Airport lounges seem to be the only saviour in depressing long-haul flights. During the flights, your hair is greasy, your breath smells like dead people, and your back is unbearably sore and stiff — you can’t wait to take a shower and lie down on a comfy bed. You glance at the airport lounges but have never dreamt of getting into it once. But what if I told you that you can enter airport lounges for free, simply by showing the right credit cards? Let’s check your wallet now!
- BOC credit cards: Unlimited access to airport lounges
- Standard Chartered credit cards: Unlimited airport lounge access in the first year of card issuance
- Hang Seng credit cards: Access to Mastercard Airport Experiences and Priority Pass
- Citi credit cards: Free airport lounge access for your accompanying guests
- HSBC credit cards: Visa Signature offers free access to airport lounges
- American Express credit cards: Exclusive entry to The Centurion Lounge
- UnionPay Diamond Prestige card: No reservations needed
- Other banks (CNCBI, Dah Sing, Shanghai Commercial Bank, ICBC)
BOC credit cards: Unlimited access to airport lounges
If you get your BOC Visa Infinite Card before 31 Dec or spend HK$180,000+ in 2018, you will get unlimited access to Priority Pass and Plaza Premium Lounge at designated airports till 31 Dec 2019. Once the main cardholder spends HK$180,000+, all of its supplementary cards get 10 free visits to airport lounges and cost HK$220/head after the 10th visits.
BOC Commercial Card can also get you unlimited free access to Plaza Premium Lounge at designated airports, but they charge you HK$220/accompanying guest.
BOC Hong Kong Airlines Visa Signature Card offers you 5 visits to Hong Kong Airlines “Club Bauhinia” and “Club Autus”. You can share your free access with your accompanying guests, but you must take the same flights of Hong Kong Airlines together with your guests. Plus, you need to hold unused air tickets for flights which are marketed and operated by Hong Kong Airlines (for designated classes only, except codeshare flights) so that you can join “Accelerate” to get unlimited entry to Hong Kong Airlines lounges.
Standard Chartered credit cards: Unlimited airport lounge access in the first year of card issuance
Standard Chartered Priority Banking Credit Card and Standard Chartered Visa Infinite Card give you unlimited entry to airport lounges under Priority Pass in the first year of card issuance. Simply meet the minimum balance requirement or spend HK$150,000 in the last credit card year, you can continue your freebies next year. But note that your guests have to pay HK$210/head to get into the lounges.
Hang Seng credit cards: Access to Mastercard Airport Experiences and Priority Pass
A fan of Mastercard? Good news! Pay only US$27 (approx. HK$212), then you can access worldwide Mastercard Airport Experiences, which is managed by LoungeKey. From today to 31 Dec, Hang Seng Prestige World MasterCard gives you HK$220 Cash Dollars for using airport lounges if you spend HK$20,000 in each phrase (around 2 months). That means your admission fee is waived! For every credit card account, you can get up to 4 times of cash back in each phase, and 12 times for the whole promotion period.
Is that too complicated? No worries, consider taking Hang Seng Visa Infinite Card. This card gives you unlimited access to airport lounges under Priority Pass without any spending target. But they charge US$27 (approx. HK$212) for each of your guests.
Citi credit cards: Free airport lounge access for your accompanying guests
For Citi Premier Miles Card, both main and supplementary cardholders can each enjoy up to 12 times complimentary access to designated Plaza Premium Lounges worldwide for every year, provided that cardholders spend over $5,000 per lounge access within 30 days afterwards. For accompanying guests, the entrance fee is the lowest among all credit cards, for only $200 per guest.
Citi Prestige Card gives cardholder access to Mastercard® Airport Experiences (MCAE) provided by LoungeKey, download the mobile app or log in to MCAE website, present your QR code, boarding pass to identify yourself as a LoungeKey member to get the free lounge access, you will need to pay $250 for each additional visit. LoungeKey also provides dining, spa and retail offer from selected airport merchants.
Citi Ultima Card holders can enjoy unlimited free access to Priority Pass Lounge with one accompanying guest, for the second or more guests, each of them will be charged an entrance fee of $211.
HSBC credit cards: free airport lounge access for Visa Signature Card
HSBC Visa Signature Card main cardholders can enjoy one complimentary lounge access per month to Plaza Premium Lounge, upon spending of $1,500 or above till 31 January 2019.
Looking for unlimited airport lounge access? HSBC Corporate/Commercial Cards get you unlimited free access to designated Plaza Premium Lounges around the world.
American Express Platinum Card: Free Access to The Centurion Lounge
With American Express Platinum Card or Centurion Card, main cardholder and two accompanying guests can enjoy free and unlimited access to The Centurion Lounge, which is opened just a year ago. Centurion cardholders can even enter with immediate family (spouse or domestic partner, and children under 18) with no additional charge. There is also a private area exclusively for Centurion cardholders and their guests.
UnionPay Diamond Prestige Credit Card: No reservation needed
UnionPay Diamond Credit Card holders can enjoy up to 3 times free access to the Plaza Premium Lounge, which required an advance reservation, with a limit of 100 quotes per day. UnionPay Diamond Prestige Credit Card gives you unlimited access to the Plaza Premium Lounge at Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport with no reservation needed. However the Plaza Premium Lounge can be quite noisy when it is getting crowded, you may also need to line up to get in.
Diamond Prestige cardholders can also enjoy up to 3 complimentary access to Plaza Premium First at Hong Kong International Airport till 31 December 2018, you will need to pay a top-up service fee of $200 in excess of the 3 access. Each supplementary card holders and accompanying guests can enjoy 20% off for the entrance fee, which is now celebratory price of $700 (US$90) per person for 3 hours.
CCB(Asia) UnionPay Diamond Prestige Credit Card is the only Diamond Prestige Card in Hong Kong for now. Sadly, you can’t apply for it yourself but need to wait for their invitations.
CNCBI CITIC first Platinum Card: Unlimited access of the Plaza Premium Lounge, accompanying guests can enjoy 30% off on the admission fee.
Dah Sing VIP Banking Visa Infinite Card: (exclusive for Dah Sing VIP Banking customers) Enjoy a maximum of 4 times Priority Pass airport lounges access per year, an entrance fee of $210 for each accompanying guest.
Shanghai Commercial Bank Pok Oi UnionPay Diamond Prestige Credit Card: Unlimited access to the Plaza Premium Lounge of Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, an entrance fee of $350 for each accompanying guest.
Shanghai Commercial Bank My Smart Card / World Credit Card: enjoy 3 times access in the first year of card issuance, and meet the spending requirement to get your freebies next year ($50,000 to 99,999: 3 times; $100,000 to $149,999: 5 times; $150,000 or above: 8 times)
ICBC Corporate Mastercard: Register and activate your account on DragonPass website to get 6 points for each cardholder and supplementary cardholders. 1 point for one entry to airport lounges and 0.5 points for one entry to high-speed rail lounge. Cardholder’s point will be deducted for accompanying guests. Promotion ends by 31 December 2018.
Can accompanying guests get free airport lounge access?
There are only a few cards allowing free entry for accompanying guests, like Citi Ultima Card. American Express Platinum Card and Centurion Card holders and two accompanying guests can enjoy free access to the Centurion Lounge, additional charges will be applied for most of the other credit cards.
You may ask “Can I share my access to my accompanying guest if I own 2 airport lounge access credit cards?” The standard answer is no, as it is listed in the terms and conditions, the promotion is only eligible for the cardholder. But some netizens claimed that they’ve tried it before. But still, better to stick with the rules.
Limited airport lounge access
Most of the promotions allow unlimited access, but technically, you only get a maximum of 1 access per day. However, if there are 2 or more airport lounges under the same network in the airport, plus you are having enough time for leisure, you can definitely enjoy free access to each lounge.
In Conclusion: Priority Pass Airport Lounge Access Worldwide
Priority Pass gives you access to a global network of airport lounges with no reservation needed, regardless of the airline you fly, which can fill most general and business travellers’ needs.
Some of the high-end credit cards also provide access to the Plaza Premium Lounge, which also covers multiple airports. Arrture members can earn 100 points for every access to Plaza Premium Lounge, and redeem lounge access vouchers or other benefits. You can now redeem 1-hour Plaza Premium Lounge Access for 1,800 points, which can be used in Hong Kong, Kuala Lumpur or London Heathrow airport.