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Are Mastercard World Elite credit cards swapping from Lounge Key to DragonPass?

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Certain Mastercard World Elite credit cards in the UK offer airport lounge access via the LoungeKey network. The two you are most likely to come across are Curve Metal – which charges £20 for every lounge visit – and the HSBC Premier World Elite credit card (review) where lounge access for the cardholder is free.

LoungeKey is owned by Priority Pass and the lounge networks are very similar, although not identical.

In some parts of the world, Mastercard World Elite has started to migrate to DragonPass.

It has just been announced that World Elite credit cards in Canada will be switching between now and mid May. It also appears to be live for cardholders in Qatar, Bahrain and Pakistan.

It isn’t clear if this is a global switch or not. It would be good news if Mastercard World Elite in the UK switched to DragonPass, however.

The key difference between DragonPass and Lounge Key / Priority Pass is that the former has access to Plaza Premium airport lounges. If Mastercard UK switches, you would gain access to the excellent Plaza Premium lounges at Heathrow Terminals 2, 3, 4 and 5 and at Gatwick’s North Terminal. Let’s see what happens.

PS. It isn’t yet clear if Barclaycard will be offering any lounge privileges with the new Barclaycard Avios Plus credit card, which is a World Elite product. I imagine it is unlikely, as nothing has been announced, but I have asked for more information on which World Elite benefits it intends to offer.

Want to earn more points from credit cards? – May 2022 update

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In February 2022, Barclaycard launched two exciting new Barclaycard Avios Mastercard cards. You qualify for the bonus on these cards even if you have a British Airways American Express card:

Barclaycard Avios Plus card

Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard

25,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £10,000 Read our full review

Barclaycard Avios card

Barclaycard Avios Mastercard

5,000 Avios for signing up and an upgrade voucher for spending £20,000 Read our full review

You can see our full directory of all UK cards which earn airline or hotel points here. Here are the best of the other deals currently available.

The Platinum Card has doubled its sign-up bonus to 60,000 Membership Rewards points, which convert to 60,000 Avios or other airline miles, if you apply by 1st June 2022.

British Airways BA Premium Plus American Express Amex credit card

British Airways American Express Premium Plus

25,000 Avios and the UK’s most valuable card perk – the 2-4-1 voucher Read our full review

American Express Amex Gold

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 Platinum card Amex

The Platinum Card from American Express

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Virgin Rewards Plus credit card

Virgin Atlantic Reward+ Mastercard

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Earning miles and points from small business cards

If you are a sole trader or run a small company, you may also want to check out these offers:

Amex Platinum Business American Express

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and a long list of travel benefits Read our full review

American Express Business Gold

20,000 points sign-up bonus and free for a year Read our full review

British Airways Accelerating Business American Express card

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30,000 Avios sign-up bonus – plus annual bonuses of up to 30,000 Avios Read our full review

Capital on Tap Visa card

Capital On Tap Business Rewards Visa

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For a non-American Express option, we also recommend the Barclaycard Select Cashback card for sole traders and small businesses. It is FREE and you receive 1% cashback on your spending.

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Comments (33)

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

  • dougzz99 says:

    Would Dragonpass make it any more likely you could enter the lounges with constant capacity issues?

    • Rob says:

      Plaza Premium lounges virtually never have capacity issues. Heathrow T2 may be squeezed at the moment as some airlines are out of their usual home and are using it instead, but even that should be OK once T4 is back.

  • rams says:

    Wondered why the Liverpool section tickets went so quick 🙂

  • David Aames says:

    For anyone that has redeemed tickets via Emirates, where are they located in the stadium? Just want an idea of how decent they are so I know for next time. Thanks

  • Gareth says:

    Can you transfer Amex to emirates in another persons name?

    • Rob says:


      Historically only Radisson and Nectar allowed this (not sure if still can) plus Marriott and Hilton allow free points transfers and BA allows household accounts.

  • D says:

    Thanks for the ticket info, ended up getting tickets for man city end.

  • CramondBen says:

    rebooked and saved 60k pts, happy days, thanks Rob.

  • Kevin D says:

    I plan to switch from the HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard to the Barclaycard Avios Plus Mastercard. It looks like I would then lose Loungekey access. Is that correct?

    • Alan says:

      Correct. At present there are no Mastercard Elite benefits with Barclaycard.

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

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