- Time for lounges worldwide to get ready for the 15th Priority PassTM Lounge of the Year Awards, with winners announced February 2020
- As the Awards enter a landmark year, Priority Pass celebrates 15 years of growth and evolution in the airport experience – including its own network expansion from 450 lounges in 2004 to over 1300 lounges worldwide today, including more than 60 in the Middle East
Priority PassTM, the original and market-leading airport experiences programme, has launched this year’s Lounge of the Year Awards, which celebrate lounges around the world that go above and beyond to offer customers the highest quality of service, amenities and business facilities. The Awards have reached a milestone, entering their 15th year of recognising the importance of a great lounge experience.
Global air traffic has soared to new heights in the past 15 years, with passenger numbers in 2019 expected to reach almost 4.6 billion – around 130% higher than in 2004. Currently the UAE is investing AED85 billion in development projects that will see airports develop a combined capacity to handle more than 300 million passengers a year. On another hand, Saudi Arabia’s travel and tourism sector is expected to contribute $70.9 billion (SAR 263.1 billion) in total to the country’s GDP in 2019. To keep up with this rapidly growing market, Priority Pass has expanded its network from 450 lounges in 245 cities and 80 countries in 2004, to over 1300 lounges in more than 650 cities across 148 countries today; including more than 60 lounges in the Middle East, with half of those located in the UAE and Saudi alone.
Over that time, as passenger numbers have soared and customer expectations have risen, airports have evolved to become experiential destinations in their own right. Dubai Airport has recently launched a new state-of-the-art kiosk, dubbed “MyDubai Experience,” in Terminal 3, Concourse A to allow flyers who are just passing through to virtually discover Dubai and inspire them to make a visit in the city. Examples further afield include Singapore’s Changi Airport which houses retail, lifestyle and garden attractions complete with the world’s largest indoor waterfall; and Vancouver International Airport in Canada has the world’s largest airport aquarium with over 20,000 marine plants and animals.
Providing this kind of enhanced airport experience is essential for driving customer satisfaction. In response, lounges available to Priority Pass members have changed not only in number, but also to offer differentiated amenities, a wider variety of spaces, and seamless digital technologies. From luxurysleep pods in Dubai, to celebrity chef-endorsed menus in Ecuador – Priority Pass membership is enriching and redefining the airport experience. The Priority Pass mobile app brings even more experiential benefits to members worldwide, with exclusive dining and shopping deals, airport maps and real-time access to special offers.
Lounges have evolved to keep pace with the ever-changing landscape of travel, and the Lounge of the Year Awards recognise these efforts. The Awards are based on the ratings and reviews Priority Pass’s millions of members leave throughout the year; taking into consideration guest feedback across several different categories such as business facilities, comfort, service from lounge staff and food and drink options. The Priority Pass network includes major hubs such as Dubai, London Heathrow, Atlanta, JFK, Singapore and Hong Kong. Every year, each region (Global, Europe, Africa & Middle East, Asia Pacific, North America, and Latin America and The Caribbean) boasts both a winning and highly-commended lounge, as well as there being one overall, stand-out, global winner.
Past winners of the Awards have received their accolades thanks to their incredible views, private suites, spa treatments and business facilities. Last year’s Middle East and Africa winner, Ahlan Lounge at B, Terminal 3 in Dubai International Airport, was called out for its wonderful menu including an array of traditional Arabic dishes as well as a wide variety of international food. The lounge also offers the chance to comfortably kick back and relax, in one of the lounges luxurious massage chairs or freshen up mid journey with their shower facilities.
Andy Besant, Director of Travel Experiences at Collinson, operator of Priority Pass, said: “The travel and airport experience has seen significant changes over the past 15 years and the Awards are a great way to recognise the lounge partners going above and beyond to evolve their own offerings and provide an awesome guest experience. Everything we do is about our members and giving them access to the very best lounge experiences worldwide. We’re constantly listening to their needs and working closely with our partners to create environments that not only let them relax before their flight but go above and beyond – making the journey one of the best parts of their trip.”
The Awards categories are:
- Africa & Middle East
- Asia Pacific
- North America
- Latin America and The Caribbean
Members have until January to provide
their feedback and make sure it counts for this year’s Awards. They can rate
the lounges they’ve visited on the Priority Pass website or via the new review
feature within the Priority Pass mobile app.