Priority Pass Members Regain Access to Plaza Premium Lounges Priority Pass Members Regain Access to Plaza Premium Lounges

Priority Pass Members Regain Access to Plaza Premium Lounges

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In 2021, Plaza Premium Lounges withdrew from the Priority Pass Network. Now in June 2023, they have returned for Priority Pass members to use. This means that Priority Pass members have access to another 63 lounges, further improving the value of the Priority Pass membership. Here are the specifics.

The Plaza Premium Lounge Portfolio

If you've traveled outside of the United States to airports in Canada, the U.K., or China, you likely came across one of Plaza Premium's 130+ lounges. Although Plaza Premium operates just two lounges in the United States — in Dallas/Fort Worth and Orlando — the lounge operator operates an extensive network of airport lounges in Canada, Europe, and Asia.

For example, there are six Plaza Premium Lounges and a spa at Toronto-Pearson International Airport and six Plaza Premium Lounges at London Heathrow Airport (two of which are currently closed).

The quality of Plaza Premium lounges varies significantly depending on the location. For example, the Plaza Premium Lounge in the domestic departures wing at Winnipeg International Airport pales in comparison to the Plaza Premium Lounge in Terminal 2 at London Heathrow.

Entry way and atrium of Plaza Premium Lounge at London-Heathrow Airport
Atrium of the Plaza Premium Lounge at London-Heathrow Airport. Credit: Max Prosperi/AwardWallet

Some lounges offer various basic amenities like free wine, beer, and light snacks. Others offer sit-down restaurant-style dining, shower suites, and craft drinks. Like many Priority Pass lounges, Plaza Premium's network of lounges is very hit-or-miss.

I've found Plaza Premium lounges to be some of the best Priority Pass lounges. This is especially the case throughout Europe. Based on early reviews and descriptions of the new(-ish) Dallas-Fort Worth lounge, Plaza Premium's U.S. lounge is quite impressive.

Before they were removed from the program, I came to enjoy the Plaza Premium network of lounges that I could access these lounges free of charge when I presented my Priority Pass membership.

The breakfast buffet at Plaza Premium's Terminal 2 location at London-Heathrow Airport
Credit: Max Prosperi/AwardWallet

Plaza Premium Renewing Ties with Priority Pass

On July 1, 2021, 57 Plaza Premium Lounges left the Priority Pass network, leaving a dent in the 1,300 lounges otherwise available to Priority Pass cardholders.

On June 6, 2023, 39 Plaza Premium Lounges rejoined the Priority Pass network, with another 24 rejoining on June 20, 2023. That's 63 more lounges for Priority Pass cardholders — more than the number of lounges that withdrew in 2021. Note that only about half of Plaza Premium Lounges are rejoining, as there are over 130 total lounges across the world.

Notable Plaza Premium Lounges that are rejoining Priority Pass include:

  • Dallas-Fort Worth Terminal E
  • Orlando
  • Toronto
  • Vancouver
  • London-Heathrow Terminal 2
  • Rome-Fiumicino
  • Hong Kong
  • Sydney
  • Winnipeg
  • Edmonton

If you're curious to see if the rejoining Plaza Premium lounges will improve your travels, you can see the full list of lounges rejoining Priority Pass here.

Get Plaza Premium Lounge Access Through American Express Global Lounge Collection or Capital One

Travelers have other ways to get complimentary access to Plaza Premium lounges. Plaza Premium has an agreement with both American Express and Capital One to give complimentary lounge access to select cardholders.

Of these, the Capital One partnership is the newer development. In June 2022, Capital One partnered with Plaza Premium to give select cardholders access to over 100 lounge locations. Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card cardholders (and authorized users) get unlimited complimentary access while Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and Capital One Spark Miles for Business holders get two free visits per year.

One benefit offered by the The Platinum Card® from American Express (and other select premium Amex cards) is the Amex Global Lounge Collection. In addition to Priority Pass membership, Amex Platinum cardholders also get access to:

  • Centurion Lounges
  • Escape Lounges
  • American Express International Lounges
  • Plaza Premium lounges
  • Air Space Lounges
  • Delta Sky Club access when flying on Delta flights

Enrollment is required for select Amex benefits.

If you have Priority Pass access through another credit card, you might consider switching to the Amex Platinum to get access to Priority Pass plus this much longer list of lounge locations. Check out this post to learn everything you need to know about the popular American Express credit card.

The Bottom Line

Plaza Premium Lounges rejoining Priority Pass is certainly good news for Priority Pass cardholders. On the other hand, The Platinum Card® from American Express cardholders might not be as happy. While Priority Pass cardholders have access to more lounges, travelers that had more exclusive access to the Plaza Premium Lounges for the past couple of years might find those lounges more crowded. Only time will tell how this change affects both networks.

Have you ever visited a Plaza Premium Lounge?

5 / 5 - (6 votes)
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  • Norah Phillips says:

    Check with your bank. CIBC is now using Global pass

  • Not happy to hear about this as a CSR cardholder. Our travel, pre-pandemic, had already slowed a bit (with two kids over 2 vs. 1), so our UA status went from gold to silver, which meant losing access to *A lounges for international travel. Given YYZ is one of our frequent destinations (family there), without plaza premium anymore, we won’t have any more lounge access there, vs. two options before (Maple Leaf Lounge and Plaza Premium). We’ve also used these in airports in India a bit (although most have alternative options, too).

    I’m not sure if it would even be worth keeping the CSR anymore. We also used the Priority Pass lounge where we were in CVG, which was welcome, but we are now in SFO (no lounge unless flying from SJC). With both our kids beyond toddler ages, we also need to get a new card on the account for all 4 of us to have access. I’ve thought about switching to Amex Plat, but we barely use uber, so not sure we can get the value out of the AF there, and I already was concerned since the fee for a single additional card is more since it comes with up to 3, which we aren’t going to use. Also, I’ve almost lost track of the guest limits now that we aren’t traveling…so not even sure any of those fit our needs anymore.

    Think I need to completely re-think the travel card strategy. yikes!

    On the other hand, wonder if Plaza Premium is holding out for increased fees from Priority Pass, hoping they will give in and pay the higher fees, as they likely know Plaza Premium access is important to a good number of priority pass subscriptions. Kind of like the tv channels going offline from a cable provider for a few days, until they pay up for whatever the fee they want is. Hoping they will resolve amicably, so once travel starts again, we have access.

  • Hmm, what was not said in this article, I wonder if Plaza Premium is actually closing lounges and scaling back their business due to the covid-19 pandemic, as that could be a reason for cutting ties with Priority Pass.
    If so, then access through American Express won’t last either.

  • Very sad. The negative impact is gonna be huge!

  • Pretty sad to hear. There has been a steady decay of the conditions and service provided by Priority Pass, and their customer support has definitively worsened in the last few years. Hopefully as travel picks up they will start offering more benefits and opportunities.

  • I am SUPER disappointed in this change! It was one of the few perks offered to us Canadian travelers. Im very sad, I spend a lot of time in the ones in Toronto and Vancouver. Such sad news, I will have to shift things around. darn it. The strange thing is most of the time the lounges have been quite empty since Covid. I would think its good to have customers? now they will have fewer.

  • Bummer – after more than a year of no traveling due to COVID, I really need to re-assess the need for an expensive travel card (Chase Reserve). As the article implies, hope this is just a ploy on the part of Plaza Premium to get Chase’s attention.

  • Thanks for the info, I’ve really enjoyed Priority Pass through my Chase Sapphire Reserve card. I’ll definitely have to re-check the updated list of PP eligible lounges the next time I plan a trip. Still, looking forward to finally traveling again once I get vaccinated!

    • With you on that. Wish Chase could re-negotiate at least some access to Priority Pass at least in Canada, this will be a really vital benefit. I need to find a way to submit this request to them.

  • Priority Pass was a great backup for places were AA didn’t have coverage, this might change some decisiones in people with both passes.

  • After one year of almost no utilisation of my Priority Pass (they extended the validity of only three months), now there are al lot of lounges not available anymore to Priority Pass customers.
    Definetely not a good news.

  • So after Covid19 Pandemic when the word feel save again to travel we might ditch our Priority Pass card. There is no use of it anymore .

  • It’s a hit for Priority Pass, but it might be one reason to consider sticking with AMEX Plat if the price of it goes up.

  • It’s getting harder to justify some of my premium cards with changes like this and already reduced travel. At this point I think I will scale back and look for a new batch with sign up bonuses when I resume travel.

  • SAAHIL VIJ says:

    A whole year of missed travel, and now when we finally get back to it there will be very little value of the priority pass 🙁

  • Rogelio fernandez says:

    Cada vez más acotado lamentablemente…

  • Priority Pass is losing a lot of value lately

  • Wow, this leaves quite a few airports without any Priority Pass lounges.

  • Scott Berry says:

    Thats a big bummer, i wonder if that has to do with COVID. I like the PP but unless its free I’m on the fence if its worth the $120 year fee.

  • This is disappointing to hear. I’ve been a long time CSR cardholder and have frequented Plaza lounges when traveling internationally across Asia. This may impact my decision to renew my separate CSR vs. consolidating with my significant other’s CSR as an authorized user…

  • I had always wondered why I was able to get 4 people in to the Plaza Premium lounges with a combination of my Amex Platinum and Priority Pass card, and this totally explains it (though now I guess I’ll be down to only two people). These are the only lounges that are in the transborder terminal at Pearson that you can get into with the Platinum card (the Maple Leaf Lounges aren’t included), so it’s kind of a shame to lose them as part of Priority Pass.

  • We love the lounges! It makes travel so much better! Hopefully they will stay open!

  • This devaluation is happening with every LoungeKe . But I hope that this situation improve after pandemic.

  • Gilberto Souza de Morais says:

    İt seems both Priority Pass and Lounge key programs are not worth the membership from July 1st.

  • Why is the Winnipeg International Airport Plaza lounge such a loss compared to other Canadian cities? My only flying this year during the pandemic was to Winnipeg, and the lounge wasn’t even open.

  • This is pretty unreal given the state of international travel. These programs risk death spirals of cutting benefits, forcing attrition…when they need the revenue most.

  • This is a significant devaluation for priority pass members

  • The Plaza Premium Lounge in London Heathrow Terminal 2 is a really nice lounge and certainly the best third party lounge I have ever visited and will be a sad loss to Priority Pass. Not as high standard as Terminal 2 but I really like the Plaza Premium Lounge in Terminal 5 as well. Although it was never accessible with Priority Pass, the Amex Platinum partnership allowed me to gain entry.

  • This is a real shame and takes some value out of Priority Pass, and Amex Platinum. Seems many companies are happy to keep chipping away under the guise of Coronavirus.

  • Quite a shame priority pass is being devalued a bit. Hopefully they add more offerings!

  • Such a bummer. The one in LHW was my go-to for waiting in before checking in at my hotel since we always got in too early.

  • This is really disappointing for international travelers…

  • The impact of the LoungeKey loss is massive, wow.

  • Not a big deal now, but this will significantly lower the appeal of priority pass memberships I think once international travel finally rebounds post pandemic….very sad….but there will likely be more shakeups in the airport lounge biz before things get back to normal.

  • Loss for Sapphire Reserve cardmembers, just another Monday for Platinum! (Tongue-in-cheek joke: I have the Amex Plat and the Sapphire Preferred)

  • Not surprising when paired with all the overcrowding pre ‘Rona. Oh well. Life goes on.

  • Jesica Dillon says:

    I hope the get to an agreement. During covid lockdowns was not able to enjoy the one in Fiumicino and the only one open in Heathrow, if remembering correctly , served its purpose but rather on a humble way. Fingers crossed it gets solved… heard some were realy good!

  • This is huge, New Delhi has the lounge I used with chase sapphire and now it will begone

  • This is a significant devaluation for priority pass members. Hopefully they will come up with a better or equal alternative.

    • Yes; as a CSR customer, I’m hoping to soon read about a resolution between Priority pass and Plaza Premium AND the CSR’s introduction of an alternative. Given the certainty that lounge overcrowding will resume as more people get vaccinated and international travel is restored to previous levels, CSR needs to always be on the lookout for ways to accommodate Priority Pass users.