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Amex Centurion lounges offer complimentary food, drink, and a comfortable place to relax before a flight — here's how you can get in

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  • If you have the The Platinum Card® from American Express, the The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, or the Centurion card, you can access Amex Centurion lounges.
  • You can also access Centurion lounges when you're flying Delta with the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card and the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card.
  • There are currently 11 Centurion lounges at US airports, along with a location in Hong Kong and more US locations slated to open in 2020.
  • Beyond offering a quiet place to relax before your flight, Centurion lounges boast premium food and drink options along with semi-private work areas.
  • See Business Insider's list of the best travel rewards credit cards »

There are many reasons to sign up for an The Platinum Card® from American Express or The Business Platinum Card® from American Express — from the valuable Amex Membership Rewards points you can earn to statement credits for airline incidental fees and more. To many frequent travelers, the best perk is access to a collection of airport lounges. Amex Centurion lounges are among the best in the world — here's everything you need to know about them.

We're focused here on the rewards and perks that come with each card. These cards won't be worth it if you're paying interest or late fees. When using a credit card, it's important to pay your balance in full each month, make payments on time, and only spend what you can afford to pay. 

What are American Express Centurion lounges?

American Express operates its own network of lounges exclusively for premium Amex cardholders. Walking through the doors feels like being whisked into a completely different world than the loud, busy airport terminals with dirty bathrooms and other unpleasantries.

Lounges feature complimentary food, drinks, internet, and other luxury amenities at 12 airports around the US and in Hong Kong. More locations are currently in the works at some of the busiest airports business travelers are likely to visit.

Each lounge may have different offerings, but all lounges have member services that can double as a travel concierge for your current and future trips. All locations have semi-private work areas and a computer bar with printer, fax, and copier access as well as TV, magazines, and newspapers. Some lounges offer spa services, wine tasting areas, conference rooms, shower suites, family areas, and luggage lockers.

How to access Amex Centurion lounges

If you have a The Platinum Card® from American Express, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, or Centurion card from Amex, you can gain admission to this peaceful oasis in the otherwise bustling airport terminal. Cardholders can bring up to two guests or immediate family members. Day passes are available for $50 each if you want to bring additional guests. 

$550 annual fee:

The Platinum Card® from American Express

American Express The Platinum Card® from American ExpressAmerican Express The Business Platinum Card® from American Express

Annual Fee
Regular APR
Credit Score
  • A five pointed star
  • A five pointed star
  • A five pointed star
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  • 4.8 out of 5 Stars
    Editor's Rating

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    Annual Fee

    $595

    Regular APR

    N/A

    Credit Score

    ExcellentA five pointed star

  • A five pointed star
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  • 4.8 out of 5 Stars
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    Featured Reward

    75,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 within your first 3 months of account opening

    Intro APR

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  • Details
  • Pros & Cons
    • Earn 75,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $15,000 on qualifying purchases within your first 3 months of Card Membership.
    • Get 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights and prepaid hotels on amextravel.com.
    • Get 50% more Membership Rewards® points. That's an extra half point per dollar, on each eligible purchase of $5,000 or more. You can get up to 1 million additional points per year.
    • 35% Airline Bonus: Use Membership Rewards® Pay with Points for all or part of a flight with your selected qualifying airline, and you can get 35% of the points back, up to 500,000 bonus points per calendar year when you book on amextravel.com.
    • Enroll to get up to $200 in statement credits annually by getting up to $100 semi-annually for U.S. purchases with Dell. Terms apply.
    Pros
    • More travel benefits than you'll find on any other business credit card
    • Generous airport lounge access options, from American Express Centurion Lounges to Priority Pass
    • Complimentary hotel elite status
    • Access to Amex concierge services
    Cons
    • Very high annual fee
    • Limited opportunities to earn bonus points
    • Annual statement credits won't be useful for everyone

    It used to be that these premium Amex cards were the only way to access Centurion lounges, but two Delta credit cards recently added Centurion lounge access as a benefit. The important caveat with these two cards is that you'll only be able to access the Amex Centurion lounges when you're flying Delta, and you'll need to pay $50 per guest (for up to two guests).

    • Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card ($550 annual fee (See Rates))
    • Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card ($550 annual fee)

    Read more: Delta Reserve American Express card review

     

    Food, drinks, and other Centurion lounge amenities

    I've been to a good number of airport lounges around the world, but few have been as impressive as the culinary experience at Centurion lounges, particularly for lounges in the US. The food, cocktails, and wine are a step above most other lounges, some by a longshot.

    Menus are designed and inspired by award-winning executive chefs. Dishes change seasonally and are filled with flavor. During my last visit to a Centurion lounge in Philadelphia, food was fresh and refilled regularly. There were meat and vegetarian options, and even some good choices for kids.

    At the bar, all drinks were included. These are not well drinks. You can enjoy signature cocktails, premium spirits, and a curated wine list. Remember, it's not free. You pay for it in your annual fee to American Express, so make sure to take full advantage!

    Where to find an Amex Centurion lounge

    The network of Centurion lounge locations leaves a bit to be desired, but there are new lounges on the way. That's a big addition to the current locations, listed below:

    • Charlotte Douglas International Airport (between Concourse D and E)
    • Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport (Terminal D)
    • Intercontinental Houston Airport (Terminal D)
    • Las Vegas McCarran International Airport (Concourse D)
    • Los Angeles International Airport (Tom Bradley International Terminal)
    • Miami International Airport (Concourse D)
    • John F. Kennedy International Airport (New York)
    • New York LaGuardia Airport (Terminal B, pre-security)
    • Philadelphia International Airport (Terminal A)
    • Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport (Terminal 4)
    • San Fransisco International Airport (Terminal 3)
    • Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (Concourse B)
    • Hong Kong International (Terminal 1)

    New locations have been announced at the following airports, and are scheduled to open by the end of 2020:

    • Denver International Airport
    • Heathrow Airport (London)

    You can find additional American Express lounges outside of the Centurion brand as well. I've visited Amex lounges at the Javitz Center in New York and the Las Vegas Convention Center.

    For a full listing of lounges you can access with the The Platinum Card® from American Express or The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, check out the lounge search tool here.

    Get a little more relaxation on the go

    Travel can be tiring and stressful, but it doesn't have to be an all-around bad experience. Even if you're not flying in a first- or business-class seat, you can get a first-class experience on the ground in an Amex Centurion lounge. If you travel frequently, particularly through any of the airports where you can find a Centurion lounge, applying for the The Platinum Card® from American Express, your ticket for admission, may be a great idea.

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