I try out Heathrow’s Personal Shopper experience

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If you’ve spent too much time in airport lounges, you might want to try something different next time you’re at Heathrow.

How about a complimentary Personal Shopper experience?

Heathrow’s Personal Shopper service launched in 2014 and can be booked by anyone travelling from Heathrow who would like professional shopping advice.

There are dedicated lounges at Terminals 5, 3 and 2 but the service can also be booked when travelling from Terminal 4. In this case you could either just shop in the stores with the assistance of a Personal Shopper or transfer to one of the other terminals to use their lounge.

To find out what the service was about, how to book it and what to expect, I booked a Personal Shopper experience before my flight to Hamburg last week.

For clarity, we were not paid for this article and I did not receive any discount on the items I ended up buying.  We just thought it would make an interesting story.

Heathrow Airport Personal Shopper review

The Personal Shopper experience is particularly useful when you need to buy an outfit for an upcoming event, update your Summer wardrobe etc.  It isn’t just about fashion however – it can also be used to reserve any other item such as a specific piece of IT equipment, some headphones etc.

I had a friend’s wedding coming up and thought I’d look for a dress and shoes.

How to book

We talked to our contact at Heathrow Airport prior to me booking to let them know that we would be covering the service in an article and would want to take photos etc.  However, the Personal Shopper service is complimentary to everyone and I could have booked it directly on this website.

There are several stylists who speak various languages, but German didn’t seem to be an option so I stuck with English!

When booking your appointment online you are asked to fill out your details, flight number and some information about brands and articles you are interested in.  The latter is optional at the booking stage and you can wait for your stylist to contact you to discuss what you are looking for.

At the airport

I agreed to meet with my stylist after security at Terminal 5 three hours before my flight, but ended up being 20 minutes late due to overcrowded BA check in desks. It took me about 45 minutes to check in, drop off my bag (at the premium check in ….) and go through Fast Track security.

My initial plan was to also check out the brand new Personal Shopper lounge at Terminal 3 (picture below)

Personal Shopper 2

As this would have involved going through security a further two times and the whole airport was very busy that day, we decided to stay in Terminal 5.

Location

The Personal Shopper lounge at Terminal 5 is on the lower level near gates A8 and A9. It’s hidden away behind sliding doors which the stylist opens via a keypad.

Heathrow Airport Personal Shopper review

The lounge at T5 has a small reception area ….

Heathrow Airport Personal Shopper review

…. with a clothing and bags display near the window.

Heathrow Airport Personal Shopper review

There were two private shopping rooms inside the lounge of which we used the one at the far end.

A small bottle of Fortnum & Mason champagne was on the table and a selection of clothes and bags were on the shelves and in the open wardrobe which also doubled as a room divider.

Heathrow Airport Personal Shopper review

and

Heathrow Airport Personal Shopper review

It turned out that the champagne was on the table for decorative purposes only and I got a fresh bottle from the fridge!

London Heathrow Personal shopper

At the very back of the room was the dressing room with a make up table, a clothing rail and two chairs.

I had sent Anjana, my stylist, links to a number of dresses that I found online to give her an idea of what I was looking for.

She had chosen 5 different dresses for me including one exact dress that was among the pictures I sent.  There were also three pairs of shoes and a number of bags waiting for me.

Heathrow Airport Personal Shopper review

I tried the dresses and shoes and loved both green dresses. We decided to have a walk around the terminal to look at what else was on offer in the stores, but in the end I did choose to buy one of the green dresses and a pair of nude heels (and paid for it with my own money 🙂 )

Heathrow Airport Personal Shopper review

Unfortunately you are currently not able to pay for your purchases inside the Personal Shopper lounge and need to walk to the individual stores to make your payment.  There are, however, plans to introduce portable payment devices at all lounges.

Terminal shopping transfers

If you plan ahead and give yourself at least three hours for the Personal Shopper experience, you can transfer between terminals.  If you’re flying out of Terminal 5 but would love to see the new shopping lounge at Terminal 2 and explore the shops at that terminal, for example, the Personal Shopper team can transfer you across.

Earn bonus Heathrow Rewards points with home delivery

You don’t need to take your purchases on holiday with you.  Your purchases can be delivered to any UK mainland residential address for FREE when you spend £300 or more in one store and use your Heathrow Rewards card (£500 for non-members).  This applies to anything you buy at Heathrow, not just via Personal Shopper when you’re on a UK or EU flight. Simply fill out a form when purchasing your items and the Shopping Service Team will take care of your delivery.

Heathrow Rewards members will receive 100 bonus points for using Home Delivery – this increases to 150 points if you are a Heathrow Rewards Premium member.

A further option is to collect your items at when you return from your trip. You need to fill out a form when purchasing your items and they will be ready for you to pick up at the Excess Baggage counter at arrival. There is no minimum spend for this option.

I was also informed that using the Personal Shopper service you can earn Harrods Rewards points and Heathrow Rewards points. Harrods usually accepts just one card, but you can scan your Harrods Rewards card when paying for your items and have your personal shopping assistant add your Heathrow Rewards points later on.

Details of the Heathrow Rewards bonuses you can earn are here.

If you aren’t a Heathrow Rewards member yet and sign up via this offer, you will get 3,000 bonus points when spending £150.   Whilst the bonus offer is sponsored by Avios, you are not obliged to transfer your bonus points to them.

What happens with returns?

If you need to return an item, you have 60 days to either take it back to the Heathrow store or post it to Heathrow Personal Shopper who will process your refund for you. More information is on this website.

Conclusion – what did I think about Heathrow’s Personal Shopper?

I enjoyed my shopping trip and would book it again.  As I spend a good amount of time at airports, it was nice to do something different for a change.  I loved that some outfits were already waiting for me and I didn’t have to go into the stores to check what was available.  Anjana had got a good grasp of what I was looking for from my initial email and also knew which stores were worth a visit for extra ideas.

The Personal Shopper service can be booked here.

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

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Comments

  1. Lady London says:

    OT I gather the issues are the same when a brand wants to have a “shop in shop” inside stores like Harrods. The stores want such crazy amounts not just in floorspace rent (and you don’t get to choose where they put you, you could end up on a floor with very little of the footprint your store needs), but also as a huge % of everything sold, you have to use the store’s till system so they can measure this. I gather most of the big brand shop in shops in prestige stores are not there to make a profit at all, just for brand visiblity.

    Airports being just shopping malls now seems to be same thing. High rents, ?high percentage of turnover? hard to make a profit unless you’re selling highly over priced merchandise to people who are impressed by brandnames. Which the world over, is a growing market 🙂

    Very OT but I’d love to know more about how this all works from the retailer side.

    • the real harry1 says:

      Not sure about the retail side of things but yes – DF (or so-called DF) in airports used to be the absolute most desirable retail space for brand owners, esp when the brands were high end. Logic being: anybody who flies must show a very heavy preponderance to being in the old ABC1 target market (definitions have changed but that’s readily understood). I’m sure that can’t really be true for all airports these days, but LHR would be a good exception (ie the old socio-economic rules of thumb still working). Brand owners want such ABC1 consumers to get their mitts on their products in such a closed environment/ captive market with time weighing heavy on their hands, maybe looking for a present etc. Then they later become loyal users & repeat consumers, so sometimes brand owners would even not be that worried about making much of a profit here – just important to get in the ‘HNWI’ shop window and sell to desirably wealthier people. I’m sure the same idea pertains to Harrods but no knowledge there.

      Of course, that’s why HFP should also be looking for rather more than £10 per active user, vs cheapo MSE’s price 🙂

      His Nibbs just needs to work out how to substitute his own knowledge when he retires, bit of a key person lol

      • the real harry1 says:

        Lucky has got a small team of staffers who seem pretty good at what they bring to the table – seems a good model if you can work out a decent way to source good FF recruits. I wonder how much they get paid per article?

      • Crafty says:

        There’s a gaping chasm between “ABC1” and “HNWI”.

    • RussellH says:

      > selling highly over priced merchandise to people who are impressed by brandnames
      >. Which the world over, is a growing market ????

      Sadly true – which is why shares in the likes of Unilever + Reckitt-Benkiser are so much more profitable than those in the firms that make own-brand equivalents.

  2. whiskerxx says:

    I use adblocker – and will continue to do so.

    Just curious as to why I can see Anika’s pics in this article but couldn’t see any pics in the article of the Iberia A350 yesterday?
    Presumably more to do with the way they are posted rather than adblock itself?

  3. Mr Dee says:

    The delivery options sounds good, some ideas to spend my reward vouchers

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