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What are the entry rules for the new (2nd) Qatar Airways lounge in Heathrow Terminal 4?

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Qatar Airways returned to Heathrow Terminal 4 on Tuesday, the first airline to do so. Others are following over the next couple of weeks until there will eventually be 30 carriers there.

One surprise is that Qatar Airways has built a second lounge in Terminal 4 during the pandemic. What we thought was going to be an extension to the existing Premium lounge seems to be a totally separate facility.

We don’t have any official information on this yet although we are hoping to take a look soon.

the new (2nd) Qatar Airways lounge in Heathrow Terminal 4

Historically, Qatar Airways restricted access to its Premium lounge at Heathrow to anyone flying in Business or First Class.

Status passengers travelling in Economy were originally sent to the SkyTeam lounge (now permanently closed) and later to the Plaza Premium lounge which sits directly above the Qatar Airways lounge.

Qatar Airways seems to have decided that it wanted to completely control the passenger experience at Heathrow Terminal 4 by opening its own ‘second’ lounge. One potential issue is that this may impact those flying on Avios tickets.

Note that the pictures in this article are all PR photos of the Premium lounge in Terminal 4.

the new (2nd) Qatar Airways lounge in Heathrow Terminal 4

The new Qatar Airways Frequent Flyer Lounge

The oneworld alliance website now shows the following lounge information for Heathrow Terminal 4.

Qatar Airways Frequent Flyer Lounge

Open to: Business Class, First Class, oneworld Emerald (eg BA Gold), oneworld Sapphire (eg BA Silver)

Guesting: You can only bring a guest if getting in via oneworld status

Which airlines?: The lounge can be accessed by Qatar Airways passengers as well as those flying on other oneworld airlines (eg Malaysia Airlines)

the new (2nd) Qatar Airways lounge in Heathrow Terminal 4

Qatar Airways Premium Lounge

Open to: Business and First Class passengers on revenue tickets

Guesting: No guests allowed

Which airlines?: The lounge can be accessed by Qatar Airways passengers as well as those flying on other oneworld airlines (eg Malaysia Airlines) but they must be flying on revenue tickets

Both lounges are open from 5am to 10pm, seven days per week.

To add to the confusion, remember that Qatar Airways also sells discounted Business Class tickets which don’t allow any lounge access.

What about Avios tickets?

It is still early days and we need to see what happens in practice. However, based on the wording on the oneworld website, it looks like anyone flying on Qatar Airways on an Avios ticket, even if flying First Class, will be relegated to the Frequent Flyer lounge. This means no ‘at table’ food service, no fine wines or top end champagne etc.

The real winners here are Malaysia Airlines and Royal Air Maroc passengers. With the Malaysia Airlines lounge in Heathrow Terminal 4 now closed, revenue passengers in Business Class or Business Suite are probably now best served by visiting the Qatar Airways Premium Lounge.

We’ll update you on the Qatar Airways lounges when we’ve been able to have a look for ourselves.

Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (June 2023)

Here are the four options to get FREE airport lounge access via a UK credit card.

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 Air Lines and Eurostar lounges.  Our American Express Platinum review is here. You can apply here.

SPECIAL OFFER: Until 13th June, the sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card is doubled to 60,000 Membership Rewards points – and you get £200 to spend at Amex Travel too! Apply here.

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points AND a £200 Amex Travel voucher until 13th June! Read our full review

If you have a small business, consider American Express Business Platinum instead.

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points bonus and a £200 Amex Travel credit every year Read our full review

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold is FREE for the first year. It comes with a Priority Pass card loaded with four free visits to any Priority Pass lounge – see the list here.

Additional lounge visits are charged at £20.  You get four 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.

American Express Preferred Rewards Gold

Your best beginner’s card – 20,000 points, FREE for a year & four airport lounge passes 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.

HSBC Premier World Elite Mastercard

A huge bonus, but only available to HSBC Premier clients Read our full review

PS. You can find all of HfP’s UK airport lounge reviews – and we’ve been to most of them – indexed here.

Comments (48)

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

  • BJ says:

    “it’s just they reward loyalty over paid tickets, so nobody on here complains”

    …except me – I’ve been complaining about it at every opportunity for years 🙂

  • ms101 says:

    Had no idea MAS was moving back to T4. Any news on when BA might reopen the KUL route?

    • Rob says:

      When it starts attracting a lot of full fare business travellers …. so don’t hold your breath.

  • DavidB says:

    Entry requirements have been in flux. Last month I was flying Y from YUL-DOH (onward to CPT) on an QR Avios award ticket (transferred from my BA Avios for added award availability) and after going to the regular Gold/Silver lounge on my DOH transit, I was referred to the Al Mourjan lounge (which I believed was off limits to anyone but revenue business flyers). Seems that OW Emeralds are now permitted when flying in economy and even on award tickets, and thus can now access it, not just QR revenue/award business class tickets. Would expect the LHR lounges to use the same criteria.

    • Chad McChadface says:

      It’s been like that for a while. Until the Gold lounge opens OWEs in steerage and basic business will get AM access.

  • Patrick says:

    Are you sure that the restriction for lounge access isn’t just for those sat in Business or First via UPGRADES with Avios (I’ve read this is the case in DOH Al Safwa I think?). For example, I believe you get Al Safwa First lounge access in DOH when travelling in First on a fully paid Avios reward ticket (even if booked via the BAEC)? Do you not? Does anyone have any recent experience of this?

    As an aside, Qatar CS confirmed to me yesterday on Twitter that if you want to be able to PAY to enter the Al Safwa First lounge DOH (and your ticket is a reward ticket) you must be on a Qatar-booked business reward ticket – not a ticket that has been already upgraded with Avios, nor an Avios business reward seat booked via BAEC.

  • Lady London says:

    All these complications and downgrades of service to people who are still paying quite a lot and travelling in J or F is a bit offputting.

    Why can’t they simply follow OneWorld rules?

    • E Simmons says:

      I am flying to Manila from LHR in October this year on Malaysia Airlines business class, on a ticket that I bought through a travel agent, will I be able to use the Qatar lounge at terminal 4 LHR?

  • A350 says:

    Rob and Rhys – Are you sure that “Revenue tickets only” means that reward flights are being excluded? Could it just mean that they’re trying to exclude “non-revenue tickets” which in the USA refer to staff travel/standby/ZED tickets and hence in fact commercially booked cash and reward tickets are considered under the umbrella of “revenue tickets”?

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