Complimentary lounge access is an included benefit for frequent flyers with Gold or equivalent elite airline status. However for infrequent flyers who don’t fly enough to earn such status, there is an option to purchase lounge access. There are a number of programs, such as Priority Pass, that offer lounge access for a fee.

For Australian flyers, the best option is arguably Qantas Club membership. Qantas operates by far the most lounges throughout Australia and Qantas Club members can also access a number of international business class and partner lounges when travelling overseas.

However, Qantas Club membership isn’t exactly cheap. The joining fee alone is $385, and on top of that the annual fee is currently $510. With this in mind, one of our members wonders whether lounge access is worth the cost. They also wonder if it is possible to have the joining fee reduced or waived.

Can anyone one advised how you can join Qanats Club, without paying a joining fee. And has anyone used their lounges at the following places; Brisbane, Auckland, Singapore and Phuket. I am flying to Phuket next month and am looking at joining the Qantas club prior to my trip.

Most of our members agree that, where possible, the opportunity to use the lounge is worthwhile. Qantas Club lounges offer complimentary food and beverages, work stations, showers and a place to relax in comfort ahead of a long flight.

My view is that any lounge access when flying is better than no lounge access – so, pay up and make use of it is my advice. In answer to your question, I have used the Qantas Club in Changi, a number of times between 2004-7. I remember thinking it was pretty good.

One possibility for a waived Qantas Club joining fee, as pointed out by one of our members, is the ANZ Frequent Flyer Black credit card. One of the value-added benefits of the card is actually a waived Qantas Club joining fee. ANZ customers who use this card to purchase a new Qantas Club membership can save up to $455 in the first year. This card does have an annual fee of $425, however it should be pointed out that the annual fee is currently being waived for the first year for customers who apply by the end of this month. Plus, as a final sweetener, there are currently even 50,000 bonus Qantas points on offer as a sign-up bonus!

There are also other cards that offer benefits when it comes to airport lounge access. Some credit cards offer complimentary lounge passes. American Express even have their own airport lounge access program.

For those who don’t want to take out a credit card, Qantas Club membership discounts are also available to AFF GOLD members. New members can currently save $235 by taking advantage of AFF’s corporate Qantas Club rate.

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Matt Graham
The editor of Australian Frequent Flyer, Matt's passion for travel has taken him to over 60 countries… with the help of frequent flyer points, of course!
Matt's favourite destinations (so far) are Germany, Brazil, New Zealand & Kazakhstan. His interests include economics, aviation & foreign languages, and he has a soft spot for good food and red wine.

You can contact Matt at [email protected]