4 US-based British Airways lounges join Priority Pass network

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Priority Pass holders travelling through select U.S. airports now have access to four additional British Airways lounges — two on each coast.

For a fee (or complimentary with some credit cards), Priority Pass lets members access more than 1,300 airport lounges in nearly 150 countries and 600 cities globally, and the BA lounges are the latest addition to the Priority Pass roster.

Be sure to read our guide to Priority Pass and how it works.

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Priority Pass holders can now access BA lounges at San Francisco International Aiport (SFO), Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA), Newark Liberty International Aiport (EWR) and Dulles International Airport (IAD) in Washington, D.C., according to both Priority Pass and Head for Points, which first reported the news.

Lounges are generally restricted to travellers with premium-cabin tickets, as a reward for paying a higher fare type or those who buy memberships or hold certain credit cards.

However, the opening of these BA lounges to Priority Pass holders means the lounges are no longer restricted to BA and partner Oneworld airline passengers with premium tickets or status, dependent on the airline.

Although this might lead to further overcrowding of lounges, these four lounges will restrict usage hours: Priority Pass holders can only use the lounges for three hours within a rather limited time frame (though this doesn’t apply to lounges at SEA). Times are as follows:

Read more: How can you access British Airways lounges?

Minute Suites
The Atlanta Concourse B Minute Suites location. (Photo by JT Genter/The Points Guy)

As is the case with most Priority Pass lounges, travellers can bring up to two guests to the lounge, including accompanying children under age 2. Complimentary bag storage is also available inside certain lounges.

Beyond the BA lounges, Priority Pass holders also have access to the Air FranceKLM lounge at SFO and IAD, the Club lounge at SEA and the Turkish Airlines lounge and the Lufthansa Business lounge at IAD. A spokesperson for BA declined to comment on this story.

In addition to lounges, a Priority Pass membership can include access to specific airport restaurants, Minute Suites and other sleep pods, depending on the level of membership you have.

There are three membership options available, ranging from $99 to $429 annually:

  • Standard membership: $99 annual fee plus $32 per visit.
  • Standard Plus membership: $249 per year, which includes 10 free visits, with subsequent visits for $32 each.
  • Prestige membership: $429 per year, which includes unlimited complimentary visits.

Many credit cards offer access to Priority Pass lounges as a benefit for holding the card, so be sure to see if your card does before enrolling in the program to take advantage. For example, the American Express Preferred Rewards Gold card gives Priority Pass membership with access for up to two free guests just for holding the card.

Related: The 7 dos and don’ts in an airport lounge

Bottom line

Although you can find more than 150 Priority Pass lounges throughout North America alone, don’t necessarily assume that you’ll be able to get in without waiting in line. Lounges have been crowded this summer since more people are travelling, so be sure to budget extra time before your flight if you intend to enjoy the lounge for all its worth.

Even so, some would argue that any lounge access is better than no lounge access as well.

Featured photo by Katie Genter/The Points Guy.

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