American Shuttering Most Admirals Clubs On Thursday

American already closed 23 airport lounges including all Flagship lounges and many Admirals Clubs. The airline has been consolidating operations at airports to handle fewer flights, so major hubs still have at least one club.

That will no longer be the case come Thursday. They attribute this to a desire to avoid large gatherings. With load factors on remaining flights averaging in the 20s, and from most of the photos of airports I’ve seen, there haven’t been very many large gatherings in Admirals Clubs.

American will temporarily close most Admirals Club lounges, but will maintain front desk customer service at large U.S. airports and at London’s Heathrow Airport. These changes go into effect beginning Thursday, March 26.

Team members working at the locations below will be available to offer travel assistance. To reduce large gatherings, lounge services — including all food and beverage offerings, restrooms and shower facilities — will be temporarily suspended.

The clubs with ‘service desks’ will be:

Charlotte, North Carolina (CLT), Concourse C

Chicago (ORD), Concourse H/K

Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW), Terminals A, C and D

London Heathrow (LHR), Terminal 3

Los Angeles (LAX), Terminal 4

Miami (MIA), Gate D30

New York (JFK), Gate 12 (Flagship Lounge with temporary Admirals Club service)

New York (LGA), Concourse D

Philadelphia (PHL), Terminal B/C

Phoenix (PHX), Gate A7 and Gate A19

Washington (DCA), Terminal C

American Airlines Dallas Fort Worth Admirals Club A

Lounges at outstations which still had operating clubs will not even have service desks. That presumably means Atlanta; Austin; Boston; Denver; Houston; Nashville; Newark; Orange County; Orlando; Pittsburgh; Raleigh; St. Louis; Tampa; Mexico City; and Toronto.

It is not yet clear what will happen to club memberships when there aren’t clubs. American acknowledges they’re going to have to address this and also the annual fees being paid on premium Citi Executive cards which come with lounge membership.

However Sr. Vice President of Customer Experience Kurt Stache says they will ‘explore’ this “[a]s the travel mandates abate and the COVID-19 crisis subsides.” In the meantime I anticipate American will be losing membership renewals and Citi will shed some co-brand cardmembers. Quick action here would be helpful in retaining customers for a future where there are airport lounges again.

About Gary Leff

Gary Leff is one of the foremost experts in the field of miles, points, and frequent business travel - a topic he has covered since 2002. Co-founder of frequent flyer community, emcee of the Freddie Awards, and named one of the "World's Top Travel Experts" by Conde' Nast Traveler (2010-Present) Gary has been a guest on most major news media, profiled in several top print publications, and published broadly on the topic of consumer loyalty. More About Gary »

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  1. The most reasonable thing to do is extend everyone’s membership by the duration between the first closures and the date all clubs reopen with normal service. Unlike ticket refunds, I wouldn’t hold the club “suspensions” against them, nor demand a refund, but there ought to be consideration that a product for which I pay to access was unavailable for access.

  2. Forget the lounges! Who wants to fly right now?

    Still havent been able to contact them after a week about a flight that flew out last week. No return of DM’s, emails, and always disconnected when on the phone/told to call back by a machine voice. The only thing they have done in response is to post some pathetic twitter videos on how they are on top of it (when clearly the bailout and their crashing stock prices are the only things on their minds)

  3. Fully agree with Jon— extend Admirals Club memberships for the duration of time they’re closed, or risk pissing off customers, resulting in less revenue for AA.

  4. Extension does you no good if you have membership through a Citi card. That is going to require something else (likely a proration of the next annual fee, or a partial refund), and that will need to be worked out among AA and Citi.

  5. I have no issue re-upping, nor will most business clients. These are the best club in the US outside of the Flagship and Polaris. Like dozens of planes being grounded so too will the clubs.

  6. I just went through the process of closing my Citi Admirals Club card because of the lounge closures and my Annual Fee is now due. It took awhile just to process the request but the otherwise very nice agents were unaware of the closures and had nothing to offer in the way of extensions.

  7. The reasoning does not make any sense and begs another explanation. I do not see how the gatherings would be any larger in the lounge than in the gate area.

    During my travel since the coronavirus has started, I greatly appreciated being able to wait in the lounge, as opposed to having to wait in the terminal.

    I was about to call Citi tomorrow to cancel my card, but may now wait a little bit to see if they work out any arrangements.

    This bothers me even more in that it comes just as American is cutting the food service on its flights. Before, the food service cuts did not bother me (although the reasoning for cutting alcohol on some routes when they would serve other beverages on request did not make any sense except for being cost cutting) as I felt that I could get food in the lounge before the flight.

    One of my questions–how much of what is being done is really because of the virus versus cutting costs?

  8. Oh guflyer. If you took you head out of your arse for just one second and looked at what is happening around the world…

    “I greatly appreciate being able to wait in the lounge…” Have you any evidence that the lounge is any cleaner, or the passengers completely free of the virus? The food that’s being served has not been breathed all over by someone infected?

    “virus versus cutting costs” This is not the 2008 recession where some people stopped flying. I give it another week before air traffic is grounded in the US because cretins keep on travelling. I’d have thought that onboard food is fractions of a fraction of the cost of running an airline and, therefore, insignificant

  9. After news this morning of grants from the taxpayer purse that don’t have to be repaid to these clowns, I want a pro-rated credit from the first closures to the date all clubs re-open for service.

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