During the pandemic, British Airways has been quietly cutting lounge access at many of its European destinations. This has not been well communicated to customers who often did not find out until they were turned away at the lounge door.
Most of the lounges used by British Airways are still open, so anyone with a Priority Pass can usually still get access. Some HfP readers have been frustrated to see Iberia passengers getting access whilst BA passengers do not.
There is no proof that these cancellations are permanent. We have already seen BA adding back lounge access at domestic airports such as Jersey as travel has picked up. Bologna has returned to the list in the last couple of days, for example.
EDIT: we have updated the list on 12/9 with reader feedback, thank you
The latest official position can be found by checking the oneworld alliance lounge access page here. When looking up a lounge you need to look for British Airways to be listed under the ‘Airlines’ heading.
Flyertalk has also put together a crowd sourced list of which BA lounges are currently open. You can find it in this thread in the wiki part at the top. You will also find information there on lounges outside the UK, but treat the oneworld website as the most accurate source.
As of last night, the oneworld website showed that the following European airports had lounges which were accepting British Airways passengers:
- Frankfurt (JAL flight days only)
- Gran Canaria
- Venice (but reader comments suggest not)
There may be other lounges which have begun to accept BA passengers again but which have not been picked up yet. Check the oneworld website link above for the official line and please post in the comments if you spot any.
The ‘open’ list is slightly eclectic – Spain-heavy, probably due to the Iberia relationship, with some huge omissions. The one I use the most – Hamburg – is gone, for example, although Priority Pass remains valid.
If you want to secure lounge access for an upcoming trip, you can get a Priority Pass for free with the American Express Platinum card. Both the main cardholder and one supplementary cardholder receive a Priority Pass, and each card admits two people for free.
This means that you can get a family of four people into a lounge for free, as many times as you want if both the main and supplementary cardholder are travelling together. There is NO LIMIT to the number of lounge visits you can make for free. Our full review of Amex Platinum is here.
You can also get a ‘two free visits’ Priority Pass if you apply for American Express Preferred Rewards Gold. As Amex Gold is free for the first year, this is an easy way of getting totally free airport lounge access for a couple. Further visits after the first two free ones are charged at £20. The Amex Gold route is by far the easiest option for a one-off trip.