A Massive United Lounge Just Opened at New Jersey’s Newark Airport

Here’s an initial peek at the first and largest lounge in Newark’s new Terminal A.

Two men standing at a long bar waiting for service from the bartender at the United lounge in Newark Airport

Cozy up to the bar—the centerpiece of the new United lounge at Newark—for a preflight drink.

Photo by Andrew Glatt

Right in time for (yet another) chaotic summer travel season, a brand new United lounge has arrived at New Jersey’s Newark Liberty International Airport.

The debut marks the first-ever lounge in Newark’s $2.7 billion new Terminal A, which opened in 2022. It will remain the terminal’s only lounge through the end of the summer. The upcoming American Airlines Admirals Club and Delta Air Lines Sky Club lounges aren’t expected to open until at least fall 2023, while an American Express Centurion Lounge is set to arrive in 2025.

“We’re going to have the largest partner lounge in this new Terminal A concourse,” said Laura Edwards, senior manager of clubs and lounges at United Airlines. According to her, the Delta and American lounges will be half the size.

Clocking in at 15,000 square feet, the lounge—located on the concourse’s upper level near Gate A27—offers travelers ample space for preflight relaxation, abundant food and beverage options, New Jersey–inspired details, and more. Here’s what to expect.

Passengers sitting on blue arm chairs and white banquettes at the United lounge at Newark airport

Despite an open layout, the new United lounge in Newark’s Terminal A offers a wide variety of seating areas and workspaces.

Photo by Andrew Glatt

Plenty of space to spread out

While travelers may find themselves battling for space in other airport lounges, the design of this new addition at Newark tries to curb overcrowding before it begins. Upon arrival, travelers can enter the lounge through one of two entrances—the first measure set in place to ensure a steady flow of traffic.

From there, the open-air layout of the lounge only continues to keep crowds sparse. Inside, you’ll find nearly 350 seats—ranging from couches and recliners to high-top tables and booths—spread across several distinct sections, giving travelers a feeling of relative privacy. While the expansive seating surrounding the lounge’s bar is geared more toward socialization, the somewhat-concealed areas that flank the entrance offer a welcome reprieve for guests hoping to get work done or those looking for some peace and quiet preflight.

On a sunny day, travelers can soak in the rays flooding in through the floor-to-ceiling windows and enjoy views of the Manhattan skyline from the lounge’s secluded workspace just behind the bar.

A dedicated wellness room offers a fairly simple but private space for those nursing children or seeking an area for prayer and meditation. It’s worth noting that the lounge’s bathroom capacity is relatively limited. For a space designed for about 350 people, there are only seven stalls available in total (four women’s stalls, two men’s stalls, and one gender-neutral single-stall restroom).

Man serving himself food at the buffet at the United lounge in Newark airport

Passengers will find plenty of locally inspired eating options at the complimentary buffet.

Photo by Andrew Glatt

Food and drinks: here’s what’s on the United lounge preflight menu

The elegant, full-service bar is by far the lounge’s most prominent piece of real estate, offering both complimentary and for-purchase drinks ranging from nonalcoholic beverages to wine, spirits, and beer on tap.

Nearby, a complimentary buffet offers breakfast, lunch, dinner, and desserts. Crafted with available produce from local farms in New Jersey, the menu was developed based on Jersey state classics (including ham, egg, and cheese sandwiches) and passenger feedback from United’s lounge in Newark Terminal C, which opened in 2022.

Although the menu rotates seasonally, past menu items have included a Greek yogurt bar, breakfast sandwiches, soups, summer vegetable ratatouille, cinnamon-sugar doughnut holes, and chocolate-chip cookies. If you’re not after a full meal, the lounge also offers fruit-infused water, fresh fruit, and other quick-grab snacks like dried fruit and saltwater taffy, as well as complimentary coffee and tea.

Entrance to United lounge at Newark Airport's Terminal A with a few passengers entering past colorful abstract painting

There’s ample artwork to enjoy while passing the time at the lounge.

Photo by Andrew Glatt

Nods to the local art community

United’s Terminal A lounge features both furniture and artwork from regional artists, the most notable being a series of colorful mixed-media murals by local artist Dr. Antoinette Ellis-Williams, a professor at New Jersey City University.

“I think that air travel is critical,” shared Ellis-Williams during the lounge’s opening reception. “In this past year, we’ve done a lot of traveling . . . and our world is so much better. So I wanted to have that. I wanted that to be the experience—that people felt joy, that they weren’t alone, that they felt seen.”

Throughout Terminal A, passengers can also spot other art from more than two dozen artists who live and work in the area, including Ricky Flores, a South Bronx photojournalist; Arthur Peña, a Bronx-based artist, curator, and writer (his painting titled Attempt 202 is on display in the club); and Eirini Linardaki, who splits her time among New York, Paris, and Heraklion, Greece, and whose art focuses on social change.

How to enter Newark’s Terminal A United Lounge

To access the lounge, travelers will need to have a same-day United or Star Alliance member airline boarding pass. They’ll also need to have a United Club Membership, one-time pass, or Star Alliance Gold Status, or be a premium cabin customer. The United Club Infinite and United Explorer credit cards also grant users access to the lounge.

Upon arrival, travelers can simply scan their boarding pass at the self-service entry gate and select the number of guests accompanying them inside. From there, a self-service kiosk and an arrival and departure board make it easy for travelers to stay up to date on their flights.

Newark’s Terminal A United Lounge is open daily from 5:00 a.m. to 9:15 p.m.

Tiana Attride is Afar’s social media editor. Previously, she’s worked on content and audience development at Vogue, Thrillist, Away, and Insider.
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