This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertising Policy, visit this page.
This past week, a number of travelers with the Platinum Card® from American Express found themselves unable to enter the Centurion Lounges in Seattle (SEA) and Miami (MIA) airports… until two hours before their flight departure time, that is.
We reached out to American Express for clarification, curious to know if the situation was temporary/location-specific case, or if Amex had made additional changes to Centurion lounge access rules, as with last fall’s new policy limiting access to holders of the Amex Platinum, and the personal and business Centurion cards.
“There is no new rule or policy that restricts time within the lounge,” said Charlotte Fuller, VP of Corporate Affairs. “Occasionally, we have to limit access and waitlist people when we hit capacity, but there are no changes to our terms and conditions. In Seattle, we reached capacity over the holiday weekend, and in Miami, we also reached capacity due to the tropical storm.”
Although the restricted access undoubtedly was an inconvenience for travelers this past weekend, it’s nice to know that the situation is not the result of a system-wide policy change. And the TPG team has noticed some crowding issues first-hand: TPG himself flew into Miami this week and found the lounge to be a bit of a “zoo,” while another TPG staffer reported that the Miami Centurion Lounge was “pretty packed” on a Tuesday at 11am: “It took more than five minutes to even get through the queue of people waiting at the bar to get a drink.”
Yet in Seattle, traveler Rohit J. reported that the Centurion Lounge looked, well, anything but crowded. But it’s hard to say based on this photo alone whether the two-hour policy was overkill, or whether it was simply preempting inevitable crowding due to holiday travel.
Again, the cards that come with Centurion Lounge access are the Amex Platinum, the Business Platinum® Card from American Express, and the personal and business Centurion cards. Each allow cardholders to bring up to two guests into any Centurion Lounge, with the ability to bring in additional guests for $50 each.
Featured image courtesy of Rohit Joy via Facebook.
Know before you go.
News and deals straight to your inbox every day.
NEW INCREASED OFFER: 60,000 points! With great travel benefits, 2x points on travel & dining and a 60,000 point sign up bonus worth up to $1,200 in value, the Chase Sapphire Preferred is a great card for those looking to get into the points and miles game. Here are the top 5 reasons it should be in your wallet, or read our definitive review for more details.
- Earn 60,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $750 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
- Chase Sapphire Preferred named "Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption" - Kiplinger's Personal Finance, June 2018
- 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
- No foreign transaction fees
- 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
- Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 60,000 points are worth $750 toward travel
- No blackout dates or travel restrictions - as long as there's a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards