Carry On Luggage

The Truth About Lounge Access

An airport lounge sounds like an oasis, a sanctuary from the insanity of the crowds where you can relax, catch up on email, and enjoy a drink or a snack. Some are even better: Most of the business and first-class lounges operated by international airlines have elaborate, restaurant-style dining. The American Express Centurion lounges offer open bars, full buffets with dishes created by local chefs, and spas in some locations.

All of this is great, provided you live in a city where your home airport is populated by lounges, or if you travel regularly and the hubs of your favorite airline have lounges you can use. Otherwise, the value of a lounge membership can be negligible.

Here’s a look at the major lounge networks, along with credit cards that give members the most useful access:

Priority Pass

Founded in 1992, this is the granddaddy of lounge networks. It currently includes over 1,200 airport locations in more than 500 cities, but beware: only 85 of those l… Read More

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