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SkyTeam lounge rules v Business Light fare rules

SkyTeam lounge rules v Business Light fare rules

Old Dec 9, 2023, 11:49 am
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SkyTeam lounge rules v Business Light fare rules

The SkyTeam rules on lounge access are very clear as regards business class tickets:
All international First and Business Class passengers traveling on or connecting to/from a same-day international flight operated by a SkyTeam member airline have access to our exclusive lounge facilities. Simply present your First or Business Class boarding passes for the lounge agent to validate for admission.

Lounge access is reserved for Elite Plus, First and Business Class customers flying on international flights or with same day connections to/from an international flight operated by SkyTeam member airlines.

International First and Business Class passengers, as well as SkyTeam Elite Plus members traveling in Economy Class, enjoy complimentary access to more than 750+ worldwide member lounges on the day of travel when flying on or connecting to or from an international flight operated by a SkyTeam carrier.
There's no small print that I can see.

However, the e.g. Air France rules on Business Light fares are also fairly clear, with some small print:
Access to our exceptional lounges*
Away from the hustle and bustle of the airport, enjoy the peaceful atmosphere of our Business lounges. Enjoy a personalized tour to discover the spaces and services available to you. Whether you choose to eat, work, get information about your flight, or simply relax, our lounges were designed to meet all of your unique needs.
*Except for Light fare tickets
So how does it work out? Is AF required to provide some lounge for people on a Business Light fare, just not necessarily the nice one (a bit like QR's tricks for oneworld Sapphires in economy)? Or does the AF rule somehow trump the SkyTeam rule? Or maybe it only trumps it for AF lounges, i.e. if there's a non-AF lounge then the SkyTeam rules do apply, but if there's only an AF lounge then no lounge access?
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Old Dec 13, 2023, 9:34 am
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AF will not provide lounge access on a light business fare (unless you otherwise qualify for lounge access by status). This is made clear when you purchase the ticket.

Light business fares are a relative newcomer to the air fare scene so I am not surprised that alliance websites do not reflect the peculiarity of those fares.
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Old Dec 13, 2023, 10:57 am
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(The ticket was purchased for me by a company travel agent, so I didn't know in advance, though I did suspect there was some reason it was relatively cheap.)

OK, but what is the legal position? Does the contract between SkyTeam and individual airlines (I presume there is such a thing) allow airlines to ignore the rules explicitly published on the SkyTeam website? For the fun of it, I've emailed SkyTeam to ask them where I can find "the complete set of detailed exact rules on SkyTeam lounge access" "used by lounge staff to determine eligibility"...
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Old Dec 13, 2023, 2:55 pm
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Originally Posted by Kvarko
(The ticket was purchased for me by a company travel agent, so I didn't know in advance, though I did suspect there was some reason it was relatively cheap.)

OK, but what is the legal position? Does the contract between SkyTeam and individual airlines (I presume there is such a thing) allow airlines to ignore the rules explicitly published on the SkyTeam website? For the fun of it, I've emailed SkyTeam to ask them where I can find "the complete set of detailed exact rules on SkyTeam lounge access" "used by lounge staff to determine eligibility"...
Good luck to obtain any response. I hate to say this (because you are right pointing out those discrepancies) but you're not going to win on this. Just buy the lounge access if this is important for you and do not loose your precious time trying to fight.
I am strongly against those light fares in J with all that comes with, but unfortunately AFKL have decided to follow this trend.
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Old Dec 13, 2023, 3:22 pm
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Yes, I don't expect to win this one (at least in UK law I don't have standing anyway, since any contract is between ST and AF, not between ST and me). But I enjoy the sparring, and if they don't accept my pragmatic solution, i.e. don't let me into the lounge, I will be insisting on my two EU261 telexes!

P.S.: Goldorak go! Corno-fulgur! Fulguropoing! Astero-hache! Pulvonium! Aaah, souvenirs, souvenirs...
Goldorak likes this.
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Old Dec 13, 2023, 3:57 pm
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Originally Posted by Kvarko
P.S.: Goldorak go! Corno-fulgur! Fulguropoing! Astero-hache! Pulvonium! Aaah, souvenirs, souvenirs...
La lune est rouge. Vga va attaquer
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Old Dec 23, 2023, 10:02 am
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[email protected] have in reply just pointed me to the bottom of https://www.skyteam.com/en/lounges/ .

I have replied to ask specifically about people travelling with Air France in business class on a so-called "Light" fare. On va voir...
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