Qantas Starts Selling First Class Lounge Access

Filed Under: Qantas

It’s not unusual to see airlines sell lounge access as a way of boosting revenue, especially when a lounge would otherwise be empty.

Over time we’ve seen more airlines add paid lounge access options, and this comes in different forms — in some cases airlines will let you “upgrade” to the first class lounge if flying business class, while in other cases airlines will let passengers flying other airlines buy access to their first and business class lounge access.

Sometimes it’s a great deal, while other times it isn’t.

Qantas Introduces Paid Lounge Access

Qantas has quietly rolled out a new paid lounge access program, allowing passengers on any airline to buy access to over half a dozen of their lounges worldwide.

Specifically, the following lounges are available for paid access (purchased lounge access is valid for a stay of up to three hours):

You can now buy access to the Qantas Lounge LHR

In each case, selling lounge access is at the discretion of the lounge manager, so you should expect that they won’t be selling access during peak hours, but rather only when the lounge is quiet (or at least not at capacity).

Is Buying Lounge Access Worth It?

The value of buying lounge access of course varies based on how much time you have to kill at an airport, and what your alternatives are for passing time. In other words, I’d value lounge access less in Singapore than in Frankfurt, given just how much there is to do at the airport in Singapore.

Some of the lounge access pricing is reasonable, like paying ~35USD to access the Qantas Business Lounge Wellington.

However, what I find most interesting here is the ability to buy access to Qantas’ First Class Lounge LAX, which is one of the best lounges in the US. It features a great drink selection, and a la carte dining. While I do think the lounge is worth visiting, I also think that 150USD for access is a bit steep.

You can now buy access to the Qantas First Class Lounge LAX

I will say that if you’re going to maximize the experience (and are very hungry and thirsty) then maybe 100USD wouldn’t be an unreasonable amount to charge (at least when you consider that US airline lounges typically charge 50USD for access), though I think 150USD will really limit the number of people paying for this.

Bottom Line

I can’t imagine this move will lead to the crowding of Qantas Lounges, both because access will only be sold pending availability, and also because the pricing is steep.

Nonetheless it is intriguing to see yet another airline now sell access to one of their international first class lounges.

Do you think buying Qantas lounge access could be worth it?

(Tip of the hat to Executive Traveller)

Comments
  1. @ Ben — Agreed. I certainly wouldn’t pay 150 USD to access LAX Qantas F lounge. Nothing special there.

  2. Excuse me, 150USD for what!? Sorry but I personally find the QF LAX F lounge to be a bit uh… bland. It is just a very big rectangle with chairs in it, without any partition or privacy. If you can throw a frisbee from the entrance all the way to the kitchen, then the lounge cannot really be considered top tier. Also crowding sometimes is a problem.

  3. I have it for free business lounge access and walked out in Sydney as it was absurdly over crowded with a ton of cheap average food
    They use to be good no longer
    People ate like it was the last supper so never going to happen that I would consider paying for that clusterF
    The only thing I would pay for is Qantas First in Sydney or Melbourne
    The rest of it is a sad joke Qantas has become incredibly mediocre otherwise
    I spit the food out in the Qantas First class lounge in Los Angeles as the quality is not even close to the First class lounge in Sydney or Melbourne with the Neil Perry cuisine which is very good

  4. Can’t help but notice that neither the domestic or international business or first lounges in Melbourne or Sydney are on this list.

    Leaving their flagship lounge out? I guess capacity would be the reason, but if it’s at their discretion, then why exclude them?

  5. I don’t understand the fuss over the Qantas F lounge in LAX. The first time I visited I had high expectations, but… meh.. it’s fine. There are no views to speak of, it was overly dark and didn’t really feel like anything out of the ordinary.

    I guess when you compare it to other US lounge options it’s decent, but I’ve been to far more interested lounges elsewhere in the world.

    I’d probably consider £55 for the LHR lounge if I was flying in Economy without any status. T3 is a dreadful place to be in without status. £55 doesn’t sound to bad for a refuge!

  6. Certainly not. I gave up going to the F Lounges in Melbourne and Sydney…the food is indifferent, there is no snack/buffet, vegetarian food is poor ( steamed vegetables is NOT a satisfactory alternative), the staff are not very efficient ( perhaps they’re overwhelmed..), the lack of power outlets means you have to put devices on the floor to be charged.
    For someone who’s EXTREMELY hungry, borderline ravenous…and a BIG TIME boozer, maybe it’s worth it @ $75.
    It wouldn’t work in Australia because the cheap-Charlie freeloaders would turn up 8 hours before departure, bringing the program to an early demise unless it was time-limited.

  7. No, I generally would not pay $150.

    But some might think it is a once in a lifetime experience and becasue they are on vacation, they will splsh out.

    Also, (and it happened to me recently). at times a family of 3 is travelling together. If only one is OW emerald, only two can get in, which breaks the family up. That family might pay $150 for a third person,

  8. Lol, $150 for three hours at the LAX F lounge? I visited the lounge twice this month, and while it’s great for a US lounge, it really isn’t a F lounge by international standards. $50 maybe, but I probably wouldn’t even pay that.

  9. I am Australian an no way I would pay for any QANTAS lounge. They have gotten so busy so not at all worth it.

  10. Lax is my home aiport, and I’ve been to Qantas F, at least 50+ times. The lounge is overrated for sure, I prefer the star alliance biz lounge because I love their outdoor patio to plane spot. $150 is too steep. Very boring lounge, with zero views, and uncomfortable seats.

    My two fond moments in the QF F

    1. Sitting next to and having a conversation with Gordon Ramsey telling me the burger was “shit”.

    2. Having a drink with Damon Wayans, and joking about my childhood memories of him on In Living Color.

    So it wasnt the lounge, it was the experiences and memories the lounge gave me

  11. Echoing all the statements about the QF F lounge at LAX. A “meh” restaurant with a subpar shower experience and no spa, working areas, or privacy spaces. I’d have a hard time paying USD 75 for entrance to that. C’mon, guys/gals…the salt-and-pepper squid is not that good, no matter what the travel blogosphere keeps telling us.

    So really it’s “How many craft cocktails can I drink to roughly equate to the cost of entrance?” At USD 150, that’s about 8-10 in the LA area. Not worth it unless you’re there for a solid 5 hours or so. Then again, the lounge is boring as all get out with terrible views. I simply don’t understand the circlejerk about this lounge.

  12. While I agree the views are lacking at the Qantas F lounge, and I had no reason to use the shower suites so no comment on that, I found it to otherwise be very nice for a lounge in the US. The food was great, drinks and liquor selection was great, and I didn’t think it was dim or anything like that at all. It was nice to sit down and unwind there for the few hours before my JAL F flight after AA did their dead level best to screw my itinerary the night before.

  13. I’m going to the qantas f in dec for the first time. Looks kind of ugly but a lot of people rave about it. Is flagship better? We are flyiNg qf first.

    Qantas lounges in Australia are so over packed already it would be ludicrous to allow people in. And beers are 12$ at least in the airport so it would probably be a good deal for most Australians getting all you can drink or eat for 50/100/150 lol. And I’m australian so not being racist lol

  14. @ Dusty
    Agree on the views but really the food was great in the Qantas First lounge???
    Great compared to what? The American Airlines Flagship lounge ?The United Airlines Star A lounge?
    I had the corn fritters which are good in Australia old and burnt when I had them
    with a stale dry lackluster muffin @Qantas First LAX
    The menu is limited and other than the tea which was a high quality standard please do
    share what was great about it as I just can’t imagine after 6 poor visits what I am missing there besides the quiet mornings and the busy evening departures
    It’s simply better than what they had previously before being built but a disappointment in my eyes
    I’d much rather go to an excellent restaurant before departure and have a tea or coffee before departure and save myself from what they serve which is anything but a premium experience

  15. @Dwondermeant
    I had zero problems with the food I was served. Ricotta pancakes and whatever sides came with it as the breakfast fare.

    I think this might be more a case of expectations being far out of proportion with what a lounge is. I’m not expecting a high end steakhouse or anything like that when I dine in a lounge. I’m not expecting a huge menu. I’m not expecting the Lufthansa F Terminal in Frankfurt or the Air France La Premiere in Paris. Which seems to be what most here are expecting from Qantas F LAX. I’d definitely rate it at least even with Polaris/AA Flagship lounges, despite being a much older space.

  16. The same commenters criticizing the LAX lounge are the same ones complaining that they were turned away as a OWE. Smh.

  17. The QF F lounge at LAX is a nice lounge for the US, but I actually find myself opting for the AA Flagship lounge sometimes now (i.e., the QF F lounge is not worth going out of my way to visit). The food has declined in quality in my opinion (although some dishes like the salt & pepper squid remain excellent). The showers at the AA Flagship lounge are better, and I like the tables along the windows, as well as the quiet room in the back, at the Flagship lounge.

    Bottom line: I wouldn’t pay $150 for 3 hours at the QF F lounge, and certainly not in the evening when all the transpacific/Australia flights leave.

  18. Plesse qantas bring in a dress code fir the lounges. Im sure these peopke who might pay will feel they can front up in anything.

  19. To call the “Qantas Business Lounge” LAX that way is a bit confusing. You must mean the “OneWorld Lounge” LAX that is operated by QF, CX and BA.

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