Imagine you are traveling and you need to kill 6 hours between your connecting flights. Or imagine your flight is perpetually delayed because of severe weather. Another scenario is that you have simply arrived at the airport hours before your flight departure to get through security, as recommended, and now you have time to kill before you board your flight. There is a luxurious solution when you are forced to pass the time in an airport: exclusive airport lounges.

What is Priority Pass?

Priority Pass grants the user access to exclusive airport lounges. These areas are quiet, Internet-accessible spaces to relax or work in, and come with complimentary pre-flight bites and drinks, including alcoholic beverages at most lounges, to help you relax during this stressful travel time.

What are the different lounges?

There are over 1,200 lounges in the Priority Pass program all over the world with more constantly being added. For example, in the Singapore Changi International Airport, conveniently located in Terminals 1, 2 and 3, are the SATS Premier Lounges. You can stay for up to 3 hours and children under 2 years old are admitted without charge. There are refreshments, wifi, a television, alcohol and even a shower available. The Plaza Premium Lounge, also located in Terminal 1, has the same amenities as the SATS Premier Lounge, with an additional conference room. This lounge is ideal for business travelers who need a bit more privacy. In Terminal 2 lies the Ambassador Transit Lounge.

Here, children under 6 years old are admitted free. It has the same basic amenities, such as Internet access, a television, and refreshments, but also offer bedrooms and gymnasiums, massages, as well as beauty and hair services, subject to additional payment. The Haven by Jetquay is located in the Singapore Changi International Airport in Terminal 3. They have all the basic amenities as well, but they also offer nap rooms! The nap rooms and conference facilities are subject to payment. The Blossom Lounge in Terminal 4 deserves honorable mention. As most lounges serve alcohol, this lounge is distinctive because they serve complimentary beer and house wine. All other premium beverages come at additional cost.

How to Get Priority Pass?

You can purchase Priority Pass for an annual fee. The Standard package allows you to pay per visit when you arrive. You can also pay for a guest to join you. The Standard Plus package gives you 10 free visits, and then you will need to pay per visit. Finally, the Prestige package gives you free access to all lounges, but you will still need to pay for your guest.

Another option is to get a credit card that comes with Priority Pass or airport lounge access benefits.

DBS Altitude Card and Citibank PremierMiles Visa Card

The DBS Altitude Card and Citibank PremierMiles Visa Card get you 2 free visits to all Priority Pass lounges. At the moment, the current airport lounges worldwide total 1,200 and counting! For the DBS Altitude card, you must apply for the Priority Pass Membership before you arrive. This processing time may take up to 3 weeks. For both of these cards, if you bring an accompanying guest, this will count as 2 visits.

BOC Elite Miles Card

The BOC Elite Miles Card gets you 4 free airport lounge access to Plaza Premium Lounges. The 4 visits can also be used for your accompanying guests too.

Maybank Horizon Visa Signature Card

The Maybank Horizon Visa Signature Card gives you access to 1 visit to the Ambassador Transit Lounge in Singapore or the Plaza Premium lounges in Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, and Hong Kong. You must charge a minimum of S$1,000 in a single transaction on a retail purchase using your Maybank Horizon Visa Signature Card to get this benefit. Principal cardmember’s accompanying guests enjoy 20% off walk-in rates at the same lounges and 10% off massages, gym admission, as well as nail and beauty services at the Ambassador Transit Lounge in the Singapore Changi Airport.

American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Ascend Credit Card

The American Express Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer Ascend Credit Card gives you access to 4 free visits to SATS Premier lounges in Singapore and the Plaza Premium lounges worldwide. You also get KrisFlyer Gold Lounge access when traveling overseas through the Singapore Changi airport. We would remiss if we did not mention what the KrisFlyer Gold Lounge includes. The facility at Singapore Changi Airport's Terminal 3 boasts of buffet food stations, televisions, and Internet workstations all overlooking water and greenery and a natural skylight. This is only 1 of 900 Star Alliance Gold Lounges all over the globe.

HSBC Visa Infinite Card

The HSBC Visa Infinite Card is one of the more unique and generous credit cards because they offer unlimited access to more than 1,2000 worldwide VIP lounges for the principal and supplementary cardholders. Both cardholders get a membership card. No prior reservation is required. Simply present your Priority Pass Membership card to gain exclusive access.

Standard Chartered Visa Infinite Card

With the Standard Chartered Visa Infinite Card, principal cardholders get up to 6 complimentary access to over 850 airport lounges worldwide. Any accompanying guest counts as one additional visit. You will need to apply for the Priority Pass prior to going to the airport.

OCBC Voyage Visa Infinite Card

The OCBC Voyage Visa Infinite Card gives you complimentary access to over 70 VIP airport lounges.

Final Thoughts

Although these perks are advertised as complimentary, some cards have annual fees. At times, the rewards, such as air miles or cash back, outweigh the costs. Furthermore, some cards also offer additional benefits, such as limousine transfers to and from the airport, as well as expedited immigration clearance. It’s a beautiful thing when your card gives you free access to a lounge with refreshments and customer service, instead of sitting on the airport waiting room floor.