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Which American Express cards will get you into airport lounges?

American Express is well known for its full selection of excellent travel rewards credit cards. Depending on the card you choose, you can enjoy great perks including generous welcome bonus offers, multiplied points for booking flights, hotels, and car rentals, and even companion vouchers so that you can book a travel partner to fly for free. But if you’re a fan of the finer things, then you’re probably also wondering which American Express cards provide complimentary access to its more than 1400 airport lounges located at 500 airports worldwide.

Fortunately, you have quite a few credit card options from American Express, and each comes with its own array of additional perks and price points.

If you’re interested in learning more about how you can book your travel partner for a free flight, jump to our article about the American Express companion ticket program. Otherwise, read on and find out which American Express cards can open the door to the American Express Global Lounge Collection.

What are the benefits of airport lounge access?

Airport lounges offer travelers a quiet comfortable place to work, relax, or meet up before flying. Many airport lounges feature complimentary coffee and cocktails, healthy food options prepared by executive chefs, and secure Wi-Fi and charging station access. Some of the top airport lounges–like the Centurion Lounge–may even offer access to wine tasting rooms, private family rooms, and spa services in select locations.

In short, when you access AmEx Centurion Lounges, Escape Lounges, and Priority Pass Lounges, you are stepping away from the often crowded and chaotic energy of the airport concourse and into a more calming and curated space. Get yourself in the right mindset to travel, whether you’re flying for work, pleasure, or a bit of both.

The Best American Express Credit Cards for Getting Into Airport Lounges

The American Express Global Lounge Collection is actually an array of unique lounge experiences under several highly regarded luxury brands including Centurion Lounges, Escape Lounges, Plaza Premium Lounges, Delta SkyClub Lounges, and Priority Pass Lounges. With more than 1400 locations across 500 airports in more than 140 countries, the American Express Global Lounge Collection offers travelers the opportunity for enhanced airport experiences all over the world.

But of course, with so many different brands under the Global Lounge Collection umbrella, lounge access as well as access benefits can vary from one card to another. Below are a few popular AmEx travel cards that are noted for the access they provide to airport lounges.

The Platinum Card® from American Express

The Platinum Card is generally tops among American Express options for travel rewards. This is no different when it comes to global lounge access. This premium card is a pretty powerful pass into the world of airport lounges, providing entryway into the renowned Centurion Lounge, the members-only Priority Pass Select Lounge and, when flying on Delta Airlines, access to the Delta Sky Club. Though the Platinum Card comes with the highest annual fee among American Express cards, it also offers among the most generous rewards packages to cardholders. Its universal airport lounge access ranks high among these perks.

  • Annual Fee: $695
  • Additional Travel Benefits:
    • 5X Membership Rewards® Points on up to $500,000 per calendar year on flights booked directly with airlines or through American Express Travel via or by calling 1-800-525-3355.
    • 5X Membership Rewards® Points on eligible prepaid hotels booked at, including The Hotel Collection.
    • 1X Membership Rewards® Points for all other eligible purchases made using your Platinum Card.
    • Annual statement credits including $200 hotel statement credit, $200 Uber Cash credit, $200 Airline Fee Credit, and $189 CLEAR Plus Credit for faster security clearance when traveling through the airport.
    • No foreign transaction fee when spending abroad.
    • Access to the AmEx Fine Hotels + Resorts and The Hotel Collection suite of benefits including daily breakfast for two, complimentary coffee and free Wi-Fi access.
    • Global Dining Access by Resy where you have preferred access to sought-after restaurant reservations and exclusive tables across the globe when you book using your American Express Platinum Card on the Resy app.
    • Premium Car Rental Status, which means you’ll be eligible for special upgrades, exclusive discounts and priority service as an automatic member of the Avis Preferred®, Hertz Presidents circle, and National Car Rental® Emerald Club.

Learn More.

The Business Platinum Card® from American Express

Sporting the same high annual fee as the Platinum Card, as well as its penchant for generous membership rewards, the business class version of the Platinum Card also offers the same universal lounge access. Business travelers gain full access to the AmEx Global Lounge Collection, including Centurion Lounges, Priority Pass Select membership, and Delta Sky Club access.

  • Annual Fee: $695
  • Additional Travel Benefits:
    • 5X Membership Rewards Points for booking flights and prepaid hotels using the website.
    • $200 Airline Fee statement credit per year for travel through any qualifying airline.
    • $189 CLEAR® Plus Credit, providing faster movement through security at select airports nationwide for cardholders.
    • An average total of $600 in annual travel perks through the AmEx Fine Hotels + Resorts program including daily breakfast for two, 4pm check-out, and more.

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Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card

The Hilton Honors card is not explicitly a lounge access card like the Platinum Card, which means you won’t get universal lounge access. However, along with the extensive lodging, dining and spending benefits of the Hilton Honors Card, cardholders do receive complimentary membership in the Priority Pass Select lounge club. In addition to this membership, your Hilton Honors card will provide an array of benefits both for using your card while booking Hilton hotels and resorts, and for making purchases on your card during your stay. It does bear noting that this card comes with a comparatively higher annual fee, so it really is only a recommended option for those who intend to make full use of its benefits. This is a card best suited to those who plan to pursue high end travel experiences.

  • Annual Fee: $550
  • Travel Benefits:
    • 180,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points after you spend $6,000 in purchases on the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card in the first 6 months of Card Membership.
    • Earn 14x Hilton Honors Bonus Points per $1 of eligible purchases on your Card made directly with hotels and resorts within the Hilton portfolio.
    • 7x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for eligible purchases on flights booked directly with airlines or as well as on car rentals booked directly from select car rental companies
    • 7x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for any spending at U.S. restaurants.
    • 3x Hilton Honors Bonus Points for all other eligible purchases made on your Hilton Honors Card.

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Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card

While the Delta SkyMiles Card won’t provide the same universal lounge access as the Platinum Card, it does combine an array of booking discounts, bonus miles, and flight perks with access to any of 50 Delta Sky Club lounges around the world when traveling on Delta flights. This makes it a great option for lounge access among business travelers who fly regularly on Delta Airlines.

  • Annual Fee: $550
  • Travel Rewards:
    • Earn 70,000 Bonus Miles after you spend $5,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
    • Earn 3x miles on purchases made directly through Delta Airlines.
    • 1.5x miles after you spend $150,000 on your Card in a calendar year per dollar (that’s an extra half mile per dollar) on eligible purchases the rest of the year.
    • 1x miles for every eligible dollar you spend on purchases.
    • 15% off when using Delta SkyMiles to book Award Travel through or the Delta mobile app.
    • First checked bag free on Delta flights for the cardholder and up to eight companions.
    • Companion Certificate upon annual renewal so that a travel partner can book for free, with nominal taxes and fees.

Learn More.

It is important to note that credit card benefits and perks may vary based on promotional offers and other terms, conditions and limitations. As noted above, American Express maintains affiliation with several lounge collections including the Delta Sky Club lounge, the Centurion Lounge, and the Priority Pass Lounge.

Access to these different lounge collections will vary from one card to another. Likewise, access to lounges may be limited by other factors including their availability in certain locations, their capacity for guests, and any limitations specific to the terms of your credit card.

In other words, be sure to read the fine print in your travel rewards package before assuming that you have access to a lounge at the airport you’re planning to visit. It may be worthwhile to reach out to customer support at the lounge in question to confirm your complimentary access. You can also review the rules of access for each AmEx rewards credit card at the American Express website before arriving at the airport.


For a look at some of the other amazing travel perks available through American Express, check out our look at the very best American Express cards for maximizing your travel rewards.