Priority Pass Restaurants: Everything You Need To Know

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I’ve written extensively about the huge increase in Priority Pass restaurants that we’ve seen in the US over the past couple of years. Every time I write about these restaurants, I realize that I spend way too much time providing “background” on them.

So in this post I wanted to provide a consolidated look at how US Priority Pass restaurants work, and include a table that I intend to keep updated that lists all of the US Priority Pass restaurant locations.

What is Priority Pass?

Priority Pass is the world’s largest network of independent airport lounges, with over 1,200 lounges around the world. Priority Pass isn’t directly affiliated with any airline, meaning that they partner primarily with lounges that aren’t affiliated with an airline (however, select airline lounges also belong to the network).

In general there are two ways to get a Priority Pass membership. You can either buy a membership directly, or you can often get a membership through a premium credit card. In the US a vast majority of people get a membership through the latter method.

Which credit cards come with a Priority Pass membership?

In the US the following are some of the most popular credit cards to come with Priority Pass memberships, along with their guesting privileges:

Card# Of Guests Who Get Free AccessAuthorized User AccessCost To Add Authorized User
The Platinum Card® from American Express2Yes$175 For Up To 3 People, $175 For Each Additional Person Beyond That (Rates & Fees)
The Business Platinum® Card from American Express 2Yes$300 Per Person (Rates & Fees)
Chase Sapphire Reserve®2Yes$75 Per Person
Citi Prestige® Credit Card2Yes$50 Per Person. ($75 Per Person for Cardmember Anniversary dates after September 1, 2019)
Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card2No$0
Marriott Bonvoy Brilliant™ American Express® Card2No$0

What are Priority Pass restaurants?

A vast majority of Priority Pass locations are actual airport lounges, which feature plenty of seating, complimentary snacks and drinks, and sometimes shower.


Quito Airport Lounge, which is “traditional” and accessible by Priority Pass members

However, in some cases Priority Pass has a hard time striking deals with airport lounges. This is especially true in terminals that are largely occupied by one of the “big three” US airlines. American, Delta, and United all don’t allow any of their lounges to participate in Priority Pass (since they view Priority Pass as competition to their own lounge memberships).

So in these cases Priority Pass has gotten creative, and they’ve partnered with some restaurants. The intention is that Priority Pass ordinarily pays lounges a certain amount for every guest who visits, so instead Priority Pass pays restaurants a certain amount for every guest who visits, and then guests get a credit for a certain amount that they can spend at that restaurant.

As a general rule of thumb, restaurants are reimbursed about ~80-90% of the credit amount, so if you get a $28 credit you can expect the restaurant is getting about $23 of that (they’re giving the discount due to the volume of business they’re getting from this).

Lunch at Viena Restaurant at Miami Airport

Which US airport restaurants participate in Priority Pass?

As of now there are well over two dozen US airport restaurants that participate in Priority Pass. Here’s a chart showing the current restaurants, sorted by airport code:

RestaurantAirportTerminal / Location
Jerry Remy’s Sports Bar & GrillBOS - Boston, MATerminal C - Landside - before Security
Stephanie’sBOS - Boston, MATerminal B - Airside - opposite Gate B24
Bar SymonCLE - Cleveland, OHConcourse C - Airside - between Gates C4 and C6
American Tap RoomDCA - Washington, DCTerminal C - Airside - near Gates 35-45
Bracket RoomDCA - Washington, DCTerminal B - Airside - opposite Gate 12
Timberline Steaks & GrilleDEN - Denver, COConcourse C - Airside - center core on the left
Kafe KalikFLL - Fort Lauderdale, FLTerminal 4 Concourse G, near gate G6
RJ Rockers Flight RoomGSP - Greer, SCConcourse B - Airside - opposite Gate B3
Chef Geoff’sIAD - Dulles, VAConcourse C - Airside - near Gate C14
Cadillac Mexican Kitchen & Tequila BarIAH - Houston, TXTerminal A - Airside - near Gate A17
Landry’s SeafoodIAH - Houston, TXTerminal C - Airside - near Gate C42
The Fan ZoneIND - Indianapolis, INConcourse B - Airside - near Gate B17
Bobby Van’s SteakhouseJFK - New York, NYTerminal 8 - Airside - opposite Gate 14
P.F. Chang’sLAX - Los Angeles, CATBIT - Airside - Mezzanine Level
Rock & BrewsLAX - Los Angeles, CATerminal 1 - Airside - opposite Gate 11B
Kentucky Ale TaproomLEX - Lexington, KYAirside - next to Concourse B entrance
Air MargaritavilleMIA - Miami, FLConcourse E - Landside - opposite the Security Checkpoints, door 11
Corona Beach HouseMIA - Miami, FLConcourse D - Airside - between Gates D23 and D24
VienaMIA - Miami, FLConcourse E - Landside - 7th Floor
Capers Cafe Le BarPDX - Portland, ORAirside - Concourse C immediately after Security on the left-hand side
Capers MarketPDX - Portland, ORAirside - Concourse D immediately after Security
House Spirits DistilleryPDX - Portland, ORAirside - Concourse C near Gate C6
Floret by Cafe FloraSEA - Seattle, WAGate A1 at the intersection of Concourses A and B
San Francisco Giant’s ClubhouseSFO - San Francisco, CATerminal 3 - Airside - Concourse F, near Gate 82
Yankee PierSFO - San Francisco, CATerminal 3 - Airside - Concourse F, near Gate 72
The Pasta HouseSTL - St Louis, MOTerminal 1 - Landside - lower level near Baggage Claim
The Pasta House and Schlafly BeerSTL - St Louis, MOTerminal 2 - Airside - Upper level, opposite Gate E6
Johnny RocketsSYR - Syracuse, NYNorth Concourse B - Airside - Airside Connector
The Café by Mise en PlaceTPA - Tampa, FLConcourse F Airside - by Gate F85
Noble HopsTUS - Tuscon, AZLandside - 2nd Floor, opposite the ‘Arroyo Trading Post’

How much credit do you get at Priority Pass restaurants?

When you visit Priority Pass restaurants you get a certain dollar credit. A vast majority of Priority Pass restaurants offer you a $28 credit per person, while a couple of restaurants give you a $30 credit. You’ll want to check the restaurant you plan on visiting on the Priority Pass website to see the exact terms.

Note that the credit is per person, so if you have a Priority Pass membership that allows guesting privileges, you can multiply the credit by how many guests you have.

Note that if you’re traveling alone you’re limited to the credit for one person, so it’s not like you can use multiple credits for yourself.


Breakfast at Cafe by Mise en Place at Tampa Airport

How many guests can you bring into Priority Pass restaurants?

There are two factors that determine for how many guests you can receive a credit at a Priority Pass restaurant:

  • Your specific membership only allows a certain number of complimentary guests (for most US issued credit cards, that number is two guests, not including the cardholder)
  • Some Priority Pass restaurants have specific restrictions about how many guests you can bring in; for many US Priority Pass restaurants you’re limited to one or two guests

US Priority Pass restaurants are pretty evenly split when it comes to their rules for guests, so check the Priority Pass website for the specific location to see how many guests you can bring.

Can you use your Priority Pass restaurant on arrival or only on departure?

All US Priority Pass restaurants require you to show a boarding pass for confirmed same day travel. Some restaurants require that you have an outbound boarding pass (meaning that you’re there before your flight), while other restaurants don’t have such a requirement.

So you can visit many Priority Pass restaurants even upon arrival of your flight.

Can you visit multiple Priority Pass restaurants at the same airport?

Generally speaking yes. For example, Miami Airport has three Priority Pass restaurants, and you could visit them all back-to-back if you wanted to.

When should you present your card at Priority Pass restaurants?

The etiquette for visiting a Priority Pass restaurant varies by restaurant. Some restaurants swipe your card upfront, while others only charge it upon the conclusion of the meal.

My strategy is to just ask the host when I’m seated if they need my card then or only want it later. I find that most locations just swipe your card at the end of the meal, though some swipe it at the beginning.

For those that swipe it at the end, when it comes time for the check, just let your server know that you’ll be paying with Priority Pass.

They should then bring over a machine where they’ll swipe your card, you’ll sign, and then you’ll be given a receipt (if you want it).

If you charge more than the Priority Pass credit amount then you’ll be brought a bill for the balance.

Should you tip when eating at a Priority Pass restaurant?

Priority Pass acts as a form of payment when dining at a Priority Pass restaurant, so it’s no different than a gift card, for example. Personally I’d recommend tipping on the full amount just as you would if usually dining at an airport restaurant.

I’d note that the one exception to this is Corona Beach House at Miami Airport. They automatically build in an 18% gratuity, so there’s no need to tip beyond that.

I’d love to see more restaurants adopt this policy, but I wouldn’t count on it happening. In the meantime I certainly don’t want servers to lose out because of what’s a very generous benefit.

Personally I always make sure I can tip in cash, because if I stay under the credit amount they sometimes can’t run credit card transactions just for tips (though if you go over your credit amount then you can just add your tip to the card you use to pay for the overage).

Are there other Priority Pass restaurant restrictions?

You’ll want to check the exact terms on each Priority Pass restaurant’s site, but as a general rule of thumb the credit isn’t available for delivery orders, or orders through their “grab & go” feature, if they have it.


Grab & go items are generally excluded for Priority Pass members

Some Priority Pass restaurants also prevent you from taking any leftovers with you.

Bottom line

The introduction of Priority Pass restaurants is a brilliant new feature for airports or terminals where Priority Pass isn’t able to reach agreements with other lounges.

Sometimes it seems too good to be true to get a “free” meal at an airport every time I fly, even if it’s not the best restaurant in the world.

Hopefully the above answers most of the questions you guys have about Priority Pass restaurants. It will be a useful resource for me to refer to in the future, as I plan to keep this updated. It will also allow me to be more concise when I write about new additions to the network in the future.

If you’ve used Priority Pass restaurants, what was your experience like? Do you have any other questions?

The following links will direct you to the rates and fees for mentioned American Express Cards. These include: The Business Platinum® Card from American Express (Rates & Fees), and The Platinum Card® from American Express (Rates & Fees).

Regarding Comments: The comments on this page have not been provided, reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any advertiser, and it is not an advertiser's responsibility to ensure posts and/or questions are answered.

Comments

  1. hoping to see more restaurants in US airports as I plan on dropping Amex Platinum due to recent changes and stick with Saphire Reserve.

  2. We enjoyed the TPA restaurant for lunch before our mid afternoon flight home. We hung in the Admirals club then switched. Great food and hospitality!

  3. Still not clear if I can tip via Priority Pass or cash. Would love Priority Pass to pick up that tab. So if my bill is $20 can I use some of the unused credit to add a tip? I’ve only used one restaurant so I just tipped in cash that one time.

  4. You missed MSP in here. Even though the PP credit is officially redeemed at the PGA Lounge, the resulting voucher is redeemable at all of these venues:
    -Ike’s Food & Cocktails
    -Champions’ Grill by Ike’s
    -French Meadow Bakery & Cafe (including to-go and grab & go)

  5. Was the Marriott Ritz card excluded from the “how many guests” section because it is no longer offered as a new card, not popular enough to include, or because it’s not clearly written as how many guests are permitted?

  6. I’m happy to see more restaurant options. However, I’m not sure it’s sustainable as more people continue to get PP. On our recent trip we visited 3 of these restaurants in the U.S. and 1 in Osaka. Only one of them didn’t have a wait of at least 15 minutes just to be seated.

  7. @Michael I think for most locations, tips are not included in the PP terms. You would need to tip in cash or add the tip amount on your credit card transaction if you go over it. If you are under the amount, some locations like at Bobby Van’s Steakhouse will allow you to leave a tip of your choosing on the credit or debit card. The server will just charge a penny to the bill, so she can swipe your card as a purchase transaction and you can tip whatever amount you want.

  8. If two people who both have PP are visiting a restaurant, can they both designate the other person as a guest and get the credit four times?

  9. Can you please add information to the article about visiting the same restaurant more than one time a day? You mention in another article that some restaurants allow a second visit four hours after the previous swipe. Other restaurants (like the PF Chang’s at LAX) only allow one visit. Thanks!

  10. The tipping thing makes it tough for business travelers. PP restaurant and tip $5-6 out of pocket or don’t use the credit and expense the whole bill? That being said I do a mix of both, but if PP included the tip it would be a no-brainer.

    If a restaurant won’t let you do grab and go, a server is typically happy to place a to go order in the hopes of a tip. I get dinner to go every time I land.

  11. @David S, perfectly ok with saving your employer the food money and expensing the tip amount. Just keep a written record or ask for a copy of the receipt, if your employer requires written documentation.

  12. @ kenny — The terms state the following: “Cardholders must present a valid Card and Boarding Pass with same-day travel before placing an order.”

    Since it’s not specified that an outbound boarding pass is required, you should be fine.

  13. @ Chaz — That’s not supposed to be allowed, though that’s not to say that some restaurants might not allow it. But it shouldn’t be possible.

  14. @ Erica T — That’s a great question. Travis wrote about this a while ago, and someone from one Priority Pass restaurant said you can get credits two hours apart:
    https://onemileatatime.com/priority-pass-visit-same-day/

    The reason I’m not including this in the post is because that’s not officially published anywhere, and I imagine a lot of servers would refuse someone under similar circumstances, so I wouldn’t count on that always working. But at least in one case, that seems to be how it works.

  15. @ Larry D — Sorry, I didn’t include it because it’s no longer issued. I believe it allows two guests, though. 🙂

  16. @ Michael — Nope, the unused credit can’t be used towards gratuity at any Priority Pass restaurant. Corona Beach House includes 18% gratuity, but otherwise that’s not possible, and you’d need to tip in cash, or in some cases could leave a tip by credit card.

  17. @ Robert — It’s definitely a mixed bag. I’ve had some restaurants ask and others not ask, I’d say in my experience it’s about 50/50.

  18. Great but incomplete survey of the cards that provide lounge access through the Priority Pass Select benefit. You did not mention (again!) that the HH AMEX Ascend Card has this same benefit.

    With your Hilton Honors American Express Ascend Card you will receive 10 complimentary lounge visits each Priority Pass Membership year.

  19. At GAT the Grain Bin restaurant is usually your best bet, since the awful No.1 Lounge is often closed to PP members and the food’s better at Grain Bin anyway.

    The Timberline at DEN is a chaotic mess most of the time; there’s often a wait to be seated and it’s noisy as hell.

    And come on. Is it really that hard to keep a few $5s and $1s in your pocket to tip servers? You tip shuttle drivers and hotel maids in cash, right?

  20. @Kalboz, agreed!

    The HH Ascend PP benefit is great for when you need to bring in more than 2 guests, since the 10 visits can include the member and/or guests. Obviously, it doesn’t help at lounges/restaurants where the guest limit is 2, but IME, it does come in handy maybe once or twice a year. It saves me from paying for the extra guests on my “regular” PP card.

  21. You sure can tip with a CC by having the waiter run a 0.01 charge and then you add the tip on the card. In fact this is the mechanism suggested by a waiter at the PF Chang LAX when our bill was over $10 below the allowed amount. He proactively suggested we could still pay the tip with a CC if we agreed to put 0.01 on our credit card. Needless to say, this was what we did and everybody was happy.

    In fact on land we have done this several times when we pay with a gift card which still have a bit of bal left after the bill but not adequate for the tip – we just ask the wait staff to put $0.01 on the credit card so we can add tip. Works every single time.

  22. I always tell the server to charge me $0.01 so I may tip with my credit card. (When I do not go over my $28)

  23. Personally I would much prefer the tips added to the total bill like what Corona Beach House does – the problem though, when the service is exceedingly BAD, like at Corona Beach House, you are still forced to pay 18% on not only completely LACK OF SERVICE but wasted a lot of your time waiting for things even for a glass … that 18% mandatory tip feels very much like a Rip Off.
    Because MIA is home airport we use Corona Beach House far more often than any other set up (and haven’t used anyone at the West Coast, as well as at Denver), the service there is indifferent at best, and inefficient most of the time. Yet, the 18% is mandatory. Other than save some folks the out of pocket cash, we dont see how good is such a set up – the wait staff has NO incentive to provide decent service.

    BTW, restaurants in Australia airports have far better F&Bs to choose from than what you can find from Qantas domestic lounges, even the F international lounge at Melbourne, that are still within the allowance. Next time we would just use the PP restaurants instead of the QF lounges other than the international F in SYD.

    With the tip being extra you have some control as to whether paying the customary, below or above, depending on the service you received.

    We have the same waiter 3 times at Bobby Van – he is a Philippino, very friendly and prompt. The last time we had him it wasn’t a busy time (around 7pm and we would head to Hampton Inn after dinner for an overnight and caught the CX flight the next morning),, we hit up a conversation – turned out he had worked on cruise ships many years and then turned to land side upon his wife’s request. The dinner experience was so pleasant that time we tipped above the normal as we had a good time.

  24. @Lucky – I’ve been to Bobby Van’s at JFK T8 about 3 times where I was able to order to-go. Is this generally not allowed in Priority Pass? Does this resteraunt have an exception?

  25. One suggestion. The chart would be perfect if you added a column indicating whether a restaurant specifically required an outbound boarding pass. That wouldn’t guarantee you can us PP upon arrival but at least would highlight that you might.

  26. Really awesome post, Ben. I have never used it once as was (I am lame) unsure of the process and was dreading arguing with restaurant staff to be able to use it.

    This has helped me a lot and I will def try it out now. Apparently there is a free lunch!

  27. I’m with you Robert. I have used PP at restaurants at least 25 times since it started. I’ve never been asked for a boarding pass. They just want to see the card (or the digital version from the app on my phone). I’ve eaten at LAX, DEN, CLE, IND, SFO, BOS, MIA, IAH, JFK AND STL.
    Where are these restaurants that require the boarding PASS? Lucky you say it’s a 50/50 chance. Maybe I should start playing the lottery if I’m this lucky. 😉

  28. Also, wondering if there’s any daily limit in terms of visiting same PP restaurant in a same day, which could happen if you have a very long layover or when you fly out in am and fly back before the end of day, etc.

  29. Traveling now to NYC each month- and 18% tip is not the normal in Manhattan. Given their standard of living, 20% is now the minimum for a tip…… just getting that word out there for people who travel to NYC. And, you should find that their service (IMHO) is sharp and worth the extra $$$.}
    In MIA, since it’s so easy to live here, 18% is more than enough (given normal service).

  30. I usually use “to go” so that I don’t need to tip. A lot of restaurants will not allow “to go” to not lose out on the tip, in which case then I don’t leave a tip with a clear conscience. I tried use the option that doesn’t require leaving a tip after all.

  31. Grab & go work well in Sydney & Melbourne, Australia. No tips (no such as tipping cultural in Australia) as well.

  32. Very helpful article. We used Corona House in MIA 3 times last year. Twice for breakfast and did not know 18% tip was included; we left cash tips on the table. They did not bring us a bill, just handed back my card and said we were all set. Our breakfast was probably way under the $30 allowance because we were given huge bottles of Evian. Last November Corona House was packed and we were rushing, the grab and go told us we could use up to $60 for the two of us. Corona service is slow and they never asked to see a boarding pass.

    The New Jersey lounge had better food but we were packed like sardines. They asked for the boarding pass and there was a time limit.

  33. @ Rob, apparently they’ve raised the minimum wage for servers in Manhattan. So, now you don’t have to tip so much.

  34. PDX always asks for a boarding pass. They are happy to let you take to-go but please be nice and leave them a tip.

  35. Tipping just allows employers to pay their employees less while we subsidise the shortfall, a terrible insidious practice that is spreading from the US like a virus. It must be stopped!

  36. Are you sure the priority pass you get from the citi prestige has guest limit of 2? I always thought it’s unlimited. we always get my family of 4 into the lounge and have redeemed more than 2 guests worth of food at the restaurant. In fact, my visit history at Timberline Steak at DEN shows 4 guest visits and I didn’t get charged anywhere. What am I missing?

  37. Our credit card just switched to lounge buddy from priority pass.

    Any info on lounge buddy associated with restaurants?

  38. I have tried multiple times to eat at PP restaurants but the wait to get in is always an hour plus. PP is becoming less valuable with inferior lounges that close by 3 pm (ie. Phoenix)

  39. Capers PDX used to ask for an outbound boarding pass. They haven’t the last couple of months.

    Both capers locations allow grab and go, there’s no need to tip on grab and go.

  40. How do you “register” a guest when visiting a PP restaurant? If u have 3 people including card holder, how do you “register” the other 2 people?

  41. Capers Cafe and Capers Market both have T&C’s that say only a “same day boarding pass” is required, yet people a few months ago were saying that Market was insisting on a departing boarding pass. Anyone have any recent DPs about this and anyone successful in showing the T&Cs to change the mind of a Market employee insisting on a departing boarding pass?

  42. @Bri and @Steve, sorry I should have read your posts before I posted, are they still asking for boarding passes but allowing inbound ones now?

  43. PP restaurants are great, personally I much prefer them to lounges, which just have much worse food.

    Home airport (STL) has good food and have never had to wait for a table. Also have never been asked for boarding pass, and in fact one time had someone with me who had come through security but wasn’t flying . . . I alerted the server but they didn’t care, still got the full guest credit.

  44. Helpful post. @tjp74 I know that ours used to be unlimited. But they changed this in August 2018 so maybe it’s the same for you?
    In MSP, as mentioned in above comment there are a few options. It’s good to note, as mentioned, that you do have to check in at PGA lounge desk to eat at the restaurants and it doesn’t open until 7 AM. Found this out the hard way with 5 hungry kids for a crack of dawn flight!
    Also a note to get around the large family problem. We have 7 people…. My husband and I have priority pass through Sapphire Reserve but that only allows 6 of us. So we made my oldest an authorized user on my account for $75 a year. She got her own priority pass. Totally worth it for our family since we travel internationally. Really love the Gatwick restaurant option, btw

  45. @Lucky. I am looking to finally use My Citi Prestige Priority Pass at the Rock n’ Brews at LAX. At all the other lounges that I have used it at, I only have the electronic version on my phone. You mentioned that they swipe your card. Do I need to bring the actual physical card of can I use the electronic version on the app? Thanks!

  46. @ James Peters — Sorry for the confusion. For the locations that accept the digital version, that works too. And it seems like Rock & Brews does accept the digital version, so you’re good.

  47. Thanks @Lucky. That begs the question, which Priority Pass lounges/restaurants require a visitor to have the physical card? I have always used the one on my phone and most people don’t want to carry more things on themselves.

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