As travellers seek more stress-free and convenient travel experiences, any steps taken by travel providers to deliver a more frictionless and connected journey, can only be seen as a plus. At Collinson and Priority Pass, we constantly strive to simplify and improve the airport experience for our 40 million global lounge members, which is why we think our Access on Payment Card feature represents a significant and positive step forward.
Put simply, with Access on Payment Card, Priority Pass members can unlock and access the Priority Pass airport lounge and travel experiences network using the same payment card through which they have their membership. This completely removes the need for the Priority Pass membership card to gain access to our 1,300 global lounges and travel experiences.
From a member perspective, one less card in their physical wallet is one less thing to think about when planning for a trip. Many frequent travellers currently carry multiple payment and loyalty cards, so offering payment and access to our lounges and experiences on the same card increases convenience and helps to declutter our often overflowing wallets. Additionally, Access on Payment Card also helps travellers with multiple Priority Pass memberships to more easily keep track of issuer-specific, additional travel experience benefits such as food and restaurant credits.
Access on Payment Card also has significant benefits for card issuers. Enabling lounge and travel experience access on a payment card means that the card in question becomes ‘top of wallet’ for travellers, helping to encourage more spend as the card is more visible and readily available to the traveller. Within the payments and travel industry, there is huge recognition of the value of driving cards ‘top of wallet’, given the value that increased cross border spend can bring to card issuers.
Access on Payment Card also feeds into a far wider payments trend - the desire from consumers for, as well as adoption of, more digital payment options which are increasingly seen as faster, more efficient and often more secure. A report published in 2022 highlighted the trend towards mobile wallets amongst Generation Z, many of whom spurn traditional financial products such as bank accounts. Travel brands such as American Airlines and Expedia are further feeding into this trend by developing financial products such as buy-now-pay-later and other flexible payments options.
There’s an ecosystem building up around digital payments, fintech and embedded finance, which is driving consumers to not only seek different payment options, but to seek services in a more singular place. Access on Payment Card is an important stepping stone towards a more digital future and only serves to demonstrate our drive to enhance the airport experience and keep global traveller needs at the heart of everything we do.
We’re committed to the Priority Pass mission to be the world’s most loved airport experiences companion and investing in innovative solutions that help people fall back in love with travel – and, while growth was expected post pandemic, our expectations were surpassed with lounge visits up 156% year-on-year and we’re almost back to 2019 global lounge visit numbers. Access on Payment Card is a perfect pathway to more digital solutions, and is helping us to maintain our position as the market leading airport experiences provider.