How to get a free Priority Pass membership — which includes access to over 1,200 airport lounges around the world


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Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse LAX Priority Pass
The Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse at LAX, one of the newly-accessible properties. Priority Pass

  • Airport lounges are comfortable, exclusive places within airport terminals where you can relax and enjoy complimentary drinks and snacks, plenty of seating, fast Wi-Fi, and more, all separate from the main part of the terminal.
  • The Priority Pass network includes access to more than 1,200 lounges around the world, as well as credits at a few restaurants.
  • It can be expensive to join Priority Pass, but two premium rewards credit cards come with a complimentary membership: the Chase Sapphire Reserve and the Platinum Card® from American Express.

The Chase Sapphire Reserve and the Platinum Card from American Express are two of the best credit or charge cards available for anyone who travels. While there are a few differences between the cards, which you can read about here, they’re also similar in many respects.

One of the things that the cards have in common is that they both come with a complimentary Priority Pass Select membership. Priority Pass is a network of airport lounges that members can access for free, as well as a number of restaurants and spa-type properties that offer substantial credits for Priority Pass members.

Priority Pass recently announced that it has surpassed 1,200 locations around the world, having spent the past year bringing about 175 new lounge properties and other facilities into the network.

As cards like the Chase Sapphire Reserve have become more popular and common, there’s been an increased demand on the Priority Pass network. By adding 141 traditional lounges and 34 restaurants, spas, and “relaxation experiences,” Priority Pass has expanded offerings around the world.

“We aim to continually improve and evolve the Priority Pass offering to our members with new and exciting experiences that meet their ever-changing needs,” said Sheryl Pflaum, EVP of The Americas at Collinson, the operator of Priority Pass.

Personally, I love having lounge access. They’re comfortable, relaxing, and generally include access to relatively private, comfortable seats, an internet connection, food and drinks (which are often complimentary), and sometimes other amenities. Lounges are the perfect oases where you can get away of the hustle and bustle of the main terminals – even when lounges are busy, they still beat the gate area by a wide margin.