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7am exclusive: First Terminal 5 ‘The First Wing’ pictures as it officially opens

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‘The First Wing’ officially opened at Terminal 5 an hour ago.

Here are a few pictures:

The First Wing British Airways Heathrow Terminal 5


The First Wing British Airways Heathrow Terminal 5


The First Wing British Airways Heathrow Terminal 5

‘The First Wing’, at the far southern end of the terminal, leads directly directly into the Galleries First lounge via a private security lane.  It can be used by ticketed First Class passengers or Gold card / oneworld equivalent cardholders – as long as they only have one guest.  As it opens directly into the lounge, it has to follow lounge access rules.  You can check in there with your family and then use the normal security lanes.

We will be at the official launch later this week so there will be another report on the way, although ironically we are banned from taking any pictures at that.   Thanks to the reader who surreptitiously took these.

How to earn Avios points from UK credit cards

How to earn Avios from UK credit cards (August 2022)

As a reminder, there are various ways of earning Avios points from UK credit cards.  Many cards also have generous sign-up bonuses!

In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards with a bonus of up to 25,000 Avios. You can apply here.

You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

There are two official British Airways American Express cards with attractive sign-up bonuses:

British Airways BA Premium Plus American Express Amex credit card

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

British Airways BA Amex American Express card

British Airways American Express

5,000 Avios for signing up and an Economy 2-4-1 voucher for spending £12,000 Read our full review

You can also get generous sign-up bonuses by applying for American Express cards which earn Membership Rewards points.

EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

American Express Amex Gold

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 Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points, £200 travel credit and an unbeatable set of travel benefits – for a fee Read our full review

Run your own business?

We recommend Capital On Tap for limited companies. You earn 1 Avios per £1 which is impressive for a Visa card, along with a sign-up bonus worth 10,000 Avios.

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

10,500 points bonus – the most generous Avios Visa for a limited company Read our full review

You should also consider the British Airways Accelerating Business credit card. This is open to sole traders as well as limited companies and has a 30,000 Avios sign-up bonus.

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express card

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express

30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

There are also generous bonuses on the two American Express Business cards, with the points converting at 1:1 into Avios. These cards are open to sole traders as well as limited companies.

Amex Platinum Business American Express

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

Click here to read our detailed summary of all UK credit cards which earn Avios. This includes both personal and small business cards.

(Want to earn more Avios?  Click here to visit our home page for our latest articles on earning and spending your Avios points and click here to see how to earn more Avios this month from offers and promotions.)

Comments (76)

This article is closed to new comments. Feel free to ask your question in the HfP forums.

  • James67 says:

    To put this into perspective let’s compare it to Thai at BKK which may not even be up there with the very best. Drop off by taxi or limo at first drop off zone of terminal. At most 50m walk takes business, first and elites to dedicated check-in. I’ve rarely had more than one person in front of me. 30-40m walk takes you through fast security and immigration to escalator. First and business lounges immediately at bottom, spa less than 1 minute walk away. The main Thai departure gates within 1-5 minute walk. Might be something better for BA and LHR to get excited about but compared to other carriers and airports it remains a poor show.

    • Fenny says:

      Walking is good for your health!

      • James67 says:

        Posted the same comment last week but given the choice I’d rather save time at the airport and walk sonewhere else.

  • Derek says:

    The only think BA is missing now is some direct boarding from the Lounge Complex to adjacent gates at both North/ South and 5B.

  • CV3V says:

    Its been nagging me all day, that corridor looked familiar…….reminds me of the corridor in the cinema you have to walk to when finding your screen and all the film adverts are on the walls (toilets will be down the far end on the the left).

  • Dave R says:

    I’m off to Boston this weekend and it looks like good timing. I’ll get to check out the new F Wing on the way out, and then the new BOS lounge and the new A380 service coming back. 😀

  • Ammar says:

    OT – I had the BA (blue) card but realised I was going to hit the 10k spend so upgrade to the BAPP 2 weeks ago, and have received my companion voucher now. I want to cancel my BA card – will i loose the voucher. I will still have Amex to pay taxes when I use the voucher.

    • Genghis says:

      Experience has shown that the voucher will remain in your BAEC acct and even if applied and then cancelled should be returned. There have been stories about vouchers being taken away. At your own risk.

    • Daz says:

      If your Companion ticket is in your BAEC account you won’t lose it by cancelling cards

  • Miguel says:

    Wait, can’t you still use the First check-in counters as a Gold BAEC member, and then use the regular Fast Track lanes instead of the dedicated security at the First Wing?

  • Louise says:


    Tesco current account applications reopened and new terms

    effect from 4 April, our Current Account Guarantee has changed for new applications. To earn 3% AER credit interest on balances up to £3,000 until 1 April 2019, you must now pay in at least £750 per statement month, and pay at least three direct debits each statement month (excluding direct debits to Tesco Bank savings accounts).

    • James67 says:

      Noticed that too Louise, posted it on bits article.

      • Von Schmallhausen says:

        Do these changes to the Tesco current account effect existing customers?

        • James67 says:

          No. They do notbaffect clubcard earnings either, just the 3% interest so if you just want the points simply deposit enough cash to cover shopping and fuel.

  • Gill Empringham says:

    I went through here today, having ‘dumped’ my husband and daughter to go through the normal routes. So I went through with my son, so quick and easy… only one small niggle, after security the seating was obviously designed by a tall person, I am 5’7″ and I had to stretch up to get my backside on these seats to put my knee brace back on. But I think all in all a great addition and so quick and smooth! Well done BA!

    • Iain Cameron says:

      Wow..ok admitidly it is Sunday at 4pm..but from “Hello..welcome to first check in” to walking past strange black horsey lamp..was 5 mins…What a great setup. most of my long haul flights originate ex Dub…that will probably be my one in only time i will use it..but great all the same. Shame I couldnt use it flying from Dub…LHR would be a nicer place to travel through..then I pick up the Sunday Times and read that AC is thinking about ditching free food in Long haul Y….gives with one hand..takes away with the other..oh well.

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