Priority Pass is a lounge network that offers memberships that provide access to airport lounges throughout the world. Lounges include independent lounges such as The Club at ATL in Atlanta that are not directly affiliated with an airline. Other lounges are airline facilities such as the Turkish Airlines Lounge at Washington-Dulles International Airport that allow access to Priority Pass members.
In its August e-newsletter, Priority Pass highlights the locations new to its network for August:
- Rio de Janeiro Galeao International Airport (GIG) - GOL Premium Lounge (August 23)
- Xichang Qingshan Airport (XIC) - First Class Lounge (August 1)
- Marsa Alam International Airport (RMF) - Pearl Assist (August 1)
- Casablanca Mohammed V International Airport (CMN) - Pearl Lounge (Arrivals) (August 3)
- Fes Saiss International Airport (FEZ) - Pearl Lounge (Arrivals & Departures) (August 6)
- Rabat-Sale Airport (RBA) - Pearl Lounge (Arrivals) (August 17)
Several credit cards include membership as a benefit:
American Express Platinum (also the Business version): The $450 annual fee gets you free access, though you’ll still need to pay the $27 guest fee. One way around this is to pay $175 to add up to three additional Platinum cardholders; each one is then entitled to their own Priority Pass Select membership.
Mercedes-Benz Platinum: This card has a $475 annual fee, and comes with the same guest policies as the regular and business Amex Platinum cards.
Citi Prestige: This card has a $450 annual fee, though cardholders can bring immediate family or up to two guests into Priority Pass lounges for free.
As a flyer without status with any airline, I have found my Priority Pass membership very useful. I routinely visit The Club at ATL before flying out of Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. On a recent layover at Washington-Dulles, I killed time and grabbed a small dinner - saving myself the high price of airport food - at the Turkish Airlines Lounge. A membership alone probably won't justify a high annual fee if you receive little or no value from other card benefits. However, you most likely will receive additional value from a card like the Citi Prestige Card, making a Priority Pass membership a great fringe benefit.