Dubai, United Arab Emirates, gulftech : Priority Pass, the world’s leading airport lounge and experiences programme, owned and operated by Collinson, has announced it has added a total of 183 airport lounges and premium experiences to its global network in 2021. The latest additions mean that Priority Pass has at least one experience covering 95% of all international flights from the top 100 airports*, with new additions in airports worldwide, including the US, Russia and China. There have been new additional lounges and experiences in the Middle East, with three new lounges across Alexandria Borg El Arab International and Hurghada International Airports in Egypt and sleep pods in Bahrain International Airport. The brand has also focused on adding more accessible experiences to their programme for Members by adding further dining, sleep and spa offerings to its network as well as recently announcing a partnership with CarTrawler.
Growing The Premium Lounges Network
As part of its dedication to growing its premium lounge network, Priority Pass added 134 new premium lounges in 2021, each designed to be a luxurious oasis for travellers pre-flight. As part of this, through its sister company, Airport Dimensions, Priority Pass Members were also given access to a new lounge concept in partnership with VIP Ambaar Lounge brand. The exciting, new, premium ‘Ambaar Club’ launched at Viracopos International Airport (VCP) and has since been rolled out to two further airports in Brazil this year, with more to come.
Separately, as previously announced in June 2021, a relationship with JP Morgan Chase will give Priority Pass Members access to lounges within the brand new, premium airport lounge ‘Chase Sapphire Lounge by The Club’. Three lounges are already in development at Hong Kong International, Boston Logan and New York La Guardia airports.
Adding New Airport Experiences
As part of its commitment to expanding the range of options available for Members beyond airport lounges, Priority Pass introduced 49 new experiences in 2021. These include: Sleeping Pods at airports including Moscow Sheremetyevo, New York La Guardia and Bahrain International; nine new spas, including in destinations such as Istanbul, Lagos and Dallas; and even a brand new gaming experience at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX). Further premium dining experiences were added, where guests can dine on delicious local cuisines and, in some cases, enjoy the scenery nearby with expansive window views.
Be Relax also joined the Priority Pass network, offering Members the opportunity for a relaxing spa experience before or after their flight. With numerous locations across the US and around the world, Be Relax offers a large range of wellness services, including chair massages, loungers, and aromatherapy. Priority Pass Members can visit Be Relax locations at San Diego International Airport (SAN), Detroit Metropolitan Wayne Airport (DTW), Los Angeles International Airport (LAX), Dallas International Airport (DFW), and New York Airport (JFK and La Guardia), with more locations coming soon to the network.
Providing New and Exciting Services
As well as expanding its airport experiences, Priority Pass added a range of new Travel Services to its app, allowing Members access to more things to enhance their overall travel experience, including a global partnership with CarTrawler. The partnership gives all Members access to competitively priced car rental and airport transfers through CarTrawler’s network of over 2,200 vehicle partners across 50,000 locations worldwide. The partnership is a result of Priority Pass’ desire to constantly evolve its propositions in accordance with travellers’ evolving needs and wants and joins COVID-19 travel testing and Duty Free Shopping services.
Rebuilding traveller confidence
Priority Pass launched a number of innovations last year to help rebuild traveller confidence and welcome passengers back safely. During the pandemic, the company launched a ground-breaking new ‘Ready 2 Order’ food and beverage system in recognition of the challenges traditional Food & Beverage (F&B) models in lounges faced as a result of COVID-19 restrictions. The solution meant a number of lounges were able to protect the provision of F&B for guests, whilst ensuring all Members and lounge staff could stay safe via a contactless ordering process. To date, over 143,000 orders have been placed via the app and in November, following this incredible response, Priority Pass announced it was expanding its Ready 2 Order footprint from 16 lounges to 46, with a view to be up and running throughout 2022.
Priority Pass Members were also offered COVID-19 travel testing discounts on both PCR and Antigen tests for arrivals and departure to help make taking to the skies again more accessible.
“2021 has been a massive year for Priority Pass,” said Christopher Evans, Joint CEO, Collinson. “Not only have we expanded the network into more locations, but we’ve expanded with a whole host of new experiences and services. One of our key goals this year was to bring more premium, digitally-enabled travel experiences to our Members, to help them feel a bit of luxury and boost their confidence while travelling during what has been a difficult time. Our aim has always been to enhance the experience of getting from A to B and make access to these benefits more seamless. I am delighted with the incredible range and quality of the additional lounges, experiences and partners that our customers now have access to.
“As we move into 2022, thanks to innovations like COVID-19 PCR testing, the roll-out of vaccines and increased health and safety measures across the industry, we can expect confidence in travel to return. Our lounges will be ready and waiting to welcome passengers when they take to the skies again.”
“Priority Pass’ recent expansion of lounges and experiences around the world, including across the Middle East, comes at an opportune time. We are seeing steady signs of recovery in the airline industry as Omicron-related restrictions are eased or removed. As travel around the world slowly increases, there is a definite need for premium lounge access. According to our recent The Return Journey report, more than half of the travellers (62%) in the UAE expect travel to be more stressful now than in the past. More than a third of travellers in KSA (34%) said that their mental health is the most important part of their wellbeing. When posed with the question of what would help ease their stress, it is no surprise that 37% of travellers in KSA and 30% in UAE responded by saying they would pay for upgrade options such as airport lounge access. Moreover, we have witnessed a soaring demand for private spaces, such as sleep pods, in two of the GCC’s biggest travel hubs – Doha and Dubai. Combined, these lounges have provided travellers with over 100,000 hours to rest to date. As travel continues to recover, Priority Pass is ready to welcome travellers back and looking forward to providing them with a rich airport experience that prioritises their safety and wellbeing.” said Priyanka Lakhani, Senior Vice President Commercial, EMEA.