Free access to Plaza Premium Lounge with Citibank Premier Miles Credit Card

Do you always see your friends checking into airport lounges on Facebook and feel a tinge of jealousy? Be envious no more, because there’s a simple way of getting free lounge access in Hong Kong. All you need to do is sign up for a Citibank Premier Miles credit card, which gives you free access to the Plaza Premium Lounges in Hong Kong airport. At the time of writing, this credit card does not come with any annual fee if you spend HK$100,000 (US$12,800) in one year.

*Update: As of July 2016, you must spend HK$5,000 (or equivalent in foreign currency) within 30 days after the date of each lounge entry in order to get the free complimentary lounge access. This is limited to 12 per year.

While this lounge might not look or sound as swanky as the Business or First Class Cathay Pacific lounges, it does the job in providing entertainment, food and drink. 

First up, there are a few counters with different types of food. The main counter offers a salad bar, selection of Chinese dim sum (including fun cheung / rice noodle rolls, congee with condiments, and fried noodles), and a noodle section, which offers a choice of fresh hor fun (thick rice noodles) or mei fun (thin rice noodle) in soup with fish cakes and fish balls. Next to this is a drinks cabinet containing soft drinks, soy milk and water – but be warned, the drinks at the front seem to always be lukewarm, so make the effort to grab the ones at the back! 

Opposite the main counter is a smaller one with coffee and tea, juice, fruit, and bread. Finally, the desserts are actually tucked away behind a glass counter at the bar, so don’t forget to ask someone for a pana cotta, chocolate brownie, or one of the small cakes they have on display if you have a sweet tooth. 

Speaking of the bar, unlike airline lounges, you need to purchase your booze. There is a small range of alcoholic beverages to choose from, and a glass of red wine will set you back HK$45. 

At last count, there are eight computers available for use, which are almost never occupied given that everyone has a mobile device these days. That means that if you’re not planning on using your laptop on the plane, don’t bother bringing it as carry on baggage, because you may as well use the lounge computers. For those with mobile devices or laptops, the lounge provides free wifi – just check the sign at the bar or check-in counter for the password. 

If you just want to relax and catch up on some reading, keep in mind that the lounge is quite dim, so grab a seat near a lamp. The lounge offers a range of magazines around the corner from the tea and coffee counter, and along the wall there is a display of newspapers (in both English and Chinese). 

Finally, while there are no showers available, the toilets are clean. Keep in mind there are only three stalls in the women’s restroom, and two wash basins – so be prepared to queue if you’re visiting during peak hours! 

1. They don’t announce any airline final boarding calls, so keep an eye on your departure time by checking the electronic board at the lounge check in. 
2. Don’t bother buying magazines like The Economist or the major newspapers because the lounge has a few copies available for in-lounge use. 
3. Grab a table by putting your jacket or a non-valuable item on it before you go get food because tables can go like hotcakes during peak periods! 

The takeaway 

This was not a sponsored post. The Premier Miles credit card is genuinely handy if you need lounge access but aren’t a frequent flyer or flying on business/first class. Time to make those Facebook friends jealous! 

xx Carmen

PS. We take no responsibility for anything that happens if you decide to get this credit card – including any fees you end up paying, blah blah. We’re lawyers. Don’t even think about it.

PPS. I just realised that you can actually get a complimentary shampoo & blow-dry service or 15-minute seated massage on level 3, terminal 2 INSTEAD of lounge access! Has anyone tried this before? Let us know your thoughts!

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  1. Were you the only one who went in or did you had another companion with you for free as well?

    1. Hey Dan, I've only ever gone in by myself before. I think if you want to bring in a companion, they will charge a fee for it.