Members of frequent-flyer platform Point Hacks have ranked the nine most popular airport lounges in the world and Qantas has taken top spot. Members also ranked the worst lounges with another Australian airline landing near the bottom.
Who doesn't love a chance to relax in a business lounge?
Point Hacks, a platform for members of frequent flyer programs in Australia, asked 1,686 of its subscribers to vote for the airline company that gives the best international business lounge experience.
Qantas international business lounge was voted the best, accounting for 31% of the votes. Singapore Airlines came in second (20%) and Emirates, third (19%).
However, the results varied from state to state. Most voters in New South Wales, South Australia, Victoria and Queensland preferred Qantas, while those in Western Australia opted for Singapore Airlines. Voters in the Northern Territory and Australian Capital Territory mostly opted for Emirates.
The lounges ranked among the worst performers were Virgin Australia, Air New Zealand and American Express — all of which ranked equal sixth. Point Hacks noted that Virgin Australia's low ranking is "not surprising" as it only has a few co-branded lounges with Etihad Airways in Sydney and Melbourne.
Virgin Australia told Australian Business Traveller it expects to open an international lounge - which is actually owned by British airport lounge operator No1 Lounges - in July 2019. However, a Virgin Australia spokesperson confirmed to Business Insider Australia that the opening is behind schedule and has not yet been open.
Point Hacks spokesperson Daniel Sciberras said the voter results correlate with the frequency of international flights offered by each airline.
"Today, with many flyers having a range of lounge options at their disposal through travelling in Business Class, partner airline and alliance wide elite status recognition, and lounge benefits offered by some premium credit cards, these results suggest that travellers still favour using the lounge of the airline that they are flying with, and highlights the importance of airline lounges in a customers’ overall travel experience," he said.
Sciberras added that non-airline branded lounges and pay as you go lounges such as American Express and Priority Pass are increasing in popularity but are yet to be the top choice for travellers, likely because of the limited number of these lounges, and access being given to "a niche group of travellers”.
The list of top business lounges ranked:
- Singapore airlines
- Cathay Pacific
- Etihad Airways
- Virgin Australia, Air New Zealand, American Express
- Priority Pass