Plaza Premium introduces a $59 lounge subscription, but is it a good deal?
You may not have heard of Plaza Premium, but if you've held a Priority Pass membership in the past, there's a decent chance you visited one of the lounges the company operates. However, Plaza Premium cut ties with Priority Pass last year, leaving many former users without access to its lounges.
If you've been itching to visit a Plaza Premium lounge, you have a new way to enter. The company just launched a new access pass called The Americas Pass. It entitles you to two lounge visits over a 12-month period for $59 and is valid at all Plaza Premium lounges in the Americas.
Is it worth it? Let's take a closer look.
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Eligible Plaza Premium Americas Pass Lounges
The full list of lounges can be found on the Plaza Premium website. It includes these lounges located in the U.S., Canada, Brazil, Mexico, El Salvador and Colombia:
- Plaza Premium Lounges.
- Avianca Lounges in Colombia and San Salvador.
- Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse Lounges in Newark, New York City, San Francisco and Washington, D.C.
- Air France Lounge in Montreal.
- MERA Business Lounges in Cancun.
This is a pretty broad spectrum of lounges when you consider that Plaza Premium alone has lounges in many major airports throughout the Americas. You can find them in many major Canadian airports, at Dallas and around Brazil, among other regions.
Related: Best credit cards for airport lounge access in 2022
Should you buy the Plaza Premium Americas Pass?
This pass is priced reasonably if you were already going to buy a day pass to one of these lounges.
A day pass is usually around the same price as the $59 Americas Pass, so it works out to roughly a 50% discount compared to buying two day passes every year. However, it's worth noting that the offerings at these lounges will likely vary quite a bit. For example, the Virgin Atlantic Clubhouse at JFK is quite nice, with a wide range of food options, seating and even a pool table. The Clubhouse at Dulles is much smaller and less aspirational.
Passes cover up to three hours of lounge time and are valid for up to 12 months. Lounge passes purchased through the pass can be transferred to other travelers if needed.
Keep in mind that these passes are for individual access. While both passes can be used at the same time, a family may find the need to buy multiple Americas Passes to enter (View From The Wing notes that kids 12 and under enter free through April 17th).
If you visit these lounges frequently, you're likely better off applying for either The Platinum Card® from American Express or The Business Platinum Card® from American Express. Both of these cards offer unlimited access to all Plaza Premium lounges around the world. Plus, the cards include a Priority Pass membership, Delta Sky Club access (when flying Delta) and Centurion Lounge access.
If you already have one of these cards, there's no need to sign up for the Plaza Premium Americas pass.
Enrollment is required for select benefits.
Related: Guide to lounge access with the Amex Platinum and Business Platinum
Before considering the Americas Pass, make sure you don't have a credit card in your wallet that can access a lounge in the airport you're visiting.
Remember that, that due to the split between Priority Pass and Plaza Premium last year, you may not be able to access some of the same lounges you have in the past with Priority Pass.You could use an Amex Platinum or Amex Business Platinum to access these lounges, as Amex has its own partnership with Plaza Premium.
If you have no other lounge access to speak of, then the Americas Pass may be worth considering. However, make sure you check the available benefits closely to make sure you'll get your money's worth out of your visit. The only thing worse than walking into a lounge to see a big crowd, meager food offerings and worn-out furniture is seeing the charge for lounge access on your credit card.