British Airways O.R. Tambo International Lounge

Our Thoughts

The British Airways O.R. Tambo Lounge is modern, stylish, and a perfect oasis to relax in away from the hustle and bustle of the busy international airport.

Cathy and I were flying home via London and we had lots of time to spend in the British Airways lounge at O.R. Tambo international Airport in Johannesburg. We were certainly impressed with what we experienced.


The lounge, which was remodelled in late 2019, is open daily from 3pm until 10:15pm.

Anyone flying in Club (business class) or First on British Airways is invited to use the British Airways lounge in Johannesburg. 

You can also get access if you are one world Sapphire or Emerald (equivalent to BA Silver or Gold, respectively) if you are flying a one world airline in any class, including Qatar Airways.

The lounge is located in Terminal A, the International Terminal of OR Tambo Airport, just after security.

It is on the mezzanine level, together with the Emirates and South African Airways lounges.

The Lounge

After checking in at reception you are greeted by the main bar, which you may recognise in style from some of British Airways’ other recent lounge refurbishments.

Immediately after the bar you have a buffet with much more restaurant style seating.

The rest of the lounge is then divided into separate zones and rooms, which helps to break up the 880 square metre facility and create cozier lounge areas.

On the right is the Concorde Lounge. This is only open to people flying on a First ticket and Cathy and I were flying Club on this leg so we weren’t able to use these facilities.


Whilst there isn’t a huge amount of choice, the quality of the food in the lounge is good. There is a small buffet next to the bar offering bar snacks including a charcuterie and cheese board.

We also had a staff member offer us champagne and took our order off the menu. This is unusual for Club level in British Airways Galleries and a welcome surprise.


The lounge is bigger than it appears when you first enter, and if you don’t explore you might miss out on an area more suited to your preferred seating. In total, there is space for around 250 guests, given that British Airways often runs two A380s per day to Johannesburg.

We never felt crowded and the lounge was a haven from the crowded terminal outside.

The bathrooms are very classy–on par with the Cathay Pacific lounges at Heathrow T3.

For the business traveller there is even a boardroom where you can work in peace and quiet if you have to. The room features a large shared marble table with plenty of multi-country power points in the middle.

All in all, this is one of the best lounges I have experienced flying on British Airways and hopefully as they refurbish the older lounges they follow this standard.

Andrew Taylor

For Andrew, travel is so much more than just learning history or taking photos. Rather, the value of travel is witnessing a lifestyle, bonding with locals, and gaining rich cultural experiences. That’s why he founded the Luxury Wanderer; a place to share itineraries, offer advice, swap stories, and foster a like-minded community of curious travellers.

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