Qantas reopens domestic airport lounges

Selected Qantas business and regional lounges will fling open their doors from July 1.

By David Flynn , June 30 2020
Qantas reopens domestic airport lounges

Qantas will begin reopening airport lounges across Australia from this week as travel and venue restrictions ease and demand slowly picks up leading into the mid-year school holidays.

The first wave will see the more exclusive Qantas Business Lounges open their doors to all travellers – including Qantas Club members and Gold-grade frequent flyers.

However, there'll be strict capacity limits on the number of guests allowed in at any time, to comply with state-specific restrictions on indoor gatherings which commonly dictate a maximum number of customers in any single enclosed space and/or a limit of one customer per 2sqm or 4sqm.

Qantas lounges will now feature 'hosted snacking stations'.
Qantas lounges will now feature 'hosted snacking stations'.

In line with those caps, a Qantas spokesperson has advised Executive Traveller that top-tier frequent flyers will be permitted to bring guests into the lounge only if they are on the same flight as their host, while in the short term, complimentary Qantas lounge invitation passes won't be eligible for entry.

The larger Qantas Clubs will open later, based on demand, while the elite invitation-only Chairman's Lounges are scheduled to open in August.

Even the elite Chairman's Lounges will have a capacity limit.
Even the elite Chairman's Lounges will have a capacity limit.

The following Qantas domestic lounges will be open from 1 July:

  • Sydney Business Lounge (capacity limit of 347)
  • Canberra Business Lounge (capacity limit of 100)
  • Coffs Harbour Regional Lounge (capacity limit of 23)
  • Tamworth Regional Lounge (capacity limit of 21)
  • Adelaide Qantas Club (capacity limit of 468)
  • Perth Domestic Business Lounge (capacity limit of 350)
  • Kalgoorlie Regional Lounge (capacity limit of 50)
  • Broome Regional Lounge  (capacity limit of 48)
  • Karratha Regional Lounge (capacity limit of 80)
  • Alice Springs Regional Lounge (capacity limit of 68)
  • Launceston Regional Lounge (capacity limit of 23)

The Qantas Business Lounges at Melbourne and Brisbane, along with regional lounges in Victoria and Queensland, will be progressively reopened from July 10 as current state-based gathering restrictions are eased.

(Under current state regulations the Melbourne and Brisbane Business Lounges, along with the Qantas Club and Chairman's Lounge, would be permitted only 20 guests at a time.)

The Spice Bar at the Melbourne Business Lounge will also reopen.
The Spice Bar at the Melbourne Business Lounge will also reopen.

Qantas closed all domestic and worldwide lounges on 23 March, as a result of government enforced restrictions which shut down the majority of domestic and international flying.

The new Qantas lounge experience

While the lounge experience of the Covid-19 era will be rather different to the old one, some travellers may find that measures such as replacing the self-serve buffet with a "personalised tray-around service" will make for a bit of a boutique club-like feel.

Why go to the buffet, when the buffet can come to you?
Why go to the buffet, when the buffet can come to you?

Customers will be able to choose from a selection of individually-plated items such as roast field mushrooms, kale and cheese tarts with tomato relish; bacon and egg rolls; bacon, chili and parmesan frittatas; blackberry cheesecakes; and carrot and pecan cakes with cream cheese frosting.

The new all-day 'tray-around' service.
The new all-day 'tray-around' service.

These dishes will change daily, and there'll also be individual treats from serviced 'snacking stations', while the Melbourne Business Lounge's Spice Bar and the Perth Business Lounge's Pizza Bar will be be in operation as usual.

The spread at the all-day hosted snacking station.
The spread at the all-day hosted snacking station.

Coffee (served in disposable take-away cups), fresh squeezed juice, beer and wine can all be ordered from the bar or barista.

All drinks will be poured for guests at the bar, replacing self-serve options.
All drinks will be poured for guests at the bar, replacing self-serve options.

"We haven’t ruled out a return of the buffet, toastie and pancake maker in the future or the reintroduction of self-serve beverage stations when restrictions ease," reassures Qantas Chief Customer Officer Stephanie Tully.

"In the meantime, we are hopeful Qantas customers will enjoy the extra personalised offering”.

Sanitising stations are dotted around the lounges, which have all undergone a deep clean during their closure.

Qantas lounges will also feature a new 'Care Concierge'.
Qantas lounges will also feature a new 'Care Concierge'.

"Some initiatives will become the norm while others such as capacity restrictions will ease as time goes on," Tully predicts.

"This is a new world for everyone as we introduce and evolve our services to the new travel climate, but we’re very confident that we can make this work well for our people and our customers"

As previously reported, Qantas has extended Qantas Club membership for six months and Qantas Frequent Flyer tier status for 12 months.

Also read: Here are Australia's best Qantas Frequent Flyer credit card sign-up offers

David

David Flynn is the Editor-in-Chief of Executive Traveller and a bit of a travel tragic with a weakness for good coffee, shopping and lychee martinis.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 Nov 2013

Total posts 23

Great timing as I'm flying to Geraldton next Monday morning. I'm a platinum but I assume that guests won't be allowed at this stage.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 Nov 2013

Total posts 23

I should clarify that I'm flying out of Perth and will be using that lounge.

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2395

Guests allowed, see article - but they have to be on the same flight as you.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 Nov 2013

Total posts 23

Just got to Perth airport to find out the business lounge doesn't open until 0700, just when my flight departs. Looking around the airport is a swarming with FIFO workers and they would fill the lounge if it was open before that time.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 Nov 2013

Total posts 23

Have been further frustrated arriving back in Perth at midday today that they aren't allowing platinum flyers to use it as an arrivals lounge. Can't believe the lounge would be anywhere its 350 capacity with so few flights and most being intrastate Fokker 100s.

24 Dec 2013

Total posts 88

I am predicting long delays for food as I can't see them replenishing those individual plates of food quick enough to match demand.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

30 May 2013

Total posts 321

Interesting to see the Launceston Regional Lounge will be reopening, however no mention of the Hobart Qantas Club. Is there any indication of when that lounge will reopen?

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2395

Not at this stage, Ryan (if we had that info we'd have included it in the article).

QFP

22 Jan 2013

Total posts 56

Great to see. I will be interest to see how it works. Their maybe some hitchers along the way, but we'll all work it out.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

16 Jan 2018

Total posts 10

Did I read correctly that Brisbane and Melbourne lounges will only have 20 people max? If this is true, I would guess most eligible guests will be turned away during peak hours. For Brisbane especially, I thought stage 3, if that is to happen in July, will allow more than 20 people in a venue...

24 Oct 2010

Total posts 2395

That's correct, but those estimates are based on current state restrictions, which we understand to be "maximum 20 customers per enclosed space" for Victoria and "maximum 20 customers per room or defined area of a venue" for Queensland. As those restrictions ease then lounge capacity would be increased (because it'd honestly be hard to justify a lounge operating at such low numbers).

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

06 Nov 2014

Total posts 352

QLD has now eased the restriction earlier than expected from midday 3 July. Does that mean BNE/OOL/CNS lounge may open too? Especially QLD is the holiday destination for many people during the cold winter.

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 Feb 2015

Total posts 108

Thanks for the misinformation.. currently sitting at Perth airport T4 and there is no QC or Business lounge open... So glad i came a little bit early!

XWu
XWu

09 May 2020

Total posts 50

It would be great if fellow readers share their lounge experience in the still-COVID-19 era (anyone calling it post-COVID-19 needs to read and listen more, esp to the WHO DG)

Let's see whether for which airport this news hold true for the Qantas lounge opening today!

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

18 Nov 2013

Total posts 23

I can advise that Perth business lounge only opening at 0700 and platinum flyers are not allowed access when returning on Qantas flights. Maybe better luck when I fly to Kalgoorlie in September.


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