I assembled this series of pages from publicly available information with no involvement from American Express.
The annual fee for either the American Express personal or the small business Platinum charge cards is $695.
The personal American Express Platinum charge card earns:
By default, Membership Rewards points are worth point six cents if you have them applied as a statement credit.
Point six cents, as in a little more than half a cent.
Their value will be greater if you use them on American Express Travel or possibly greater still if you transfer them from American Express to another travel company such as an airline or a hotel.
If your priority is cash back, there are many credit cards with no annual fee that have greater rewards for purchases that fit in the "everything else" bucket.
If having a personal or small business American Express Platinium charge card makes sense for you, it will likely be based on perks and credits.
The perk that this page will focus on is the Global Lounge Collection.
The Global Lounge Collection is American Express terminology for the superset of airport lounge access provided by the American Express Platinum charge card and the Centurion charge card.
The small business and personal versions of Platinum charge card and the Centurion charge card include airport lounge access.
Airport lounge access is a significant part of the value of the American Express Platinum charge cards.
If you do not spend time in airports, you may find it difficult to justify the annual fee for a Platinum charge card.
If your American Express card was issued outside the United States, how American Express defines the Global Lounge Collection may or may not be different.
This page will focus on how the Global Lounge Collection is defined for Platinum and Centurion cards issued by American Express in the United States.
Types of airport lounge access:
For many people, the link below will be the most important part of this page and everything else will be fluff.
The link below will open a page on the American Express website where you can search for lounge access for a given airport.
In the specific case below I have made the text displayed and the link that you will be directed to the same text.
In real life that will not always be the case.
The menu items and buttons displayed on my site and other sites display descriptive text intended to be easily read.
On many sites you may also come across nefarious links where benign looking text takes you to a nefarious site.
The text displayed could even be a link to a reputable site, but clicking on that link could take you to a completely unrelated site.
The link below worked in November of 2022 when I tested it.
American Express may or may not change it in the future.
I do not speak on behalf of American Express.
Please search the American Express website for the term Global Lounge Collection to see the specific terms for each kind of access.
American Express does not intend for airport lounge access to function as a meal plan for people working in airports.
At a very bare minimum you will need something that shows that you will be flying and evidence of either your American Express charge card or Priority Pass card as applicable.
A given brand of airport lounges might potentially allow entry for arrivals, departures, or either arrivals or departures.
Even for a native English speaker, the terms Arrivals and Departures may be ambiguous, so I will define them below.
While Centurion Lounges contains the word "Centurion", "Centurion Lounges" are available to both Platinum charge card holders and Centurion charge card holders.
Well at least potentially available to Platinum charge card holders.
As with any other airport lounge, you may be denied access to a Centurion Lounge because it is full.
American Express Centurion Lounges are for departures, within 3 hours of your flights departure time.
In addition to departures, you also potentially have access to Centurion Lounges if you have a layover.
For example, you are travelling from City A to City C, but you have a layover in City B.
If City B has Centurion Lounge then if space allows you would have access to it.
I do not believe that the rule regarding entry is only allow 3 hours before your flight's departure would apply to the Centurion Lounge in City B.
Escape Lounges is a group of airport lounges in the United Kingdom and the United States.
In the United States, Escape Lounges has added The Centurion® Studio Partner to its branding.
Despite the new branding, there is also the option to pay at the door in the United States.
If an Escape Lounge is near capacity, I am not sure whether any method of access would have priority.
The policies for accessing an Escape Lounge in the United Kingdom is different from the policies in the United States.
For example, Priority Pass is accepted in the United Kingdom but not the United States.
Plaza Premium Lounges is group of airport lounges.
Plaza Premium Lounges has a fairly significant global footprint.
Too many locations for me to quickly summarize on a page not dedicated to that particular group.
Viewing the Plaza Premium Lounge website, the group has at least one location on every continent on which people routinely spend their lives.
Whether access is valuable to you depends on whether the group has locations in the airports and terminals that you routinely use.
On the American Express website under Global Lounge Collection, Air Space Lounges are referenced along with the other brands listed on this web page.
Correctly or incorrectly, my best guess is that Air Space Lounges have been rebranded as Aspire Lounges and the American Express website has not been updated yet.
The Global Lounge Collection includes airlines access for many Lufthansa lounges.
Many Lufthansa lounges are available directly with a personal or small business Platinum charge card.
For access directly with a Platinum charge card you will need a departing boarding pass on a Lufthansa Group airline.
Some Lufthansa lounges are accessible through Priority Pass.
Access through Priority Pass may have blackout times.
For access through Priority Pass you will need a departing boarding pass but not necessarily with a Lufthansa Group airline.
The first seven types of lounge access in the bullet listed under Global Lounge Collection are direct benefits of having a Platinum charge card or a Centurion charge card.
For those first seven, a cardholder has a Platinum charge card or Centurion charge card and American Express negotiates access with an airport lounge provider.
Priority Pass is different.
Priority Pass is a third-party company through which American Express bundles a membership with some of its cards.
You will need to request a Priority Pass membership.
Your Priority Pass membership card or Priority Pass app on your phone is what will grant access not your Platinum card.
The American Express Platinum and Centurion cards include Priority Pass memberships among those cards airport lounge options.
The following American Express issued personal and small business cards also come with a Priority Pass membership but no other parts of the American Express Global Lounge Collection:
Several years back when the American Express Platinum cards alone had a very substantial number of the total Priority Pass memberships, Priority Pass got holders into many more U.S. airport lounges than the program does today.
Between airline mergers and the greater number of Priority Pass members, many U.S. airport lounges either do not provide access to Priority Pass members or restrict access to certain hours.
To mitigate the impact of lessened access, Priority Pass has contracted with specific restaurants in many airports to provide a credit on Priority Pass member's bills.
In the United States, Priority Pass memberships issued as a benefit of American Express card memberships do NOT participate in the airport restaurant credit program.
You can still pay for a meal at an airport restaurant with an American Express card if that restaurant accepts American Express cards.
As to the policy of American Express cards issued outside the United States, that will have to be someone else's blog.
American Express offers a range of Delta Airlines co-branded personal and small business cards.
Within that range are the personal and small business American Express Delta co-branded Platinum credit cards.
Be careful not to confuse the American Express Platinum charge cards with the American Express Delta co-branded Platinum credit cards.
The above statement is not intended to imply that any of the Delta co-branded credit cards are better or worse than the Platinum charge cards.
They are merely different.
Below I will touch on the Delta SkyClub access that the co-branded Delta cards offer.
The American Express Delta co-branded credit cards have other features that I am not going to go over on this page.