American Express Platinum cuts American Airlines Admirals Club benefit

Earlier last week I received the following email from American Express, letting me know that access to the American Airlines Admirals Club would be discontinued as a card benefit:

We are writing to give you advance notice of changes to your travel benefits and remind you about other valuable features of your Platinum Card.

As of March 22, 2014, Platinum Card Members will no longer receive complimentary access to American Airlines® Admirals Club lounges and US Airways® Club locations.

While I appreciate getting advanced notice, this is a bummer and a major devaluation of this credit card for business travelers who fly primarily American (or fly through locations with US Airways clubs). It’s not surprising though, as Citibank is likely trying to strengthen its American Airlines credit card offerings, and forcing American Airlines to cut ties with other banks. Look for a premium Citibank credit card offering complimentary American Airlines lounge access some time next year.

The folks on FlyerTalk say that many American Express Platinum Card Members are receiving offers for additional airline fee reimbursements in 2014, in order to compensate for the loss of this benefit. I would expect that these offers are coming out to those members who spend the most on their cards. If you have an American Express Platinum Card, it might be worthwhile to check your spam folder a few times over the next few months.

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