There’s some exciting news this week: Alaska Airlines is opening its third Alaska Lounge location at Sea-Tac Airport just in time for the holiday rush. The new lounge will be at the end of Concourse C. However you’ll have to go upstairs to access it since anyone familiar with the area realizes there’s very limited space.
I’ve spoken to a few lounge agents at Alaska’s current locations in Concourse C and the North Satellite. They’ve all mentioned an opening date of June 29 (this Thursday) and spoke about how busy the lounges are currently as they’ve doubled their staff while training new hires. However, another site claims the lounges will open June 30. Either way, we can look forward to more, badly needed capacity.
A picture of the lounge was available in this month’s issue of the Alaska Beyond inflight magazine (see page 17).
Anyone who’s been using the temporary lounge in the North Satellite might be interested in this new location, too. It’s right next to the inter-terminal train and should be a more convenient location when the North Satellite is full, instead of going to the flagship location near the main concourse.
New Lounge Should Ease Capacity Limits
Alaska Airlines has cut back access to its Alaska Lounges in recent months through two changes. First, it started putting up signs outside lounges when they near capacity, giving priority to lounge members while keeping out Priority Pass cardholders. Second, it put in place a formal rule that prevents Priority Pass cardholders from bringing a guest at any time (with the exception of the Anchorage location, which still permits guests).
This didn’t affect me much — and in a place like Seattle with two locations I could usually go to the other — but I know my wife has been burned more than once when traveling during peak business hours. We also had to make sure we each had our own Priority Pass membership cards so that we could get around the guest limits. That meant when my wife canceled her Citi Prestige card, we had to pay extra to make her an authorized user on my Amex Platinum card.
I’m hopeful that with a third lounge in Seattle, we’ll see fewer of these signs put up to keep out Priority Pass cardholders. But I suspect that the ban on Priority Pass guests is here to stay, and it won’t do much to solve issues at other airports.