Has the bank removed the free lounge access facility on your credit card? Find out what this facility is and how much it costs

These days you will find airport lounges packed with people at airports in major cities like Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore. At one time such lounges could only be seen by corporate executives or luxury travelers. A major reason for the increasing number of passengers using airport lounges is complimentary offers from credit card companies and banks Banks give these offers to their customers. For some time now, banks have been facing pressure to recover lounge access costs. HDFC India It has announced changes to the launch access facility for its credit card customers. These changes Regalia Credit Card But it will be effective from December 1. Now lounge access will depend on program credit card spending. HDFC Bank has set a limit of Rs 1 lakh in a calendar year. users Buy Regalia Smart You can avail the lounge facility by visiting the page. In addition, credit card users can receive two complimentary lounge access vouchers as part of their quarterly milestones.

How do banks provide this facility for free?

IDFC Bank and ICICI Bank have also set minimum spending limits for some credit cards. Only credit card customers who spend up to the minimum limit will be able to avail airport lounge facilities. Cashback SBI Card has also ended airport lounge benefits from May 1. This card was launched in September 2022. Customers are disappointed that many banks have imposed lounge access conditions on some of their credit cards.

There are two ways banks offer free airport lounge access. The first method is the partnership card network. Sumant Mondal, founder of Technofino, said, “Banks purchase a large amount of free launch access from card networks tied to credit cards. Network providers have signed agreements with airport lounges around the world. Suppose your bank has a deal with MasterCard to issue credit cards. Under this, your bank pays MasterCard a fee for each visit. Then, it offers its customers free airport lounge access.

The second method is the aggregator company method. “In this, banks directly tie up with aggregators like PriorityPass or Dreamfox. These aggregators connect banks with airport lounges around the world. In this approach, too, banks pay the aggregator a fee for each visit to the lounge. Aggregators “Because of this, a large number of lounge visits from airport lounge providers. By purchase.” Thus, it becomes easier for the bank to offer free airport lounge access to its credit card users under this system.

Is it really free?

Banks have to pay a fee to give their cardholders free airport lounge access. “The charge per visit depends on the bank’s negotiating power and location,” said Mondal. For example, if you want to use airport lounges in India and pay the charges out of your own pocket, you will have to pay Rs 800 to Rs 2,500. This charge varies depending on the location. This charge for banks is much lower than the charges prescribed for general public. One has to pay only 200 to 1000 rupees to visit each bank

Credit card lounge access

Ajay Awateni, editor of LifeFromALonuge.Com says, “International lounges are expensive. This is because domestic lounges include space and food charges, while international lounges offer other facilities including alcohol.” In such a situation the total cost of the operator increases. In 2017-18, banks provided free lounge access only to premium credit card customers. Corporate executives who travel a lot take advantage of this. During and after the Corona pandemic, banks started offering this facility to entry-level and mid-level card customers as well. It began to be used as a weapon to increase credit card market share. Due to this, the number of passengers in the airport lounge increased. Now at the airport you will see queues of people to enter the lounge.

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