One of the advantages of being a Oneworld Emerald or flying British Airways glorified business that they call First Class from London Heathrow’s Terminal 5 has been the use of First Wing with its own check-in area and security that directly deposits the passengers in the Emerald Lounge (First Class lounge but the actual first class passengers use the Concorde Room).
Now, the First Wing’s security is closed for roughly four months starting on January 8, 2024, per information from Heathrow Airport, as they are installing new screening machines that would allow us to keep everything inside your bag, including liquids and all electronics.
You can access BA here.
So, the First Wing check-in area will stay open, but you must then use the South Security for screening purposes, which dumps you in the general area.
First Class passengers and Gold Guest List cardholders can then use the “Millionaires Door” to access the Concorde Room, while others need to walk through the shopping mall and take the escalator up to the lounges.
The usual First Wing security check line to screen that you are eligible to use it.
After the screening, you must walk through the corridor with all the ad displays.
Quite tellingly, a horse welcomes you to the First Class lounge intended purely for Oneworld Emerald members.
I have not had much luck with the new scanners many airports have installed recently. They often refer half of the bags to additional security checks that slow down the process instead of speeding it up.
Perhaps when they have been correctly calibrated, the number of fall positives comes down to an acceptable level, but until then, good luck.
Let’s hope that the First Wing security update goes according to the plan and that we can return to using the dedicated screening lane before May.