You've just stepped off a Qantas flight to Los Angeles, with a connecting American Airlines flight to a domestic US destination still to go... but that doesn't mean you have to make do with AA's pedestrian Admirals Club lounge at LAX.
Provided there's enough time between those QF and AA flights, many travellers will have the option of dining and relaxing at the far superior Qantas Los Angeles business lounge...
... or even the Qantas first class lounge, with its Rockpool dining room and a familiar if pared-down breakfast menu.
(Either way, you're almost certain to get the last decent cup of coffee until you're back in Australia.)
But hang on: with the Qantas lounges at Los Angeles' Tom Bradley International Terminal (TBIT) and American Airlines flights departing from LAX T4, how do you perform this 'terminal tango'?
It's quite easy when you know the trick. So here's the trick.
1. Once your inbound Qantas flight arrives at LAX you'll need to collect your luggage and re-check it for the onwards flight – so far, so normal.
2. You'll exit TBIT, turn right and head towards Terminal 4 to check in for your American Airlines flight and make your way through security into T4. Again, this is par for the course.
3. Now look for signs to the terminal connector walkway, which lets passengers seamlessly stroll between T4 and TBIT without going back out through security.
4. Once you reach TBIT, head to the Qantas lounges and have ready your inbound Qantas boarding pass, your connecting American Airlines boarding pass and – if necessary – your Qantas Platinum or Gold frequent flyer card or Qantas Club membership card.
Which Qantas LAX lounge can you use?
If you flew in on Qantas first class or have Qantas Platinum (or Platinum One or Chairman's Lounge) status, make your way straight through to the first class lounge. We suggest that a glass of champagne isn't the worst welcome to America.
If you flew in on Qantas business class or have Qantas Gold status, settle into the business class lounge.
Qantas Club members can also use the Qantas business lounge before a domestic American Airlines flight provided that flight was booked and ticketed under a QF flight number, not its native AA flight number. As long as your boarding pass lists a QF flight number, you're in.
Note also that your class of travel on the American Airlines flight makes no difference to what Qantas lounge you can use.
To quote the lounge access rules for the Oneworld alliance (which counts both Qantas and American Airlines as members): Lounge access will be determined on the international long haul ticketed flight (either First of Business Class) regardless of the ticketed class of travel on the international short haul or domestic flight.
Avoiding the T4 trek entirely
It's sometimes possible to avoid shlepping across to T4 and then back via the connector to TBIT.
After your Qantas flight offloads you at TBIT, look for the American Airlines checkin desks at the 'Connections' area. If they're open you should be able to drop off your bag and head straight upstairs to the TBIT arrivals security area.
Show them your AA boarding pass and when told that your flight leaves from Terminal 4, just explain that you're visiting TBIT for lounge access and will use the connector to get across to T4.
Of course, this same strategy works if you're travelling to the US with hand-luggage only – a fairly impressive feat for a stateside business trip – and already have the boarding pass for your American Airlines flight.
Regardless of how you get to the Qantas lounges at TBIT, you'll of course want to set an alarm on your smartphone to remind you when it's time to leave the lounge and head back to T4 before boarding commences on your American Airlines flight.