ConciergeKey is American’s revenue-based top level, given to very high revenue customers and those who influence significant business for the airline.
It’s the ‘super secret’ level that George Clooney had in Up in the Air. The program began mostly for corporate travel buyers and folks in their old VIP program back in 2007, and gradually expanded to individual high revenue customers.
ConciergeKey customers get priority for upgrades and other waitlists, use of Flagship check-in, can confirm upgrades using miles without a cash co-pay, and have myriad other benefits including use of the airline’s business class Flagship lounges when flying domestically. Over the summer they even got Flagship Dining invitations.
On tight connections ConciergeKey members may be met on the jetway of their arriving flight and driven on the tarmac to their onward gate in a Cadillac (United uses Mercedes and Delta Porsche).
You cannot qualify for ConciergeKey with a specific amount of flying or a published amount of spending, however in the recent past $50,000 in a year has frequently been enough (or buying a $50,000 ‘AAirpass’). Sometimes the amounts have been lower. ConciergeKey is also given out to decision-makers of big corporate contracts. Before the US Airways merger there were between 10,000 and 15,000 ConciergeKey members.
JT Genter recently wrote that the criteria for the status was getting more restrictive, because one member was being told his $50,000 spend so far this year was insufficient to get renewed.
- We don’t actually know enough about the case, for instance how much of that spending was on partners.
- We do know that American is increasingly requiring more to earn status. I still expect that they’ll match United’s increase in qualifying dollars spent for status for instance and they’ve made earning qualifying dollars through credit card spend less useful too — supporting the general trend though these don’t affect ConciergeKey directly.
What was reported though in the member e-mail JT wrote about was a ConciergeKey challenge: spend $14,000 on American flights (no codeshares or partner flights) flown between November 12 and January 25 to re-up the status.
In fact this looks similar to the ConciergeKey fast track offer which was available to targeted members this past summer. The offer was targeted at AAdvantage members who would not otherwise have achieved the status.
There were four spend levels for American Airlines flights that had to be met during a 90 day period. Different members received different amounts, $10,000; $12,000; $14,000 EQDs; $16,000. It’s notable that the annualized ranges here run from $40,000 to $64,000.
After successfully completing the promotion, updated status was promised within 10 business days with member kits following in 4-6 weeks… which seems insane to me. ConciergeKey recognition should happen immediately. That said, even within ConciergeKey some members are more important to American than others.