American Express Implements $50 Fee for Centurion Lounge Guests: Here’s What Cardholders Need to Know


American Express offers excellent membership benefits on its premium cards.

And one of the most sought-after perks offered by American Express cards is airport lounge access.

Needless to say, AmEx’s network of Centurion Lounges is among the most exclusive lounges in Amex’s Global Lounge Collection.

To enter one of these lounges, you will need to have your AmEx card with you to be verified at the entrance.

However, not all cards give you a go-ahead into the lounge.

So, who can enter?

Only American Express cardmembers with Centurion or Platinum-branded cards such as The Platinum Card® from American Express or The Business Platinum Card® from American Express have access to Amex Centurion Lounges.

Not just primary card holders, but authorized users with a Centurion or Platinum Card also get access.

However, AmEx cardmembers with cards that aren’t Centurion or Platinum cards, like the American Express® Gold Card or the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, do not have access to enter these lounges.

Guest Policy

Up until now, Platinum cardmembers could enter the Centurion Lounges with up to two guests at no additional charge. Centurion cardmembers could enter with up to two guests or immediate family — defined as a spouse or domestic partner and children under 18 — at no additional charge.

It’s important to know that Guest access is per card member only, not per card. So you’ll still only get two guests even if you have the personal and business versions of the Platinum Card.

Changes to the Guest Policy

But here comes the not-so-good news…

Starting February 1, 2023…

AmEx implements its new Centurion Lounge guest policy where…

…most card members will no longer be allowed to bring in two friends or family members for free.

These changes will affect cardmembers with The Platinum Card® from American Express and The Business Platinum Card® from American Express.

So, is there no way you can bring guests with you?

Turns out, there is.

Here are some of the options you have if you want to bring guests into the Centurion Lounge:

  1. Spend $75,000 on eligible purchases using your American Express Platinum Card in a calendar year. Once you meet that goal, you’ll be allowed to bring two guests for free into the lounge.
    Also, if you didn’t spend at least $75,000 on your card last year, your ability to bring complimentary guests into Centurion Lounges could bid you adieu soon.
  2. Add up to three authorized users to your personal card for $175 per year. This could make the most sense for frequent travel partners like couples, siblings, etc. It’s important to remember that adding an authorized user to your credit card can impact the primary cardholder’s credit score.
  3. You could pay a per-visit fee. You can pay $50 to bring an adult guest ($30 for children ages 2 through 17) into the Centurion Lounge.

Final Thoughts

Granted the lines leading up to the entrance would shrink massively, it’s unfortunate that this policy change could devalue the card.

Yet, I am curious to know what you will do.

How important were the Centurion Lounge experiences for you?

Will this change be a make-or-break deal for you to retain the Platinum card?

Let me know in the comments below!

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