This is our review of the Aspire Lounge at Birmingham Airport.
Reader Rob kindly sent in a brief review of the Aspire Lounge at Birmingham Airport:
“A short hop across the main departure lounge, you’ll find the entrance to the Aspire Lounge. This is a Swissport lounge which grants access to DragonPass, Lounge Club and Priority Pass holders as well as FlyBe passengers holding their most flexible “premium” tickets.
The lounge was refurbished in recent years and still looks fresh; it has pleasant grey ash wooden accents throughout the lounge with varying styles of seating including a business/quiet zone. The dress code is relaxed but smart casual, and large groups must book before entry.
The picture below is from the Aspire website.
One advantage of this lounge is that the view outside is straight onto the BHX Pan, where you can see anything from a 737 to the weekly RAF Voyager service. It’s a definite bonus for anyone who is somewhat of a spotter.
Throughout the lounge there is excellent power availability with EU, UK and USB plugs available, whilst all work benches have relatively comfortable stools to perch yourself on whilst firing off those last minute emails.
This picture is from the Birmingham Airport website.
The food and drink selection is not great; a few sandwiches, some soup and some crisps are complimented with entry level spirits, beers and wines. Not the best selection but if you’re only making a short stop before boarding it serves its purpose. If the lounge is busy, which is a regular occurrence, don’t expect the food to be refreshed too often.
The lounge is long and narrow, with good segregation and seating throughout. When it gets busier, the small business area is great to sit down in and relax while reading emails or even just a newspaper. Position-wise, the lounge is well placed to access the budget airlines area of the terminal (Gates 1-20) as it’s a 5 minute stroll away, although BHX is a pretty compact airport with a 15 minute walk allowing you to get where you need to be regardless of your gate.
There aren’t many staff members in this lounge, and it can get a little messy during busier periods but as mentioned; if you’re just making a short stop then you shouldn’t have too many issues.
This lounge is a mid-tier paid entry lounge and in terms of comfort and seating it is reasonable. However it lacks feeling, atmosphere, good food and the general pizzazz that other lounges provide.
When at Birmingham Airport I’d always visit the No 1 Lounge first. It has superior food offerings, ambience and more comfortable seating – it’s a no brainer.”
Thanks Rob. If you want to compare this with Rob’s review of the No 1 Lounge, you will find that here. You can pre-book access to the Aspire lounge via their website here.
How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (January 2021)
As a reminder, here are the three options to get FREE airport lounge access via a credit or charge 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.
The Lounge Club list is slightly shorter than the Priority Pass list. Additional visits are charged at £20. You get two more free visits for every year you keep the card. There is no annual fee 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 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.