Guest Fees Are Coming to Amex Centurion Lounges
Centurion Lounges are quite popular for frequent travelers, but overcrowding has been an issue lately. So starting next month American Express will start limiting guests access for these lounges.
These changes will affect The Platinum Card® from American Express and The Business Platinum Card® from American Express. Currently, cardholders can bring two guests into the lounge, free of charge. Starting February 1, 2023, each guest will cost $50 or $30 for children ages 2 through 17. Corporate Platinum and Centurion cardmembers will not see any changes.
The changes only apply to Centurion Lounges. Platinum cardholders will not see any changes when it comes to other lounges in the American Express Global Lounge Collection. That includes AirSpace lounges, Delta Sky Club airline lounges, International American Express lounges, Lufthansa lounges, Plaza Premium lounges, Priority Pass lounges, and even some non-airport locations.
As for Centurion Lounges, Platinum cardholders will now have two options to avoid guest fees.
If you are a heavy spender, and always use your Platinum card, then you have nothing to worry about. But I doubt many readers are putting $75,000 a year on a Platinum card, considering the low earning rates.
If you spend $75,000 or more on eligible purchases on your card during a calendar year you will receive complimentary guest access for up to two guests per visit for that calendar year plus the next year and through the end of January of the following year. So the earlier you reach that $75,00 spending threshold in the year, the better it is.
Add Authorized Users
This is the better route for most people. You can add up to three Platinum authorized user cards to your primary personal Platinum account for a total of $175 per year. That’s less than $60 per cardholder, which is cheaper if you use Centurion lounges at least two times a year.
Besides access to the American Express Global Lounge Collection, Platinum authorized users also get some other benefits, such as:
- Global Entry or TSA PreCheck credit, up to $100 every four years
- Complimentary gold status in Hilton Honors
- Complimentary gold status in Marriott Bonvoy
- Trip cancellation and interruption insurance)
Authorized users on the Business Platinum Card cost much more, $350 per year.
One issue with this option is that children under 13 years old can’t be added as authorized users. So you will have to pay $30 to bring young kids into Centurion Lounges.
The Centurion Lounge NetworkHere is a list of the lounges that are currently available and the ones that will open soon:
- Atlanta (coming soon)
- Hong Kong
- Las Vegas
- Los Angeles (temporarily closed)
- Melbourne (coming soon)
- New York – LaGuardia
- New York – JFK
- Newark (coming soon)
- San Francisco
- Sydney (coming soon)
- Washington, D.C. (coming soon)
Centurion Lounges will become more exclusive going forward. Bringing in guests for free was a big perks for couples or families with kids. A family of four could access lounges with just one Platinum Card.
Starting next month, Amex Platinum cardholders will have two options to avoid guest fees for Centurion Lounges. They can spend $75,000 in a calendar year, or add Authorized users.
But looking at this from the perspective of those who travel solo, it could be good news. Less people will have access which can help with overcrowding.
Let me know what you think!