As part of a customer retention play for travelers in the Asia Pacific region, Mastercard is providing free access to airport lounges to reduce the annoyance to consumers whose flights have been delayed.

The Mastercard Flight Delay Pass, created through a partnership with Collinson Group, is the first program in the region to provide Platinum, World and World Elite cardholders and their travel companions with complimentary access to more than 850 LoungeKey airport lounges around the world.

The delay pass becomes effective when a flight is expected to be delayed by two or more hours and the cardholder has registered flight details at least six hours prior to scheduled departure. When a delay is in place, Mastercard sends the LoungeKey through a messaging service to the cardholder's phone.

Bloomberg News
Bloomberg News

This privilege is exclusive to Mastercard cardholders who have purchased their flight ticket with their Mastercard, regardless of the airline they fly, the ticket they hold or the affinity program of which they are members. Cardholders need not hold a separate membership to be able to register flight details for access to the delay pass.

“Whether it’s agonizing over missing a flight leg, or feeling lost at an unfamiliar airport, plane delays can certainly sour a trip," Jenn Ong, head of consumer credit in Asia Pacific for Mastercard, said in a Thursday press release.

"Our travel privileges are designed not only to help cardholders maximize what they value most: time, connection and experiences, but also provide them with peace of mind, whenever and wherever they are," Ong added. "As such, we seek to help travelers make the most of their time at the airport, too.”

To be eligible for a complimentary lounge pass, Mastercard cardholders are required to register their flight details so that Mastercard is able to monitor the flight for premium cardholders.

Cardholders may register up to two flights per eligible card. The number of extra guests able to use the delay pass depends on the premium card being used.

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