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MORE Rules for AMEX Centurion Lounge Access?

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MORE Rules for AMEX Centurion Lounge Access?

Joseph HostetlerMORE Rules for AMEX Centurion Lounge Access?Million Mile Secrets Team

Signing up for credit cards through partner links earns us a commission. Here’s our full Advertising Policy.

Lots of folks consider American Express Centurion Lounges to be the best lounges in the US.  That’s because they offer perks like tasty buffet-style meals, premium alcoholic beverages, showers, conference spaces, and speedy Wi-Fi.

Previously, you needed a boarding pass, same-day flight, and eligible AMEX Platinum card to enter the lounge.  But it looks like AMEX is testing out new restrictions at a couple Centurion Lounges.  Signs posted in the Centurion Lounges in Miami and Seattle state:

  • Access is limited to 2 hours prior to the scheduled departure time of your flight
  • Inbound boarding passes are NOT accepted for entry
MORE Rules For AMEX Centurion Lounge Access
AMEX Centurion Lounges Are Probably the BEST Domestic Airport Lounges

So you can’t have an extended break in these lounges.  And if you’re arriving, you’re not eligible to visit.

If these rules spread to all Centurion Lounges, that could devalue the lounge access benefit you get with cards like The Platinum Card® from American Express and The Business Platinum® Card from American Express.  Or, it could enhance your visit to a Centurion Lounge, because there won’t be nearly as many travelers fighting for seats!

You can find AMEX Centurion Lounges in:

  • Dallas-Fort Worth
  • Denver (coming soon)
  • Houston Intercontinental
  • Las Vegas
  • Los Angeles (coming soon)
  • New York-La Guardia
  • New York – JFK (coming soon)
  • Miami
  • Philadelphia
  • San Francisco
  • Seattle-Tacoma

Let me know what you think of this change!  And check out my post on the top cards for airport lounge access.

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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This is disappointing. There have been many times where I have gotten to the airport 3-4 hours early to avoid traffic and to be able to just relax and have a few drinks while I do some work before my flight. Furthermore, there have been plenty of times I have gotten off my flight and headed over to the lounge to grab some water and freshen up a bit before going to my hotel or meeting. If made official, I have a feeling AMEX will have many upset customers. I’ll be at the top of the list.

Carlton Carter

I don’t like the idea of no inbound access to the lounge. I don’t have a Centurion lounge at my home airports. It’s nice that you can take a quick shower, quick meeting, have a light meal and drink. It would highly devalue the cards. 2 hours is to short especially if your flying international.

Meghan Hunter

Agreed! And given you have to be at the gate at LEAST 30 minutes before departure, that 2 hours is more like 1.5 hours. It’s way too short.

I like the idea of no inbound access but a limit of 2 hours seems a bit short especially when waiting on connections. Perhaps extend the stay if presenting you stopover ticket. I sometimes have extended layovers ov 4 hours + when travelling internationally and would hate to have to become a ‘Lounge Hopper’ to fill the time.

Meghan Hunter

That’s my argument too, Gwen. It’s so nice to be able to relax in a lounge during long layovers. Especially when traveling internationally, when you might have 3 stops along the way!

This is a real bummer. My home airport is SeaTac and the Centurion lounge was a lifesaver when a recent flight was cancelled and we had hours to kill while waiting for our new flight. I’ve also taken advantage of Centurion lounges in SFO and DFW during long international connections, so this is going to significantly devalue that benefit if they make this the standard across all of their lounges. If this sticks, I don’t see myself paying the annual fee for it again next year.

Meghan Hunter

Ditto, Krissy. I too would have to reconsider whether an annual fee makes sense if these types of restrictions continue.