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Capital One Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport [Review]

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Katie Seemann
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Katie Seemann

Senior Content Contributor and News Editor

Countries Visited: 28U.S. States Visited: 29

Katie has been in the points and miles game since 2015 and started her own blog in 2016. She’s been freelance writing since then and her work has been featured in publications like Travel + Leisure, F...
Edited by: Jessica Merritt
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Jessica Merritt

Editor & Content Contributor

Countries Visited: 4U.S. States Visited: 23

A long-time points and miles student, Jessica is the former Personal Finance Managing Editor at U.S. News and World Report and is passionate about helping consumers fund their travels for as little ca...
& Keri Stooksbury
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Keri Stooksbury

Editor-in-Chief

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With years of experience in corporate marketing and as the Executive Director of the American Chamber of Commerce in Qatar, Keri is now Editor-in-Chief at UP, overseeing daily content operations and r...

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After much anticipation, the Capital One Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) has finally opened.

This is the second Capitol One Lounge — Capital One opened its first lounge at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) in 2021, and it’s quickly risen to the top of many lists of best domestic airport lounges.

As a fan of the Capital One Lounge at DFW, I was excited to visit the IAD lounge in its first week and see how it compared.

This new lounge is smaller than the one in Dallas and kind of hard to get to. On the plus side, it offers many of the same well-loved amenities, like excellent grab-and-go foods and locally inspired food and beverages. But did I find it still worth going to?

I’ll explain everything you need to know about the new Capital One Lounge, including how to find it, how to get complimentary access, and what to expect inside the lounge.

Location

The Capital One Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) is on the ticketing level in the main terminal, just beyond TSA PreCheck.

Capital One IAD lounge location map
The Capital One Lounge was located in the main terminal at IAD, just past TSA PreCheck. Image Credit: Capital One Travel

How To Find the Lounge

Unless you’re coming straight from TSA PreCheck, the Capital One Lounge can be hard to find.

If you’re arriving from a connecting flight in the C or D gates, take the train to the main terminal (it’s the train marked “terminal”). Go up 2 sets of escalators and then look for the elevators with the Capital One Lounge logo.

Elevator to Capital One Lounge Dulles
Once you’re in the main terminal, look for a set of elevators displaying the Capital One logo.

Take the elevator up to level C. The lounge is right in front of the elevator bank on level C.

Capital One Lounge IAD front entrance
The Capital One Lounge is on the ticketing level of IAD’s main terminal, just past the TSA PreCheck security checkpoint.

If you find stairs marked “Do Not Enter,” turn around. The elevator should be in front of you.

escalators and stairs by the IAD Capital One Lounge
If you find this set of escalators and stairs in the main terminal, the elevator for the Capital One Lounge will be right behind you.

Guests arriving from A or B gates can walk to the main terminal or take the train. Guests arriving from the Z or H gates should look for the elevator with the Capital One logo in the main terminal. Go up to level C, and you’ll see the lounge as soon as you exit the elevator.

Capital One Lounge IAD entrance
Capital One Lounge entrance.
Bottom Line:

The Capital One Lounge at IAD can be hard to find unless you enter the airport at TSA PreCheck. If you’re coming from anywhere else, look for signs for the main terminal and then take the elevators marked with the Capital One Lounge to level C.

Gaining Access

There are a few ways to access Capital One Lounges. The easiest way is to use a Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card or a Capital One Venture X Business Card (Information collected independently. Not reviewed by Capital One). Cardholders and authorized users get unlimited complimentary access for themselves and up to 2 guests at any Capital One Lounge. Any additional guests cost $45 each, while children under 2 are free.

Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card and Capital One Spark Miles for Business cardholders get 2 free passes each year. Additional guests are $45 each.

If you don’t have any eligible Capital One cards, you can gain entry to the Capital One Lounge by paying $65 per person. Children under 2 are free.

All guests must have a same-day boarding pass for a departing or connecting flight.

Hot Tip:

In addition to complimentary access to any Capital One Lounge, the Capital One Venture X card and Capital One Venture X Business card also have access to other lounges, including Priority Pass and the Plaza Premium Lounge.

Hours of Operation

The Capital One Lounge at IAD is open daily from 5:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.

First Impressions

The first Capital One Lounge at DFW was such a success that the Capitol One Lounge brand has become a favorite in the points-and-miles community. So my expectations were high when I visited the Dulles lounge less than a week after it opened.

IAD Capital One Lounge seating
There were lots of different kinds of seating in the lounge.

The lounge was decorated in a mid-century modern style that felt more contemporary than kitschy. Maroon, blue, and grey tones exuded a calmness that was a stark contrast to the busy airport terminal. The vertical planks of natural teak wood that lined the back wall added a warmth and architectural element to a view that would otherwise have been stark and uninviting.

Bar and seating area at Capital One Lounge IAD Dulles
The bar opened to the main seating area.

Nothing was boring in this lounge. The club chairs looked like they were straight from the West Elm catalog, the angled wood accents behind the bar were striking, and the purple glass lights were modern, high-end, and just plain fantastic. I would love to get my hands on one of these lights for my house.

Purple lamps at IAD Capital One Lounge
I’m in love with these purple glass lights.

Even the ceiling was cool — it was covered in rounded diamond panels that made each recessed light appear as if it were a star.

Main lounge area at Capital One Lounge Dulles
The ceiling pattern was a nice touch.
Hot Tip:

A third Capital One Lounge opened in early November 2023 at Denver International Airport (DEN). Learn more about all of the anticipated locations in our detailed guide to the Capital One Lounge.

Seating

At 8,000 square feet, the Capital One Lounge at IAD was smaller than at DFW (which is 10,000 square feet), but it didn’t feel cramped.

The main seating area was at the back of the lounge near the bar, with cushioned club chairs throughout. Most seats had a side table with electrical and USB-A outlets.

Chair and outlets at Capital One Lounge IAD
These chairs had side tables and plugs.

There were bigger tables and banquettes in the main area in front of the bar, ideal for larger groups or families.

Capital One Lounge Dulles seating
There were larger tables by the bar.

The barstools were upholstered and offered back support. Every barstool was right next to an outlet.

Bar at Capital One Lounge Washington Dulles
Each cushioned bar stool had access to a plug.

I found runway views to the right side of the lounge. There were tables and work benches along the windows and cushioned chairs toward the back.

Capital One Lounge Washington Dulles seating areas
Runway views were available on the right side of the lounge.

Next to the workspaces, a quiet corner with a couple of chairs offered a semiprivate space to relax.

Seating area at Washington Dulles Capital One Lounge
This cozy corner was next to the workspaces.
Hot Tip:

Check out these other lounges at Washington Dulles International Airport. Capital One Venture X cardholders have access to 5 other lounges at IAD.

Food and Beverage

I found the food and beverages at the IAD Capital One Lounge to be excellent — and I’d had high expectations from the top-notch offerings at the DFW location.

Grab-and-Go

One of the best aspects of a Capital One Lounge is the great grab-and-go selection: think fresh salads, sandwiches, açaí bowls, and overnight oats.

Because of where the Capital One Lounge is inside the airport, the grab-and-go options are even more important. Lots of passengers may just be stopping in to grab a snack for their flights. When I stopped in, I found that the lounge did a good job of catering to those pop-in guests — for one thing, the grab-and-go items were just to the left of the check-in desk.

Grab and go at Capital One Lounge Dulles
Drinks and snacks were available right next to the lounge’s front desk.

There were premade sandwiches, salads, snacks, desserts, Bubly sparkling water, and Aquafina still water in aluminum cans.

Capital One Lounge Dulles grab and go sandwiches and lite bites
Grab-and-go items included sandwiches and light bites.

Even the lounge’s coffee bar was at the entrance, making it easy to order a coffee to go without having to actually enter the lounge.

For added convenience, the lounge provided branded bags for your on-the-go snacks.

Capital One to go bag
Capital One Lounge to-go bag.
Hot Tip:

Though the grab-and-go food section at the Capital One Lounge at IAD is better than most airport lounges, it’s still smaller than the grab-and-go section at DFW. However, the IAD lounge surpasses DFW with its to-go coffees and teas, which you don’t get at DFW.

Coffee Bar

The full-service coffee bar was one of the most unique features of the Capital One Lounge at IAD. Located just to the left of the front desk, the coffee bar could serve your beverage in a to-go cup if you were in a hurry.

Capital One Lounge Dulles Airport coffee bar
The Capital One Lounge coffee bar.

The baristas during my visit, Dalila and Terry, were delightful. Not only did they make excellent lattes, but they were a total pleasure to speak to, and I got a sense that they took great pride in their jobs. That positivity, along with amazing pastries and delicious beverages, made this coffee bar the best part of the entire lounge.

Baristas at Capital One Lounge Dulles coffee bar
Great service and coffee at the Capital One Lounge IAD coffee bar.

One of the coolest features of the coffee bar was the latte art machine, which the baristas used to make a foam Capitol One logo in my coffee. They could also add text or even use a photo from your phone to create latte art! This fun touch elevated this lounge from above-average to exceptional.

Latte art at Capital One Lounge IAD
Latte art at the Capital One Lounge.

On my visit, the coffee bar pastries were croissants, cinnamon buns, and homemade strawberry Pop-Tarts. The homemade Pop-Tart was so divine I had 2 and took 2 more home in a to-go bag.

Pastries at the coffee bar at Washington Dulles Capital One Lounge
The strawberry pop tart pastry was delicious.
Bottom Line:

One of the best features of the Capital One Lounge at IAD was the full-service coffee bar staffed with trained baristas. You could quickly grab your favorite coffee drink and a pastry to go or bring them into the lounge with you.

Buffet

The Capital One Lounge offered small plates and individually plated snacks instead of the standard buffet. The food was in the back of the lounge, across from the bar.

Capital One Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport
Head to the back of the lounge if you’re hungry.

Food items were individually portioned.

Breakfast sandwiches at Capital one Lounge Dulles
Food was individually portioned.

Some of the breakfast options included a delicious breakfast sandwich with egg, cheese, and bacon on brioche, chia pudding with fresh fruit, grits, and pastries.

Breakfast at the IAD Capital One Lounge
Breakfast at the Capital One Lounge at IAD.

Lunch options included asparagus guacamole, goat cheese toasts, cheese tots, and charcuterie skewers.

Lunch at the Capital One Lounge at IAD
The asparagus guacamole was excellent.

I grabbed a cherry-blossom-flavored dark chocolate from the front desk on my way out. These sweet treats were from local chocolatier River-Sea Chocolates.

Chocolates at Capital One Lounge Washington Dulles
Chocolates were available at the front desk.

Beverages on Tap

There were tons of beverages at the Capital One Lounge at IAD. I found La Colombe draft latte and cold brew on tap by the coffee bar.

Cold Brew on tap at Capital One Lounge IAD
Cold brew on tap at the Capital One Lounge.

The back of the lounge had even more drink options. There were 4 sodas on tap: cola, zero-sugar cola, pineapple cream soda, and agave vanilla cream soda.

Sodas on tap at Capital One Lounge Dulles
Sodas on tap at the Capital One Lounge IAD.

Also on tap were water, lemonade, and unsweetened iced tea.

Drinks on tap at Capital One Lounge Dulles
Water, lemonade, and iced tea were on tap.

Bar

The Capital One Lounge bar offered a curated drinks menu, including cocktails, local craft beer, mocktails, and wines. Sparkling wine, bourbon, and tequila cost extra.

Bar at Capital One Lounge IAD Dulles
Capital One Lounge bar.

The lounge’s beverage director, Will Patton, also designed the beverage programs for Jônt DC and Bresca. Bresca is a Washington, D.C., Michelin-starred restaurant that’s won awards for its drinks.

I ordered Bresca’s signature cocktail, the Bee’s Knees, which came in perhaps the most unique glass I’ve seen in an airport lounge. This citrusy cocktail featured Bombay Sapphire gin, Suze liqueur, lemon, and kombucha honey cordial, and I’m pretty sure it’s going to become a big hit at the airport.

Bees Knees cocktail glass at Capital One Lounge Dulles
The Bees Knees cocktail was served in this unique bee-shaped glass.

There was a selection of cocktails, wines, and beers available on tap at the bar:

  • Cherry Blossom Margarita
  • Directions to J Street cocktail
  • Face Plant IPA
  • Pre-Flight Lager
  • Prosecco
  • Spring Rickey
Bar selections on draft at the Capital One Lounge Dulles
Unique options, like prosecco and a margarita, were on tap at the bar.

One of the things that really made the Capital One Lounge stand out was its selection of alcohol-free cocktails. With more and more people decreasing their alcohol consumption in recent years, zero-proof cocktails have become a welcome trend.

Zero proof cocktail and lunch at Capital One Lounge Washington Dulles
I tried the Pretty Rickey zero-proof cocktail at lunchtime.

There were 3 nonalcoholic beverages offered on the cocktail menu during my visit:

  • Pretty Rickey: Cherry blossom syrup, fresh lime, sparkling water
  • Rock Creek Park: Jasmine green tea, cucumber, Fever Tree lime and yuzu soda
  • DC Is Tropical: Coconut water, pineapple juice, honey kombucha

Amenities

The Capital One Lounge at IAD didn’t have the bells and whistles I’ve found in many other airport lounges. There were no workout rooms, showers, or sleeping pods. However, this lounge offered some nice amenities to enjoy while waiting for your flight.

Work Areas

There were 2 semi-private work areas, all the way to the left side of the lounge (when looking from the front desk), facing the windows.

Working spaces at Capital One Lounge at Dulles Airport
There were 2 semiprivate workspaces.

These spaces each had a long desk and 3 chairs. Though open to the walkway, they offered more privacy than any other public spaces in the lounge.

Semi private work area at Capital One Lounge Dulles Airport
These workspaces were handy as a quiet space to work or make a phone call.

Restrooms

There were 4 individual restrooms. Each was large and stocked with hand soap, lotion, and tissues.

Bathroom at Capital One Lounge at Washington Dulles
Each private restroom was spacious.

Nursing Room

The private nursing room had a comfortable chair and a changing area.

Parents Room at Capital One Lounge IAD Dulles
The parent’s room at the Capital One Lounge.

The nursing room also had complimentary Capital One-branded bibs.

Capital One Lounge bibs at Washington Dulles
These cute Capital One-branded bibs were available in the Parent’s Room.

The bibs also work well for fur babies!

Cat wearing Capital One Lounge bib scarf
My tripod cat, Peanut, looks quite handsome in his new Capital One gear.

Luggage Lockers

I found the lockers to the right of the front entrance of the lounge.

Capital One Lounge Dulles lockers
Guests could use these lockers to secure their belongings.

Artwork

Travelers will find unique contemporary artworks by Washington, D.C.-area artists displayed throughout the lounge.

Artwork at Capital One Lounge IAD
I enjoyed seeing pieces from local artists displayed throughout the lounge.

Service

One of the highlights of the Capital One Lounge at IAD was the staff. Every staff member I talked to was friendly, helpful, and eager to show off the lounge and its amenities. A few even told me how happy they were that the location was finally open and what a great place it was to work.

Final Thoughts

The Capital One Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) is finally open in the main terminal just past TSA PreCheck. It’s especially convenient for travelers who want to pop in to pick up a coffee or some snacks to take on their flight.

For travelers with a long layover, the Capital One Lounge offers plenty of comfortable seating, delicious small plates, a full bar, and a coffee bar. Semiprivate workspaces and a nursing room make this lounge great for business travelers and families.

Select Capital One cardholders can access this lounge for free, while anyone else can pay a $65 per visit per person fee to enter.

The information regarding the Capital One Venture X Rewards Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Capital One Venture X Business Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.
The information regarding the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

Information regarding the Capital One Spark Miles for Business was independently collected by Upgraded Points and not provided nor reviewed by the issuer.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Dulles have a Capital One Lounge?

Yes, the Capital One Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD) opened in September 2023.

Where is the Capital One Lounge in IAD?

The Capital One Lounge at Washington Dulles (IAD) can be tricky to find. It’s located on the ticketing level of the main terminal right past TSA PreCheck. If you’re coming from a connecting flight, head to the main terminal and look for the elevators marked with the Capital One Lounge logo.

Is the Capital One Lounge open at IAD?

Yes, the Capital One Lounge at IAD opened on September 7, 2023. It’s open daily from 5:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.

How can I get into the Capital One Lounge at Washington Dulles?

Cardholders of the Capital One Venture X card or the Capital One Venture X Business card get unlimited complimentary access to all Capital One Lounges for themselves and up to 2 guests. Cardholders of the Capital One Venture card and the Capital One Spark Miles card can get 2 complimentary lounge passes each year. Anyone else can pay a $65 per person per visit fee to access the lounge.

What are the Capital One Lounge Dulles hours?

The Capital One Lounge at Washington Dulles International Airport was open daily from 5:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.

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About Katie Seemann

Katie has been in the points and miles game since 2015 and started her own blog in 2016. She’s been freelance writing since then and her work has been featured in publications like Travel + Leisure, Forbes Advisor, and Fortune Recommends.

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