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The LoungeKey airport lounges you can enter with the new HSBC Premier World Elite MasterCard

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On Thursday, we published exclusive details on the new HSBC Premier World Elite MasterCard.  Luckily for us, all of those details appear to have been correct!

The official website for the card is now available at as you can see here.  The representative APR, which I didn’t know on Thursday, is 59.3% APR variable and 18.9% APR variable for purchases, based on an annual fee of £195 and a credit limit of £1,200.

To remind you of the points benefits, you get:

40,000 points (20,000 miles) for signing up and spending £2,000 within 3 months

40,000 points (20,000 miles) for spending £12,000 in your first 12 months

2 points (1 mile) for every £1 you spend – this makes it by far the best Avios MasterCard or Visa product

4 points (2 miles) for every £1 you spend outside the UK

You can take your ‘miles’ as either Avios, Cathay Pacific miles, Singapore Airlines miles or Etihad Guest miles.

HSBC Premier World Elite

The card also comes with airport lounge access.

This is via an exclusive MasterCard company called LoungeKey.  You can access their website here.

What is interesting about LoungeKey is that you simply show your World Elite MasterCard at the door.  There is no separate membership card.  However, you must have registered your HSBC card via this link first.

No free guests are allowed.  However, you can get a supplementary card for your HSBC Premier World Elite MasterCard for a £60 annual fee and that person can then access lounges with that.

Across Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted, Southend and Luton, the following lounges are covered:

Gatwick:  No 1 Lounge (North), MyLounge (North), Aspire (North), No 1 Lounge (South)

Luton:  Aspire

Southend:  Skylife

Heathrow:  Plaza Premium (T2 Arrivals, T2 Departures, T4 Departures), SkyTeam (T4), No 1 Lounge (T3), 

Stansted:  The Escape Lounge

I don’t mention Southend for a laugh.  I mention it because, due to its inclusion, along with the SkyTeam T4 and No 1 Heathrow T3 lounges, LoungeKey has a better offering the Lounge Club, which comes with American Express Preferred Rewards Gold.  It is marginally weaker than Priority Pass but only because it doesn’t include the Aspire lounge in Heathrow Terminal 5.

(The full list of UK lounges covered by Lounge Club and Priority Pass is here.)

The HSBC Premier World Elite MasterCard is not clearly better than American Express Platinum if you want a card with lounge access.  It is cheaper (£255 for the HSBC card with one supplementary card vs £450 for Amex Platinum) but the Amex Platinum package has far more benefits – Hilton Gold, Melia Gold, Club Carlson Gold, Eurostar lounge access etc etc (see my review for details). For some people, however, it will be the right choice.

Thanks to reader Rob for his help.

Disclaimer: Head for Points is a journalistic website. Nothing here should be construed as financial advice, and it is your own responsibility to ensure that any product is right for your circumstances. Recommendations are based primarily on the ability to earn miles and points and do not consider interest rates, service levels or any impact on your credit history.  By recommending credit cards on this site, I am – technically – acting as a credit broker.  Robert Burgess, trading as Head for Points, is regulated and authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority to act as a credit broker.

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  1. So:
    No travel insurance
    2.99% foreign spend loading fee
    18.9% interest
    No extended warranty like the free version of the card

    It’s a no from me

    • Honkytonk says:

      I believe travel insurance and extended warranty comes with being a Premier customer rather than with the card. And you have to be a Premier member to apply for the card.

  2. Any partial refund on the fee – ie take it just to get the sign up bonus?

    • Aspirational Flyer says:

      I don’t think so – the HSBC website describes the annual fee as “non refundable”.

  3. Danny says:

    Most important restriction for me (and I suspect many other readers of this blog) is: UK residents only. Doesn’t make sense, as the regular HSBC Premier MC is open to non-residents, and if you have a Premier account HSBC should already have your credit record. Shame, as it means those of us living overseas lose out again (apart from the Amex ICC of course). Do any other of the many non-UK residents of this blog know of any other cards which will accept overseas applicants?

    • Flyingbee says:

      Counts me out then, although I wonder if I can manage it with a UK mailing address. If not then I will get the regular Premier MC.
      No T5 lounge access and no guests makes it less attractive for me (usually travelling through T5 as a family of 4).

    • It seems that if you are non-UK resident but hold a Premier relationship, you may be available to apply through HSBC Expat (i.e. Guernsey) –

      Otherwise if you have an existing relationship with Amex in a fairly prominent jurisdiction, my experience is that they will allow you to apply for a UK-issued Amex as long as you have a UK address and a UK bank account. They’ll look at your credit history and income declared when you applied for an Amex in your “home country”.

      • Sorry, that should read Isle of Man, not Guernsey.

        • Danny says:

          Great. Many thanks for spotting this. I am an HSBC Expat customer and will apply through them. But what did you mean about Amex accepting your application as long as you have a UK address? Surely if you’re resident overseas, that’s not your real address? Or are you suggesting Amex simply don’t care!

          • When I applied I maintained a property in the UK and hence had a residential address to declare on the application. I suppose that, in theory, you could always put a family member’s address as long as you don’t mind them holding onto your mail/statements! I figure that it’s probably more important that you have a bank account in the UK because that’s (in theory) more financially-concrete than a holding address or rented property (unless you happen to own said property).

            If I remember correctly we had to provide tax returns as proof of income but even then it was a foreign tax return mailed to a foreign residential address (in the home country in which the “original”/”main” Amex relationship is held)! This was back in 2013(ish) though… not sure if things have been tightened up then, particularly in terms of KYC requirements.

          • Danny says:

            Many thanks, very helpful. I’ll give it a go.

  4. Stuart says:

    Sounds like it is worth considering using this instead of Amex Premium Plus.

  5. pauldb says:

    I don’t think I could cope with another boring black credit card. Currently all the cards I’m using day to day are the same colour, making it fiddly to pull out the right one: firstdirect debit, Tesco world, 2 BAPP Amexs, Curve.

  6. Tom C says:

    Thanks, Rob. Just phoned HSBC and ordered one, which I was approved for – phone call took 20 minutes. They’re sending the application letter in the post, which I just need to fill in some information, sign and return and they will then upgrade my existing HSBC Premier Mastercard within 12 working days.

    To repeat what I said in the original thread, this card is for me to pay HMRC and also to use whilst Curve continue to impose their £5k/m limit on me.

    • I think we will both( Mr and Mrs Yuff) be calling HSBC this morning and upgrading our cards. 2 points per £ is very handy for those who don’t have the old BMI card.
      Between us we spend 6 figures on the MasterCard so £390 for 150k etihad miles seems pretty good value to me, albeit at the increased reward rate it will be more.

      • AHCL20 says:

        I thought 2 HSBC points = 1 Avios?

        So 2 points = 1 Avios with the new card, is equivalent to 1 pound – 1 Avios.

        Happy to be corrected if I am wrong!

        • No you’re right 🙁
          Hmmm not so good now, so just getting what I was getting 6 months ago but with a £195 fee 🙁

          • Actually the bonuses might just swing it, plus I wonder if spending in Guernsey( I visit fairly frequently) you get the double bonus?

          • Looks like they fixed that “UK includes the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man” and “Earn two points for every £1 of eligible spend in Sterling currency and earn four points for every £1 of eligible spend in non-Sterling.”

    • Just called HSBC premier and I was told letters are going out from the 24th May to all current card holders, with details of the new card, and all you need to do is call up and they will upgrade your card.

      • Bruce says:

        Even easier, I think I saw a form on the website to input the code from the letter so phonecall won’t be necessary 🙂

  7. Any idea if you can take out the card, get the bonus, cancel it but still use it to get lounge access? Do you just need to flash it like the Amex Plat for the Eurostar lounge or do they swipe it to check it’s still active? Just a thought 😉

    • Assuming that your card has 2-3 years expiry date, it is possible (like Amex Plat and Eurostar) that you could cancel it after the first year and continue to flash it at lounges for another couple of years.

      MasterCard presumably is recharged for the lounge visits though, so I assume some record is taken of your card number even if the card isn’t swiped. We’d need to wait until someone uses it and we know how it is processed.

      (Eurostar does not track card numbers, but that is one company who presumably gets a flat fee from Amex each year. 500 airport lounges probably have 300 different owners between them.)

      Once I get my letter I think I will give this a go, albeit I might push the miles into Singapore or Etihad.

      • Mine will be going to Etihad, hopefully with the Christmas 25% bonus they’ve had the last 2 years 😉

      • Rob how easy are Singapore Airline redemptions with Kris Flyer – we will be going to Oz in 2-3 yrs time and hope to use 2-4-1 to get to and from Singapore but would love to do one leg from BNE to SIN with Singapore in business. Don’t want to start saving then find I can’t get a redemption to connect with the BA flight home. With a couple of Amex churns we could get the 55k miles each for one trip.

        • Meant to be excellent with their own miles but tricky with partner miles. I had no issue getting 4 bus last year to SIN on exact day we needed it. I think you can search without a balance if you sign up.

          • Ok great – thanks for the quick reply – I signed up last week and have been playing around with different options!

          • Can you transfer MR points from 2 different accounts into one KrisFlyer account or would we need to save up 55k each from 2 MR accounts to 2 KF accounts.

          • From different people? The rules say No. In practice it depends how SQ checks. Matching surnames may be good enough for it to slip through. Some schemes do not even seem to do name verification so anything gets through.

          • Ok thanks Rob – lots to plan and think about!

  8. Graeme says:

    Does the Natwest Reward Black Mastercard include lounge key? It doesn’t say it does unless you have the current account but it does hae the same silver logo and Masterard page suggests it might?

  9. Rajeh says:

    I wonder..can I lie about the annual income?
    (E.g.: get pdf bank statement, change the amounts…?)

    • James says:

      Absolutely not

      • Rajeh says:

        Sorry James I did not mean whether I should do it or not.
        It was more whether it would work or not.
        Nice to see a person with morals though, well done! 😉

    • Yes, it may or may not work, and it also happens to be fraud

    • harry says:

      Definitely not. Fraud is fraud. Criminal offences = gaol.

      However, they won’t actually ask for bank statements.

      Neither does Amex.

    • Andrew (@andrewseftel) says:

      I don’t have any particular knowledge of HSBC’s underwriting or fraud strategies, but credit applications incomes can be cross-checked against other applications from the same individual. In addition, some credit bureaux supply estimates of individuals’ incomes. Discrepancies on either of these could lead to an application being flagged for manual review or declined. Worst-case scenario would be picking up a fraud marker against your name.

    • First off, that would be committing a fraudulent act and now t something you want to do – it’s just not worth it as it would likely have a negative impact on your ability to enter into a contract (mobile phone, utilities, etc), get any kind of financial product or mortgage for many years due to your actions being recorded on CIFAS & National Hunter.

      You really need to take time out and read this guide on everything you need to know about credit checks and crucially, how to boost your credit score – so you’re likely to be accepted for products & get the best rates too.

  10. Johnny5a says:

    Q: Do supplementary cards have to pay £60? We’re not interested in the lounge pass as we already have PP?

  11. Does the card also include the concierge service?
    The mastercard site claims to do so ( but no mention of it from HSBC…

    • just called them… what is on mastercard wedbsite doesn’t apply to this card. Only what is on HSBC’s website.

      • thanks john, that would have swung it for me but likely give it a miss now.

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