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British Airways and American Airlines Chelsea Lounge - JFK Terminal 8

British Airways and American Airlines Chelsea Lounge - JFK Terminal 8

Old Dec 2, 22, 4:49 pm
  #61  
 
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Originally Posted by jjLDNY View Post
I'm not quite sure if there's a genuine message being conveyed behind this. I'd like to think your fighting for us US based GGLs!

Given the logic of how GGL provides unlimited access to the CCR if flying from T5 in Y to some place 1hr away, I see no difference to why it would be treated differently in the US (where there are fewer GGLs to take advantage of their earned benefit).

To isolate CKs for a moment, they didn't have unlimited access to the FFD, they had 1-2 passes a year to use to access it so it makes complete sense they wouldn't have the same treatment as a GGL does to the 'new' CCR labeled as the Chelsea.

Also on the GGL vs CK thing. There was a comment here about how easy GGL may be to earn vs CK, and whilst it's irrelevant to this current dilemma, for the traditional traveler that isn't 'optimizing trips' or doing 'points runs' to get an invite to CK or earn 5000TPs they'd both be looking at between $40-70k in spend. Can GGL be acquired for <$10k? Absolutely, but it's besides the point.
Worth pointing out that CK should in theory get unfettered access to CCR in T5 on HBO economy fares to Dublin or Amsterdam as well. Although I do think I remember there being some mixed results with CKs trying to get access in some cases.
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Old Dec 2, 22, 4:57 pm
  #62  
 
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Originally Posted by jjLDNY View Post
I'm not quite sure if there's a genuine message being conveyed behind this. I'd like to think your fighting for us US based GGLs!

Given the logic of how GGL provides unlimited access to the CCR if flying from T5 in Y to some place 1hr away, I see no difference to why it would be treated differently in the US (where there are fewer GGLs to take advantage of their earned benefit).

To isolate CKs for a moment, they didn't have unlimited access to the FFD, they had 1-2 passes a year to use to access it so it makes complete sense they wouldn't have the same treatment as a GGL does to the 'new' CCR labeled as the Chelsea.

Also on the GGL vs CK thing. There was a comment here about how easy GGL may be to earn vs CK, and whilst it's irrelevant to this current dilemma, for the traditional traveler that isn't 'optimizing trips' or doing 'points runs' to get an invite to CK or earn 5000TPs they'd both be looking at between $40-70k in spend. Can GGL be acquired for <$10k? Absolutely, but it's besides the point.
It is a genuine message and itís not about fighting its about what we have enjoyed at T7 and what i hope to continue to enjoy at T8
And I agree with you 1000%
Maybe it was written ironically not to sound too entitled
Further to my logic
If BA has two top lounges and in one allows their top customers why would it restrict access to the in the other one. Iíd see it as a discrimination if its top customers based on its other pole of operations, JFK
And if it is cobranded and takes effort to negotiate with AA then BA should negotiate for its top customers given I gather they werenít given the option to stay in T7, they had to move in with AS
But i doubt there will be issues if not with AAgents

Originally Posted by jjLDNY View Post
Can GGL be acquired for <$10k? Absolutely, but it's besides the point.
I didnít read this part if the note well, but please share the secret 😂
To get to 5000 (or even 3000) Iím often at least at CCk spend level. And I try to save!
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Last edited by Prospero; Dec 20, 22 at 1:14 pm Reason: combine consecutive posts
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Old Dec 2, 22, 5:12 pm
  #63  
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Originally Posted by IkarosBOS View Post
It is a genuine message and itís not about fighting its about what we have enjoyed at T7 and what i hope to continue to enjoy at T8
And I agree with you 1000%
Maybe it was written ironically not to sound too entitled
Further to my logic
If BA has two top lounges and in one allows their top customers why would it restrict access to the in the other one. Iíd see it as a discrimination if its top customers based on its other pole of operations, JFK
And if it is cobranded and takes effort to negotiate with AA then BA should negotiate for its top customers given I gather they werenít given the option to stay in T7, they had to move in with AS
But i doubt there will be issues if not with AAgents
ba.com is unequivocal, access is granted to GGLs travelling on all BA and AA flights, hereís what BA stipulates:

ďAs a Gold Guest List Member you have access to the Concorde Room, our most luxurious and well-appointed lounge at London Heathrow Terminal 5. Extend the invitation to one guest when youíre flying with British Airways in any cabin, or two guests when flying in First, so they can relax or dine with you prior to take-off.

You can also take advantage of our exclusive Chelsea lounge at New York JFK Terminal 8 when you fly with British Airways or American Airlines. Likewise, a guest may join you when youíre flying with either airline, or two guests when flying in First. (Passengers flying with other oneworld airlines are unable to access this lounge, but can enjoy our other two lounges).Ē


Bolding mine for emphasis. You canít be any clearer than that!
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Old Dec 2, 22, 6:28 pm
  #64  
 
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Asked twice. Response given was same as CWS posted.
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Old Dec 2, 22, 6:33 pm
  #65  
 
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Originally Posted by carat22 View Post
Asked twice. Response given was same as CWS posted.
Just to be clear as CWS hasn't posted in here except for the content when it was created - "For GGLs, we know this covers all BA and AA cabins, we still need confirmation it applies to the other oneworld airlines in T8 such as Iberia, which has also relocated to terminal 8."

Are you saying you asked twice, and they said that GGLs are fine to enter on AA domestic flights twice?
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Old Dec 2, 22, 6:42 pm
  #66  
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Originally Posted by jjLDNY View Post
Just to be clear as CWS hasn't posted in here except for the content when it was created - "For GGLs, we know this covers all BA and AA cabins, we still need confirmation it applies to the other oneworld airlines in T8 such as Iberia, which has also relocated to terminal 8."

Are you saying you asked twice, and they said that GGLs are fine to enter on AA domestic flights twice?
The wording I quoted from ba.com indicates that passengers flying on airlines other than AA and BA are not entitled to use the Chelsea Lounge, and that applies to GGLs too.
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Old Dec 2, 22, 6:49 pm
  #67  
 
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Originally Posted by Tobias-UK View Post
The wording I quoted from ba.com indicates that passengers flying on airlines other than AA and BA are not entitled to use the Chelsea Lounge, and that applies to GGLs too.
Yes what you quoted is what we all assumed was the case - we're talking about flying AA; on a domestic (non-flagship) route. But given GGLs were being rejected from the Chelsea lounge on AA domestics yesterday, we're trying to work out if they've resolved the confusion they had around the CK and GGL entry requirements being different.
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Old Dec 2, 22, 7:08 pm
  #68  
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Originally Posted by jjLDNY View Post
Yes what you quoted is what we all assumed was the case - we're talking about flying AA; on a domestic (non-flagship) route. But given GGLs were being rejected from the Chelsea lounge on AA domestics yesterday, we're trying to work out if they've resolved the confusion they had around the CK and GGL entry requirements being different.
ba.com is unequivocal, a GGL travelling on any BA or AA flight is allowed access to the Chelsea Lounge. There are no restrictions as to which route or in what class the GGL is travelling. The door agent clearly made a mistake when denying entry to a GGL when travelling on AA.
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Old Dec 2, 22, 7:11 pm
  #69  
 
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i still do not think CK and GGL are equivalents solely for the reason that AA still sells memberships to the basic lounge, like every other US carrier. paid or via credit cards etc, they have an interest in keeping things limited.

the scope of BA and its GGL fliers in the US is still going to be quite small compared to CKs or explats that will regularly use the new facilities.
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Old Dec 2, 22, 7:23 pm
  #70  
 
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Sat in it now. Total shambles - menu is down to ďburger, prawn cocktail or Caesar saladĒ. No Diet Coke, Coke Zero, sparkling waterÖ I gave up at this point.

Drinks ordering seems to be hit and miss - 50% of drinks seem rejected or served with an apology for not being the right thing.

Lounge itself is nice enough, but the CCR was much nicer IMO. Certainly much quieter and service was orders of magnitude better.
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Old Dec 2, 22, 7:47 pm
  #71  
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Originally Posted by jjLDNY View Post
But given GGLs were being rejected from the Chelsea lounge on AA domestics yesterday, we're trying to work out if they've resolved the confusion they had around the CK and GGL entry requirements being different.
There is no confusion to be honest. As several of us have mentioned, apart from those flying BA F or AA Flagship F/Business Plus who get in by virtue of their tickets:

- The wording is very clear that GGLs are allowed in when flying on BA or AA, regardless of route and regardless of cabin, and not when flying any other airline.

- The wording is equally clear that CK are only allowed in when flying AA Flagship routes only regardless of cabin.

There is simply no parallelism in the GGL and CK access.
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Old Dec 2, 22, 8:03 pm
  #72  
 
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Originally Posted by orbitmic View Post
There is no confusion to be honest. As several of us have mentioned, apart from those flying BA F or AA Flagship F/Business Plus who get in by virtue of their tickets:

- The wording is very clear that GGLs are allowed in when flying on BA or AA, regardless of route and regardless of cabin, and not when flying any other airline.

- The wording is equally clear that CK are only allowed in when flying AA Flagship routes only regardless of cabin.

There is simply no parallelism in the GGL and CK access.
I agree with everything you're all saying. Technically we are allowed access; I celebrated this when the news came through and was very active on reviewing the BA site and reports from the press. However we have only had, unless I have missed something(?) reports of GGLs on domestic routes not getting access.

What I am hoping to hear, is that if I turn up tomorrow that all of the confusion has been dealt with and I won't have to stand at the desk asking for the manager to show them the T&Cs.
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Old Dec 2, 22, 8:04 pm
  #73  
 
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Iím sorry to say that the Chelsea Lounge is not the least bit attractive when compared to the Soho Lounge next door.

Iím about to take off so my comments are rushed, but my summary is as follows (which is based on tonight only, perhaps it will be better in time though some comments are more than linked to Ďteething problemsí):

1. We waited to be assigned a table for 10 minutes and three different members of staff (some who looked like management) said they would come back and seat us, but they never did. Eventually we just went and got ourselves a table.

2. the only hot food available was not even on the menu: a burger.

3. the staff were apologetic but they couldnít even get the starter orders right. Several of the wrong starters were delivered to our table. They didnít seem bothered that they got it wrong and didnít bother asking us what we had ordered.

4. We ordered Krug and 3 waters. 15 minutes later another member of staff came back and said the Krug was warm. They suggested a different champagne and it was delivered in a mix of wine and champagne glasses, and this champagne was also warm. We never got our waters. So much for the lounge that prided itself in being champagne-focused!

5. another waitress came over and took over the service. She was worked off her feet, said she cried after the first nightís work because she was run ragged with no help. And she did a fantastic job. She said that they were severely understaffed and apologised when she didnít need to for otherís failings. She did well to do her best given the circumstances, so credit to her.

6. The lounge space isnít relaxing. Itís incredibly bright, with people running around. It lacks privacy, calmness and exclusivity. And it feels very cramped for an F-ticket lounge. In comparison the Soho lounge (OWE / BA Gold) was dimly lit - though busy - open and airy and most importantly it had a view of the tarmac. It really was quite a shocking contrast. Soho fit the Soho I know and love at home in London, itís actually quite an authentic representation. From the lighting, to the colours and textures through to the music. Chelsea felt like a rich kid who doesnít know how to be classy!

One of the guys whoís normally at the CCR reception recognised me (which was nice of course) and suggested that frequent visitors to CCR raise some constructive feedback with BA, and he was very embarrassed with the AA/Sodexo outfit, saying that this was several times less Ďpremiumí than Flagship Dining in T8 and miles behind JFK CCR. Apparently some conversations are being had within BA..

Anyway, until this settles down AND the menus improve (I donít think the menu is akin to CCR level and Soho next door has much much much more choice!!) I would recommend the Soho lounge for any GGLs / Prem / F considering Chelsea.

Soho was fantastic, easily BAís best Gold lounge. Decent food (with quite a bit of choice on the buffet, though granted the QR code ordering doesnít work), good cocktails and local beers on tap, lovely space and of course tarmac views!

Last edited by Foofighter69; Dec 2, 22 at 8:15 pm
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Old Dec 2, 22, 8:14 pm
  #74  
 
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@Foofighter69 Excellent and comprehensive review. The brightness and layout not being conducive to relaxing were my biggest concern, as I don't know how they can fix that without a full refurb. Glad to hear the Soho is a little more intimate and won't have the 'living wall' and bright lights - perhaps the move will be to grab dinner and a few glasses in Chelsea (menu and chilled drinks allowing) and then head over there.
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Old Dec 2, 22, 8:24 pm
  #75  
 
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Foofighter69 Interesting - I didnít have enough time to try out soho, but will definitely give it a try next time.

Agreed that the management is chaotic - the suited men walked around me whilst I sat on my own and it wasnít till one of the overworked ladies showed up that I was able to place my order.

Time to get a bunch of F/GGLs on here to send constructive feedback I think. This is a step back from a BA perspective,
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