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You can now pay £6 to reserve the Club Aspire lounge in Heathrow Terminal 5

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Before it went into administration, independent UK airport lounge operator No1 Lounges had come up with a novel method of dealing with the low sums paid by lounge card scheme Priority Pass. It allowed members to guarantee entry for a pre-payment of £6 per person.

This was a smart move by No1 Lounges. It was pure additional profit for the company – it was taking in the same number of Priority Pass guests each day, but was receiving an additional £6 from many of them.

It was also good news for Priority Pass holders who were happy to pay £6 in order to guarantee lounge access. It was bad news for those who were not willing to pay, of course, but they could still take their chance on the door.

Club Aspire lounge Heathrow Terminal 5 reservation fee

Ironically, the £6 fee was not enough to make Priority Pass visits viable given how little the lounge was paid per visit. In September 2020, No1 Lounges and Priority Pass ended their partnership.

Unsurprisingly, given the amount of debt that the business was carrying (it was a management buy-out) it was unable to survive the pandemic. Someone senior in the company told me that some airports were insisting on rent payments even though their terminals were closed ….

In June 2021, No1 Lounges was sold to a joint venture of Priority Pass’s owner, Collinson, and ground handler Swissport. These partners already owned the Club Aspire brand.

(Confusingly, standard Aspire lounges, as opposed to Club Aspire, are solely owned by Swissport.)

No1 Lounges rejoined Priority Pass with the £6 reservation fee retained.

The Club Aspire lounge in Heathrow Terminal 5 can now be prebooked via No1

It seems that No1 Lounges and Club Aspire are now seeing a little more integration under their new shared ownership.

You can now pre-book a Priority Pass visit to the Club Aspire lounge in Heathrow Terminal 5 via the No1 Lounges website.

The reservation fee is £6 per person, the same as at No1 Lounges. You can reserve here.

You still need to show your Priority Pass or Lounge Key (the Mastercard World Elite scheme run by Priority Pass) card at the door.

Interestingly, pre-booking no longer appears to be available for DragonPass or Diners Club cardholders.

Which other lounges can be pre-booked?

This page of the No1 Lounges website lets you pre-book the following lounges:

  • Birmingham – No1 Lounge (£6), Clubrooms (£15)
  • Gatwick North – No1 Lounge (£6)
  • Gatwick South – No1 Lounge (£6), My Lounge (£6)
  • Heathrow Terminal 5 – Club Aspire (£6)

At Gatwick, your reservation fee also gets you fast track security access.

Club Aspire lounge Heathrow Terminal 5 reservations

Is the Club Aspire lounge at Heathrow Terminal 5 worth visiting?

You can find all of the UK HfP airport lounge reviews by clicking here.

Specifically, our most recent review of the Club Aspire lounge at Heathrow Terminal 5 is here.

Personally, I don’t like this lounge due to its poor design although it does what it can with the space it was given by Heathrow. I think Aspire should increase its footprint by bringing the entrance forward – there is plenty of space available.

A quick visit to the Plaza Premium lounge in the identical spot on the other side of the terminal shows what can be done – but Plaza Premium is not part of Priority Pass. You can access it with American Express Platinum by showing your Platinum card at the door. DragonPass is also accepted.

Useful links:

You can reserve your Club Aspire Terminal 5 lounge visit, or any other No1 Lounge, on this page of the No1 website.

You can find out more about the other No1 Lounges, and book them for cash if necessary, on their website here.

You can buy a Priority Pass lounge access card here.

You can receive a free Priority Pass (two free visits per year) with American Express Preferred Rewards Gold and a free Priority Pass (unlimited visits for two people plus two guests) with The Platinum Card from American Express.

Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

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

As a reminder, here are the four options to get FREE airport lounge access via a credit card:

The Platinum Card from American Express

60,000 points (SPECIAL OFFER), £200 travel credit and unbeatable 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 Air Lines and Eurostar lounges.  Our American Express Platinum review is here. You can apply here.

EDIT: Until 25th October 2022, there is an exceptionally generous sign-up bonus on The Platinum Card. You will receive 60,000 Membership Rewards points – double the usual amount – and £200 to spend at Amex Travel. You need to spend £6,000 within six months to earn the bonus.

American Express Business Platinum

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

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

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 (50)

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

  • TimM says:

    It appears more straightforward just to pay per visit, in advance for the lower rate. If you are turned away, at least it is a full refund.

  • Sam says:

    The prepaid arrangement defeats the whole purpose of Priority Pass – it’s no longer a pass with priority.

    ‘Pre-booking no longer appears to be available for DragonPass or Diners Club cardholders’. – this sounds like only priority pass holders may be turned away, dragon pass should then have access at all times. But who wishes to visit this packed street market in T5 whilst Plaza Premium is just right across the terminal?

  • Nomid says:

    What’s the best lounge in Gatwick North?
    Flying next Saturday and trying to understand my options – PP via Plat

    • r* says:

      Your options at gatwick north will be turned away, turned away, closed and charged £15 uplift.

      • Rob says:

        If you’re flying before 2pm, My Lounge may be quiet because people may not have realised its open.

        Logically Plaza has a higher chance of letting you in as Priority Pass isn’t accepted – you can just flash your Platinum card.

        • Nomid says:

          Thank you. Our flight is at 10.50am so quite concerned it will be mayhem there

      • Brighton Belle says:

        Just as bad at Gatwick South. Turned away today at no1 and My Lounge go home at lunchtime. Why? Staff shortage? Terminal was swamped with queues at most food outlets.

        No1 was booking in lots of other punters.
        Priority Pass is Priority Farce.

        • Jonathan says:

          I once watched two people pay £110 in total at No 1 in Heathrow. Virgin used to (may still do) a deal where passes were £25 each. I would imagine that staff in the lounge are on minimum wage and that those on the desk get a bonus for each full paying entry. Therefore there is no incentive to let in PP at all. Totally agree that the name needs to change, you are not a ‘Priority’ at all!

    • scottydogg says:

      Im sure you can access the Plaza premium lounge in Gatwick north with your Amex , (not available on PP)
      You might have a better chance of getting in there and not get turned away from a PP lounge

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

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