Airline Executive Encourages Calling Cops On Customers

Filed Under: Qantas

Late last year Qantas opened their first class lounge at LAX, which is a spectacular lounge. Not only does it have beautiful decor, but it has a full Neil Perry sit down restaurant. I’ve argued it’s probably the best airline lounge in the US.




The Qantas First Class Lounge LAX is a oneworld Emerald lounge, as is evident based on the logo at the door.


Oneworld Emerald lounges are available to the following customers:

  • International longhaul oneworld first class customers, either departing internationally out of LAX, or connecting internationally before 6AM the following day
  • Oneworld Emerald members traveling on oneworld itineraries, regardless of destination (excluding Emerald members through the AAdvantage program)
  • American Executive Platinum members receive access to oneworld Emerald lounges in the US only when on longhaul international itineraries

This isn’t a rule which varies by lounge, but rather that’s the policy for all oneworld Emerald lounges. Now, there are some oneworld lounges which don’t allow Emerald members, like the British Airways Concorde Room or the new Qatar Airways Al Safwa Lounge. But those aren’t oneworld Emerald lounges, and they make those rules clear. Aside from those exceptions, which are clearly stated on the oneworld website, you’re good to go.

Anyway, that brings us to the Qantas First Class Lounge LAX, where the agents working the desk seem to be quite confused over who should have lounge access. People have reported being denied access when:

  • Traveling domestically with a foreign oneworld Emerald card (for example, a British Airways Gold member traveling from Los Angeles to New York)
  • American Executive Platinum members traveling internationally same day, but not out of LAX (for example, traveling from Los Angeles to New York to London)

But it seems the confusion over who should have access might actually come from higher up. FlyerTalk member sisamouth was recently denied access to the lounge (correctly, actually), and was shown the following email, which was sent from one of Qantas’ lounge managers to the staff in the lounge:

From: <redacted>
Subject: Lounge Access
Date: September 17, 2015 at 12:06 PM
To: QantasFirst <redacted>

Hello Everyone,

I understand that there is some increasing confusion around lounge access, particularly in the mornings with American Airlines and other domestic flights. The AA website and access policy is a little contradictory, but this is a Qantas Lounge. I had a phone call with <redacted> this morning to clarify.

In a nut shell

  • Any one on an AA or other OW Domestic flight, originating their journey in LAX regardless of status or cabin to be flown, does NOT have access to the Qantas First or Business Lounges.
  • If an eligible guests has come in on an international flight (i.e. from Australia) and has a connecting flight on a oneworld carrier they are eligible to use one of the lounges.
  • If we witness or know of a passenger soliciting to eligible guests attempting to gain lounge access we are to deny access to that person. Same goes for people saying that their colleague will be coming shortly can they come in, they must wait till the eligible member arrives.
  • If someone bullies or forces their way into the lounge we have Jeff’s full support to call the Airport Police to have this person(s) removed from the lounges and contact the Qantas Duty Manager to inform them of our actions.

It is important that we protect the integrity of the lounges and to not dilute the experience of those that are genuinely eligible. By allowing all and sundry in we compromise the service and product that we offer and cannot recover costs form other airlines when we allow extras in who do not have access.

When I return from Sydney in a couple of weeks we will hold some team briefings and training sessions so that we are ready when the connector tunnel opens between T4 and TBIT.

It’s quite pathetic that this guy doesn’t seem to understand oneworld rules. He is specifically suggesting that:

  • A British Airways Gold member traveling from Los Angeles to New York shouldn’t have access to the lounge
  • An American Executive Platinum member traveling from Los Angeles to New York to London shouldn’t have access to the lounge

And both of those are simply not true. Like I said, this is a oneworld lounge, and therefore it has to follow oneworld policy.


But to me, more concerning than the guy in charge not knowing the rules is the way he suggests handling a situation. “If someone bullies or forces their way into the lounge,” he suggests calling the police. Of course there are cases where that’s appropriate, like if someone goes into the lounge without permission.

But one could also reasonably interpret that as meaning that someone who tries to make their case based on the correct rules should have the cops called on them if they talk back at all. And we know frontline airline employees do sometimes call the cops on people, but I always assume those are “bad apples.” In the case of Qantas, this actually seems to be the suggestion from the manager.

Bottom line

Perhaps before this guy returns to LA to do more “training sessions” he should read up on the rules himself. I  believe some people have reached out to Qantas to clarify the situation, though it’s quite concerning to me that someone fairly high up at Qantas who is in charge of this department both doesn’t know the rules, and also suggests calling the airport police as a means of dealing with such a situation.

What has been your experience with accessing the Qantas First Class Lounge LAX recently?

  1. Seems pretty crazy that a computer can’t correctly admit or deny 99.999% of passengers who try to access the lounge. These policies aren’t the most straightforward things in the world but they are hardly super complicated.

  2. I guess my point is in this day and age it shouldn’t be left up to misinterpretation by uninformed/misinformed agents.

  3. Lucky. This post is quite timely. I am a Qantas Gold and was denied access to the biz lounge today on a LAX-JFK flight. The gate agents were quite mean. They said this was a new policy for the last 3 months and that “American doesn’t pay its bills.” Even though I am a Qantas elite! When I asked to speak to a manager, the lounge agent threatened to call airport police. I shuffled off to the Admirals Club. It’s so funny that you’re posting about this now. I was also told by the lounge agent Isaac that “nobody knows this yet but this isn’t going to be a one world lounge anymore”

  4. @lucky, @stvr – I don’t see what the big deal is, since TBIT is all international flights. It’s a giant pain in the ass to go through security at TBIT simply to access a lounge — especially when there are lounges in other terminals, no? Why wouldn’t you just access the lounge in your designated departure terminal?

  5. @ Josh — That’s not quite true, though. Some domestic American flights do leave from TBIT (specifically some which arrive from international destinations and continue domestically).

  6. I like at Lufthansa lounges where you scan your ticket at the door. It’s a computer that decided if you are in or out, not an agent who may be misinformed.

  7. @lucky, my mistake, it appears there are some domestic flights in that terminal. I think those flights should be permitted but I can’t help but think the majority of the cop-calling situations are probably arising from individuals who really have no need to be in that terminal to begin with. I know it’s just anecdotal but I witnessed it myself a few months back. I was traveling AF F (which also has access to the Qantas lounge) and there was a super shady guy trying to convince the lounge agent he belonged there. He was on a domestic F flight originating out of LA and departing out of (I think) terminal 4. The lounge agent was polite (no cops called 🙂 ), but he was not being let in. I think it was the right call.

  8. As you point out, this is a amazing lounge with full sit down restaurant- Qantas is obviously investing in the product to differentiate its international first class product.

    OW is just a marketing alliance. All that will happen with complaining over-entitled status-matched frequent fliers complaining at the door is 1) the OW Emerald logo will be pried off and an exception added in the OW lounge access rules and 2) airport security will be called. This is a Qantas lounge, with Qantas rules, and they’ve clearly decided to only give access to passengers departing internationally from LAX.

    I am surprised that a Qantas Gold was denied access, but then maybe they are defining the “domestic” exclusion to mean any domestic flight in the world, not just Australian domestic. But then Qantas has never treated it’s elite frequent fliers particularly well…

    I don’t see where a US AMEX platinum card holder (I assume you mean a US card- you should make it clear as you have some international readers) gets access to OW First Class lounges when departing International long haul-

  9. The only reason anyone is trying to go to the Qantas lounge when not flying internationally from LAX (or connecting…) is because they read it on some blog/forum/whatever that they have access and they want to take advantage. There’s nothing wrong with the airline trying to keep what amounts to lookyloos out when the reality is that that lounge isn’t meant for the flyer going from LAX-LAS.

  10. Timely post. Confused I was turned away from the first/international lounge in LAX this morning en route to Toronto in first class. Went to the primary lounge, but was told I didn’t qualify for the first/international lounge.

  11. This is the same airline that denied someone entrance because they wore open toed sandals. Shame on Qantas.

  12. “The only reason anyone is trying to go to the Qantas lounge when not flying internationally from LAX (or connecting…) is because they read it on some blog/forum/whatever that they have access and they want to take advantage.”

    Correct. That’s why people read travel blogs.

    “There’s nothing wrong with the airline trying to keep what amounts to lookyloos out when the reality is that that lounge isn’t meant for the flyer going from LAX-LAS.”

    There’s everything wrong with making up one’s own set of rules because one doesn’t like the current, contractual rules. Do you break laws you don’t like?

  13. >But one could also reasonably interpret that as meaning that someone who tries to make their case based on the correct rules should have the cops called on them if they talk back at all.

    Anyone who could “reasonably interpret” it that way ought to be arrested for committing assault and battery on the English language.

    “If someone bullies or forces their way into the lounge” (emphasis mine [duh])

    At the bare minimum: if you’re still trying to “make your case based on the correct rules”, then either (a) you haven’t entered the lounge yet, or (b) you should learn to pick your battles.

    Incidentally: sometimes the line between a title being informative and being clickbait is lack of context.

  14. Flew LAX-LHR-MAD ON October 20. Booked in WT+. I recently reached BA Gold.
    BA itinerary for this flight stated:
    After Check In
    oneworld First Class Lounge
    Location: Directly past Security, take the elevator to the 5th Floor. (Lounge access is subject to capacity restrictions.)
    The Business lounge/Silver is very good but it was great to turn left past security to the Qantas First Lounge. Lovely welcome at the desk and I entered a nearly empty lounge (I was on the afternoon BA flight). But, there was one big problem. An alarm went off in TBIT which resulted in a gas shutdown in the kitchen! Only a limited number of items were available from the menu, but the food was still excellent. Naturally, the gas returned minutes after I finished eating.
    I purchased an upgrade to Club World at check in and had an exceptional Club World experience. The CSD stopped by to welcome me to Gold and thank me tor my loyalty. Lovely touch.
    Thanks to the recent Club World sale, I will be Gold/Emerald thru November 2017! Looking forward to many more visits to the Qantas First Lounge.

  15. @Nick

    Nah, I just believe I adhering to the terms of contracts into which one may enter.

    Do you break laws you don’t like?

  16. Lucky,

    My favorite part of the e-mail is where they allude to the incoming hordes of great-unwashed AA domestic passengers coming through the new TBIT-T4 Airside Tunnel to an Occupy OneWorld Event in the Qantas lounge!

    I know you and I both use AA and T4 a lot out of LAX, but I still find myself bewildered by the plan for US/AA T6/T4/TBIT integration at LAX. They’ve known for years that T4 doesn’t have enough gate capacity for the combined airline… and US was in T1, then T3, then T6, all since the merger. So, yeah, I’m thinking AA is going to use TBIT gates a lot more in the next stage of integration. So, QANTAS better get their rules down on the OW lounge access or they’ll have to post fulltime sentries at the entrance door.

  17. The reality is that if everyone flying out of LAX on domestic “first” (which would not quality as domestic business class in most of the world) got access to the qantas first lounge they would have to either scale the experience back significantly or go broke. It’s an international first lounge, in most parts of the world international and domestic flyers don’t really mix so this gap in the oneworld rules has not really been exposed.

  18. Airline operated lounges are reimbursed by the partner carriers for each pax allowed entrance according to the published rules. In other words, the airline owning the lounge loses money every time they turn down qualified customers. Sometimes a lounge dragon may turn down qualified pax because they are saving space for a large group expected at a specific time period. There’s only so many employees to clean showers and cook fast enough to process a bank of pax at a given busy period. The airline is just ensuring quality of experience.

  19. The oneworld rules states emerald flyers (Exc. AA cardholders) are allowed into the LAX First lounge. If that person is allowed into the terminal or flying out of that terminal on a oneworld airline (including American Airlines) then that person should be allowed in. It shouldnt matter what cabin or destination that member is flying. In LHR I am still allowed in to the BA First lounge even when flying economy on a domestic ticket! Why should I be denied access unless it’s due to capacity. It is absolutely disgraceful that Qantas staff and management choose to ignore this. As a oneworld emerald passenger we have spent huge amounts of money gaining this status. We accept at some airports the lounges are below standard, some airports have no lounges at all, while others are excellent! It is just how it goes. They shouldn’t be allowed to deny any passenger who has the correct status entry into the lounge, whether this cardholder has trekked over from t4 or not. This needs to be fixed!

  20. @ tk — Domestic American first class doesn’t qualify for lounge access with any lounge (with the exception of select transcon routes).

  21. @ Steven L. — Yet see comment number three above, where a Qantas elite member was threatened to have the cops called on him for asking to speak to a lounge manager…

  22. With the connecting tunnel opening up between T4 and TBIT, could a caveat to access rules for the QF lounges at TBIT be put in place along the lines of access only for flights departing from TBIT?

    I think it is sensible and fair, whilst maintaining the principles of reciprocal access, to safeguard airlines operating in airports, where transfer between terminals are easy or possible. Let’s not let the few wreck what is a very fair and reasonable Oneworld policy.

    We don’t want the agitators to force airlines to impose blanket draconian measures that hurt more people.

  23. Had a similar experience in May in IAH – AA lounge.
    Was BA Silver/Oneworld Sapphire, which, according to BA website provides “Lounge access when flying with British Airways and our partner airlines”.
    Itinerary was IAH-DFW on AA, then DFW-LHR on BA, both economy, issued by BA.
    The agent would not let us in because ‘this is an AA lounge, and not a BA lounge. You can use the BA lounge in Dallas once you get there”. I tried arguing that with the Oneworld status I should be allowed, but “that’s only for international flights and you are flying domestic AA to DFW.”
    So we dropped it and left.
    I’ve made BA Gold/Emerald since, and was granted access with no questions at all to the AA Admirals in PHL last week when flying to IAH in economy.

  24. I’m no shill for Qantas at all (it’s an airline that sometimes does unjustifiably stiff it’s customers, and it can be very hype heavy), but I do consider that if Qantas isn’t receiving payment from other OneWorld airlines for guest access (for AA domestic flights, etc) then they are entitled to not accept those guests regardless of the published OneWorld benefits.

    As someone pointed out earlier, Qantas (who never turns down an easy dollar) would not be turning back eligible people for whom they would be getting a lounge access payment for. Clearly, the lounge can only continue to exist if it pays it own way, and if other OneWorld airlines are stiffing Qantas for non-QF guests then why should Qantas wave them just because the OneWorld access policy says so (it’s just some words on a website) – they aren’t a charity (they’ve certainly never acted like one lol).

    Looks like this issue is more with American Airlines, who appear unwilling to pay for these class of AA travellers to have entry to TBIT Qantas lounge. Once AA cough up to honour the OneWorld access policy, I’m sure Qantas will be rolling out the red carpet to get some easy cash.

  25. @Jason, not sure what lounge you are referring to at IAH. There is no AA lounge at IAH. The only OneWorld lounges are the BA Terraces Lounge (for J/OneWorld Sapphire passengers) and the BA First Lounge (for F/OneWorld Emerald). Both are located in Terminal D, within walking distance of the KLM Crown Lounge (which is also a PriorityPass Lounge).

  26. Is it complicated? This is like a committee discussing the design of a wheel. “Okay, smartypants, if you’re so smart, what colour should it be?” The author of that memo made it more complicated and we’re doing the same.

    Let’s boil it down: Oneworld makes the rules, then publishes them. Then, the great unwashed, including “lookyloos”, flock to their door to accept the published offer they’ve made. Caveat vendor, if you ask me.

    One way to avoid bad interactions between uninformed but opinionated lounge dragons and uninformed but opinionated travellers is for Oneworld to develop a point-of-access system. Dragon enters itinerary and member details, computer tells dragon the answer. If the traveller has a complaint, he/she complains to the company, not the dragon. A memo from an uninformed but opinionated executive at Qantas is probably not at the heart of an effective solution, IMHO.

    My concern in this specific instance is the typos and grammar in the memo. Does this guy have serious responsibilities? People who can’t write shouldn’t.

    I feel sorry for all the stakeholders listed above, except the Qantas exec, who should be named and shamed.

    If you want to run an airline but you don’t want to honour the Oneworld published benefits to high elites, don’t join Oneworld. Qantas can go it alone, like Emirates. Good luck with that.

  27. Isn’t the QF F lounge in the Bradley Terminal? How many domestic flights depart from this international terminal? Ergo, why should QF permit OW Emeralds on domestic US flights into the lounge? Why would anyone other than a freeloader want to go through the hassle of going through security and the changing terminals to do this once more? In fact, once airside at this terminal, would not one have to exit to get to the domestic terminals via normal immigration channels? (BTW as is well known, this is also the practice followed by SQ at its lounge at SFO for STARGolds flying domestic.) More to the point, why is TSA permitting passengers not departing from this terminal to pass through security? The lounge is intended for internationally-bound travellers. It’s not in a domestic terminal so has no obligation to service domestic travellers and can interpret AA’s own lounge access rules.

    (In the case of the BA Silver cardholder, that’s not AA policy but a misinformed lounge receptionist. If BA Silver is also OW Sapphire, entry for domestic flights should have been provided…just as AA Plats/ExecPlats OWSapphire/Emerald would have lounge access when flying domestic segments in conjunction with a same day overseas segment.)

    I remember the days when not a few FTers would purchase a F ticket on SQ between SIN-KUL and spend the day drinking and eating in the SQ Silver Ktis F lounge, then cancel their flight and get their ticket refunded. SQ smartly redesignated their short haul regional flights on two-cabin planes as business rather than F.

  28. This is very easy. Qantas set up a lounge and they put up a sign (see 4th pic) that basically grants access to OW Emeralds (except AA EXP flying a domestic itin). Since those rules are very explicit they can’t change them at will. Freeloader or not, if you are entitled to use the lounge, then you should be able to get in. If Qantas doesn’t like OW rules, then leave the alliance.

  29. AA has rights to 4 gates at TBIT and they use them for any flight they want.

    TSA will let anyone with an LAX boarding pass for that day through any checkpoint, even those not in the terminal they are flying out of. This was changed many months ago at the insistence of LAWA to allow more people to access the shops.

    There is nothing in the rules preventing non AA Emeralds access to any F lounge in North America when flying on any oneworld flight. I am QF Plat/oneworld Emerald. I have access to *any* oneworld lounge in North America regardless of if that flight is LAX-LAS or LAX-LHR.
    AA members (unless paid club members) however only have access to the lounges when flying on a 3 class transcon flight (all SFO/LAX-JFK and selected LAX-MIA) and flights to locations outside North America.

    The QF F TBIT lounge staff are confusing the rules that allow a non AA Emerald access to the lounge while blocking AA Emerald/2 class domestic F.

  30. Ha,
    glad that you wrote about this. Actually something interesting happened to me yesterday. I was flying on AA domestic Y tix LAX to JFK and I have BA gold and AA ExPlt. When I went to the lounge the same happened as the other readers. I politely pointed to the policy and the dude pulled out the email above. I insisted that he should follow his own airline policy. What do you know 10 mins later a cop came that wanted me to leave the terminal. Now I work for the NYPD and while I am civilian I had much more experience than the rookie talking to me. I explained to him the rules of the program and that according for the contract that they have signed with the status I have they should let me in. The cop sided with me and they had to let me in as they were breaking the law. The front desk employee called his boss and they made a special exception for me. I told him that it was not an exception and will call the cops on them the next time If I have to…. I really hope they dont convert from OW lounge into something else as I really like that lounge

  31. Essentially we’re talking about uniformed people feeling an affinity for uniformed people. Dragon summons quasi-cop, cop sides with her. Nothing to see here, move along.

    I’m tempted to bring the text of the access rules with me to every lounge in future. Isn’t there something absurd and pathetic about that? For me, it says something about the times.

    The opposite of “security” is convenience.

  32. @TravelinWilly: It’s called civil disobedience; I have and have been arrested for it, but was ultimately not charged.

    @Lucky: And did the lounge dragon do so solely on the basis of the email, or do you think (far more likely) that he or she had already been the habit of threatening to sic the cops on people trying to get into the lounge?

  33. The issue here is actually quite simple – and Qantas is in the wrong.

    But to clarify some errors made by folks in comments above:

    1/ AA F domestic does NOT get you access.
    2/ AA EXP does NOT get you access on domestic itineraries.
    3/ OW Emeralds who are elite with a OW airline OTHER than AA are entitled to access when flying on a Oneworld marketed and Operated flight – that includes an AA domestic itinerary.

    The issue is that people who qualify under point 3 (which is the standard OW rule, and QF’s own PUBLISHED Lounge Access Policy) are being denied entry – even QF’s own elites.

    The email issued by the Qantas Manager was inaccurate (although in the context was probably talking about AA elites, so the “intent” was right). But it was sloppy, lazy wording, and QF appear NOT to have rectified the matter.

  34. @Dave, AA Domestic F does get you access to a oneworld F lounge, provided you are flying in F on a 3 class flight. These flights are only the A321T LAX and SFO-JFK, 777 operated LAX-MIA and very rare 777 flights between other hubs.

  35. If QF were to withdraw the LAX F lounge from oneworld, that would be very silly. The other airlines pay QF for their members/pax to use the lounge.
    So long as the payment they get for each non QF pax/QF member that enters the lounge is higher then the cost of letting them in, QF could be earning a very large amount out of that lounge.

  36. Copy of a post from October 26, 2015 on Australian Frequent Flyer:

    Unhappy TBIT ‘Qantas’ Business Lounge – extremely confused, as are staff

    Hi all!

    I just thought I’d quickly write to document my experience on arrival at the TBIT Qantas Business Lounge on Friday.

    I’m a Qantas Club member, and the short version is – I was denied access.

    The long version:

    I was flying from Sydney->Lax->SEA in economy. The Sydney->LAX was great, and I kicked it off with a stint in the Sydney business lounge – always a pleasure there, and the staff are lovely.

    The LAX->SEA leg is where it gets interesting. The boarding pass for this leg was printed in Sydney, and sold to me as QF3739. The whole trip was purchased directly from Qantas, and both my boarding passes were issued by Qantas. The operator for this leg, however, was Alaskan – and the primary flight number was AS475.

    Ahead of time I checked the access rules for the TBIT lounge for Qantas Club members, which are as follows:

    ‘Next onward flight that day must be a Qantas, or Jetstar Airlines+ flight number.One guest allowed and must be travelling with the member on the same flight.’

    I made sure to call the QFF hotline ahead of time to clarify this, and these assured me that there would be no issue. In fact, I further clarified this at the Qantas checkin desk in TBIT before heading through security (I didn’t want to waste my time). However, upon arriving at the front desk of the lounge, there were two issues:

    1. The staff member at the desk didn’t know what the Qantas Club was, despite entry rules for Qantas Club members being clearly posted on the Qantas website for this lounge. It was a bit odd standing at the desk explaining the concept of the Qantas Club to this staff member, who perhaps might not be a Qantas employee – but was still representing Qantas.

    2. Despite my boarding pass clearly having a Qantas flight number allocated ‘Sold as QF3739’, and the flight clearly showing as QF3739 in my Qantas app on my phone, the staff member was quite abrupt, and would only scan the boarding pass and say ‘computer says no’. I should have thought of it at the time, but I didn’t get call the QC hotline to discuss it further (I’d just got off a long flight!).

    I’m now in Seattle, and have made several calls to the QFF line (I called first on Sunday, Australian time, and there was no supervisor available). I have subsequently spoken to a supervisor, and they agreed after a quick internal conference that they see no reason I should have been denied access, and my reading of the rules was correct.

    They have offered to ‘pass my comments on’ – but honestly I feel like this has had the effect of reducing the value of my QC membership (lounge access being the very reason I purchased it in the first place…) has been substantially reduced here – and that ‘passing my comments on’ is a polite way of simply getting rid of me.

    Has anyone else had an experience such as this? I was originally unsure as to whether I would be allowed lounge access at TBIT on this codeshare flight, but now that every Qantas staff member I’ve spoken to seem to believe that I should have been – it seems odd to me that they’re being so dismissive of this. The whole experience was a bit embarrassing to me, as I had a staff member with me as my ‘lounge guest’, so to be turned away was an even less pleasant experience.

    As I said to them, this kind of dismissal of Qantas Club members is precisely what will make me reconsider renewing next year..

  37. @Himeno,

    That only applies to the Flagship Lounge access criteria. The flights you mention are the only ones that grant Flagship access based on cabin.

    The access rules for the QF TBIT F lounge do NOT grant access to any domestic AA F pax. To access the lounge by virtue of being a First passenger, you need to be flying International First.

  38. I had a great experience at the empty Quantas First Lounge last month in LAX. Flew a AA domestic flight to LAX then checked in with JAL for my flight to NRT. Bought an upgrade to Premium Economy (this was also only half full). As an EP with American/OW Emerald I was given a pass to the Quantas First Lounge. When I entered the attendant scanned by boarding pass and escorted me in.
    No questions about my access. In the past when I flew out of LAX on Cathay Pacific I was allowed to go into another OW lounge, which I think is still in the TBIT on a different floor from the Quantas First Lounge.

  39. Bottom line for QANTAS…either adhere to published rules for Oneworld lounge access (non-AA Emerald tier elites get access when ticketed same day) or specially opt the lounge out of program. There is no interpretation or discussion. This is a contractual requirement which QANTAS leadership acquiesced to when they joined/renewed Oneworld. End. Of. Story.

  40. I was denied access to Qantas First Class Lounge at LAX yesterday. I’m OW Emerald (AA ExecPlat) and was travelling LAX>DFW>HKG in First and Biz. The staff at the front desk had no idea what the policies are and I was told that my ticket is domestic, not international. Try to argue with someone who is totally confused, poorly trained and not familiar with the policies. I gave up and went to Flagship which is going downhill too. Then I have asked the Flagship employee if there is any change in the access policy and was only told that I was not supposed to be let into TBIT. Do airlines employees get some kind of basic training or do they at least know what is going on at their workplace???? The whole US based airline industry can’t compete against Asian and Middle East airlines with people like this.
    Today I met a friend in Hong Kong and he had exactly the same experience at the Qantas First Class Lounge at LAX few days ago, he was travelling on exactly the same itinerary as me. I have been to the lounge many times and I was always connecting in US. No idea what has changed. Definitely this lounge is not as good as it used to be in terms of service. Sad.

  41. re: QC member and Qantas gold denied access

    I was first a QC member while gaining status and read the rules later – you have to be on a Qantas OPERATED flight. ie fly their metal. I remember flying Emirates on a QF paid for ticket with QF flight number but then read the rules stating I didn’t have access to the Qantas lounge so I didn’t try.

    Now platinum – I thought the rules stated QF platinum and above had access to the First lounge. Sorry but I think the Qantas Gold person was turned away as per the rules. The tiers for QF are bronze, silver (allowed 2 complimentary passes to QC lounges), then gold (allowed free access to QC lounges only domestically – not domestic business lounges, and business lounges on international departures – not first lounges) then platinum and platinum one allowed access to all lounges including first regardless of cabin class.

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