Competition to keep the well-heeled separated from the hoi polloi is heating up in Australia with Qantas announcing a premium entry in Brisbane that allows elite customers to avoid everyday queues.
Virgin Australia pioneered the concept in Australia when it opened its Sydney lounge five years ago and has since opened a premium entry in Brisbane as well as a quirkier “premium exit” in Melbourne.
Both the Sydney and Brisbane Virgin lounges offer a kerbside entrance and valet parking. The Brisbane entrance was opened last year as part of a refurbishment that doubled the size of the lounge there.
Now Qantas has joined the trend with its own premium lounge entry at Brisbane’s domestic airport, due to open with its refurbished lounge precinct next March.
The new entry, located on level 1 of the terminal, will be open daily and will offer eligible customers a dedicated check-in area, bag drop, security screening and escalator with direct access to the new Qantas Lounge Precinct.
“This is about streamlining the overall departure process for our top tier Frequent Flyers from the moment they arrive at the airport,” head of Qantas customer experience Philip Capps said in a statement.
“Premium Lounge Entry will speed up the process for customers checking in both at the airport or on their mobile – allowing them to move through the terminal quickly and maximise their time relaxing or working in the lounge.’’
Qantas opened a new international lounge in Brisbane this year and the domestic redevelopment includes a Chairman’s Lounge and a new look Qantas Club.
Customers eligible to use the new entry include those travelling in business, Qantas Club members, Gold, Platinum and Platinum One Frequent Flyers and oneworld Sapphire and Emerald Members.