I have been traveling internationally for over 5 years. I had always shown up to the airport with just enough time to get through security and make it to the gate. I would usually be bored waiting at the gate, and debating on buying some overpriced airport food. That is until I received my Priority Pass. This has completely changed the way I travel. I am consistently now the first person to check in for a flight so I can have lots of time in an airport lounge to get free WiFi, food, and drinks!
What is the Priority Pass?
The Priority Pass is a company that has put together a membership pass to visit different airport lounges around the world. There are over 1,300 airport lounges in more than 600 cities in 148 countries around the world participating in their program. Airport lounges are the holy grail of travel. Regardless of the airline you are flying, the lounges accept you based on your membership. Each time I visit one, I am rejuvenated and relaxed before my flight. While all lounges are different, most will have free food, drinks, wifi, charging stations and showers. Once we even received a free 15 minute neck massage from a airport lounge in Thailand!
The Priority Pass has totally revolutionized the way I travel. I’ve never been late to the airport since having it to maximize the time I spend in the lounges. This year while traveling around the globe, I have visited over 20 airport lounges. It has saved me hundreds of dollars when I would have been purchasing overpriced airport food.
How do I get the Priority Pass?
There are two ways to get the Priority Pass. You can purchase a membership or you can get the membership as a benefit of having particular credit cards.
Priority Pass offers 3 different types of memberships when buying directly off their website: standard, standard plus and prestige. The standard membership costs $99 USD annually plus $32 USD for every time you visit a lounge. To bring a guest with the standard membership it is also an additional $32 USD. With the standard plus membership it costs $299 USD annually and your first 10 visits are free. After first 10, it costs $32 USD per visit. To bring a guest with the standard plus membership it also costs $32 USD per visit. The highest level, prestige, costs $429 USD annually; with this membership all of the visits to the lounges are free. To bring a guest to the lounge with the prestige membership costs $32 USD.
To purchase the Priority Pass membership on their website you can click here.
Another option of getting a Priority Pass is by signing up for a credit card that gives you the membership as a perk of the credit card. This is how I have my Priority Pass, through my Chase Sapphire Reserve credit card. With my membership, I can go to one lounge per day for free with two guests at no additional charge. Each additional guest after that costs $27 USD. There are several credit cards that offer the Priority Pass membership as a benefit of their card.
Credit cards that offer the Priority Pass membership include:
- Chase Sapphire Reserve
- The Platinum Card from American Express
- The Business Platinum Card from American Express
- Hilton Honors American Express Surpass Card
- U.S. Bank Altitude Reserve Visa Infinite Card
Travel tip: To learn more about my favorite travel credit cards click here.
Which airports have lounges that I can use with the Priority Pass?
There are over 1,300 airport lounges around the world in over 600 cities that accept the Priority Pass. You can search for airport lounges on the Priority Pass website or on their mobile app. Once you find the airport you will be traveling through, you can see which lounges, restaurants, and shopping offers are available per terminal. They also have airport guides on their website and mobile app that can help you figure out the WiFi situation, how to get to and from an airport, parking information, and a map of the airport. It is very helpful when arriving at an airport and you need to figure out where to go and how to connect to the free WiFi.
While traveling around the world this year and having taken 20+ flights, we only encountered two airports without lounges. This was mainly due to being such small airports we were flying out of like Vientiane, Laos or Da Lat, Vietnam.
Can I bring guests with me to the lounges?
If you purchase the Priority Pass through their membership program you can pay $32 to bring guests into lounges. If you receive a priority pass through a credit card company, it can depend on the contact the company has with Priority Pass. But for example with my Chase Sapphire Reserve, you can bring two guests for free each time you visit a lounge.
How do I get into the lounges?
When visiting a lounge, you present your Priority Pass membership card to the lounge front desk. You can also download the Priority Pass app and sign into your account to have a digital membership card which they can scan. Typically you can only spend 3 hours there; however, we have been to some lounges where they let you stay 6 hours, which is helpful for long layovers. You can find out the different conditions for each lounge on the page for the lounge on their website or through the app.
The Priority Pass App
The Priority Pass has a great app that you can download from the App Store or the Google Play Store. On this app you can log-in and have a digital membership card that the lounge can scan for your access. The app also offers a great search bar where you can search for lounges available at all the different airports. You can search by city, airport name, or airport code. From there, you can select your desired airport and see which lounges are offered in each terminal. This is where you can also see if there are any spa offers or restaurants which you can eat at.
Once you find the lounge you would like to go to, you can view the opening hours, lounge facilities, location within the terminal, and special conditions (like dress code or maximum time to stay). We have not yet encountered an issue with dress codes set by the lounges; and we are not the fanciest travelers. I’m typically in leggings and Luke is sometimes just in athletic shorts. Sometimes I feel worried they would say we are not dressed to the dress code, but no one has said anything to us yet (knock on wood).
The Priority Pass app also shows photos of the lounge and guests can add their own. Within the app you can also change the language setting. They offer Chinese, French, German, Spanish, Korean, Japanese and more.
My Favorite Airport Lounges with the Priority Pass
We have been to many airport lounges with our Priority Pass over the past year. Not all airport lounges are created equal. We have been to some pretty basic ones that did not include food or ones that the food is not so great, but, overall, they are fabulous. Here is a look at my favorite airport lounges that we have been to:
- Fiji Airways Premiere Lounge- Nadi International Airport, Fiji
- Absolutely stunning airport lounge with great food and drinks
- Strata Lounge- Auckland International Airport, New Zealand
- Excellent food, left completely stuffed
- Ahlan Business Class Lounge- Dubai International Airport, United Arab Emirates
- Delicious food, can order food like a restaurant in addition to their buffet
- Plaza Premium Lounge- Phnom Penh International Airport, Cambodia
- Large lounge with plenty of seating options and great charging ports, great buffet of food options
- Cedar Lounge- Beirut Rafic Hariri International Airport, Lebanon
- Relaxing, large lounge with great WiFi and food
- Changi Lounge- Singapore Changi International Airport, Singapore
- Open 24 hours, and will let visit upon arrival to Singapore (say you arrive too early to check into your hotel, you can visit this lounge for a few hours before heading to your hotel)
- The Coral Executive Lounge- Chiang Mai International Airport, Thailand
- Complimentary 15 minute neck and shoulder massage
The Priority Pass has absolutely changed the way I travel for the better! I highly recommend getting a membership if you’re often traveling by plane. This is the best travel secret that is meant to be shared! Safe travels and let me know if you love airport lounges as much as I do below 🙂
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