American announced an update of their Admirals Club and Flagship Lounge access policies for passengers traveling in First or Business Class on transcontinental flights. Here’s a look at the new rules:
Traveling on a Non-Stop Transcontinental Flight?
Beginning September 1, 2012, access to the Admirals Club and Flagship Lounge will change for customers traveling on an American Airlines non-stop transcontinental flight.
If you are traveling in the First or Business class cabin in one of the following non-stop markets, we welcome you to visit the lounge as indicated below.
For many (if not most) of American’s premium class non-stop, cross country passengers this is good news: these simplified policies are much easier to understand.
Compare these new rules to the policies that they replace:
Transcontinental Premium Class
Transcontinental flights are American Airlines marketed and operated non-stop flights between the following cities:
Boston / Los Angeles
New York (JFK) / San Diego
Los Angeles / Miami
New York (JFK)/ San Francisco
Miami / San Francisco
New York (JFK)/ Seattle
Newark / Los Angeles
Washington Dulles / Los Angeles
New York (JFK) / Los Angeles
Washington Reagan / Los Angeles (effective June 14, 2012)
Passengers eligible for access must provide their government-issued ID and a ticket or boarding pass valid for departure on the same-day.
Full-Fare First Class traveling on nonstop, three-class transcontinental flight (booked in F or Z inventory)
Full-Fare First-Class traveling nonstop on two-class transcontinental flight (booked in F or Z inventory)
Business Class traveling on nonstop, three-class transcontinental flight (booked in J or U inventory)
Passengers who have upgraded to First Class do not have complimentary access to the Admirals Club lounge or Flagship Lounge facilities, where available. Passengers booked in F or Z inventory on U.S. non-stop transcontinental flights are invited to use either the Flagship Lounge facilities, where available, or the Admirals Club lounge.
Big difference. The old polices were just way more complicated than they needed to be.
Of course for passengers traveling on transcontinental flights to/from Newark, D.C., Seattle, San Diego, Boston , the news isn’t so good.
I’m not sure why American decided to exclude those people, but my guess is that either the clubs in those markets are too small to accommodate all those passengers, or that financially it was the sensible thing to do. Actually, it’s probably very likely that it was for a combination of both reasons.
I’m a little surprised though that premium class passengers traveling between DCA and LAX will no longer have Admirals Club access. American just started non-stop service between the two cities in June, and I would have guessed that given the prominence (and influence) of many of the people on that route, that American would have included them in the updated policies. But maybe it’s not that much of an issue…
Here’s a link to the new access policies.
So what do you think? Are you impacted? Share your thoughts in the comments section and have a great weekend!