Lounge Access Question

Discussion in 'United Airlines | MileagePlus' started by k_malm, May 4, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. k_malm
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    k_malm Silver Member

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    Forgive me if this info is elsewhere, I did some digging and didn't see it.

    I have a trip in a couple months with connections in DEN then ORD. I know in ORD I can use the RCC Lounge as it is my layover before the ORD-FRA segment. What about in DEN? The layover is quite long (4 hours) and I would love to be in the lounge. I think I am allowed as I have a international flight in the same day, but I have seen mixed information.
     
  2. Canadi>n
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    Canadi>n Gold Member

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    Assuming you are STARGold and you are on a coach ticket, as long as it is the same day as your international flight you should be granted access to the DEN RCC. (Of course if you're in F or C internationally, you'd also have access to the RCC at DEN too.)
     
  3. sfo1
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    sfo1 Silver Member

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    When you get to DEN and the RCC show them your International Boarding Pass ORD/FRA they will let you in, no need to show the DEN/ORD as that indicates domestic travel, you will have no problems.
     
  4. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Technically only if on UA metal. If flying DEN-IAD-FRA on UA/LH and only the LH segment is in C/F and the passenger has no status then I'm pretty sure the rules state no access in DEN.
     
  5. k_malm
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    k_malm Silver Member

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    Here is more detail:

    The exact flights are BOI-DEN UA/F, DEN-ORD UA/F, and ORD-FRA LH/F. I do not have status with the alliance, just US silver, which I know does nothing for me here.
     
  6. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Based on that itinerary my understanding of the rules is that technically you are only permitted access in ORD. This is the appropriate excerpt from the *A site (see the red I added below):
    http://www.staralliance.com/en/benefits/lounges/lounge-access-policy/
     
  7. gobluetwo
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    gobluetwo Silver Member

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    Oddly, I was with a colleague of mine traveling ORD-FRA in C and they would not let her into the ORD concourse C RCC. I mentioned that she should have access based on class of travel at the international gateway city, but she insisted it was *G only (which would apply if we were in Y). Anyway, didn't want to deal with the hassle, so just showed my 1P card and got us in. Relevant *A rules (from same link as Wandering Aramean):

     
  8. BurBunny
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    BurBunny Silver Member

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    *Silver flying international doesn't get you lounge access unless you're First Class I believe. I don't see in your posts what class of service you're flying?
     
  9. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    If you're flying IFC or business class on an "international flight" (be careful about the definition, Canada isn't always considered international, for example), you should get lounge access before the flight regardless of status with the airline/alliance, although status might help you access a better lounge.
     
  10. BurBunny
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    BurBunny Silver Member

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    Interesting, as I've been denied access based on business ticket internationally one year when I was only 2P. Pretty sure it was before the international leg, but it may have been the originating flight out of DEN.
     
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  11. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    First of all, please allow me to extend a belated welcome to MP.

    Before an international long-haul (TATL/TPAC) flight in business class, you should be able to get lounge access in the designated business class lounge for your carrier. Generally you can also access the lounge before connecting flights on the same day, but the rules can vary on this. Sometimes you're supposed to get a lounge invitation at the check in counter and sometimes the agents fail to inform you about the lounge until you ask, but it's considered one of the perks of a business class ticket, whether revenue or award (but not for nonrevs, buddy passes, etc.). In the USA, one tends just to show the boarding pass to the lounge dragon with no invitation required as a general rule.

    If this happens again, you should politely point out that you're travelling on XXX airline in business to YYY (foreign destination) and escalate if necessary. Given the fare levels, you don't want to miss any part of the business class experience and lounges are much better places to wait. Sometimes the dragon will unfortunately make assumptions about your class of travel without looking at the documents. If this happens, you need to make clear to them that you are indeed a business class passenger and expect to be treated accordingly.
     
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  12. BurBunny
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    BurBunny Silver Member

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    It's never been an issue any other time, but of course most of the time I'm at least *G and entitled to the privilege anyway.

    Not sure what happened that time, but I have gotten more confident in the rules overall since then. But glad to know the C class is across the board for international.

    Interestingly, I've never been denied access to RCC as *G flying to Canada. Then again, it's usually from the DEN RCC and the dragons there have always been kind to me.

    However, the OP still never stated what class they were in, and the purpose of my post was to make sure they didn't think a Y international entitled them to RCC access. One would not think so, but I've learned not to presume.

    Thank you so much for your warm welcome!
     
  13. gobluetwo
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    gobluetwo Silver Member

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    Int'l business should get you access to the carrier's lounge at the gateway city, based on the *A rules I posted above. That means if you're 2P flying DEN-IAD-FRA in C, for instance, you'd only have lounge access at IAD outbound and FRA on the return. You would not get access at DEN or IAD on the return.
     
  14. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Not really. If you are flying in Biz/First on the same carrier that operates the lounge then often they will provide it but otherwise the airlines often do not actually provide access in the manner you described. The rules are actually quite clear on this.
     
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  15. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I think I was careful to qualify this and, in fact, the sentence before what you quoted ends in the words "designated business class lounge for your carrier." My experience has been that I have indeed been admitted to lounges before connecting flights. In fact, I just checked the DL/SkyTeam rules and they explicitly permit lounge access before connecting flights when confirmed in business (or IFC) international (not including Canada, etc.) on a SkyTeam flight for the same day. Their definition considers the connecting flight to count as international business too, assuming that the connecting flight is on Delta for a Delta lounge.
     
  16. k_malm
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    k_malm Silver Member

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    Thank you for all your help. I didn't think I would have access, but wanted to check. It is actually a trip for two, so I will see if I can arrange to have someone at least "guest" my husband into the RCC in DEN on our long layover. He gets bored more easily than I do. :)
     
  17. Wandering Aramean
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    Wandering Aramean Gold Member

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    Perhaps I misunderstood your post there. I read the first line as applying to the flight immediately prior to the long-haul departure. That would be the "designated business lounge" bit. That is not in dispute. It is the "also access the lounge before connecting flights" bit that I am suggesting is different than what you've asserted.

    If flying DEN-IAD-FRA booked in C on all UA metal then you get access in DEN as UA has a provision that adds access to all RCCs if in international biz that day. CO has a similar provision for BusinessFirst customers and PClubs. But if you are flying DEN-IAD on UA and IAD-FRA on LH then, according to the letter of the rules, you would not have access as LH does not operate the lounge in DEN and you are not departing on an international long-haul segment in biz from DEN.

    What do Delta's policies have to do with those of CO, UA or *A? :confused:
     

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