Qantas international lounges: First class lounges opened up to business class, Qantas Club members

Qantas' first class international lounges, shuttered since March last year when the airline suspended international flights, will reopen in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane on Monday to coincide with the start of the trans-Tasman bubble.

It's good news not just for passengers who normally have access to the lounge: since the international business class lounges will remain closed, more passengers will be granted access to the first class lounge.

Normally the lounge is reserved for Platinum members of Qantas' frequent flyer program. The lounge will now open to business class flyers, Gold status frequent flyers and Qantas Club members.

The same passengers will be able to access Air New Zealand's lounges in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Queenstown while the Qantas lounges remain closed in New Zealand.

"If you're making a comeback, you should do it in style," said Qantas CEO Alan Joyce.

"Our lounges are a second home for many frequent flyers when they're on the road and we know their re-opening will be well received."

Guests in the first class lounge are offered a la carte dining from a Neil Perry-designed menu, featuring items such as salt and pepper squid, bircher muesli for breakfast and the lounge's signature pavlova. There will also be items on the menu from other Qantas lounges.

Most of the airline's domestic Qantas Club and business lounges have now reopened, along with the exclusive, invitation-only Chairman's Lounge.

The opening of the international business class lounges would happen "in line with the broader reopening of international borders and recommencement of the rest of Qantas' international network" a statement from the airline said.

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Mr Joyce this week indicated the airline is still hopeful broader international flights will resume from October this year, despite delays in Australia's vaccination rollout and indications from the government international borders were unlikely to open until next year.

The reopening of the first class lounges comes as the airline announced a seven-year extension of its 14-year agreement with hotel group Accor to manage the lounges.

See also: Bubble loophole means Australians can travel to other countries via NZ

See also: 'Flyer beware': Travel bubble or not, a holiday in NZ still risky

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