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An amazing deal when you use DragonPass at the DIH Ahlan First Class lounge in Dubai

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Reader Greg dropped me a note to highlight a great deal he found in Dubai.

The new Concourse D, used by British Airways and most other long-haul airlines not called Emirates, has a lot of lounges, including the DIH Ahlan First Class Lounge.

As the name suggests, the DIH Ahlan First Class Lounge is aimed at First Class passengers on airlines who do not have their own Dubai lounge.  Air France and Singapore Airlines use it for their First Class customers.  For some odd reason, it also accepts the DragonPass lounge card – but not Priority Pass or Lounge Club.

This is not your typical 3rd party lounge as you imagine, being aimed at First Class passengers.  It has a la carte restaurant dining, it has free-flow Moet & Chandon champagne and it has (reportedly) an amazing whisky collection.  If you are into aviation you will also be obsessed by the 6-screen FlightRadar24 display.

A full review of the lounge can be found here (external link).

If you don’t have DragonPass via your Barclays current account, this HfP article shows ways of buying a one-off DragonPass access voucher cheaply.


Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (August 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 (118)

  • Simon says:

    I’ve been enjoying using my DragonPass at the Air Canada lounge at Frankfurt Terminal One. It doesn’t take Priority Pass, the only lounge that does is a pretty dire land side lounge. There are no signs in the lounge I could see about accepting DragonPass but it appears on the DragonPass App.

    When I asked at reception they said they only take certain types of DragonPass, not sure what the criteria is, I got mine via the Groupon offer just before Christmas.

  • Kevin says:

    Ham Yard is lovely and has one of London’s nicest cinemas. Never been bowling there though so quite jealous.

  • steve says:

    Could someone please confirm how many zeros you need to add in front of the Starwood account number for setting up an account for Amex MR points transfer?

    • Stu N says:

      Four, I think. If that gives an error message try five. Linking seems to take 24h and points showed in SPG 24 hours after that. Balance seems to refresh around lunchtime UK time.

  • Nick_C says:

    O/T. Just check my BAEC account, and a mysterious “Special Promotion” of 500 Avios posted on 29 June. I treat all my Avios as currency, and log all qualifying transactions, but I’ve no idea what this is for. Has anyone else had it? (The only thing missing is the Aer Lingus sign up bonus, but that was 18 months ago!)

    • Lumma says:

      I’ve got the same thing. No idea what it’s for, I did sign up for a Aer Lingus thing, but surely that would have went to avios.com instead.

      If you look at the transactions on a computer and not on mobile it says “special promotion – avios e store”

    • Ray. says:

      I got 500 as well, no idea why.

    • BJ says:

      Could it be IHG hotels flight offer if you had your earnings preferences set to avios? On the same day I got 1500 IHG points having opted for the points.

  • the real harry1 says:

    O/T this might help anybody here with the cancelled Tel Aviv flights, I feel a tad guilty as I highlighted it and some people bought tickets: [HT onobond FT]

    ‘After 2 emails to Omega without replies, I ried to phone them. Contrary to the day when every flight was cancelled, I had a hard time getting someone to talk to. After many calls ( actually 12 attempts) with 2 busy line signals, 3 disconnects before anyone answered, and 7 disconnects after giving my name and Omega booking reference and/or BA booking reference, I called Amex to request a charge-back. No need for any documentation, they thought this was the correct step to take, especially since the time limit when re-imbursement should have been cleared was promised 3-5 working days, and 14 already passed.

    The voucher problem was of course nothing to discuss with Amex, but they promised to let Omega know I waited for re-imbursement, and if not cleared fast enough, they could cut Omega out from using Amex in the future. In the mean time I called BA GGL, not for the money, as that definitely was on Omegas business, neither for the voucher, as BA had informed TAs to offer this compensation to pax with cancelled flights. Instead, I wanted to say how the whole situation was tarnishing the BA brand, as some of the TAs neither paid back nor sent any vouchers. I have never done business with Omega before,and do not see them as a future partner in my travel, but did not plan to jump the BA ship for this incident.

    3 hours later Amex called and said they now had the correct amount credited to my account. The next morning an email response from BA with a personal voucher, with original ticket # as reference, valid for 12 months, with no restrictions on needing to book before end of use, fully usable on ba.com website, thus no need to do business with Omega again. They made this as some sort of exception, but did not elaborate if done to others as well.’

  • CV3V says:

    Fascinating stuff, and on a global scale.

    i tried to log into Iberia this morning and it didn’t work, so i tried again and it did. Was such a drama.

    • the real harry1 says:

      it’s going crazy out there in the IB FF blogosphere

      a/cs getting blocked!

      IB asking people who opened up 5 a/cs to get 450,000 points asked to prove ID with passport!

  • Marcw says:

    Time to get the popcorn out!

  • Anna says:

    Lol, they really are hardcore on there aren’t they?!

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