The No 1 Lounge at Birmingham International suffers, along with its sister lounges at Gatwick and Heathrow T3, with capacity problems. This is especially acute in the mornings, when Priority Pass holders are at risk of being turned away if they have not paid the £5 reservation fee (you can reserve spots here).
The good news is that No 1 is bringing its Clubrooms product to Birmingham. A new lounge is currently under construction opposite Gate 54, next to the Emirates lounge.
I took a look at the Gatwick North Clubrooms here. At Gatwick South, the lounge has table service and is arranged in a more restaurant-like style. Instead of one large open space it is made up of a number of small rooms, with individual airlines – or private individuals if they wish – able to reserve a particular space. Gatwick North was done differently and looks more like a standard lounge, done out to a plusher standard than a standard No 1 Lounge.
There is no opening date, and indeed there is no mention on the No 1 Lounges website that the lounge is even on the way – but it is.
How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (October 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.
You also get access to Plaza Premium, Delta and Eurostar lounges. The card has a sign-up bonus of 60,000 points which is a special offer running to 2nd November 2021. Our American Express Platinum review is here. You can apply 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 special 30,000 points sign-up bonus until 9th November 2021. 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.