Terminal 3, Heathrow Airport
This is my review of the No1 Lounge in Heathrow’s Terminal 3.
I’d visited this many years ago as a Priority Pass holder, but it seems that access to this lounge is being handed out like sweets – and it really isn’t great!
September 2022 at 08:00.
The lounge is open daily from 05:00 to 22:00.
In my case, I was gained entry via my Priority Pass. However, access also can be granted by use of LoungeKey, Dragon Pass and even those traveling premium on Delta, FinnAir and PIA.
Curiously, there is a large sign saying that unless you’ve pre-booked you’ll need to wait. Whilst this is fair enough, Priority Pass charge £6 to pre-book, which is a complete cheek when you’ve paid for the Priority Pass in the first place!
As I left the lounge a large queue had built up, and it was quoted at some £40 per person for entry. See my rant below under conclusion!
It also seems that access to this lounge comes free with parking, holiday insurance – and virtually anything else. The consequence of this has changed the lounge from a once ‘hidden gem’ to an over-crowded chavvy drinking club, where a food and drinking competition starts the moment access is granted.
How to Get There
After Security, walk through T3’s shopping plaza and follow the signs for Lounge F. Go through the corridor and turn right, and it’s up some elevators to the entrance…….and probably into a large queue!
In fairness to the lounge, it has stayed the same good quality for many years from a décor point of view. It is fairly spacious (when children aren’t running around you), and does offer a small hint of luxury to it.
Predominantly the lounge has casual seating and some high-table seating.
There is what used to be a cinema room, which is now lounge seating in a ‘quiet room’. Due to the excessive rowdiness of its guests, and the lounge being practically a creche – the room wasn’t quiet at all!
There are some desks for working – however I’m not sure if it’s safe to leave your laptop in this lounge, unattended!
Sadly, there is no ‘official’ business area – nor is there anywhere to print. It gets pretty rowdy in this lounge with all the drinking competitions, so the chances of getting any work done is unlikely.
Food and Drink
Food is all self-service, and people are not afraid to pile those plates high – it’s very much feeding time at the zoo!
This time I visited was breakfast, and there was a small amount of breakfast items – the very basics you can get away with! Most of the food looked stale and re-used from the day before. Poor.
On the drinks side, there is a large bar, which (as most of these lounges do) offers premium and ‘included’ drinks. Again, people aren’t afraid to get ‘on it’ in this particular lounge with the free booze.
If, unlike most people in the lounge, you don’t want to get paracletically drunk before your flight – then there is self-served coffee machine and soft drinks station, manned by more children.
I was not proactively given the Wifi code, and I certainly didn’t intend to stay to work.
I was abruptly informed that “due to Covid” showers and the ‘spa’ were closed. This is despite the fact all the others lounges in Terminal 3 were functioning quite normally. I’d used the showers here in previous years.
It seems an excuse to cut costs, and offer a poor service.
Before I seriously got an airline status, the No1 Lounge was a great little lounge given that it was my only choice, and at the time it was OK. I’d got Priority Pass ‘free’ with a bank card, and it was perfect for my occasional jaunts from T3.
In part, comparatively to other airline lounges, and in part opening its doors to anyone who parks their car with Purple Parking; this lounge has hugely gone downhill.
Despite it being term time (no school holidays whatsoever at the time I visited), there were far too many children running around causing mayhem – that aside from the adults looking to squeeze every drip out of the bar they could!
I know I sound like a snob, but to charge £40 for entry; make Priority Pass holders wait (who pay for the privilege of access one way or another); seek a £6 booking fee on top; let the world and his wife in; un-regulate behaviour; reduce services to the bare minimum; and let children treat the lounge as a playground: completely de-values (a) the idea of a Priority Pass; and (b) the idea of ‘premium/luxury’ lounge access.
For these reasons, it’s a really poor lounge. In part this is because of the poor food, the rude staff and lack of amenities – plus the fact the lounge has clearly set its sights on making Priority Pass holders pay beyond the odds, and get increasingly worse value for money!