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Review: the Tempelhof (British Airways) lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport

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This is our review of the Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport. It is the lounge used by British Airways and, amongst others, Aer Lingus and Air France.

It is also a DragonPass lounge but does NOT work with Priority Pass. DragonPass means that applicable Barclays and NatWest customers can enter. Priority Pass cardholders can get €23 of free credit at the Moevenpick Cafe – this includes cards issued by American Express, for once.

It is also possible to pay cash although you wouldn’t catch me paying the asking price of €48.

Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport

This was my first visit to Berlin Brandenburg Airport. It is four years since I was last in the city for the ITB travel show, and when I was there last year I travelled by train from Hamburg whilst my family were with my in-laws. (A bad decision in retrospect …. it was a Bank Holiday weekend, literally everything in Berlin was shut for two days and it rained constantly!)

I miss the quick 15 minutes taxi rides to and from the city that the old Tegel airport offered. Brandenburg is a long way from the centre, not helped by a confusing mix of local and suburban rail options. There is only one mainline train per hour from Friedrichstrasse, for example. Whilst Potsdamer Platz (outside my hotel) has U-Bahn, S-Bahn and national rail services, none of them seemed to go directly to the airport. Signage at the airport itself is spectacularly unhelpful in guiding you to the best rail option for your needs.

Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport

Finding the Tempelhof lounge

Berlin Brandenburg is U-shaped, with passengers entering into the departure area in the centre. Unfortunately, the Tempelhof lounge is at the far end of the top of the ‘U’ – you literally could not walk further.

The lounge is up a few flights of stairs, or you can take a lift.

The good news is that, as you leave the lounge, you can immediately go up a flight of stairs to the non-Schengen departure area. Boarding was relatively efficient from there although you are pretty low on facilities once you go through passport control.

Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport

Inside the Tempelhof lounge

One benefit of the lounge being on the prong of the ‘U’ is that you get good views over the runway as you can see above.

It’s a slightly confusing layout inside. The upside is that there is a range of seating, from:

Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport


Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport


Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport


Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport

…. and, for those who want to take it easy:

Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport

It was fairly busy in the lounge so I couldn’t get better photographs. The irony is that the airport itself was deserted. I walked past many totally empty cafes on my way to the lounge, and if I’d known how far I had to walk – and if I hadn’t given myself ample dwell time before my flight – I would have sat in one of those instead.

Food and drink

I’m in two minds about the F&B offering. There was certainly food available, and it is a better selection than you find in most independent airport lounges, but it didn’t get me too excited.

The hot food options were:

  • meatballs in pepper sauce with rice
  • beetroot sweet potato pan
  • celery soup with walnuts and tangerine

It didn’t do it for me but your tastes may vary. There was always Plan B, the not-hugely-appealing salad bar:

Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport

…. and Plan C, the pretzel wall:

Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport

The alcohol selection was decent. As well as a fridge of beer and soft drinks, there was a decent range of spirits (self pour):

Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport

…. and wine, albeit no champagne:

Review Tempelhof lounge at Berlin Brandenburg Airport


For a brand new airport, Berlin Brandenburg is underwhelming when it comes to lounges.

I’m not sure what the Lufthansa facilities are like, but as Berlin is not a Lufthansa hub I would be surprised if they were anything special. The failure to set up any sort of Priority Pass lounge is very odd. There is no shortage of underused space in the airport so things may change in the future.

For now, I certainly wouldn’t rush to the airport purely to give the Tempelhof lounge a try.

Getting airport lounge access for free from a credit card

How to get FREE airport lounge access via UK credit cards (April 2024)

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

The Platinum Card from American Express

40,000 bonus points and a huge range of valuable benefits – for a fee Read our full review

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

American Express Business Platinum

40,000 points sign-up bonus and an annual £200 Amex Travel credit 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 £24.  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 Priority Pass card, allowing you access to the Priority Pass network.  Guests are charged at £24 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 (84)

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

  • David Hawkins says:

    I am a regular business class passenger of Aegean from BER.
    Aegean expect me to use the Lufthansa lounge which is approximately one kilometer from the Aegean departure gate. The Tempelhof lounge on the other hand is very close to the usual Aegean departure gate but I am not allowed to use it.

  • Alan Gavurin says:

    For more about the history of the building this airport have a listen to this fascination and horrifying podcast

    How to F#€k up an Airport

  • John says:

    The original Tegel architects are still going. It was their first commission post-graduation.

    They did an interview with DW, and explained that they considered pitching for the new BER.

    Changed their minds when they saw the brief. Main requirement for TXL was shortest possible time for passengers to get to gate.

    BER developers insisted on massive built in redundancy to effectively force passengers to consider profit generating shopping/eating options (which haven’t really materialised).

    Deliberately slowing people’s traffic through a building didn’t appeal, so they didn’t come up with a design.

  • Charles Martel says:

    I thought it was only marginally better than the Pearl Lounge at Arlanda which is pretty awful.

  • vlcnc says:

    I agree, I also miss Tegel. Loved how you could be airside so quickly after landing and on your way to the city – in many ways apart from perhaps capacity, it was the perfect airport concept for Berlin given it is a mainly point-to-point destination with people starting or ending journey’s then. Of course though when Berlin Brandenburg started being built (took 14 years!!) it was different time, Air Berlin was to have it as its shiny new hub and it was built to accommodate A380’s which now ever ended up regularly servicing it!

  • Carpenter says:

    Is there a ticket within VA class which can be cancelled before 2-3 hrs of departure .Might visit Amex and Clubhouse lounges.

  • Blair Waldorf Salad says:

    Good grief, that black chair looks like something used for dental surgery, not sitting out in the open in a lounge.

    I’ve been to the Lufthansa lounge at BER. It’s perfectly fine. There’ll never be a risk I go hungry as the cheeses, cold cuts and breads are enough (and good enough) to be a meal in and of themselves.

    For interest the LH lounge at DXB T1 appears to be catered by Emirates. The font on the food buffet labels is the Emirates font, and the dishes are not what is typically served in LH lounges. The Haribo gummies and M&Ms in jars are pure Lufthansa though and still present in DXB.

  • Richard T says:

    I’ve used BER about 20 times with BA. The lounge is just too far away to make sense, I tend instead to go straight to the quite nice cafe by the gate BA normally use and have a valedictory wurst and bier before boarding.

    And of course I lament the ease of getting to TXL and the ease of taxi to gate journey once you got there. O well.

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

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