Review: British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

Filed Under: British Airways, Travel

As I mentioned in the introduction post, because of the way I booked my SkyMiles award ticket I had to do the stopover in London instead of Edinburgh. So I redeemed Avios to fly from London to Edinburgh on the front end of the trip, and then again redeemed Avios to fly from Edinburgh to London.

In London I’d be connecting to Paris and then Prague on Air France. Let that sink in for a second, folks:

  • I had three intra-Europe flights in a day
  • I transited London Heathrow and Paris Charles de Gaulle in a day

In general that sounds to me about as appealing as flying from New York to Kuwait in the last row middle seat on a Kuwait Airways 777. On the plus side, since I was transiting Heathrow and Charles de Gaulle in one day I got all my exercise for the week done in a single day!

In all honesty, much to my surprise the intra-Europe flights were actually quite pleasant, so I figured I’d just cover the British Airways Galleries Club Lounge in Edinburgh, since it’s brand new and just opened a bit over a month ago.

While by no means impressive, Edinburgh Airport is fairly small and easy enough to transit. I was kind of amused by the fact that not only do premium passengers get access to the Fast Track security lanes, but there’s also a ticket machine just outside the security checkpoint where you can buy a Fast Track security pass for £5 per person.

I’m kind of surprised we haven’t seen these in the US yet. 😉

Fast Track security lane tickets

Anyway, the security queue was short, and once through security we headed to the British Airways Lounge, located across from gate five. The lounge opens daily at 5AM, and we arrived just as it opened. It was probably the slickest British Airways lounge I’ve seen from the outside.

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport entrance

We were promptly admitted after presenting our OneWorld Emerald cards. The lounge was massive and gorgeous, probably physically the nicest British Airways lounge I’ve ever visited.

I didn’t realize what a big station Edinburgh is for British Airways. At least it must be based on the size of the lounge. The lounge still had that new furniture smell, and was in immaculate condition. I always love lounges that have different types of seating areas, and this lounge definitely had plenty, from dining tables with chairs, to lounge chairs, to communal tables, to a business center.

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport

The lounge had a variety of newspapers.

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport newspapers

The buffet spread was fairly decent, with a variety of tea and coffee (the machine actually made fairly good cappuccinos as well).

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport coffee/tea

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport coffee

The breakfast spread consisted of muffins, danishes, croissants, chocolate croissants, cereal, yogurt, fruit, and juice.

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport snacks

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport snacks

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport cereal

There was also an open bar, though I didn’t see anyone taking advantage of that at 5AM.

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport drinks

The bathrooms were also quite nice with Elemis amenities.

British Airways Galleries Club Lounge Edinburgh Airport bathrooms

Anyway, on the whole this was a really nice, fresh, spacious British Airways lounge. There are some other options now in Edinburgh for those with a credit card with lounge access, but otherwise this is a perfectly decent place to spend some time.

  1. You can access this lounge with a business or first class ticket, right? Why don’t US lounges allow customers on domestic first or business tickets into lounges for free? Never understood that

  2. The Edinburgh lounge is newly opened and their lounge in Glasgow is probably c. 12 months old or thereby. Both lounges are bigger than their predecessors as a result of the demise of BMI and the increased traffic.

    You have to bear in mind that during the week BA fly from to London airports 22 times a day Edinburgh and 19 times a day from Glasgow.

  3. @Anthony, yes you can access with business or first class ticket (if flying on from London).

    You can also access using a Business UK ticket which is a full fare domestic ticket (c. £555 / $888).

  4. British Airways Gold Card holders definitely have fast-track security at Edinburgh Airport.

    I don’t know if this extends to OneWorld equivalents (e.g. AA EXPs) or not.

  5. Not advertised quite as blatantly but JetBlue will sell you a priority security line pass for $10 or $15 from any of their kiosks.

    @Anthony — US carriers see lounges as profit centers and sell annual memberships. If you got into the lounge with status, very few people would have any reason to buy the memberships. By contrast most airlines outside the US don’t sell memberships, the only way to get into the lounge is with status or a premium class ticket.

  6. @ Anthony — Correct, a premium cabin ticket gets you access. Ultimately the business model for lounges in the US is different than abroad. Outside the US the concept of a lounge membership is more or less unheard of, while it’s commonplace in the US.

    Similarly, first class cabins within the US are totally centered around upgrades, while that’s not the case internationally. So as an elite member in the US you’re usually getting first class upgrades but not lounge access, while in Europe you’re getting lounge access but no upgrades.

    I think we win, ultimately. 🙂

  7. Earlier (in the introduction) you said you were flying coach from EDI to LHR. How did you get in there?

  8. @ Hong Kong Airline News — I’m BA Gold, which gets me access to the lounge even when flying economy.

  9. Lucky – just asking, but do you need to explore a bit more what a “good” cappuccino is? Many a coffee enthusiast would argue the stuff coming out of the sort of machines you cite as “decent” is anything but…maybe more gourmet-coffeshop reviews?

  10. @ Jason — To be clear, it’s certainly relative, though there are good and bad airport cappuccino machines. So it was good within the realm of being an airport cappuccino machine, though perhaps not good compared to one at a “true” coffee shop.

  11. Lucky,

    I’m not seeing any Business class (being sold period, not sold out) from EDI (other than to IBZ) and it looks like BA only flies EDI direct to LHR/LCY/LGW and IBZ (only flight that sell Biz class) according to So other than Oneworld Sapphire/Emerald members, folks continuing on Business/First from London, and the off chance someone is flying Biz to IBZ – why do you think BA would put up a new lounge in EDI? I ask because my family is flying from EDI to LHR (multi-day stopover) in economy since there is no business class seats sold on that market – and then they’ll be flying business class LHR-US. But because of their multi-day stopover in LHR, they’ll have zero access to the EDI BA lounge. (they have no status) So I was just trying to see if I’m missing something. I appreciate any insight you can provide!

  12. @ Chris — Don’t think you’re missing anything. I guess the lounge gets enough elite members and passengers connecting in first/business class to other destinations same day to justify it.

  13. If you have a flexible ticket on BA Domestic you do get lounge access. So I’m guessing the lounge exists for that reason, since there are quite a few business travelers flying on the more expensive flex tickets.

  14. Yep, it’s a massive improvement – glad you liked it, Lucky 🙂

    As Euan mentioned EDI and GLA are probably the biggest two destinations for BA when looking at number of flights per day and EDI-LHR apparently has the highest concentration of GCHs of any of their routes so it’s well worth them spending the cash on this lounge. The downside is their new priority boarding policy – now it includes right down to Bronze (OW Ruby) often more than half the plane on these flights can make use of it 😉

  15. This is not actually a Galleries Club lounge. As can be seen from the entrance, it is branded as a ‘British Airways Lounge’, which is the latest lounge branding. It uses elements from the Galleries concept combined with local influences in the interior design.

  16. @ Chris

    BA regularly operate a range of larger aircraft from their normal A320’s up to B767 & B777’s on the EDI – LHR / LGW route to cope with the demand, at peak times there is a flight every hour to LHR.

    While the domestic flights are all single class – majority of the passengers are regular travellers – commuting up and down to London two or three times a week, lounge access (with your executive club status) is an encouragement to fly with BA rather than one of the alternative “low fares” airlines.

  17. I used the Edinburgh BA lounge on the 25th of Sept 2016. The lounge is very nice and tidy however the selection of food was shocking. A sandwich or a bit of cheese with a cracker. Maybe if they cut back a bit on the expensive booze they could spend a bit more on the food.
    It was good to have a nice quiet seat however overall it was very disappointing.

  18. The lounge is not that well serviced. Staff are disinterested, and totally overwhelmed when a flight is cancelled. (Happen twice recently) water pours into and through the aircon units when it is raining, and the TV’s (live ~TV channels) have not worked correctly for months. BASICALLY NO ONE appears to be really interested in fixing anything…

    The food on offer is the basic range of BA sandwiches – no afternoon scones, or hot food that I have ever seen…

    All in all it sort of looks nice but with little effort could be so much better.

    There are no showers.

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