Virgin opens airport lounges for ‘on arrival’ access

Top-tier Velocity members can once again visit Virgin’s lounges after their flight.

By David Flynn, April 19 2022
Virgin opens airport lounges for ‘on arrival’ access

Sometimes you step off a flight and want to make a beeline straight out of the airport to the office, to a meeting, to your hotel or especially to home.

But other times you need to make a pit-stop to dash off some emails, attend to some urgent business or even grab a quick coffee or a bite to eat.

That’s when a visit to the airport lounge can be an ideal post-flight pause – and for Virgin Australia’s top customers, the opportunity to nip into the lounge apres-flight is now back on the cards.

As of Monday April 25, Virgin’s popular ‘lounge entry on arrival’ perk returns for

Travellers taking advantage of Virgin’s on-arrival lounge access will be limited to a 60 minute visit so as not to max out lounge capacity, especially as more people are flying again.

This doesn't change the standard Virgin Australia lounge access rules when departing. 

This week will of course also see Virgin Australia cut the ribbon to its private Beyond lounges at Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane.

These havens for high flyers are promised as “a quiet, relaxing and unobtrusive space” where members of the invitation-only Beyond program – which replaced The Club as Virgin’s matchers agains the Qantas Chairman’s Lounge – will enjoy an elevated à la carte menu.

Complementing Beyond, the freshly-shucked Virgin Australia Business Flyer loyalty program targets the substantial small-to-medium enterprise (SME) market, which comprises 99.8% of Australia’s businesses, with flight discounts, double-dipping on points and complimentary Velocity Gold membership.

And as previously reported, entry-level fares in business class on the country’s busiest routes – the ‘triangle’ between Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane – have been slashed to $299 on an ongoing non-sale basis.

Piece by piece, the airline is filling in the jigsaw puzzle that is Virgin Australia 2.0. Indeed, that picture seems almost complete – at least on the domestic front – with the notable exceptions of inflight WiFi and premium lounge access.

The former is widely expected to be rebooted in a different shape to original service launched in early 2017, while the premium entry lanes at Sydney and Brisbane are tipped to unlock their own doors in the coming months.

It’s been a frustratingly slow return for the airline’s fast-track premium entry pathways.

Located at the valet parking entry to Virgin Australia’s Sydney and Brisbane terminals, the premium entry facility gave business class passengers and Velocity Platinum frequent flyers their own checkin desk and security lanes, which led straight into the lounge.

These time-saving channels have now been shuttered for over two years, since the beginning  of pandemic and Virgin Australia’s subsequent collapse into administration, and there’s no doubt they would have been especially welcome during the travel crush of this month’s school holiday season.

United Airlines - Mileage Plus

12 Sep 2011

Total posts 337

What about when flying business?  Will we have access on arrival? Or is it solely Virgin Golds/Platinums wh owil lhave lounge access on arrival?


09 Nov 2011

Total posts 27

Coburg, the first listed in the article is business class passengers. You had me in a panic for a moment😆 until I re-read the article.

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

16 Jul 2018

Total posts 20

This is excellent. 

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

25 Jul 2013

Total posts 63

Thanks David. Is there any update on when showers will be available again?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

06 Nov 2014

Total posts 367

What about people with Amex platinum card?

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

20 Aug 2014

Total posts 142

Showers, premium entry, premium exit???? Tumbleweeds......

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Jan 2018

Total posts 581

Other than 'on arrival' when flying internationally (Delta Sky Club in LAX and Virgin Atlantic 'Revival' Lounge* at LHR), can't say I've ever wanted to have a shower when flying domestically, though did cross my mind when I last flew back from Perth (pre-Covid).  

* Great tip here on BT, circa May, 2018 (thanks).  


11 Jul 2014

Total posts 798

First thing is I’d be interested to know how many people use the on arrivals lounge access (not many I think). 

Second thing is checking in this morning I was told “surely they will reopen the curb side entry considering the new club opens shortly”

Virgin Australia - Velocity Rewards

24 Jan 2018

Total posts 581

I used the SYD lounge last week after stepping off VA823.  No problems at all.  Time for a real coffee, pit stop, then (15 minutes later) off to the train into CBD.  

Qantas - Qantas Frequent Flyer

21 Jan 2014

Total posts 317

I suppose that’s the advantage of only having a very small amount of lounges like VA, you more can offer more at those few locations.

You would think priority screening would ease the flight delays waiting for pax to get on the plane, I’ve seen many delays leaving the gate due to late arrivals of pax. Valet was being opened before Xmas that is another one I’m missing due to early morning starts.


11 Jul 2014

Total posts 798

I'd like to see P1 QF compared to VA 1800 status credits in an article, I'm sure people aren't aware of the little difference between both of them.

12 Oct 2021

Total posts 2

I’m arriving from London/Abu Dhabi on A virgin booked itinerary/ ticket but partner airline flight (Etihad) in business class into Melbourne 

Was all booked through Virgin.

Do “business class guests”on virgin itineraries but partner airlines get access on arrivals?

Or is it Virgin flights only?

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