Amex a Gold. I agree – totally dismal and depressing and we left quite quickly and went to Strada for lunch.

  • Volker says:

    I am a big fan of your reviews, Raffles, but on this occasion your verdict seems a bit harsh. At least from your photos (I have never been there myself) this lounge looks perfectly acceptable to me if you are looking for a quiet seating area where you can pass some time reading or working on your laptop. I travel in BAs Club Europe regularly, and half the passengers don’t take any food at all – those would probably be absolutely happy with the frugal selection in this lounge. At least the place looks clean (unlike the disgustingly dirty BA Galleries Lounge in MUC I visited a few weeks ago). Obviously, we have all got different preferences.

    • Tom C says:

      I think the harshness is due to No 1 Traveller being so much better. Kinda like flying F for your first time and it’s on BA, whereby you consider it the greatest thing ever, yet then when trying a decent airliner you realise you’re mistaken.

      • Raffles says:

        It really is as bad as I say. The photos do not give the full impression, for eg the 30 year old polstyrene ceiling tiles and those terrible mirrored ceiling lights that were de rigeur in cheap office blocks in the 1980’s!

  • Waribai says:

    This looks quite appealing though if travelling with very young kids and you want some empty space where they can eat/fidget without distrubing others!

  • Rob says:

    Is it just the T3 Nbr 1 Lounge that isn’t on Lounge Pass? I recently used my free lounges at the Nbr 1 in Gatwick North.

  • Duncan says:

    Totally agree with your review. Went there last month with my wife using our Amex ‘free’ Lounge Passes. My exact comment was – if had not been free, I would have wanted paying to go in there. To be really blunt, if someone had had a project to create the worlds worst ever lounge they would have won by miles!! A characterless white box, crammed full of seats with very few people in.
    Our next lounge later that day was – Waldorf Astoria Dubai Palm, in one day we saw the two extremes!

  • Andy says:

    This was the standard of 3rd party lounges until the likes of No 1 and Premium Plaza arrived!

    • Alan says:

      Indeed, looks very similar to T1 Servisair lounge! Food similar to the old EDI one too, thank goodness it’s Aspire now!

    • Lady London says:

      … and sadly, Andy, still is the standard of many third party lounges at several airlines outstations around the world. Including in Europe.

  • James says:

    So what are the best lounges to go on a Lounge Club card?

    • Raffles says:

      Plaza Premium in T2 and T4, No 1 at Gatwick, the new Stansted and Luton lounges

    • CV3V says:

      If you are passing through Dubai, then the paid for lounges are all good – DCA lounge (very good food selection) and the Marhaba lounges. A bit of peace and quiet in a huge, noisy airport.

  • James Alexander says:

    Helpful! Thanks.
    I’m between flights at T3 soon and have a BA Gold Card and wondered if it’s got arrival facilities? Cheers

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.