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Can I use American Airlines lounges with a British Airways Silver or Gold card?

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A question I am often asked is whether you can use American Airlines lounges if you have a British Airways Gold, Silver or Bronze status card.

Lounge access is one of the perks that many people aspire too when the travel. Nothing beats escaping the crowds of a busy terminal and settling down with some free wine or champagne before a long flight.

Can I use American Airlines lounges with a British Airways status card?

Your entitlement to lounge access depends on what status you hold, even with British Airways’ own lounges.  British Airways Bronze members are not entitled to lounge access whilst Silver and Gold members are.

Executive Club Silver status is the equivalent to oneworld Sapphire tier, allowing you to access the oneworld equivalent business class lounges. This includes American Airlines business class lounges, called Admirals Club, across its entire network.

A weird quirk of the oneworld rules means that Silver card holders can also access American Airline’s domestic first class lounges. Though American Airlines does not allow its own mid-tier members into these lounges, they are open to oneworld Sapphire and above. Unfortunately this doesn’t apply to their international first class lounges.

These new international first-class lounges are a new addition to the American Airlines portfolio, with the first developed in 2017. They are subsequently only at a handful of airports though the benefit is that you know they are (almost) brand new.  You can read an article I wrote about American Airlines Flagship Lounges here.

The same rules apply to British Airways Executive Club Gold members.  Note that you do not need to be flying with American Airlines to use its lounges – any oneworld airline will do.  If you are flying on British Airways from Heathrow Terminal 3, for example, you can use the AA lounge instead of the BA lounge if you choose.  The smart flyer goes to the Cathay Pacific or Qantas lounges, however, which are far more impressive.

(This article is part of our ‘BA Q&A’ series which explains how British Airways Executive Club works.  You can see all of our ‘BA Q&A’ articles here. )

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