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British Airways lounge at Manchester Airport will not re-open – report

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According to reports on Flyertalk, from someone with impeccable credentials, British Airways has decided not to reopen its lounge in Manchester Airport Terminal 3.

The Manchester lounge is, effectively, the lounge that time forgot. In all the years that I have used it, there was never any noticeable change.

Like the Newcastle lounge, which has also been permanently closed, the Manchester lounge would have required significant investment to bring it up to modern standards.

Review British Airways Terraces Lounge at Manchester Airport Terminal 3

There is also the question of which terminal British Airways will be using once the extension to Terminal 2 is open. Terminal 3 is very lacking in terms of, well, everything really. Shops, bars, restaurants …. it doesn’t really have them.

Inside the British Airways Manchester lounge

If you ever visited the lounge, you will remember it.

The lounge was surprisingly large and doughnut shaped.  The centre is taken up by a cupola that provides a natural light both to the lounge and the main departure hall below.

Review British Airways Terraces Lounge at Manchester Airport Terminal 3


Review British Airways Terraces Lounge at Manchester Airport Terminal 3


Review British Airways Terraces Lounge at Manchester Airport Terminal 3

The bar was not to be sniffed at:

Review British Airways Terraces Lounge at Manchester Airport Terminal 3

Here is a typical breakfast – no bacon rolls here though:

Review British Airways Terraces Lounge at Manchester Airport Terminal 3


Review British Airways Terraces Lounge at Manchester Airport Terminal 3

It even had a small business centre which I used quite a bit in the years before I bought a laptop light enough to happily carry around:

Review British Airways Terraces Lounge at Manchester Airport Terminal 3

It isn’t clear what British Airways will do now. There are plenty of other oneworld airlines using Manchester, and of course Aer Lingus will need a lounge for its new long-haul operation launching from Manchester this Summer. The official launch information on this is due very soon.

There is also Finnair, Iberia, Qatar Airways, Cathay Pacific etc ….. assuming that all of these services return. There was talk of a oneworld lounge in the Terminal 2 extension but this was never confirmed.

Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (January 2022)

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.  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 you get 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 (89)

  • richardderby says:

    more reason to take the train when travelling to London, its only 2 hours, and there is normally a train every 20 minutes on the route. better for the planet too..

  • ThinkSquare says:

    Gutted. This lounge was the best thing about flying with BA

    • TGLoyalty says:

      I’m sure there will be a replacement lounge within the one world network in the new terminal

  • Mr(s) Entitled says:

    The new T2 is ready it just isn’t formally open yet due to Covid and delayed testing. I would be surprised if there wasn’t plans for a decent One World lounge here but with air travel now under a cloud, who knows. T3 was next for redevelopment but again, when that now starts is open to debate.

    • Tiff says:

      I wonder if the new T2 will have suitable domestic arrival facilities for BA. Does anyone know?

  • Anna says:

    It was a very pleasant space to wait for a flight with a glass of bubbly. The food wasn’t great but there was always plenty of room and it was very quiet (unlike LHR T5!). I’ve got 2 CE flights booked for the end of this year, I’ll be very annoyed if there’s no lounge provision whatsoever. As previously mentioned, PP is useless at MAN (and the Escape Lounge isn’t even worth £5 pp for pre-booking IME!)

  • Dave says:

    I agree with all the positive comments.A very spacious and calm lounge with an excellent atmosphere.Maybe not the best food offering but for ambience and a feeling of exclusivity as good as any business lounge anywhere.

  • Neil says:

    I get my sausage sandwich in the Priority Pass lounge next door, first, then head over to the BA lounge for peace, quiet and my morning brandy. My routine is shot to bits. What am I supposed to do now?!

  • Catalan says:

    Why such a demand for a BA lounge at MAN for what is little more than a 50 minute flight to London?

    • Mike says:

      Because you still need to arrive at the airport some hours in advance…

      • Jonathan says:

        Especially at Manchester which is a horrible airport.
        Terrible drop off setup & the worst security experience in Europe.

    • IrlamGreen says:

      Connecting Flights. BA only fly outside the UK from LHR & LGW, and in my experience, most passengers on the shuttles seem to be going on for connections. Sorry to see the MAN lounge go – hopefully there will still be some lounge access for status/ CE & CW, although nothing surprises me about BA anymore.

    • Littlefish says:

      There’s a decent amount of demand due to MAN being far more accessible as a journey start point than LHR, especially by public transport. Those on Club World itineraries or with shiny frequent flyer cards then have an overall smoother journey ex-MAN the ex-LHR.
      This equation worked for my parents for example despite the awful security experience at MAN. Without the calm space that was the BA lounge I would guess a small percentage of travellers will look at alternatives, which is probably more of a thing for MAN than BA.

  • Rick says:

    What a shame.

    I’m not a prolific traveller, rather we do a the occasion CE/CW redemption and the MAN lounge was always a very welcome start to the journey. It was always an oasis of calm compared to the terminal down below.

    I remember it fondly on our first ever redemption to New York on the then direct flight. It was a great intro to up front travel to us. Even if a friend commented that it looked like I was sat in a DFS showroom on a Facebook post!

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