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New BA and oneworld arrivals lounge opens in Heathrow Terminal 3

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The American Airlines arrivals lounge in Heathrow Terminal 3 has reopened after a five month refurbishment.  Whilst AA branded, this is also the arrivals lounge used by British Airways long haul flights into Terminal 3 as well as all Qantas and Cathay Pacific flights.

The lounge features an impressive 29 shower suites, stocked with C.O. Bigelow toiletries.  A valet service is also available to help with clothes pressing.

It is, interestingly, the only American Airlines arrivals lounge anywhere in the world.

American Airlines Heathrow Arrivals Lounge t3

The catering has been outsourced to Rhubarb, best know for event catering at outlets such as the Royal Albert Hall.  According to the AA publicity:

Now offering champagne and Bucks Fizz

Upgrading the breakfast buffet to include made to order smoothies and omelets, pastries, pancakes and porridge

Features a new a la carte menu option

Introducing a lunch service including a buffet, artisan breads, a British cheese board and seasonal dishes

New buffet options will be offered every four weeks, and the a la carte menu will change every three weeks

American Airlines Heathrow Arrivals Lounge t3 2

Access rules are NOT the same as for airside lounges.

In order to get access, you will need to have arrived on a First or Business Class ticket on a oneworld airline or have British Airways Gold status or a oneworld equivalent.  A British Airways Silver card will not do the job unfortunately.

The lounge will be open from 5am to 3.30pm.

American Airlines Heathrow Arrivals Lounge t3 3

Next up is the reopening of the Cathay Pacific airside lounge in Terminal 3 which is now expected in very early September.  

Accessible to British Airways status card holders, this will be managed by Plaza Premium following the refurbishment.  The new year will see the impressive new Qantas lounge which I wrote about here.  Both of these will make a pleasant change to the British Airways Terminal 3 lounges.


Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (March 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 (32)

  • Ziggy says:

    I believe the access rules are a lot stricter than that. Per this American Airlines page OW Emerald only gets you in if flying AA or BA not Cathay, Qantas or Finnair – need to be upfront if flying on those airlines.

    https://www.aa.com/i18n/travel-info/clubs/arrivals-lounge.jsp

  • Nathan says:

    O/T flying from CDG T2E tomorrow, is it linked to the other 2 terminals so I can use my priority pass for lounges in 2A and 2D? Thanks.

  • Neil says:

    I’m landing tomorrow on BA246 in to terminal 5. Can anyone let me know if they’ve had any difficultly getting in to the lounge after changing terminals. I have 4 hours to kill before my meeting in the city and would love to freshen up. Cheers,

  • Jeremy Holden says:

    Customers who can access the lounge when arriving on a same-day flight:*

    ◾First, Business Class, oneworld®EmeraldSM and British Airways Premier customers on long-haul international flights marketed and operated by British Airways.

    ◾First and Business Class customers on long-haul international flights marketed and operated by Qantas, or marketed by British Airways and operated by Qantas, or marketed by Qantas and operated by British Airways.

    ◾First and Business Class customers on long-haul international flights marketed and operated by Cathay Pacific.

    What is a British Airways premier customer?

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