American Airlines is in the process of reopening their Flagship First Class lounges and part of the modifications the underwent is that you can now buy Flagship Lounge access for $150.
So far only the New York JFK lounge has been re-opened with Miami following in two weeks time while the remaining ones in Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles and London will remain closed for now.
American has closed down their Flagship Lounge network due to rather limited international travel and directed eligible customers to the Admirals Club instead.
Some locations like Los Angeles have taken over the Flagship Lounge space but without any of the amenities being offered. I visited there in early August and it was shambolic.
This is of course only for the time they use this area for regular guests who’d otherwise go to the Admirals Club but it was still somewhat unworthy of a premium experience.
These are their usual amenities when all is operational:
This looks all very nice on glossy pictures but the reality isn’t quite as glamorous. I’ve visited my fair chair of Flagship Lounges in recent years and while I liked them, none of them really appeared like luxury to me let alone worthy of paying $150 per visit (I have free access through oneWorld Emerald).
Here is the new description for their Single Visit Guest Pass:
Get access when traveling the same day on any flight marketed or operated by American or a oneworld® airline (regardless of cabin).
Where you can go
- Flagship® Lounge locations (based on lounge capacity).
- Available for $150 per person and may be purchased at open Flagship® Lounge locations. Must be at least 21 to purchase.
- A Single Visit Pass is valid for same-day, one-time use at the Flagship® Lounge in which it was purchased.
- Government-issued photo ID
- Single Visit Pass
- A boarding pass for same-day travel on an eligible flight. An ‘eligible flight’ includes any departing or arriving flight that is marketed or operated by American or marketed and operated by any oneworld® airline. Same-day priority verification cards will be accepted.
These passes have to purchased at the day of travel directly at the lounge according to the conditions of this new feature.
Is it worthwhile buying? Only the traveler can decide that. Day passes are targeted towards customers who don’t ordinarily have lounge access based on their ticket or frequent flyer status.
$150 for a visit to the flagship lounge while probably flying in Economy Class… not sure I would recommend anyone doing that. I myself certainly wouldn’t pay for it. Not for American.
A while back Lufthansa offered First Class Lounge access for 149 Euro in Frankfurt and Munich (the offer has since disappeared):
I would maybe consider the Lufthansa offer if I had sufficient time as I consider it much better value and quality compared to the Flagship Lounge but hey, different strokes for different folks.
Remember: A day pass to American’s regular Admirals Club already costs $59/pax.
Passengers must also be on a qualifying flight and a full-revenue ticket in order to be able to purchase an entry for themselves.
You can now buy First Class Flagship Lounge access for $150 per one time visit and these admissions can be purchased directly at the entrance of the club.
This might be an opportunity for people with airline credit on their credit cards and no status to redeem said credits by purchasing a day pass. Remember to set your preference to American Airlines before the purchase where required.