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Consolidated "Polaris Lounge Access Questions" Thread

Old Jul 25, 2018, 1:08 pm
FlyerTalk Forums Expert How-Tos and Guides
Last edit by: WineCountryUA
The Polaris Lounge is United's Business class lounge for passengers in premium cabins on long-haul flights only. It is separate from the United Club locations and the arrivals lounge in SFO.

Currently there are PLs in EWR, IAD, IAH, LAX, ORD, and SFO.

Quick Guide to "Do I get access?"

Are you in Polaris (Business) class on a long-haul United metal flight to/from Asia, Australia, Europe, Africa, French Polynesia, or one of these South American countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Peru?
  • You get access at all airports the same-day. It does not matter if your flights are on the same ticket or same cabin.
  • "Same-day" is ambiguous and is interpreted differently by different agents with respect to itineraries that include an overnight connection. YMMV and this thread has examples both ways.
  • No guests. Unless on F on a partner.
  • Though not stated by United, includes AKL (Auckland, New Zealand) when service begins.
  • Examples:
    • EWR-SFO-NRT, if SFO-NRT is on UA you get access in EWR and SFO
    • NRT-SFO-EWR, if NRT-SFO is on UA you get access in SFO and EWR, even if SFO-EWR is a separate Y ticket.

Are you in Business/First class on a long-haul *A partner metal flight to/from Asia, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, Africa, Middle East, or one of these South American countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, and Peru?
  • You get access only at the airport where the long-haul flight departs.
  • At other airports along your route, you may have access to the United Club or other *A lounges. See here: Consolidated "United Club Access Questions" Thread
  • Though not on United's stated list, access includes long-haul partner flights to Africa, Middle East, New Zealand, etc.
  • Guests: First Class (on flights with both First and Business cabins) only: you can bring 1 guest. Business class 0 guests.
  • Examples:
    • EWR-SFO-NRT, if SFO-NRT is on NH you get access only in SFO, not at EWR
    • NRT-SFO-EWR, if NRT-SFO is on NH you don't get any Polaris Lounge access because there is no Polaris Lounge in NRT, and you aren't eligible for SFO or EWR.

Are you on a United or partner short-haul international flight to/from Guam, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean, Central America, Colombia, or Ecuador?
Are you in Premium Economy, Economy Plus, or Economy on any flight?
  • You do not get access, unless you are connecting to/from a flight that gets access as described above.

Are you on a United domestic flight, including P.S. flights EWR-LAX, EWR-SFO, BOS-SFO?
  • You do not get access to the Polaris Lounge, even if you're flying in First on a wide-body plane with lie-flat "Polaris" style seats, unless you are connecting to/from a flight that gets access as described above.

Can I get access through status, membership, one-time pass, or any other method?
  • No.
What else do it need for access?
  • Reports indicate that most PL's require a passport in addition to boarding pass for access. Some locations may accept other forms of ID (driver's license, etc.). This appears to be a response to possible fraudulent attempts at access (e.g., double printing BPs for friends).
If eligible for access, who can I guest?
  • Only those departing on a *A airline in long-haul Int'l First on a plane w/ First and Business classes has guesting privileges. One guest only, and that guest must be departing on same flight, in any class..
  • Those in Polaris or qualifying International Business cannot guest another passenger.
  • If you are in an old Global First seat in United Polaris class, you cannot guest another passenger. No longer relevant

More info

UA website outlining access for Polaris Lounge access

Photo ID required?There have been numerous reports from all Polaris Lounges of a photo ID being requested upon entry. Apparently, there have been some attempts to enter the PL with another person's BP (such as a traveling companion's). Recently there are reports that only a passport (not driver's license) is accepted at some lounges.

Related Threads:
Polaris Lounge Roadmap 2017-2018 (wiki) (thread)
ORD Polaris lounge -- Reviews, Experiences, Q&A, ..
SFO Polaris Lounge -- Reviews, Experiences, Q&A, ..
EWR Polaris lounge -- Reviews, Experiences, Q&A, ..
IAH Polaris lounge (E11/12 - top fl) -- Reviews, Experiences, Q&A, ...
LAX Polaris Lounge -- Reviews, Experiences, Q&A, ..
IAD Polaris Lounge -- Reviews, Experiences, Q&A, ..
United Polaris-New Business Class seats & in-flight service and new Polaris Lounges(wiki) (thread)}

Consolidated "United Club Access Questions" Thread

Archive: Consolidated "Polaris Lounge Access Questions" Thread {Archive}
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Consolidated "Polaris Lounge Access Questions" Thread

Old Jan 10, 2023, 7:04 pm
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Jun 2021
Posts: 46
entry into united polaris lounge

flying europe to Houston on united polaris business then I have a 3 hour layover and connection to San Antonio. will I have access to polaris lounge when I arrive in Houston? I ask because this is what is on united website
  • Re-entry to the airport after clearing customs is not permitted without further eligible onward travel. Access upon arrival is available to customers who have already made a domestic connection.
to me it doesn't sound like I will
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Old Jan 10, 2023, 7:09 pm
  #2  
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
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Originally Posted by Kyle Friedman
flying europe to Houston on united polaris business then I have a 3 hour layover and connection to San Antonio. will I have access to polaris lounge when I arrive in Houston? I ask because this is what is on united website
  • Re-entry to the airport after clearing customs is not permitted without further eligible onward travel. Access upon arrival is available to customers who have already made a domestic connection.
to me it doesn't sound like I will
As long as you have onward travel at IAH, sounds like you do (SAT), you will get into the Polaris lounge. Obviously, you’ll have to re-clear security after you clear customs. Just keep your Polaris boarding pass handy.
The bullet point you quoted is in cases where you end your travel at IAH (in this case), then you won’t be able to clear security to get to the Polaris lounge, since you do not have an onward BP.
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Old Jan 10, 2023, 7:11 pm
  #3  
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The website wording has been vague since they added Polaris years ago. Yes, you have access at IAH on your way to SAT if you originate in Europe in business class on UA. The IAH-SAT flight can be in any class of service, just as long as you came over to IAH in business on an international long haul (many IAH-central/south America flights do not qualify). Europe is fine.

-RM

Last edited by RobOnLI; Jan 10, 2023 at 7:30 pm Reason: grammar
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Old Jan 10, 2023, 7:15 pm
  #4  
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
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Your onward domestic flight doesn’t even have to be on UA, I think, as long as you can clear security to get to it.
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Old Jan 10, 2023, 7:18 pm
  #5  
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Originally Posted by RobOnLI
The website wording has been vague since they added Polaris years ago. Yes, you have access at IAH on your way to SAT if you original in Europe in business class. The IAH-SAT flight can be in any class of service, just as long as you came over to IAH in business on an international long haul (many IAH-central/south America flights do not qualify). Europe is fine.

-RM
Specifically, the International long haul must be operated by UA, which it is in this instance. If OP were flying LH to/from IAH in J, there'd be access on the way to Europe but not on the way home.

Originally Posted by VRFast
Your onward domestic flight doesnt even have to be on UA, I think, as long as you can clear security to get to it.
Correct.
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Old Jan 10, 2023, 7:18 pm
  #6  
 
Join Date: Aug 2019
Location: SFO
Posts: 215
Originally Posted by Kyle Friedman
will I have access to polaris lounge when I arrive in Houston?
Yes
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Old Jan 11, 2023, 10:48 pm
  #7  
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 41
I read the wiki and tried searching already so I just want to confirm I understand it correctly. I have an aeroplan reward flight in business class on ANA (YVR-NRT) and then returning on United (NRT-LAX) and AC (LAX-YVR).

Am I correct that on arrival at LAX I can access the Polaris Lounge as I will be flying on United metal even though my ticket was not purchased from United? I have a 5 hour layover (yikes!) and it would be nice to shower and eat in the Polaris Lounge at LAX before my connecting flight home to YVR. Also any suggestions for what to do for 5 hours at LAX :S
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Old Jan 11, 2023, 10:59 pm
  #8  
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Originally Posted by WJ_Fan_147
I read the wiki and tried searching already so I just want to confirm I understand it correctly. I have an aeroplan reward flight in business class on ANA (YVR-NRT) and then returning on United (NRT-LAX) and AC (LAX-YVR)

Am I correct that on arrival at LAX I can access the Polaris Lounge as I will be flying on United metal even though my ticket was not purchased from United? I have a 5 hour layover (yikes!) and it would be nice to shower and eat in the Polaris Lounge at LAX before my connecting flight home to YVR. Also any suggestions for what to do for 5 hours at LAX :S
Yes, you'll have Polaris access at LAX.

Five hours is more than enough time to go to In-n-Out. Or you might go to one of the beach towns (Venice or Manhattan).
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Old Jan 19, 2023, 11:55 am
  #9  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Flying CPT-IAD in Polaris, then IAD-ORD in F, then ORD-MCI in coach on Business award tickets. I have a 2h47m layover at IAD and 3h10 layover at ORD.

Which lounges will I be able to access? Can I use the Polaris lounge at ORD as it will be the same day?

Last edited by susiesan; Jan 19, 2023 at 12:06 pm
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Old Jan 19, 2023, 12:03 pm
  #10  
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
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You will at least have access to PL at IAD (I assume you meant IAD), ORD as well if same day.
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Old Jan 19, 2023, 12:13 pm
  #11  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
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Originally Posted by VRFast
You will at least have access to PL at IAD (I assume you meant IAD), ORD as well if same day.
Yes, the journey is all same day.

Related to this trip, is there a lounge at CPT to use before boarding a Polaris flight?
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Old Jan 19, 2023, 12:19 pm
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Originally Posted by susiesan
Yes, the journey is all same day.

Related to this trip, is there a lounge at CPT to use before boarding a Polaris flight?
Looks like UA uses the BA lounge.
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Old Jan 19, 2023, 12:25 pm
  #13  
Moderator: United Airlines
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Originally Posted by susiesan
...
Related to this trip, is there a lounge at CPT to use before boarding a Polaris flight?
Your best resource for this is

UA - Other Lounges
or
the *A lounge Finder

Both point you to
British Airways Lounge

Location: See partner site
Eligibility
  • United Polaris business class customers
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Old Jan 19, 2023, 12:55 pm
  #14  
st3
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
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Any recent experiences with an overnight layover and PL access?

I burned some of my PlusPoints upgrading my sister who will have an overnight layover in EWR, UA75 gets in at 8:25PM and her connecting flight is 10:10AM the next morning.
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Old Jan 20, 2023, 2:28 am
  #15  
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
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LAX- IAH , IAH-SYD seprate ticket

Lax - IAh cash ticket
IAH- SYd mileage ticket in polaris
Different tickets and PNR number . Contacted chat to link ticket asked about lounge access and they said no.
FlyerTalk banner says eligible for Polaris access in LAX but United website isnt specific enough to say same ticket just same day routing ?
i wouldnt have a boarding pass for IAH Syd yet so I guess it makes it difficult
Do I go early to LAX to try or just suck it up
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