OK, this one IS a FWP.
Flying Virgin to NZ, economy class. Bummer enough, right? Virgin is not Star Alliance but has an agreement with Singapore Airlines for club lounge access. I check-in at the priority counter and the lady says that there is no Virgin lounge in International in Melbourne, but I am welcome to use the Air New Zealand lounge or of course the Singapore lounge. Huh, go with what you know, right? I find that the Singapore lounge is under renovation and the sign directs me to the United lounge. Steely looks from both the SIA person and the United person.
"Virgin is not Star Alliance."
"But the SIA lounge is closed, the sign directed me here."
"Yes, but Virgin is not part... "
" But Virgin has reciprocal lounge access with SIA."
"Virgin is not... "
" I can get into the Virgin lounge (at Perth which doesn't have a SIA lounge.) when I am flying Singapore."
The SIA guy calls his boss. He goes red. He is under-trained.
"I am still sorry sir, but because this is a United lounge and Virgin is not part of Star Alliance, the reciprocal agreement cannot be applied."
Smug look from United person.
Go to New Zealand lounge.
"I am sorry sir, I but Virgin is not part of Star Alliance." (There is a sign outside the ANZ lounge welcoming Virgin customers.) "Your SIA membership doesn't cover the ANZ agreement with Virgin."
"Oh fuck, just let me in...!"
(Vindicated: my ticket was sold as an Air New Zealand flight.)
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