Flying Out of Sydney? Get $187 Per Person in Free Food Before Your Flight

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The folks at the Collinson Group have been really innovating bringing on additional lounge benefits for their Priority Pass cards in recent months.

I love that they added the Turkish Airlines lounge at Washington Dulles although it gets full during peak times (and they may even refuse Priority Pass access as a result).

You also now get use of Minute Suites in Atlanta, Philadelphia, and Dallas.

With the spread of access, we’ve seen Priority Pass add other non-traditional options besides lounges such as the club lounge at the Sofitel London Heathrow Terminal 5 as a participating ‘airport lounge’. You get a £15 credit per person at London Gatwick’s Grain Store Cafe & Bar with your Priority Pass card.

The restaurant credit is interesting, and we see people go eat and then go to a lounge.

Getting Priority Pass Lounge Access

They’re working hard to manage capacity as Priority Pass cards have grown via premium credit cards, you can get into over 1000 lounges around the world (more than 40 in the U.S.) with your Platinum Card by American Express, Citi Prestige Card, or Chase Sapphire Reserve Card. Those give you unlimited visits for yourself and free guests. (The Platinum card added two free guests this year.)

The Hilton Amex Surpass® Card from American Express gets you Hilton Gold status. And it comes with a Priority Pass membership too though you have to pay for lounge visits. This was the first credit card that gave me lounge access.

You can also redeem Japan Airlines miles for Priority Pass membership and of course you can buy it too.

Now Get $187 in Food Per Person at the Sydney Airport

Sydney has a plethora of lounges. In addition to Qantas lounges including their famous first class lounge you have dedicated lounges for Singapore Airlines (great menu-based dining), Emirates, and Etihad. You have the Air New Zealand lounge. You have the SkyTeam lounge. There’s an American Express lounge, and more.

Qantas First Class Lounge, Sydney

But none of these lounges welcome Priority Pass members.

Priority Pass has solved this by adding 7 restaurant options where you get AUD$36 credit per person per visit.

Interestingly, one of these is even landside meaning you don’t need to clear security to eat.

All 7 lounges offer the AUD$36 credit for food or any type of drink so you could go from place to place drinking for free before your flight if you wish.

Now, since the locations are spread across different terminals it would take creative determination to visit them all in a single airport departure, there’s no Priority Pass rule against doing so. And that would total AUD$252 in credit, which is ~ US$187.

Three people traveling together could thus leverage a single Priority Pass card from the Platinum Card by American Express, Citi Prestige Card, or Chase Sapphire Reserve Card for US$561 worth of food or drink at the airport provided they get themselves access to all 3 terminals.

(HT: Points from the Pacific)

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. We will be in this airport next month. Has anyone tried this yet? Do the restaurants know automatically what your talking about when you show your priority pass card or will I have to go into a long explanation of what I get with this perk?

  2. Gary,

    It’s great to read about a new perk, thank you for reporting it – but why would you invite people to abuse this? Seriously, you don’t think the PP folks would move to immediately limit the perk to card holder only when it starts costing them when someone goes from restaurant to restaurant on a single visit? :-\

  3. The impracticality of eating so much food in one visit, or the immorality of abusing it aside, some of these restaurants are in the Domestic terminals and others are in the International terminal – you couldn’t visit them all in one airport visit even if you wanted to. Unless perhaps you have a good excuse for Australian authorities on why you went through security and passport control for a free burger, as I imagine that reason may not “fly” too well with them.

  4. I’d have to imagine they have a limit of reimbursement per day per airport on each card. Guests might be included.

    Whether that’s spelled out or not some people will soon find out.

    If they don’t have it, they will soon.

  5. @Avi re “The impracticality of eating so much food in one visit”

    AUD36 is equivalent to about USD27, just enough for a main (entree in US speak) say pasta, or burger, and a glass of wine/beer, and maybe a coffee.

    wouldn’t be enough to cover cover fish/steak with a drink.

    so not excessive by any stretch of the imagination.

  6. Glad to see Priority Pass doing something creative to add value to its product, especially with concerns about overcrowding and oversubscription flaring up. That said, hoping for some improved domestic options since the US pickings are still pretty slim.

  7. I’ve been to SYD. You can only enter the terminal you’re flying out of, so the most restaurants you could possibly visit is 3. Also, if you order fish/steak, you would have the pay the additional out of pocket, it’s not like you could use another restaurant’s credit to pay. The only thing you could really do is buy wine at one place and food at another, however, that’s only 2 swipes and no different from lounge hopping, how many people who don’t read this do you think would actually try something like that?

  8. That Hilton card seems tempting until you realize it has foreign transaction fees so you won’t want to use it out of the US.

  9. Terminal 2 and Terminal 3 are domestic terminals in Sydney, and unlike in the US you can go through security without a boarding pass. So it’ll be interesting to see how they manage it. They’re both easy walking distance from each other too, so it’s straightforward to visit both.

    Certainly in the past top tier Qantas Frequent Flyers had anytime access to the Qantas Club and that got removed due to excessive non-flying use by some members. There are enough Priority Passes issued by premium credit cards in Australia as well for it to be interesting to see the outcome.

  10. Thank you! This is very useful information as my wife and I are flying into and out of Sydney from SFO next February. The question I have is if I am arriving at 9am on QA biz and have a Park Hyatt reservation what is the best strategy for my time from landing to check-in? Is there a QA lounge that will let us shower? Then since both my wife and I have our own Priority Pass that would give us each a $27 USD breakfast to kill some time if Hyatt won’t check us in early (no status). Then 5 days later we are flying QA Biz again to Hamilton Island and it would be useful again over the QA Biz lounge? Any seasoned advice is appreciated?

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