Fake News Friday: American Express Introduces Centurion Lounge Elite Program

Full Disclosure: The following article is completely made up and not based on any factual information.  Any resemblance to actual facts is purely coincidental.  Since I cannot afford another author (sorry Devil’s Advocate), I will let my imagination run wild.

The Problem:

Right now, there are 2 groups of people who can enter American Express Centurion Lounges: Platinum cardholders and Centurion cardholders.  During the last few months, American Express Centurion Lounges have become overcrowded – table space is limited, food is sparse, and the WiFi speed is unbearably slow.

Artist interpretation of American Express Centurion Lounges

The Solution:

Beginning on Monday, November 7, American Express will introduce “The Centurion Lounge Elite Program from American Express.”  This is the only elite program that guarantees access to the American Express Centurion Lounges.  This program is designed to reward cardholders who frequently visit American Express Centurion Lounges with reserved tables, higher quality food, and dedicated high speed internet access.

reserved-table

New Elite Levels and Qualifications:

When you first become an AMEX Platinum cardholder, you start at Freeloader status.  To become a Silver elite member, you must complete 10 qualifying visits and charge $10,000 to the card over the cardmember year.  To become a Gold elite member, you must complete 50 qualifying visits and charge $50,000 to the card over the cardmember year.  Although the number of stays and spend seems high, visits and spend do roll over from year to year to help you reach next year’s elite status.

A qualifying visit consists of:

  1. Staying in the Centurion Lounge for a minimum of 60 minutes
  2. Consuming 1 beer, wine, or other alcoholic beverage
  3. Eating 1 plate of food and/or dessert
  4. Using the WiFi for a minimum of 20 minutes

Elite Level Challenges:

If you want to fast track from Freeloader status to Silver status, you need 2 qualifying visits in a rolling 30 day period.  If you want to go from Freeloader status to Gold status, you need 4 qualifying visits in a rolling 30 day period.  1 challenge is allowed per person, per lifetime, unless you successfully complete the challenge.  At that point, you will receive another challenge which can be used at any point in the future.  All scoring plays are automatically reviewed, so no challenge is necessary.

To request a challenge, please email idontwanttobeafreeloaderanymore@thecenturionloungeeliteprogramfromamericanexpress.com.

Freeloader “Benefits”:

Freeloaders are limited to 1 alcoholic beverage and 1 plate of food per visit and access to complimentary standing room only areas.  Your entire visit may not exceed 2 hours from door to door.  A maximum of 50 Freeloaders may enter the Centurion Lounge at any given time and a designated Freeloader waiting area will be clearly marked outside the lounge, near the entrance.

Silver Benefits:

Speed past the Centurion Lounge check in counter by flashing your Centurion Lounge Silver elite card (not to be confused with the silver AMEX Platinum card – nice try Freeloaders!).  You can reserve a table within 24 hours of arrival (subject to table availability) and when you sit down, your favorite alcoholic beverage will automatically be brought to your table (update your alcoholic beverage preferences online).  You also have unlimited access to the elite restroom and shower (please lock the door to keep the Freeloaders from “accidentally” wandering in).

Gold Benefits:

Speed past the Centurion Lounge check in counter by flashing your Centurion Lounge Gold elite card (not to be confused with the AMEX Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card – I got you again, Freeloaders!).  You can reserve a table within 48 hours of arrival (eligible for last table availability with no blackout tables).  Along with your complimentary alcoholic beverage and access to the elite restroom and shower, your personal chef will come to your table and make you anything you want (subject to kitchen ingredients and chef background).  While you enjoy your meal and alcoholic beverage, the in-house masseuse will give you a complimentary back massage.

Summary:

I am very pleased that American Express has decided to reward cardmembers who use their card often and not just for free access to the Centurion Lounges.  As a Gold elite member, I am looking forward to that personalized meal and relaxing massage.  Are you as excited about the new program as I am?  What feature do you think American Express should add to make the program even better?  If you have any questions, please leave a comment below.  Have a great weekend everyone!

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