How To Get Into Airport Lounges For Free

How To Get Into Airport Lounges For Free

image credit: Star Alliance – Los Angeles lounge

Have you walked past those double doors at the airport? Sometimes they’re frosted glass or solid wood. Often they’re restricted to access to a select few passengers. Passengers who’ve paid for the privilege in one form or another. But no longer. From being a frequent flyer, buying a day pass, to having the right credit card, here are all the ways you can get into an airport lounge.

Have you ever found yourself at the airport with several hours before boarding sitting uncomfortably on the metal benches? Airport lounges provide a comfortable way to relax before you board your flight, with many lounges being so luxurious that it will feel your vacation started early.

image credit: American Airlines – Los Angeles lounge

Airport lounges offer comfortable seating and workstations, wifi, showers, and free food and alcohol. Some of the best lounges in the world even offer amenities such as gyms, massages, movie rooms, and rooms to take a nap.

Airport lounges aren’t only limited to people who have a first class or business class ticket. Here is how you can get into airport lounges for free.

 

1. Have Elite Status

How To Get Into Airport Lounges For Free

If you take enough flights with an airline you can earn elite status which gives you complimentary lounge access to their lounges. Plenty of airlines such as Delta, American Airlines, and all the airlines that are part of Star Alliance such as Air Canada.

 

2. Join Your Friend

How To Get Into Airport Lounges For Free

image credit: Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse – JFK New York

If you are flying with someone who else who has elite status with an airline they can often bring a guest with them into the lounge. For example, if someone you are flying with has Star Alliance Gold, or paid for membership in the United Club or Air Canada Maple Leaf Club they can bring one guest into the lounge with them.

 

4. Trade In Your Points

How To Get Into Airport Lounges For Free

You can trade in your Aeroplan miles to obtain access to Maple Leaf Lounge for a year.

One time lounge access – 7250 Aeroplan miles  

Canada (access to 16 lounges in Canada) – 53,500 Aeroplan miles or 78,250 miles for you and your spouse for a year of lounge access. Regular price is $375 CDN for one person per year.

North America Plus (access to 60 lounges in Canada, US and Europe) – 70,500 Aeroplan miles or 104,000 miles for you and your spouse for a year of lounge access. Regular price is $495 CDN for one person per year.

Worldwide (access to 210 lounges worldwide) – 94,750 Aeroplan miles or 138,000 miles for you and your spouse for a year of lounge access. Regular price is $665 CDN for one person per year.

 

5. Use Your Airport Lounge Gift Card

How To Get Into Airport Lounges For Free

Plaza Premium Lounge Gift Card

Around your birthday or Christmas start giving hints that you would like a Plaza Premium Lounge gift card. Gift cards can be purchased for 2 visits ($98 USD), 5 visits ($219 USD) or 10 visits ($349 USD) and are valid for a year.

The great thing about Plaza Premium Lounge access is they aren’t tied to a single airline, so you can enjoy lounge airline no matter what airline you use.

Loungebuddy Gift Card

Loungebuddy is the perfect gift for travelers as it gives you access to hundreds of lounges worldwide. Gift cards can be purchased starting at $25 up to $250, with lounge access rates starting at $35 (prices vary depending on the lounge). On their site or app you can search for nearby airport lounges and present your gift card to obtain access.

 

 

6. Use Your Credit Card

Several credit cards provide free airport lounge access.

 

BMO Air Miles World Elite Mastercard

How To Get Into Airport Lounges For Free

The BMO Air Miles World Elite Mastercard offers a welcome bonus of 20,000 reward points worth $200. This card gives you 1 Air Mile for every $10 you spend on your credit card, along with travel and medical and insurance.

The BMO Air Miles World Elite Mastercard offers a welcome bonus of 20,000 reward points worth $200. This card gives you 1 Air Mile for every $10 you spend on your credit card, along with travel and medical and insurance.

The annual fee is $120.

 

American Express Platinum Card

How To Get Into Airport Lounges For Free

It is the only credit card in Canada that provides unlimited lounge access, and each time you visit a lounge, you can bring a guest for free. American Express Platinum Card includes worldwide Platinum Lounge Benefit, the Airport Club Program, and Priority Pass membership.

Additionally, you gain access to the Centurion Lounges in North America and Plaza Premium lounges worldwide for free. At these lounges, you can bring two guests for free and purchase entry for additional guests.

Included in the card is a $200 CAD annual travel credit that you can use towards your next flight, and extensive travel insurance that covers trip cancelation, car rental damage, flight delay, baggage delay, lost baggage, accident insurance, hotel burglary, and medical coverage.

The card costs $699 a year CAD, but with the $200 CAD travel credit, and unlimited lounge access it is the best credit choice for frequent travelers.

 

Scotiabank Platinum American Express Card

How To Get Into Airport Lounges For Free

This credit card included Priority Pass membership with 10 free passes per year with each visit after costing $27. It also includes 7 types of travel insurance.

The annual fee is $399.

 

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