American Express Plans New Airport Lounges
American Express plans to open new airport lounges at LaGuardia and San Francisco airports. This is in addition to the Centurion lounges in operation at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport and McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas.
The new lounges may be the result of the company cancelling free access to American Airlines and US Airways lounges for Platinum cardholders in March 2014. American Express CFO Jeffrey Campbell remarked that the company will “experiment” with building its own airport lounges for the coming months.
Travel business at American Express took a hit in the final quarter of 2013, with US consumer travel sales dropping 5%. Travel commissions and fees dropped 2%, but global business travel sales managed to increase by 4%.
An investment firm led by Certares will be contributing up to $1 billion to the joint venture, while American Express provides the assets for American Express Global Business Travel.
Campbell estimates this plan to be completed in the second quarter of 2014.