Dear American Express,
I’ve been a cardholder for 12 years and a Platinum cardholder for six. I am a strong advocate for American Express and have helped dozens of friends and family members also sign up.
Last week you announced some changes to the American Express Platinum card. In exchange for raising the annual fee from $450 to $550, you added a couple benefits like $15/month in Uber credit and the ability to bring in two guests when using Priorty Pass. While I would have preferred the status quo, the changes were acceptable.
Today, View from the Wing broke news that your network of Centurion Lounges would begin to limit guests to two per primary cardholder on March 30, 2017. Currently, you allow either two guests or the immediate family of a cardmember. Put another way, you don’t charge for children or parents accompanying the cardmember.
It is my understanding that under the new access policy if I wished to bring in my spouse and two children, I would have to pay $50 for one of the children. I can tell you, as nice as I find your Centurion Lounges, I would never fork over $50 for a visit. That seems excessive for a child.
You have built these great playrooms in your Centurion Lounges–
But they are going to remain empty if you think you can charge exorbitant entrance fees to larger families .
I ask you to reconsider your guest access policy in the following way: count all children (up to age 18) in a family as a single guest. Absent that policy modification, your apparent disdain for traveling families will result in the cancellation of my card. I know I am just one person, but I guarantee you others share my sentiment.
If crowding is what you are worried about, simply stop selling access to non-Centurion or AMEX cardholders. If the issue is revenue, don’t label it a crowding issue.
Thank you for your consideration,