Nothing to Admire about the Admirals ClubBack to Forum
Anonymous30 Oct 2014
I am about to complete my return journey with American Airlines from Miami to LHR this evening. My outgoing flight LHR MIA a few days ago was perfectly fine and the new 777 on that route was great in terms of seating and onboard service.
I am quite disappointed though with the so called Admirals Club. I was in the US last month traveling between Chicago and Kansas City in First Class and was told that I do not have access to the lounge. Admirals Club is only for “members” and those traveling on International Business/First. When I heard this, I thought to myself this place must be something real special reserving it for only a handful of people.
This evening, I was really interested to see what the fuss and exclusivity is all about. Upon entering the one in MIA, I was surprised that there were 3 customer service agents all diligently waiting near the entrance of the lounge to check anyone that came in. It gave me a feeling that I was entering a heavy security area or a posh private club. Once my boarding pass was checked and I was “allowed” to enter, I was given a voucher for complimentary Premium Wine, Beer, Liquor or Bottled Water.
American Airlines, are you serious? First of all I don’t drink alcohol but that’s not really the point. You operate a lounge and have the courage to call it Admirals and you are giving your premium customers and so called members “vouchers for a bottle of water.” I need to explain to people who have not been here before that there are no beverages except tea/coffee, and probably some tap water with a few lemon slices in it.
To my further disappointment, I went inside and there was literally a table top about 2 meters in length with mixed nuts, stale chocolate chip cookies, and a selection of apples and oranges.
And then we go back and wonder why Gulf/Asian carriers are eating away as competition. I am not even going to compare the not so Admirals Club to Emirates, Qatar, or Etihad because that would just be pointless. Even the Saudi Airlines Lounge in Jeddah or Egypt Air Lounge in Cairo is world class compared to this (and that’s not saying much). What a sad name for a lounge.
A piece of advice American, don’t market your lounge as an exclusive must go to place if you are not able to ensure that what you are trying to promote matches the actual experience.30 Oct 2014
Welcome to the USA. Most airport lounges operate the same way and are generally crap.
Oh in MIA and other ports where there are flights to the Carribean and South America, being in first or business doesn’t get you access either, it is just like domestic.
As for your advice I don’t think American or other American airlines in gerneral are all that concerned to be honest. Their target market is primarily Americans, where this kind of lounge is the norm.30 Oct 2014
I will concur with the fact that the Admirals Club leaves a bit to be desired. However, I think the term “Club” is different from “Lounge”. I am not a native English speaker, but I would see the term “Club” require some sort of membership. If we look at American Airlines offer they have:
Admirals Club – predominantly accessed via an annual, paid membership
The Flagship Lounge – predominantly accessed travel in International First Class
The US carriers have different perks/benefits for their travelers. The most important being unlimited upgrades domestically. Simply, it looks like American travelers are okey with their perks, and they wonder how we can put up with the Euro-style seating in Business class and no free upgrades…30 Oct 2014