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Get free lounge access with easyJet if you buy a FLEXIfare ticket from Gatwick

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If you’ve got an easyJet flight from Gatwick coming up in the next three months you may want to check what fare you booked. The airline has just announced that it is offering free lounge access to all FLEXIfare customers.

It appears to be a genuine service upgrade, albeit for a limited time only until the end of November.

The offer is available for new and existing bookings. You can get up to three hours’ access.

easyjet lounge The Gateway Gatwick

easyJet already has a lounge at Gatwick

The move doesn’t exactly come as a surprise. Almost a year ago, in October 2021, easyJet unveiled its first airport lounge, called ‘The Gateway Lounge’. This was a joint venture between the airline and No1 Lounges and rebranded an existing My Lounge facility at Gatwick North

Whilst the lounge was easyJet branded, it did not offer free access to any customers – not even easyJet Plus members, the paid loyalty scheme. Instead, you could pay £18.50 (now £18.99).

It would have been odd, however, to rebrand a lounge without the intention of bundling it into certain fares for free. Eleven months later and easyJet is ready to do just that – albeit as part of what appears to be a trial, given the three month offer period.

Is easyJet’s Gateway Lounge any good?

We don’t know. With BA now domiciled at Gatwick South it’s rare that any of us make it to the North Terminal.

That said, the Gateway Lounge appears to be a simple rebrand of the existing My Lounge, which we last reviewed in 2016 here.

My Lounge is the ‘budget’ lounge brand from No1 Lounges (now owned by Swissport and Collinson). In general, they feature industrial-chic decor and a more basic food and drinks offering. Typically you can expect a small buffet and some basic self-serve alcohol, including spirits.

Here is how easyJet describes the lounge:

“Look forward to nibbles and light bites from the hot and cold menu – just help yourself to a bit of what you fancy and bring a bit of your holiday to your table.

Take advantage of some delicious breakfast options including a hot breakfast grill, brunch and all day eggs.”

It also claims there is a dress code ….

“The dress code is smart-casual – tracksuits, sports kit and bare shoulders aren’t recommended. If you like being comfy on the plane you’re welcome to get changed just before you leave the lounge.”

…. although I’d be shocked if this is enforced.

The Gateway Lounge is currently open from 4am until 4pm daily.

Free access to easyjet lounge at Gatwick Airport

What is easyJet’s FLEXIfare?

Lounge access is only free if you book one of easyJet’s FLEXIfares.

This is what easyJet calls its bundled offering, with a large cabin bag, 23kg checked luggage, Up Front seat, easyJet Plus bag drop, priority security, speedy boarding, an in-flight food and drinks voucher and free flight and route changes within 1 day of the original booking.

It is as close as easyJet gets to business class. Together with the free lounge access it pretty much covers everything you’d get from a British Airways Club Europe flight, albeit you’d have to forego your Avios and tier points.

I did a quick price comparison on a one-way flight from Gatwick to Amsterdam in November. Here’s how easyJet priced them up:

  • The cheapest flight-only fare on the day was £26.99
  • FLEXIfare was £120.99 flat fee that day

Whilst that sounds like a big jump, and it is, remember that you are mostly paying for the freedom to change your flight timings. You can even change your destination. An equivalent fully-flexible ticket on British Airways costs upwards of £450.

FLEXIfares are mostly aimed at the business market, where the flexibility to change your flight timings and date at short notice is essential. It is not really aimed at holidaymakers.

If you aren’t travelling on a FLEXIfare you can still use the lounge, although you have to pay for it. You can book it in advance via the Holiday Extras website here, with prices starting at £22.99 – it should be £18.99 if booked along with your easyJet ticket.

Conclusion

Although just a trial, adding free lounge access to its FLEXIfares is a genuine improvement to its offering and will close the gap with British Airways, particularly for anyone travelling on business who needs the flexibility to make last-minute flight changes.

We will have to wait and see if easyJet extends the deal beyond 30th November. It’s not clear if this is a one-off promotion or simply a trial before it is rolled out long-term.

Let’s see if Rob or I eventually make it over to the North Terminal to review the lounge over the next few months.

The easyJet homepage is here. This offer isn’t on the home page but will appear if you try to book a ticket from London Gatwick.


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 (14)

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

  • JimBH says:

    This is really interesting. I did a test for 1st October LGW-RHO. I currently have a normal ticket to which I’d added speedy/upfront & 23kg bag. If I was booking that today I’d be better off buying the fully flexible ticket which costs only £26 more but includes lounge access and £7.95 onboard refreshment voucher. And of course I’ve got the hidden benefit of “change flight free of charge up to 24 hours before”.

  • P matheson says:

    Don’t even bother going to this lounge l flew on easyJet in August and used it only because the No 1 lounge was fully booked. On arrival at 7a.m there were empty tables but all full of dirty cups and plates, l cleared one to use and went up to the buffet where l was told by staff that they had run out of all juices , pastries , cereal , bread and all hot breakfast items except for bacon so basically their was nothing to eat. I asked for a refund as l was going to leave but that request was denied.

  • Speedbird676 says:

    I was in The Gateway Lounge, courtesy of Lounge Key, as the main No. 1 lounge was full. It was perfectly pleasant and the breakfast was pretty good. Staff were friendly.

  • Joey London says:

    I cannot believe that crappy, budget airline has the audacity to quote a dress code for it’s basic, 3rd-rate lounge.
    In 2022 where do they actually get off judging people for wearing tracksuits or an off-shoulder jumper? Give me a break.

    • lumma says:

      To be fair, that’s the dress code that No1 have always had for their lounges

  • Bill says:

    I haven’t used Flexi since the change period was changed from ‘weeks’ to a day.

    • Rhys says:

      Yes, not exactly the most liberal change policy…

      • pigeon says:

        Though there’s no fare difference when moving times, can’t think of another airline with this policy?

    • Bagoly says:

      .. which unfortunately killed off the ability to save hundreds by booking a route one had no intention of flying (I was nervous the first time I did it!)

  • r* says:

    I dont believe that lounge actually opens at 4am.

    Ive been through gatwick north a few times on morning flights over the last few months and despite pirority pass stating the lounge should be open, not once has it been open by the time Ive had to leave the lounge area to head to the gate.

  • Richie says:

    Wagamama with views is my preference at the north terminal.

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

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