Review: United Club Lounge SFO – “E” Concourse, USA

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United Airlines has a very large footprint at San Francisco International Airport and runs four separate lounges at this airport. The United Club “E” Gates is the smallest United Club at the San Francisco International Airport. The lounge served many of the United Airlines regional destinations that depart from San Francisco. We would end up checking out this lounge on our circuit of the United Club’s in San Francisco.


This post is one chapter on our trip during the pandemic to Honolulu Oahu, Hawaii, United States. This trip was redeemed through Marriott Bonvoy and further enhanced through Marriott Bonvoy Elite Status. For more information on how this trip was booked, please see our trip introduction here. For other parts of the trip, please see this index.

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Review: United Club Lounge, San Francisco International Airport – “E” Concourse, California, United States of America


We arrived into San Francisco International Airport on United Airlines First Class: Honolulu – San Francisco. We had a four hour connection to use up prior to continuing onwards on United Airlines Business Class San Francisco – Vancouver, as a result of being on a deeply discounted business class ticket.

With MrsWT73 comfortably deposited at the American Express Centurion Lounge San Francisco, continued onwards on my lounge tour around San Francisco International Airport.

Locating the United Club San Francisco:

The United Club “E” Gates Concourse is located adjacent to the “F” Concourse. It is easily accessed through a secure passageway on the secure side. Unlike the United Club “F” Rotunda that is located close to Gate F11 out on the wing, the United Club “E” Gates is located immediately at the start of the wing near Gate E4.

United Club SFO “E” Gates
Map Courtesy of flysfo.com

You wont miss the United Club at “E” Gates. The United Club blue glass makes this particular United Club lounge highly noticeable and spottable. The United Club San Francisco E Gates is located immediately on the corner of the E Finger. As you round the corner, the front of the lounge and it’s blueness becomes every more prevalent.

United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Entrance
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Entrance
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Entrance
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Entrance

During our visit, the lounge was open early in the morning as one of the first lounges open for the day at San Francisco International Airport. It also happens to be one the earliest to close thanks to it serving the smaller commuter flights in the “E” gates.

United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Hours of Operation
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Accessing the United Club:

Thanks to complex lounge access rules in the United States where memberships are offered, it’s a little more challenging than most to access the United Club. Access to the United Club is permitted under the following circumstances:

  • A boarding pass for travel in United Polaris or United Business Class (international) business class at departure, connecting and arrival airports along their eligible same-day routing.
  • Customers traveling to and from Canada in United First are eligible for United Business access.
  • Customers on premium transcontinental flights may only access United Club locations at the origin and destination of their premium transcontinental flight (only between New York/Newark and Los Angeles and New York/Newark and San Francisco).
  • A boarding pass for travel in first class on a Star Alliance member airline, only at the departure airport for their international first class flight
  • A boarding pass for travel in business class on a Star Alliance member airline, only at the departure airport for their international business class flight
  • A valid Star Alliance Gold membership card and a same-day boarding pass for travel on an international flight operated by a Star Alliance member airline are needed to access United Club locations at departure, during connections and upon arrival, along the eligible same-day itinerary 
  • A same-day boarding pass showing Star Alliance Gold status, for travel on an international flight operated by a Star Alliance member airline is needed to access United Club locations at departure, during connections and upon arrival, along the eligible same-day itinerary
  • A valid Star Alliance Gold membership card and a same-day boarding pass for travel on a flight operated by a Star Alliance member airline and departing from the same airport
  • A same-day boarding pass showing Star Alliance Gold status, for travel on a flight operated by a Star Alliance member airline and departing from the same airport
  • A boarding pass for same-day travel with a valid United Club membership number listed 
  • A valid United Club membership card and boarding pass for same-day travel 
  • A valid United Club membership number and boarding pass for same-day travel
  • A valid mobile or paper United Club one-time pass and boarding pass for same-day travel 
  • A valid 15-digit one-time pass number and boarding pass for same-day travel
  • Active duty military members with a valid military ID, boarding pass for travel within 24 hours on a United- or United Express-operated flight and one of the following: Dressed in uniform, Leave orders, Rest and recuperation papers
  • A valid Air Canada Maple Leaf Club membership card and a boarding pass for a flight operated by a Star Alliance member airline and departing from the same airport 
  • Maple Leaf Club North America members can access United Club locations in the U.S. only. 
  • Maple Leaf Club Worldwide members can access all United Club locations.

In short, there are many ways to get in, if one can figure out the assortment of complicated access rules. Our access today was courtesy of the International Business Class ticket status of our United Ticket.

United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Reception Entrance

Inside the United Club SFO “E” Gates:

The United Club at SFO “E” Gates represents United’s most institutional lounge at the San Francisco International Airport. Given that the San Francisco “E” Gates represent many smaller commuter flights to nearby destinations, it’s probable that the matching lounge in this are represent a smaller, more higher turnover destination.

The main room in the United Club SFO “E” Gates lounge is visible immediately upon entry into the lounge.

Lounge Seating:

Immediately on entering the lounge, you find yourself in the tables and chairs area. The area ends at a wall featuring retro United Airlines plane photography, along with a computer upright stool area suitable for working.

United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Dining Seating
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Dining Seating

The large rectangular lounge seating room is anchored with the usual United Club grey loungers. It has a very high density seating arrangements, with horizontal rows of seating that lead towards the windows.

United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Seating
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Seating
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Seating

At the end of the horizontal rows is the United Club bar. It’s adorned in modern light fixtures, which gives the space a modern and contemporary look that is up to date and functional.

United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Bar
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Bar
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Seating

Off to the left of the bar is the lounge’s second room. There is a small seating area with seats that are situated against large glass windows that are perfect for plane spotting.

United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Seating
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Seating
United Airlines SFO Lounge Airplane Spotting – Airbus 320
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Food an Beverage:

Lounge Dining:

The United Club’s aren’t usually known for their outstanding food and beverage. The lounge space at the United Club San Francisco “E” Gates offered the smallest food selection between the three lounge locations.

The United Club offered a cappuccino machine, some pre-packed cereals, Chobani yoghurt and fresh fruits for the breakfast hour.

United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Food and Beverage
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Food and Beverage
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Food and Beverage
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Food and Beverage
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Food and Beverage
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Food and Beverage
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Food and Beverage
United Club SFO – “E” Gates – Lounge Food and Beverage

The food products were the same at the United Club “E” Gates SFO. Unfortunately, the dining space here was a lot less generous than at the other United Club locations in San Francisco International Airport.

Lastly, the lounge also featured a wine and cocktail list as scanned from a QR code on the menu. The lounge offers alcoholic drinks during afternoon hours, which would have been after my visit on this date.

We would enjoy at stay at this lounge, prior to heading off on our United Airlines Business Class San Francisco – Vancouver international flight.

My Thoughts on United Club SFO “E” International Gates:

The United Club San Francisco “E” Gates is the smallest United Lounge at San Francisco International Airport. Although a nicely decorated facility, it’s also the smallest lounge of the group. There isn’t really any reason to visit this location over any other United Club unless you happen to be departing from the “E” Gates as the “F” and “G” lounges are much nicer.


If you travel through San Francisco International Airport, do you visit the United Club “E” Gates Lounge ?

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