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Here is an airport VIP terminal you can use with a Priority Pass card

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On Thursday we covered the new VIP terminal being built at Manchester Airport, which will allow any passenger willing to pay to bypass the main airport and be driven to their plane.

Reader Andrew dropped me a note about his trip to Ohrid in Macedonia.  The Priority Pass lounge at Ohrid St Paul the Apostle airport is the VIP terminal as the Priority Pass website confirms.

Ohrid St Paul the Apostle airport

Andrew checked in at the main terminal, went through security and was then walked down the apron to the VIP terminal which is in a separate building (photo below). 

Primeclass VIP lounge Ohrid airport

When it came for the flight to depart, they walked the 50 metres from the terminal to their WizzAir plane to Luton ….

Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (July 2024)

Here are the four options to get FREE airport lounge access via a UK credit 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 1,500 lounges in the Priority Pass network – search it here.

You also get access to Eurostar, Lufthansa and Delta Air Lines lounges.  Our American Express Platinum review is here. You can apply here.

The Platinum Card from American Express

40,000 bonus points AND (to 27th August) £400 to spend at Amex Travel Read our full review

If you have a small business, consider American Express Business Platinum instead.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit Read our full review

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold is FREE for the first year. It comes with a Priority Pass card loaded with four free visits to any Priority Pass lounge – see the list here.

Additional lounge visits are charged at £24.  You get four more free visits for every year you keep the card.  

There is no annual fee for Amex Gold in Year 1 and you get a 20,000 points sign-up bonus.  Full details are in our American Express Preferred Rewards Gold review here.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes Read our full review

HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard gets you get a free Priority Pass card, allowing you access to the Priority Pass network.  Guests are charged at £24 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.

HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard

A huge bonus, but only available to HSBC Premier clients Read our full review

PS. You can find all of HfP’s UK airport lounge reviews – and we’ve been to most of them – indexed here.

Comments (128)

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

  • rob says:


    If you book a flight redemption with a built in connection that has a tiny amount of time for the connection, will the airline put you on another flight if you miss your connecting flight? Or do they have no responsibility here?


    • Genghis says:

      They’ll put you on next flight.

    • Alex W says:

      Yes if it’s booked on the same ticket they have a responsibility to sort you out.

    • Stu N says:

      Airline’s responsibility but check what options there are. If there’s a flight every few hours, it’s the airline’s problem; if there’s one a day and you need to be at destination as planned, it becomes your problem.

  • Brian says:

    OT – Rob, I mentioned in the comments that the Doubletree in South Ken is becoming a Curio Collection hotel. I was told last night at the Doubletree Westminster that it too is becoming a Curio Collection, and that is the reason why the Executive Lounge was closed, as part of the refurbishment.

    • BJ says:

      Not been at the SK one but hard to see how Westminster fits Curio branding. Tbh Hilton branding is increasingly confusing me.

      Did Westminster provide you free drinks given the lounge closure?

    • TGLoyalty says:

      curio is 5* but not luxury.

      A good refurbishment for a London hotel would probably make it more curio than doubletree. Doubletree was just a conversion brand wasn’t it?

      • Dan says:

        No way is the south ken doubletree a 5* hotel. I stay there weekly, and regularly get a room for less than £130 per night if booked a few weeks in advance.

        The rebrand looks nice, but just hope the price doesn’t skyrocket as a result. I agree with BJ too, the Westminster property is perfectly nice, but is a carbon copy of most doubletrees around the UK (same desk, wardrobe, tv etc.).cant imagine it getting a rebrand

      • BJ says:

        Westminster was Mint or whatever it was called. The roons had imacs instead of TV. I loved this hotel, great upgrades, great staff, nice free gifts, cleanest hotel roons I have seen outside Asia, walking distance to three tube stations. Lounge was lousy as far as the room went but free flowing drink and ok snacks. Most nights rates offered great value for money as Dan also notes for DT SK. Comparedbto rates or ooints for ConradStJ it was often a steal.

  • Roger says:

    OT – Has anyone taken a plunge with Curve Metal?
    iOS App is already updated and is allowing Subscription upgrade.

    • Roger says:

      Also it looks like Amex Wallet is treated completely differently i.e. does not count towards annual limit.

      Is this correct, anyone on current beta can please confirm.
      I have exhausted the annual limit but still allows me Amex topup hence guessing it is the case.

      • Axel says:

        Have you spent on the wallet to find out? Topping up any spend (on the beta) hasnt counted but spend does.

      • Alan says:

        Amex Wallet top-up is not connected to spend limits. However if you top up the wallet and then have no spend limit remaining you’ll be stuck with a chunk of cash you can’t access for a period of time until limits reset (and still have an Amex bill to pay!)

    • Rob says:

      I have one but was not on the Amex beta so could only link a card today. Card is heavy and slips out of wallets. Blue one is a bit dull.

  • Andrew says:

    Is a £69 upgrade to Club Europe good value on a BA domestic flight?

    I paid £62 for my return domestic flight (LHR-EDI), out Friday teatime, back tomorrow teatime…

    • Rob says:

      If you need the tier points, yes. Otherwise depends if you have status anyway and whether you value the novelty.

    • BJ says:

      Depends if you value TP, fast track, lounge access, an empty middle seat and something to eat and drink on the plane. If the answe is yes to most or all if these then it is worth it. An empty middle seat alone = selling price/2.

    • Stu N says:

      Business check-in, fast track, 2x23kg bags, lounge access, free middle seat, snack and a couple of drinks and 40tps vs 5/10/20 for economy.

      Only you can decide if it’s worth it. If you don’t have any status it’s probably worth it, especially if you have checked baggage. If you do it’s a relatively cheap and convenient way to top up TPs for renewal plus any value you ascribe to free middle seat and in-flight service.

  • s879 says:

    OT: Are there any bonus Avios given when renewing insurance with Alan Boswell?

    • Rob says:

      They have been offering them but there is no official rule, it depends on the size of your policy and if you ask nicely.

      • Roberto says:

        Still awaiting for my 5000 since October. This was a new policy and they have been rather shy in dealing with my chasing. I appreciate changed but their admin in looking after this matter is very poor.

        I am thinking if their claims handling is a bad prehaps my relationship with them with be short term.

        I have given them plenty of opportunity to get back to me. Unfortunatly they dont seem particularly customer freindly when it comes to problems. They were rather more proactive in taking my money.

  • tom1 says:

    Couldn’t see it mentioned elsewhere… the Curve app on iOS has been updated already, so you can already add your Amex card if on Blue, or upgrade to black/metal if you so wish.

    Jealousy over, I feel like one of the cool kids now 😉

    • Anna says:

      How can you tell?! I’ve just updated the app but there’s no indication that I can now use Amex with it.

      • Anna says:

        Just tried to add Amex, got a message that it’s still in closed beta 😩

        • Tom1 says:

          That’s strange – I didn’t apply for the beta. I was able to add my amex and validate it.

  • A270 says:

    I keep reading about the Curve discussion. Is there still time to apply for one? I read about beta version and that people should apply sooner rather than later. Is the main benefit no fx charge when abroad and ability to use Amex? Is there anything I should be careful about or just apply via the Curve website?

  • Bob says:

    Millennium offer. Looks good to start with 30% off if you are a menber but….
    It’s off the flexible rate which is not the best available rate so by the time you have knocked off the 20% it’s the same as the best rate so basically it’s the same price as best rate and it has to be paid in advance not at the flexible rate so it looks good but no price advantage except 5000 points 🤔

    • Moooooo says:

      Correct BUT the “best available rate” closes automatically at a certain point or the discount % changes, however this “culture vulture” product could be open much closer to the arrival date and it has the same flat 30%/20% discount as long as the hotel have it open. You could still get a very good deal though it if you book the right day at the right time.

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

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