As a frequent flier, you tend to know when to go fast, when to slow down and when to relax. Airport Lounges are such places where you can find everything you need at the airport; a sanctuary in the midst of all chaos.
It’s why I have invested so much in Star Alliance and became a GOLD member which entitles me to free lounge access in all airports with my family or friends.
However, sometimes life does not give you all you want and you have to find a back up plan to find a sanctuary where you can sleep, eat, shower and get good coffee.
I have heard that there are three ways to access lounges; first is through status with airlines( like I have with Star Alliance), second is through credit cards and third through buying lounge memberships.
The second and third options are intertwining as sometimes the credit cards as MasterCard World and World Elite and American Express do provide lounge access through a third party like Plaza Premium Lounges or Priority Pass.
So last time I was passing through London Heathrow on a British Airways flight which does not provide me with access to Star Alliance network lounges. I always check my app Loungebuddy which has a directory of worldwide airport lounges with their amenities and ways of access.
I found out there is a Lovely Plaza Premium Lounge in T5 at Heathrow. So I decided that I will try to access the next time I’m transiting.
Lucky I am in two months, the perfect scenario happened. I was coming back home from China and transiting through Hong Kong and had to wait for 10 hours for the inbound counter to open. I arrived at the airport with no where to go. So I checked the app and there was a Plaza Premium Lounge in Terminal 2 at Hong Kong airport. One of my MasterCard World Elite credit cards let in my daughter and I bought another access for $75 (discounted if you buy online or membership).
The good news is I found out there is another one after security and even a Premium third lounge too. Visiting the website where you can buy passes online, the network is extensive all over the World.
So I got a place to stay in the Arrivals before security with plenty of time to relax, eat and shower till the counter opened. The Wi-Fi was excellent allowed me to finish all my work and have time to sleep on the inbound flight. The staff were amazing and so was the food. They had a cook making noodles soup which was amazing. The desserts too were a saviour.
The trick is that it was before the security which was a no brainer instead of heading back to the city with all the luggage and puffed up eyes!
Will definitely look for more ways to access for free using the credit cards but buying access is much cheaper than having lunch and coffee at the airport! We will not be stranded again for hours, take it from me.
If you have any questions, leave in the comment section below….