In June 2021 we learned how Chase will be getting into the airport lounge game, which was previously dominated by American Express with its Centurion Lounges (and for that matter, Capital One is also getting into the airport lounge business). We’ve progressively seen more locations revealed for future Chase lounges, so in this post I wanted to cover everything we know so far.
Basics of Chase Sapphire Lounge by The Club
JPMorgan Chase has announced plans to introduce airport lounges, which will be known as Chase Sapphire Lounge by The Club. Chase describes this as offering a “fresh approach to the lounge experience.” Chase’s entry into the lounge space is being done in collaboration with Airport Dimensions, which operates existing airport lounge group “The Club” (which are perfectly fine, but aren’t particularly remarkable).
We now have some details about where the first lounges will be located, when they should open, and who will get access.
Chase Sapphire Lounge locations & sizes
The first five Chase Sapphire Lounge by The Club locations have been revealed, with four being in the United States, and one being outside the United States. Specifically, there will be lounges in:
- Boston (BOS), in the connector between Terminal B & Terminal C
- Hong Kong (HKG), in Terminal 1
- New York (LGA), in Terminal B
- Phoenix (PHX), in Terminal 4 South 1
- San Diego (SAN), in Terminal 2 West
While no exact opening dates have been given yet, it’s expected that at least a couple of these lounges should open in the next year or so. Boston and Phoenix seem most likely to open in 2022, while San Diego is expected to open in late 2023. It remains to be seen when the New York and Hong Kong lounges will open (and in the case of the latter, I can’t help but wonder if it’s even happening at all anymore).
In terms of lounge sizes, we do have a sense of the size of three of these lounges:
- The BOS Chase Sapphire Lounge is expected to be 12,000 square feet
- The PHX Chase Sapphire Lounge is expected to be 3,500 square feet
- The SAN Chase Sapphire Lounge is expected to be 11,000 square feet
Interestingly Hong Kong, New York, and Phoenix, already have Centurion Lounges, while Boston and San Diego don’t.
Chase Sapphire Lounge entry requirements
The Chase Sapphire Lounge by The Club will be accessible to Priority Pass members. That means that Chase Sapphire Reserve cardmembers get access, since the card also comes with a Priority Pass membership (though it’s possible you won’t even need to access the membership to use these lounges).
Further access requirements haven’t been revealed. For example, will day passes be sold? Will Chase Sapphire Preferred cardmembers be able to get access at a discounted rate?
What should we really expect from Chase Sapphire Lounges?
Even as we learn more details, this concept is still kind of confusing to me:
- It doesn’t sound like Chase is going as premium as Amex or Capital One with airport lounges
- Since these lounges will have “The Club” in the branding, it’s not entirely clear how different they’ll be than typical “The Club” lounges
- Is this just a mutual marketing opportunity of sorts between “The Club” and Chase, or is there more to this?
- Since these lounges will be open to everyone with a Priority Pass membership, that more or less opens the floodgates, and I imagine these lounges will get busy; I wonder if any capacity controls will be put in place
It’s awesome to see Chase get into the airport lounge game, though at the end of the day I think you can only get so excited about credit card lounges in the United States, given how many people have access. The broad access requirements — and opening them up to all Priority Pass members — realistically limits how nice these will be.
Personally I think the only really exceptional credit card lounge in the United States is the Capital One Lounge DFW, which has some pretty awesome amenities.
A new lounge concept will be debuting in 2022, in the form of Chase Sapphire Lounge by The Club. So far we know that Chase will open lounges at BOS, HKG, LGA, PHX, and SAN, and we should expect them to be accessible by all Priority Pass members, which would include those with the Chase Sapphire Reserve.
I wouldn’t get too excited here. Ultimately this just seems like a branding opportunity, and I wouldn’t expect these to be competitive to Centurion Lounges or Capital One Lounges in terms of the experience.
What do you make of Chase’s new airport lounge concept?
(Tip of the hat to Chris Dong)