British Airways to upgrade New York business, first class lounges

By Chris C., November 23 2016
British Airways to upgrade New York business, first class lounges

British Airways will spend upwards of US$65 million (A$88m) over the next five years to upgrade its check-in, security screening and boarding gate facilities at New York JFK’s Terminal 7, along with its Galleries business class and first class lounges.

Fellow Oneworld alliance members Qantas, Cathay Pacific, Iberia and BA affiliate OpenSkies also fly from Terminal 7 at JFK, with Qantas passengers bound for Los Angeles and beyond utilising BA’s lounges before beginning their journey.

(Pictured: British Airways' current Galleries Business lounge at JFK)

However, there’s no word on when, or indeed if, British Airways’ separate Concorde Room at JFK – exclusively for BA’s own first class passengers, Concorde Room cardholders and invited Executive Club Premier members – will also get a refresh.

“We are excited to start work on a targeted investment plan to make improvements for our customers,” said British Airways Chairman and CEO Alex Cruz during a recent visit to New York.

“We have already introduced the newest aircraft in our fleet onto many of our popular routes in the US and we want to ensure the lounge facilities match that premium experience,” Cruz continued.

In New York, Qantas business class travellers, Gold-grade frequent flyers, Oneworld Sapphire cardholders and Qantas Club members enjoy access to the BA Galleries Business lounge, while Qantas Platinum frequent flyers (and above) plus other Oneworld Emerald members can instead visit the BA Galleries First lounge:

The airline is yet to clarify a specific timeline for its upgrade works at JFK, with the news coming as part of a broader US$110 million (A$148m) facility upgrade plan for the airline with improvements also earmarked for Chicago, San Francisco, Seattle, Boston, Miami and Houston.

Qantas also shares access to the British Airways lounges at London Heathrow Airport’s Terminal 3 for passengers travelling to Dubai, Sydney and Melbourne with the Flying Kangaroo.

Also read: British Airways cuts London City – New York flights

Connect with other business travellers in our new British Airways discussion group

Chris C.

Chris is a a former contributor to Executive Traveller.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2012

Total posts 137

Just out of passing interest, how does a FF become a "Concord Room cardholder"? (as mentioned in the story)

Earning 5,000 Tier Points (TP) in a membership year would get you a Concord Room card. 

This is not to be confused with Gold Guest List (GGL), the level above Gold, which requires 5,000 TP in the first instance and only 3,000 TP in subsequent membership year to retail GGL.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

10 May 2012

Total posts 137

Thank you TherealBabushka

British Airways Executive Club Gold

25 Jun 2015

Total posts 21

5000 Tier Points (and 4 qualifying flights) in a membership year. There is no requirement for a certain amount of TPs needing to be from BA metal/code flights, so you could credit 4 BA flights and then earn the rest on other oneworld carriers. Of course if you don't fly BA much you wouldn't get the maximum benefit - hitting the 5000TPs gets you Gold Guest List (somewhat like P1 is for QF) which gives you a higher CIV, Upgrade vouchers, an extra guest in BA lounges and Hilton Diamond.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

06 Oct 2015

Total posts 22

Wish they'd move to T8 for better AA connections without the need to clear security, catch the airtrain, etc. Also the Flagship lounge is much better than the current BA offerings. Even CX is moving over in January next year.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 May 2016

Total posts 9

No mention of the nightmare low 'ceilinged', cramped baggage carousel area...

Qantas - QFF Platinum

20 Mar 2012

Total posts 212

Great news, though they've been needing updating for about 10 years.

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