(Almost) All Alaska Lounges are Once Again Accessible to Priority Pass Members (Almost) All Alaska Lounges are Once Again Accessible to Priority Pass Members

(Almost) All Alaska Lounges are Once Again Accessible to Priority Pass Members

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Update: As of July 24, 2021, all of the Alaska lounges have (once again) left the Priority Pass program. Hopefully this is just a temporary departure.

If you're a Priority Pass member, you can once again access all but one Alaska Lounge. This is great news for travelers flying through Los Angeles (LAX), New York JFK, Seattle (SEA), Portland (PDX), and Anchorage (ANC).

Alaska Lounges Rejoin Priority Pass

In 2018, Alaska Airlines withdrew its Seattle lounges from Priority Pass due to overcrowding. A year later, Alaska withdrew its lounges in Anchorage and Portland, leaving only the lounges in Los Angeles and New York accessible to Priority Pass members.

With the pandemic slashing the number of passengers, Alaska brought Anchorage and Portland back into Priority Pass. Now, Alaska has announced that its flagship lounge in Seattle has also rejoined Priority Pass.

Alaska opened its flagship lounge in Seattle Sea-Tac's North Satellite terminal in 2019. The lounge covers over 15,000 square feet and has beautiful views and a huge fireplace to relax or work by as you wait for your flight.

Alaska's lounge in Seattle

Please note that at the time of this writing, the lounge in JFK and in Concourse C at Sea-Tac are closed — but remain part of Priority Pass. The lounge in Concourse D at Sea-Tac remains open but is not currently available to Priority Pass members.

Accessing Priority Pass Lounges with Credit Cards

If you're not familiar with Priority Pass, it's a subscription service to access airport lounges, get meal vouchers, and a range of other benefits. Memberships start at $99 a year, after which you pay $32 to access each lounge. For $429 a year, all your lounge visits are free.

However, there are several credit cards that offer a “Priority Pass Select Membership.” Most of these memberships give you and two guests unlimited, free visits to airport lounges, while a couple of the cards give you 4 or 10 free visits. Unfortunately, the Amex cards no longer offer food and beverage credits. The cards which provide the Priority Pass membership are:

Enrollment is required for select Amex benefits.

Our Take

Alaska probably withdrew its lounges from Priority Pass due to overcrowding, but that's no longer an issue. As Priority Pass pays airlines each time a member uses one of their lounges, it's another way that Alaska and other airlines can recoup some of their lost revenue at this time. Whether Alaska will keep its lounges in Priority Pass after the volume of passengers recovers is yet to be seen.

Please note that being a member of Priority Pass does not guarantee access to an airport lounge. Airlines have the right to deny entry at any time due to overcrowding or other reasons.

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  • That is cool ,but I am not visiting lounge till I get my vaccine

    • If you’re in the States, that really should be right around the corner for all of us, as supply is improving rapidly and eligibility across states is opening more broadly.

  • Its a very good news for the priority pass users to get more options of Vip lounges in some airports like LAX or JFK

  • Thanks for the heads up

  • And when they get busy, what will have better chance of access: OneWorld status or Priority Pass?

    • JT Genter says:

      Almost certainly Oneworld. I imagine that the Priority Pass spigot would be shut before restricting Oneworld

  • This is a good news even though actually I haven’t used a lot my Priority Pass last year. Hope to reach an almost normal situation soon.

  • How long will it last though? I think it depends on the increase in travel at the second half of the year. Even with Priority Pass, it was not easy to obtain a slot in the lounge before your flight due to long waiting lists. This would be a lot more valuable benefit if access was easier and not second to other programs.

  • This is a really positive development. However i’m not sure how long this will last, especially with Alaska joining OW and once travel picks up, they may start having crowding in the lounges.

  • That new lounge at SEA North Satellite is indeed gorgeous.

  • This is good news for those that need to travel at the moment. It certainly makes it easier to wait at the airport.

  • I have priority pass through the Sapphire Reserve card but a more sure way to get into the Alaska lounges is through the AAdvatage Executive card. The primary cardholder can access the lounges both flying on American or Alaska. The Alaska lounges are very nice so it adds a lot of value to that card and I don’t think they can turn you away as easily as when trying to enter with priority pass.

  • angelo fonseca says:

    That’s good. Gradually we are walking towards the return of normal life.

  • This news inspires cynicism, given the extent to which – when travel is at normal levels – Alaska Airlines discriminates against Priority Pass holders on the basis of overcrowding rather than taking Priority Pass members -and others with lounge access – on a first come first served basis. A better approach would be to limit the number of guests each Priority Pass member is allowed.

  • I am so happy to see that Alaska is back in Priority Pass! Now I just need to travel and use my passes. Since I have their credit card I hope then I’d be able to get in, if PP doesn’t work. I agree it will remain to be seen if the lounges stay in the program. I hope they do. I really want to try out their lounges and it’d be awesome to try them for free.

  • Wow….let the overcrowding begin! Used to love Priority pass when I had it and AK in SEA had been part of it when I flew thru there a few years ago, but AK will bail as soon as they can live without the extra revenue and their elites complain about the PP folks crowding them out.

  • Great news! Now let’s open the closed priority pass lounges around the world so we can use them. If we can fly around they could at least have some lunges open internationally.

  • It make sense that they wanted to limit the lounges from overcrowding. They need to take care of elites first .

  • This is the nicest lounge I seen. Wonder if they have same decoration / layout on every airport they operate. I wish they have one in SFO or SJC.

  • Visited the Alaska Lounge at New York’s JFK during the summer of 2019. Fun times pre-Covid. It was early in the morning @6AM and the lounge was almost deserted. Nice lounge – only issue was that we were flying on British Airways – the lounge board listed only Alaska flights, so we had to be careful and watch the time for our 7:45 BA departure. This was a very pleasant start for our trip to London, which concluded five days later with a cruise on the Queen Mary2 for the trip back to New York. Thank you Chase Sapphire!