On March 22, 2014, American Express Platinum/Centurion cardmembers lost access to American Airlines Admirals Clubs. It sure seems like the change was prompted by Citi as opposed to American. American was getting revenue from American Express when members used their Admirals Club, so they had no reason to terminate the relationship.
However, Citi’s premium co-branded Executive AAdvantage Card didn’t seem to be gaining much traction, so my guess is that Citi strong-armed American into making the policy change so that they would be the only co-branded card that gets you into Admirals Clubs.
And they sure have been doing a heck of a job acquiring new customers, given that they’ve been running a 100,000 AAdvantage mile sign-up bonus on the card for several months now.
Anyway, for the month of April, Citi will be giving American Express Platinum cardmembers one day Admirals Club passes at the door:
Travelers with a credit card that previously enabled access to the Admirals Club lounge can bring that credit card to any Admirals Club lounge or US Airways Club in the domestic U.S. beginning now through April 30, 2014 and they will receive complimentary One-Day Passes from a Citi Ambassador at the lounge entrances, courtesy of Citi. During the first week of the program, Citi Ambassadors will initially be in clubs Monday through Friday between the hours of 9 am – 5 pm. Citi Ambassadors will soon expand to extended evening and weekend hours at select clubs throughout the remainder of the month. To receive complimentary One-Day Passes, travelers must meet with the Citi ambassador and show their credit card that previously enabled access to the Lounge. For details about this limited time complimentary access promotion, visit citi.com/opendoors.
Absolutely brilliant and classy on their part. Over the past few weeks I’ve seen a countless number of angry American Express Platinum cardmembers turned away from Admirals Clubs, so this is a great way for Citi to familiarize them with the new card.
American Admirals Club
(Tip of the hat to Gary)