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American Express is bringing in changes to the Access Policy to its Centurion Lounges. The policy is in line with the recent changes for holders of personal and business platinum cards. The new changes restrict the number of guests you can now take into the Centurion Lounge.
The New Policy (As of March 30, 2017)
Previously, cardholders could access the Centurion Lounge with two guests or immediate family. Guests under 18 could gain access and did not count as part of the quota. This meant that those traveling with a large family could grant several people access with their card. The new policy places a limit on two guests only per cardmember, whether they are family or not. Now, any guests in addition to two will have to be paid for even if they are family members and under 18.
The new policy takes effect March 30, 2017, which now streamlines the Centurion lounge access policy with Priority Pass lounges.
Why the New Access Policy?
Fundamentally, the Centurion Lounges are a victim of their success; they are some of the best domestic lounges in the US, and as such attracted heavy traffic. As a result, cardmembers have complained about overcrowding at many lounges. The new policy is designed to alleviate some of the congestion inside the Amex Centurion Lounges.
According to a source at Amex, “As our Centurion Lounges have quickly become one of our Card Members’ favorite Card benefits and continue to increase in popularity, we have increasingly heard from our Card Members that our lounges are becoming overcrowded at times.”
One thing in Amex’s favor is that the policy is not unduly harsh, in fact, the new policy brings Centurion lounges in line with other lounges in the industry.
This policy change is good news and bad news for holders of The Platinum Card® from American Express, and The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, as well as Centurion cardholders. For those who regularly travel solo or with one other person, they should enjoy lounges that are less crowded. For those who travel with a large family on a regular basis, they will have to make a decision whether to forgo lounge access entirely or pay for the additional members, which can get quite expensive. Are you happy or disappointed with the new Centurion Lounge policy?
Source: Julian Mark Kheel/The Points Guy
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