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Full List of United Polaris Lounges — Locations, Hours, Amenities, and More [2023]

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Ehsan Haque
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Ehsan Haque

Content Contributor

Countries Visited: 100U.S. States Visited: 24

Ehsan is an avid traveler who has traveled to 100 countries, diligently using points and miles to fund his journeys. Currently, he holds 32 active credit cards and earns over a million points and mile...
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Keri Stooksbury

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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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Airport lounges have become quite popular thanks to programs like Priority Pass. However, nowadays, there is a serious overcrowding problem across most lounges.

Unlike lounges that are part of a network, some airlines also offer their own lounges. These include known options such as Delta Sky Club, American Admirals Club, and United Club, among others.

Airlines typically allow select elite members, those flying in a premium cabin internationally, and passengers with the airline’s top-tier credit card to access their lounges. However, some premium lounges, including United Polaris lounges, are much more restrictive.

In this article, we will take a look at United Polaris lounges. Unlike United Club, which has numerous access methods, United Polaris lounges are much more restrictive. We’ll detail the locations, how to access them, and what makes them so special.

United Polaris Lounges

While there are more than 45 United Clubs worldwide, there are only 6 Polaris lounges in some of United’s busiest hub airports.

Below is a list of the airports with United Polaris lounges, their specific locations, hours of operation, and select amenities.

Chicago O’Hare International Airport (ORD)

Location: Terminal 1, Concourse C (near gate C18)
Hours: Daily from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Select Amenities: Full buffet, full-service bar, pre-flight dining, quiet suites, showers

George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH)

Location: Terminal E (between the United Club location and gate E12)
Hours: Daily from 5:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Select Amenities: Full buffet, full-service bar, pre-flight dining, quiet suites, showers

Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)

Location: Terminal 7, between gates 73 and 75A
Hours: 
Daily from 6:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.
Select Amenities: 
Full buffet, full-service bar, pre-flight dining, quiet suites, showers

Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR)

Location: Terminal C (after security, between gates C102 and C120)
Hours: Daily from 5 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.
Select Amenities: Full buffet, full-service bar, pre-flight dining, quiet suites, showers

San Francisco International Airport (SFO)

Location: International Terminal (across from the security checkpoint for Boarding Area G)
Hours: Daily from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.
Select Amenities: Full buffet, full-service bar, pre-flight dining, quiet suites, showers

Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD)

Location: Midfield Terminal, Concourse C, near gate C17
Hours: Daily from 5:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
Select Amenities: Full buffet, full-service bar, pre-flight dining, quiet suites, showers

United Polaris lounges
United currently has 6 Polaris lounges in the U.S. Image Credit: United

United Arrivals Lounge

In addition to the Polaris lounges mentioned above, United also operates an international arrivals lounge at London Heathrow (LHR) exclusively available for United Polaris business class travelers. Eligible travelers must be flying on a same-day ticket and arriving before noon. United Club memberships and one-time passes cannot be used to access this lounge. Eligible travelers cannot bring any guests with them to the arrivals lounge.

Location: Immediately after immigration and customs
Hours: Daily from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Select Amenities: Á la carte breakfast menu, breakfast-oriented snacks, clothing press service, non-alcoholic beverages, showers,

What Makes a Polaris Lounge Special?

United’s Polaris lounges are significantly more exclusive and among the best out there.

Lounges typically offer different amenities and services, including complimentary refreshments, spacious sitting areas, private restrooms, and high-speed Wi-Fi. However, United Polaris lounges take it a step further.

Polaris lounges offer extra amenities such as spa-like shower facilities and exclusive rest areas featuring day beds, soft lighting, and gentle white noise.

United Polaris lounges also offer unique dining experiences, from a hot and cold buffet to a sit-down à la carte meal in private dining spaces. These lounges provide beverages such as wine, craft beer, and cocktails.

United Polaris Lounge Houston IAH The Dining Room entrance
The Dining Room at the United Polaris Lounge Houston (IAH). Image Credit: Chris Hassan

Lounge Access and Eligibility

Unlike United Clubs, which allow access to those with specific United co-branded credit cards and those with United Club memberships, United Polaris lounges are much more restrictive. There is no way to pay your way to get into a United Polaris lounge. United does not sell Polaris lounge memberships and does not sell one-time passes for Polaris Lounges.

There are no credit cards that allow access to United Polaris lounges. Even those with the highest MileagePlus or Star Alliance elite status do not get free entry to United Polaris lounges.

Access: United Polaris Lounge access is available to United Polaris first and business class customers traveling on long-haul international flights. United defines long-haul international flights as those flying between the U.S. and Asia, Australia, Europe, the Middle East, or South America.

Star Alliance first and business class customers departing on international flights are also allowed access.

Access to the lounge is granted by showing your United (or Star Alliance membership) boarding pass for flights arriving or departing on a same-day itinerary within 24 hours.

Guest Policy: Eligible first class travelers on a Star Alliance member airline can bring 1 adult/child with them as a guest free of charge.

Hot Tip:

If you do not frequently fly United Polaris but are still after a comfortable place to rest and recharge before your flight, consider one of our best credit cards for airport lounge access.

Final Thoughts

United Polaris lounges are unique experiences and are among the best lounges in the U.S.

Polaris lounges also have stringent entry requirements. There’s no way to enter them based on elite status; these lounges are exclusively available to long-haul first and business class passengers on Star Alliance airlines.

United Polaris lounges are worth the visit and are one of the best parts of flying in a premium cabin with United Airlines.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can you purchase a one-time pass to go to a United Polaris lounge?

No, there are no one-time passes available for United Polaris lounges.

Which airports have United Polaris lounges?

United Airlines currently operates 6 Polaris Lounges located in some of its busiest hub airports, including Chicago (ORD), Houston (IAH), Los Angeles (LAX), Newark (EWR), San Francisco (SFO), and Washington, D.C. (IAD). There is also an international arrivals lounge at London Heathrow (LHR).

Which credit cards gives access to United Polaris lounges?

Currently, there are no credit cards that give access to United Polaris lounges.

Can I go to a United Polaris lounge if I am flying business class?

United Polaris Lounge access is available to United Polaris first and United Polaris business class customers traveling on long-haul international flights. Additionally, Star Alliance first and business class customers departing on international flights are allowed access.

Ehsan Haque's image

About Ehsan Haque

Ehsan is an avid traveler who has traveled to 100 countries, diligently using points and miles to fund his journeys. Currently, he holds 32 active credit cards and earns over a million points and miles annually, primarily using them for luxury hotels and long-haul premium cabins.

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