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Our review of the three lounges at Leeds Bradford Airport – which is best?

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This is our review of the Yorkshire, White Rose and 1432 Runway Club lounges at Leeds Bradford Airport.

This article is part of our series of reviews of airport lounges across the UK.  You see all of the reviews here.

We recently asked for your help in completing our series of UK lounge reviews for airports that we are unlikely to fly from. The three lounges at Leeds Bradford Airport were missing, and reader James has very kindly let us tick off all of them at once!

The Yorkshire, White Rose and 1432 Runway Club lounges are all owned by the airport.  There are no airline-run lounges and nothing from No 1 Lounges, Aspire or Plaza Premium.

Over to James:

“Leeds Bradford Airport recently moved their lounges to a new location and expended the options.  There are now three lounges, each with different levels of comfort and service. Depending on your access method, you will be directed to either The Yorkshire Lounge, The White Rose Lounge, or The 1432 Runway Club. You’ll find the entrance to the lounge “complex” near gates 4 & 5.

Leeds Bradford Airport Lounges

All lounges are open from 05:00 to 20:00, with a three hour maximum stay.

In general:

  • The Yorkshire Lounge is aimed at leisure passengers
  • The White Rose is aimed business passengers
  • 1432 Runway Club is their premium lounge

(For brevity, I’ll use the abbreviations YL, WR and 1432 throughout the rest of this post.)

Leeds Bradford lounge access rules

All three lounges offer paid access and the rates are ~£5 less when booked in advance via Lounge Pass. Booking ahead also guarantees entry, whereas walk-up entry is subject to availability. Advance purchase is available until the day before arrival; if you forget to pre-book early enough and you’ll pay extra for walk-up access (like I did… doh!)

The advance rates are £25.95 for the Yorkshire Lounge, £30.95 for the White Rose and £35.95 for the 1432 Runway Club.

Since there are no third party or airline-run lounges, passengers with airline status or travelling on a business class ticket are directed to one of two lounges. British Airways and KLM use the White Rose Lounge whilst Aer Lingus and Flybe offer access to the Yorkshire Lounge.

You can also access one or more of the lounges with Priority Pass, DragonPass, Institute of Directors membership and Amex Gold‘s Lounge Club. Annoyingly, the airport’s website doesn’t mention Lounge Club, so I didn’t take my membership card with me and paid the full price! All four passes offer access into the Yorkshire Lounge, whilst the White Rose lounge is only open to Priority Pass and Lounge Club holders.

It’s possible to upgrade from YL / WR to 1432 for £10 on the day, subject to availability. The airport’s website only mentions the upgrade option in respect to customers with access via their airline but the staff on reception told me this is also available to those entering on a lounge membership.  I wasn’t able to verify this myself.

Facilities and service

One immediate benefit over the old location is that all three lounges now offer natural light and apron / runway views (1432 and WR more than YL). The lounge complex also has its own toilets, so you no longer have to use the main terminal facilities.

The differences between the three lounges are style and design, service, food and beverage options, and the views.

The Yorkshire Lounge

The cheapest and most basic of their lounges is also the largest of the three. Despite this, it has the smallest window, with somewhat restricted apron and runway views: the jet bridge for gate 5 obscures the view.

Leeds Bradford Airport Yorkshire Lounge seating

Alcoholic drinks are served from a staffed bar, as was the case in the old “leisure” lounge. There aren’t any premium spirits available.

Leeds Bradford Airport Yorkshire Lounge bar

The food selection at the time of my visit (just before midday on a quiet Friday) was quiche, salad, pasta salad and a few jacket potatoes, as well as crisps, cakes, and biscuits.

Leeds Bradford Airport Yorkshire Lounge buffet

The White Rose Lounge

The White Rose is their “middle tier” lounge. The differences between the Yorkshire and the White Rose are significantly better views and slightly more stylish furniture. The food and beverage options seem wider than the Yorkshire, although, as I visited the lounges on different days and at slightly different times, that may not be the case.

Leeds Bradford Airport White Rose Lounge seating

and

Leeds Bradford Airport White Rose Lounge food

Reader Rachel, who uses the White Rose Lounge on a regular basis, is far less excited the food and sent HFP a couple of recent pictures of her own – make up your own mind!  See:

Leeds Bradford Airport White Rose lounge

and:

Leeds Bradford Airport white rose lounge review

As for me, I did like the large and very striking image of the Yorkshire Dales that completely fills the end wall:

Leeds Bradford Airport White Rose Lounge seating

1432 Runway Club Lounge

This is the airport’s premium lounge. It offers the best views…

Leeds Bradford Airport 1432 Runway Club seating

…. as well as table service (the lounge hosts were really friendly and efficient), more stylish furniture, premium spirits (all drinks self-serve), and a better buffet, which includes cold cuts and pork pie:

Leeds Bradford Airport 1432 Runway Club cold meats

and

Leeds Bradford Airport 1432 Runway Club spirits

The most significant difference is cooked-to-order food options. But don’t get too excited: this is no Virgin Clubhouse. I didn’t find the options especially inspiring. From opening until 11am the lounge serves cooked-to-order full English. From 11am until close, the lounge menu consists of jacket potatoes, soup of the day, a variety of paninis / toasties, a hot turkey roll or turkey served in a Yorkshire pudding with gravy and a jacket potato as well as a daily special.

At the time of my visit I was the only passenger in the lounge. Despite this, the food service was a little slow as the chef was on a break.  I ordered a ham and cheese panini and it was on a par with what I’d expect at a Starbucks or Costa Coffee.

Leeds Bradford Airport 1432 Runway Club panini

Conclusion

The three new airport lounges at Leeds Bradford Airport are not life-changing, but they do the job.

I’d say it’s worth paying the £10 upgrade for the 1432 lounge if you’ve already had free entry to the more basic lounges. It’s more comfortable and stylish, has slightly better food and drinks, and the service is good. I didn’t have chance to sample the cooked-to-order breakfast, but the lunchtime / dinner options were disappointing. They could easily improve the appeal of the 1432 by a slightly more imaginative menu, which would really differentiate it from the other two lounge offerings.”

Thanks James.  You can access selected lounges at Leeds Bradford Airport for free with a Priority Pass (which comes free with American Express Platinum, or you can buy one separately), as well as the DragonPass and Lounge Club card (two free entry vouchers with American Express Preferred Rewards Gold).

As we noted in the main review, all lounge passes offer access into the Yorkshire Lounge, whilst the White Rose lounge is only open to Priority Pass and Lounge Club holders.  There is no way to get free entry to the 1432 Runway Club – you need to pay the £10 supplement.

You can find out more about the lounges, and pre-book entry, on the airport website here.

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Comments

  1. barnaby100 says:

    I go to LBA at least weekly. The 1432 is rarely open although they do let you sit in it if there are large crowds of drinkers in the White Rose (which there often are). On the occasion that the 1432 is open is stag and hen central- how much booze can you get down your neck in 3 hours. Yesterday there was a guy being dragged out by his girlfriend as his plane was boarding with him shouting something about having to get more drinks in as he had paid. Sadly the lounge offer is much worse than before it was moved. The white rose launched with fever tree and slings by gin, now it is gordons and britvic. They have finally put more sockets in the white rose, but still not enough, Yesterday we arrived at about 4pm, the tables were overflowing with empty glasses and the floor was covered with food. Its as still like that when we left for the delayed BA 3 hours later. I am surprised that you can pay £10 to upgrade to 1432, that must be new as I asked when it opened and was told you couldn’t. That said it really is a booze fuelled place and really not pleasant (you can see in and hear).

    • James Ward says:

      On both my visits, the 1432 was roped off, but not closed. They seem to leave the rope there permanently; presumably to discourage people walking in accidentally. Also, both of my visits were when the airport was very quiet, so didn’t experience the issues you’ve described… but doesn’t surprise me!

  2. barnaby100 says:

    You say- At the time of my visit I was the only passenger in the lounge. Despite this, the food service was a little slow as the chef was on a break.

    Did they know that you were reviewing it? I suspect that they opened it just for you if so as it is almost always closed when I am in there (for the early morning BA). There are sometimes people who have booked the 1432 being told it isn’t open when they arrive.

    I forgot the best bit. In the White Rose they used to have bags of crisps. Now they open the crisps from the single bags and put some in a white bowl (not a whole bag) . Crisps are available only on request- they have empty bags on display in holders. Environmentally unfriendly – creating extra washing up.

    Sadly we can’t add photos as I have lots that show the true picture of what you can expect in the white rose. They used to have big posters at the entrance describing it a business lounge. After a particularly hairy visit with large crowds downing round after round at 8am and no seats or access to sockets I raised this with them, they said it wasn’t a business lounge. I showed them the poster, which was gone shortly after. They need to give the white rose a proper identity as a business lounge. More sockets, better seating for singles and stop the big boozy groups.

    • James Ward says:

      It seems to be roped off all the time, even though it’s open. Another couple arrived as I was leaving, so they hadn’t opened it for me. They did know I was writing a review.

      I did notice the discrepancy in the crisps – only the 1432 offered bags. The other two lounges offered bowls.

      • barnaby100 says:

        No, it is definitely closed. I sit in there from time to time to work or if I need to make calls as the white rose is often noisy and overcrowded. Regulars just let themselves in to sit and the staff don’t object and sometimes offer it.

        • James Ward says:

          Well, all I can say is what the reception staff and lounge hosts told me… that it’s open the same hours as the other lounges, subject to its own access rules.

      • barnaby100 says:

        I have just looked at the recent tripadvisor reviews for the yorkshire lounge. They are dire. The positive one is from a man who had a pint in the bar before he went in and then 4 pints in the lounge- which made it good value in his opinion. Those reviews suggest that they sometimes close the yorkshire lounge as well and so upgrade people to the white rose- which may explain why it is sometimes full of big groups of drinkers.

    • With the state of the toilets, crisps in a finger bowl sounds really appealing.
      Difficult to imagine what’s left to cut back on when they ration the crisps.
      Empty packets on display – real classy.

    • Lady London says:

      Sounds like hell.

      • Agreed, ‘it’s grim up North’ springs to mind!

        In all seriousness, these comments make Qantas Pubs sound civilised!

  3. I was in the white rose lounge with BA status and it was awful. Food was dreadful. Every 30 minutes or so they’d bring out a plate of 4 or 5 bacon sandwiches which would be immediately grabbed by the nearest person, leaving another 10 people returning to their seats empty handed. Tables were all covered with dirty plates. It was crowded. Not comfortable or private. No mention of paid upgrades, in fact staff at the reception were very unhelpful, almost rude. The sort of people who act like you, the customer, are interupting and inconveniencing them.

    • barnaby100 says:

      I often don’t even bother to go in these days. Just sit for a couple of hours in a seat on the concourse as it is preferable. They also seem to have some kind of scam running where if you are a BA gold flying in CE they insist that you enter via your gold status rather than as a CE passenger which takes longer and they have to access your number in the app rather than just scanning the boarding pass. When I asked why they did this they muttered something about it being a new management rule as it was better for them.

  4. barnaby100 says:

    My husband only flies through twice a month. I have just asked his opinion.

    He likes the bar but the current drinks on offer are not worth having.
    The toasted tea cakes are 10/10, likes the cheese with digestive biscuits (it is Yorkshire) but the rest of the food is 0/10.
    The view of Ingleborough is great.
    The place is filthy.
    Good view out of the window.
    Can mostly get a seat.
    There is an interesting range of people.
    Some of the staff are friendly.
    The 1432 is never open.

    • Lister says:

      It certainly isn’t filthy. They can be slow to clean up etc but general housekeeping is quite good.

      I use the WR most Friday evenings as I did yesterday. The last few week they have had a sign that due to increase in demand PP & LP can’t gain access. Likely to last the whole of the summer. BA Silver/Gold or a BA CE ticket is fine.

      While I like the view of the runway the old business lounge was far more relaxing and I preferred the self service drinks to the bar service. LBA is a bit of a zoo at this time of year, especially on a Friday afternoon.

      • barnaby100 says:

        The women loos are filthy, if you go in and there is no urine/loo roll on the floor it is a bonus. There is an open white loo brush holder (so no lid over the brush- a £1 ikea type) The brush and holder are covered in excrement (and it has been the same for at least a year)

      • Lady London says:

        Quite clear PP and LP aren’t paying the various lounges that are doing thi, enough then

  5. I like a good drink, but I never understand people caning it at 7am in the morning.
    What possesses people to want to get to the airport 3 1/2 hours before their flight so they can have full 3 hours in a lounge to maximise the free ale and food?
    It seem like a competition between lounge companies trying to gouge passengers who in return feel obliged to drink and eat as much as possible, regardless of the quality.

    • Julian says:

      Presumably these are people on some major life landmark trip who don’t normally ever use airport lounges but have paid extra for the privilege and/or have a one off lounge pass to use up.

      One thing that strikes me about most British airport lounges is that they offer nothing special food and drink wise and are actually an active inconvenience by requiring you to arrive significantly earlier for your flight to experience the supposedly massive special benefits and privileges………..

      • Major life landmark?
        More like a weekend in Magaluf or anywhere in Eastern Europe.
        People make the rational choice that if they are having 5 or 6 pints before boarding, why not book a lounge. A couple of hours kip on the plane and you are ready to go again.

      • With the exception of LHR, where the lounges are actually worth spending time in, for the most part. The worst was probably the old T3 Servisair lounge, but even there you could get a can of Guinness (and then leave to one of the many other lounges in T3).

    • Peter K says:

      Some places I’ve stayed at you have people queuing at the bar at 11am when the free drinks start.
      You also get those who go to the chippy across the road from one place I work that are queuing outside ready for when it opens at 4pm.
      Having said that, I have found the UK lounges I’ve been to better than most reports I’ve read about them, and I will usually have one drink at most.

    • Rooster says:

      People who like to drink a lot and the fact it is free makes it 10x better for them, still there are also plenty paying in the airport bars at 10am for beer :/

  6. Darren Sykes says:

    I visit the White Rose a couple of times a month and get access with KLM Gold. The only time that I have seen the 1432 open is as an overspill due to large drinking groups necking as much Prosecco and G&T as possible. I would be very surprised if anyone had been refused service due to being drunk, which undoubtedly some are. Sometimes it can be a pleasant, relaxing experience, but this is usually later in the day after the early morning holiday flights have departed.

  7. Am I the only person here who noticed how filthy the chairs appear to be in the Yorkshire lounge?

  8. I have to also disagree with the review of the WR “lounge” and agree with all the negative comments above. It is a canteen with nothing remotely “classy” that I could see. I was there at 09.00 last Sunday, when it was full of customers going to (I’m guessing) holiday resorts and trying to see how many pints of lager they could down before their flights. The food offering was minimal except that the bacon rolls were good: large northern baps instead of the little rolls at LHR Galleries lounges.
    Luckily the BA flight was on time (early in fact) so I was spared a longer stay in the WR. On the way out I passed the YL which the receptionist indicated I was welcome to use. I thought it looked better but I was on my way. I expressed the view that the old lounges were very much better and she told me many customers had said the same thing.

  9. Barnaby100 says:

    We need a readers photo page! I have deleted most of my pictures recently but I still have a good sample of the actual offer in the white rose across the past 12 months.

  10. Gaill says:

    Sounds like reviewers helping out HFP need to be more experienced lounge users to generate more incisive and bold reviews.

    • I think is one place where she Business Traveller experience Mon-Thu is not the leisure traveller experience Fri-Sun …

      I know James, he is definitely not short of lounge experience!

      • Barnaby100 says:

        I go in most weeks. It would be possible to experience a quiet calm lounge on consecutive visits. . I am not sure the food offer is ever acceptable. Since the morning BA moved earlier the experience has got worse as I think they amalgamate the lounges first thing and so there are groups of big drinkers (silver surfer not youngsters). Middle of the day when the reviewer visited is the calmest times. I appreciate reviews from a range of contributors.

  11. TheKiteMan says:

    Re: upgrading from WR to 1432, so when entering WR with a PP I’ve asked a few times about paying to upgrade, has always been refused, with reason given was due to it being busy. It didn’t look that busy when I passed it, I kinda think they didn’t want new entrants to close it down sooner. This was at 5pm ish, my flight was at 8.

    • TheKiteMan says:

      Oh and still a two flights to depart LBA latest at 2055 but kicked out of the lounge at 2000hrs as it was closing!

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