An ultimate guide to Amex Centurion Lounges

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Amex Centurion Lounges offer a luxe oasis for travelers who find airports stressful and uncomfortable. The laid-back atmosphere and extra amenities are a major draw for cardholders who count themselves as proud Amex customers.

Centurion is the newest addition to the American Express Global Lounge program—and it’s the most luxe and exclusive offering yet. These upscale lounges offer spacious seating, Wi-Fi, signature cocktails, snacks and concierge services.

A few airports already have Amex Centurion Lounges, and Amex is continuing to expand its network of Centurion Lounges and Centurion Studios. So far, the expansion includes a global presence with more than 40 locations planned worldwide. Here’s what you should know about changes to the Centurion Lounge network and access policies.

What is an American Express Centurion Lounge?

Before we jump into changes and updates, it’s helpful to get a rundown of exactly what these lounges are and what you can expect if you visit one. But first we should point out that some Centurion Lounge locations may still be temporarily closed due to COVID-19. Check with American Express for the list of currently open Centurion lounges.

Centurion Lounges are chic spaces designed for comfort, with amenities that elevate the travel experience. If you’re wondering whether The Platinum Card® from American Express’ annual fee is worth it, consider the benefit of access to the Centurion Lounges.

These Centurion amenities will have you looking forward to your next airport experience:

  • Signature cocktails
  • Healthy, regionally sourced snacks and foods
  • A travel concierge
  • Quiet workspaces
  • Spacious seating
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Spa services
  • Wine tasting
  • Stocked family rooms (in some locations)

Once you’ve used your card to access the lounge, you can put it back in your wallet. All food, cocktails and services within the Centurion Lounge are complimentary.

How to get access to Amex Centurion Lounges

If you hold one of these Amex cards, you qualify to enter the Amex Centurion lounge:

The lounge is available only to cardholders scheduled to depart on a flight within the next three hours. That means you can use the lounge for departure flights or layovers but you can’t enter it at your final destination.

If you’re flying on standby, you’re not eligible to use the lounge unless you have a boarding pass showing a confirmed seat or zone assignment.

To access the Centurion Lounge, you’ll need to present:

  • One of the above Amex cards
  • Your boarding pass showing your reservation for same-day travel
  • A government-issued I.D. card that matches the name on your credit card

Guest access

  • Platinum card members can enter with up to two guests at no charge.
  • Delta SkyMiles Reserve cardholders can bring up to two guests but must pay $50 per person for each visit to one Centurion Lounge.
  • Centurion members can bring up to two guests or immediate family at no charge.
  • Day passes (valid for one location only) for additional guests are available for $50.
  • The cardholder must accompany guests at all times.
  • Children under the age of 2 are admitted free of charge if they are traveling with the cardholder. You’ll need to show proof of age.

The complimentary guest access policies will have some changes as of February 1, 2023:

  • Platinum card members will be charged  $50 for each guest (or $30 for children aged 2 through 17, with proof of age).
  • Platinum card members will qualify for complimentary guest access for up to two guests per visit after spending $75,000 in eligible purchases on their cards between Jan. 1, 2022, and Dec. 31, 2022, and in each calendar year thereafter.

If you don’t want to pay for additional guest access, one workaround is to add children, ages 13 and up, as an authorized user to your Platinum card account. You can add up to three authorized users for $175 per year, which would grant them access to Centurion Lounges.

Can you purchase access to Centurion Lounges?

Centurion Lounge access is not currently available for purchase for the general public.

Where are Amex Centurion Lounges located?

Here’s a list of Centurion lounges in the U.S.:

  • Atlanta (ATL)*
  • Charlotte (CLT)
  • Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW)
  • Denver (DEN)*
  • Houston (IAH)
  • Las Vegas (LAS)
  • Los Angeles (LAX)
  • Miami (MIA)
  • New York (JFK)
  • New York LaGuardia (LGA)
  • Philadelphia (PHL)
  • Phoenix (PHX)
  • San Francisco (SFO)
  • Seattle-Tacoma (SEA)
  • Washington D.C. (DCA)*

*Opening soon

Another, smaller location will be opening in London (LHR), which will include showers, private workstations and other amenities. Plus, expansions are planned for both Seattle and San Francisco, slated to debut sometime in 2022.

What other changes are coming to Centurion Lounges?

Aside from some changes in the access policy, the Centurion Lounge is experiencing growth and updates through partnerships, renovations and upgrades. Amex recently partnered with Escape Lounges which are part of The Centurion® Studio collection. You’ll see them labeled, “Escape Lounge – The Centurion Studio Partner.”

Visitors to these lounges will enjoy an exclusively curated menu, which includes a complimentary premium bar snack and a selection of complimentary cocktails, spirits and wines, plus access to The Centurion® Lounge Digital Library. Upon check-in, lounge visitors will get a QR code to take advantage of the exclusive perks offered in Centurion’s Escape Lounges.

Additionally, Amex reports that it will be updating 11 international lounges. Changes will affect decor and add premium food and beverage offerings. Lounge locations on the renovation list include:

  • One Centurion Lounge in Argentina (Buenos Aires)
  • Two Centurion Lounges in Australia (Sydney and Melbourne)
  • Two Centurion Lounges in India (Mumbai and Delhi)
  • One Centurion Lounge in Brazil (São Paulo)
  • Five Centurion Lounges in Mexico (Mexico City and Monterrey)

More access for select Delta cardholders

Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card and Delta SkyMiles Reserve Business American Express Card cardholders will now gain access to more lounges as part of the expanded Centurion Lounge and Centurion Studio initiative.

Delta cardholders will get complimentary access to international Amex lounges and Centurion Studios at no cost. Delta Reserve cardholders get lounge access only when flying on a same-day Delta-marketed or Delta-operated flight.

Other terms and limitations apply, so cardholders should check with their terms of services for any other restrictions or requirements.

Access to more Lufthansa lounges

Amex and Centurion cardholders could previously access Lufthansa lounges in a couple of German airports under very specific circumstances with Austrian, Lufthansa or Swiss flights. But Amex is now expanding access to Lufthansa lounges worldwide to include various European and U.S. airports.

Other Lufthansa lounge locations accessible directly with the Amex Platinum or Centurion card include:

  • Boston Logan International Airport (BOS)
  • Frankfurt Airport (FRA)
  • Hamburg Airport (HAM)
  • London Heathrow Airport (LHR)
  • Munich International Airport (MUC)
  • Washington Dulles International Airport (IAD)
  • Newark Liberty International Airport (EWR)
  • Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG)

This list is not comprehensive, as Amex continues to add new lounges and locations. Cardholders can see all available and open lounges in the LoungeFinder tool within the Amex mobile app or on the Amex website.

Credit cards with Centurion Lounge access

The Platinum Card from American Express: Best for personal travel

  • 5X Membership Rewards points for flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel
  • 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on American Express Travel
  • VIP Uber status and Uber Cash to spend on rides or food
  • Hotel upgrades
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Premium Global Assist Hotline

The Business Platinum Card from American Express: Best for small business

  • 5X Membership Rewards points for flights booked directly with airlines or amextravel.com
  • 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com
  • 1.5X Membership Rewards® points on eligible purchases in key business categories, as well as on purchases of $5,000 or more everywhere else (Up to $2 million
    of these purchases per calendar year ).
  • Up to $200 airline fee credit (in statement credits per calendar year toward baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.)
  • Itemized expense reports to speed your bookkeeping
  • Build credit for your business

Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card: Best for frequent Delta travelers

  • 3X Delta SkyMiles on eligible Delta purchases
  • Complimentary Delta Sky Club access
  • Two Delta Sky Club one-time guest passes each year
  • Earn 50,000 Bonus Miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.

The bottom line

The Amex Centurion Lounges turn long airport waits into pure pleasure for qualified American Express cardholders. These elite, stylish spaces offer everything from quiet workspaces to spa services and signature cocktails to turn the airport into a destination.

The information about American Express Corporate Platinum Card and The Centurion Card from American Express has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.

Written by
Aja McClanahan
Personal Finance Writer
Aja McClanahan is an author, blogger and speaker on personal finance and entrepreneurship. Aja is the author of "How a Mother Should Talk About Money with Her Daughter."
Edited by
Senior Editor, Credit Card Product News
Reviewed by
Credit Cards Reporter