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Priority Pass has been on a trend lately, and it is a good one. They’ve gone from just a couple restaurants in their network to several within the U.S. in the past year or two. Capers in Portland and the Timberline Grill in Denver started us down this great road, and now we are seeing the addition of two SFO Priority Pass restaurants.
As a West Coast flyer who often passes through SFO, these are heartily welcomed. SFO has been hurting when it comes to Priority Pass coverage.
Two great restaurant options added at SFO
The two Priority Pass options added at SFO are the Giants Clubhouse and Yankee Pier. Both are located in Terminal 3 and open at 5:00 a.m., so you may even be able to grab breakfast before an early morning flight out.
Located near Gate 82, the Giants Clubhouse offers burgers and sandwiches and other ballpark-inspired food. Catch a game on the TV while you munch. Expect to also see memorabilia from the better of the Bay Area’s baseball teams.
Yankee Pier offers a selection of seafood choices, plus a full bar. The restaurant is located near Gate 72, a short walk from Terminal 3 security. I’ve walked by at least a couple dozen times and never eaten there. I’ll be sure to try it out next time I fly through Terminal 3. Except that means flying United (SEE: United’s problem is…everything).
Both SFO Priority Pass restaurants have implemented a guesting restriction for users. Although the guest policy of your membership may allow multiple (or unlimited) guests, both the Giants Clubhouse and Yankee Pier restrict you to a single guest for Priority Pass usage. This means the total that can be taken off your bill is $56. You’ll be responsible for any charges in excess of the allotment.
Also remember that the $28 per person credit from Priority Pass does *not* cover gratuity, even though some staff apparently will tell you it does (SEE: Enjoy those Priority Pass restaurants, but remember this one tip).
The one bummer of the SFO Priority Pass restaurants
Although the additions are nice, they won’t help everyone traveling through SFO. San Francisco International Airport remains one of the worst when it comes to post-security connectivity. Currently, there are three separate connected areas. Terminal 1 and Terminal 2 are connected with a post-security walkway (something I was unaware of until recently). International Terminal A exists alone. Terminal 3 is connected to International Terminal G, where all the Star Alliance partner flights arrive and depart. This allows United great connectivity at their west-coast hub.
The bummer is that both restaurants added to the Priority Pass network are located in Terminal 3. Currently, there are no lounge or restaurant options for Priority Pass users in Terminal 1 or Terminal 2. You’re out of luck if you’re flying Southwest, Delta or American, or many Alaska flights.
Eventually, Terminal 1 and International Terminal A will be connected, as San Francisco is undergoing a massive improvement project (SEE: Take a look at the $2.4 billion SFO Terminal 1 expansion). This will allow passengers departing from any of those terminals to use the Air France / KLM business class lounge; however, this may still not be a great option, as this lounge is known to limit Priority Pass members due to (sometimes fake) capacity constraints.
In any case, this is great news for SFO, whatever the woes of flying out of the Bay Area’s busiest airport may be. I hope Priority Pass continues this trend of restaurant additions. I experienced one for the first time last time I flew through Denver (SEE: Timberline restaurant review – Priority Pass Denver Airport (DEN) lounge).
Will you try one of the SFO Priority Pass restaurants next time you pass through?
United SFO image courtesy of Raimond Spekking under CC 4.0 license.