You learn something new every day. My wife and I flew into Zurich earlier this week and found that two SWISS lounges are part of the Priority Pass network. Not that we had access…
SWISS has several lounges at Zurich Airport, but the business class lounge between the A & B gates and the D gates lounge are open to Priority Pass members.
The A/B lounge is open from 5:45AM to 10:30PM each day while the D lounge is open from 6AM to 9PM. Last time I flew out of ZRH I spent some time in the Aspire Lounge: now I can use the SWISS lounge whether I am flying Star Alliance or not.
Here’s why you should choose the SWISS lounge if you have the choice–
The SWISS lounges have a hot buffet and nice selection of soups and salads. And gummy bears…
All the lounges crowd up in Zurich, but the other Priority Pass lounges (Aspire and Danata) have always been particularly busy during the morning rush. I find the SWISS lounges to be less crowded.
In the A/B lounge, SWISS offers world’s longest airport bar. It also serves as the smoking area, so you may want to take your drink and leave, but it is something unique.
The Problem with Priority Pass and a Star Alliance Gold Card
Although perfectly understandable, access to the SWISS Lounges (and all Priority Pass lounges) is restricted only to departing passengers. The same is true for Star Alliance Gold passengers (in most cases). That created a bit of headache for my wife and I earlier this week.
We arrived into Zurich at 4pm and had to wait about two hours for our ride to show up. (Yes, we could have taken the train, but it is rather difficult with two large checked bags, two carry-ons, a baby, a stroller, and two personal items). Augustine also soiled his diaper as we deplaned our SWISS flight…
So having access to a lounge would have been so nice. As we walked off our flight, a SWISS lounge greeted us. I knew the access rules but figured it was worth a shot. The lounge matron was not understanding. In fact, she was downright rude, as if we were trying to game the system just by asking. But at least we tried.
For both cost and crowding reasons I understand why SWISS and Priority Pass limit lounge access to only passengers with a valid onward departing boarding pass, but it sure would have been nice to have access, even if just to change the baby’s diaper.
Note the SWISS Business Lounge in Geneva (GVA) is also a Priority Pass lounge. Hours are from 5:30AM to 9PM daily.
The addition of SWISS lounges to the Priority Pass network is a nice surprise. SWISS has above-average lounges that are worth your time if you arrive early for your flight. Just in case you are wondering, the SWISS lounges in New York (JFK) and Chicago (ORD) are currently NOT Priority Pass lounges.