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AA Concierge Key / ConciergeKey / CK members lounge (master thread)

Old Dec 18, 2015, 12:53 pm
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American Airlines ConciergeKeySM / "CK" Program (by invitation only)
(Includes Executive Platinum status and Admirals Club membership)


NOTE: For questions such as "How can I get Concierge Key?" or "This is my spend: will I get CK?" Please refer to the How do I make / making AA Concierge Key / ConciergeKey / CK?thread

Also see AA Concierge Key invitations / renewal for 2019 status (out early 12/2018).


13 Apr 2020: AAdvantage extends CK status is extended automatically until Jan 31, 2022.

"The ConciergeKey Program is an exclusive program that American Airlines has for our very top customers. This is by invitation only and a very exclusive club." (Billy Sanez for AA)

ConciergeKey Services are provided to a select group of VIPs to facilitate travel on AA. The program is offered on an invitation basis only and is targeted at customers who control travel policy for large organizations. Customers who generate a high amount of revenue for AA may also be invited into this program (possibly those who spend upwards of US$60k a year on travel with AA).

Services provided include airport escorts and pre-boarding (seems variable, more likely during OSO?); assistance with flight changes, seat changes, and upgrade requests via their own dedicated telephone line. In addition, there is the ability to communicate directly with ConciergeKey associates via a dedicated email address. ConciergeKeySM representatives will also monitor day of travel of ConciergeKey members and will proactively reroute or rebook travel when necessary. ConciergeKey status allows check-in at First Class counters, as well as access to elite lines through security at certain airports. Miles and copay upgrades with copay waived.

ConciergeKey is now a distinct elite tier, above Executive Platinum. ConciergeKey benefits include membership to the Admirals Club, international miles upgrades with copayment waived, as well as two additional System-Wide Upgrades (SWU's) as part of CK membership.

CK members have access to Flagship Check-in on any flight, and CK will have Flagship Lounge access when flying a OneWorld airline.

As of 1 Jan 2017, Concierge Key members have upgrade requests prioritized over all other tiers: CK members have an upgrade window of (up to) 120 hours (Executive Platinum member's will retain the 100 hour upgrade window). CK members will board ahead of other passengers.

Regarding Concierge Key tier benefits coming in 2017, please see: New Concierge Key Benefits for 2017: New CK Elite Status Tier

Please: do respect members' privacy by refraining from asking for overly personal information and details relating to ConciergeKey membership or nomination. If your question receives no response, consider the member chooses not to reply, as is his/her right.

Boarding Area's AAdvantageGeek's blog shows the card and documents here.

Previous threads:
ConciergeKey AA Premium Service (ARCHIVED)
ARCHIVED: AA Concierge Key / ConciergeKey / CK (2014 consolidated)

Updated 18 Aug 2019 by ikwia to reflect CK being a distinct elite tier and to clarify the FL access requirement
Updated 25 Jul 2017 by JDiver
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AA Concierge Key / ConciergeKey / CK members lounge (master thread)

Old Aug 7, 2023, 1:11 pm
  #2521  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Programs: AA CK, UA 1K, Hilton Diamond, Marriot Plat, Hyatt Globalist
Posts: 285
Agree with above and congrats on the CK. Remember too that 5 Star gets priority to CK as well so that may make a difference. I have veered away to see if I should change but I think I will try to keep my CK. I will try to call ahead and ask for a meet and greet. I have had car transfer at LAX to the Nest most of the times or an agent meet me at Bradley to expedite my getting on. I appreciate the FL with any fare or itinerary. I appreciate the transfer at LHR. REALLY appreciate that!! And now being able to access the Concord Room and Chelsea at JFK. I guess it depends on where you fly the most and which services you want. ALWAYS preorder your meal so you don't have the issues with a dwindling supply. Also, maybe you haven't experienced it yet but the proactive rebooking has saved me many times over the past year. Getting a call and backing me up on another flight has been invaluable. All airlines have their ups and downs. 1K with UA hasn't gotten me much but don't know about GS as mentioned above. You have the rest of this year to figure it out, right? Share your thoughts.
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 1:22 pm
  #2522  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: DFW
Programs: AA ConciergeKey, Marriott Ambassador Elite
Posts: 406
Originally Posted by astebel
Agree with above and congrats on the CK. Remember too that 5 Star gets priority to CK as well so that may make a difference. I have veered away to see if I should change but I think I will try to keep my CK. I will try to call ahead and ask for a meet and greet. I have had car transfer at LAX to the Nest most of the times or an agent meet me at Bradley to expedite my getting on. I appreciate the FL with any fare or itinerary. I appreciate the transfer at LHR. REALLY appreciate that!! And now being able to access the Concord Room and Chelsea at JFK. I guess it depends on where you fly the most and which services you want. ALWAYS preorder your meal so you don't have the issues with a dwindling supply. Also, maybe you haven't experienced it yet but the proactive rebooking has saved me many times over the past year. Getting a call and backing me up on another flight has been invaluable. All airlines have their ups and downs. 1K with UA hasn't gotten me much but don't know about GS as mentioned above. You have the rest of this year to figure it out, right? Share your thoughts.
The Five Star point is interesting. I've been on two flights in the last 12 months (1 LAX, 1 DFW) where there was a Five Star customer. The same premium services representative called me forward to board with them, but this sounds different from other folks' experiences. I was pleasantly surprised though.

The IRROPS is the best attribute of CK hands down IMO. once again it saved me last week on a return from RNO that was delayed 5 hours. Put me in First on another flight (with an additional backup option in First) that saved me hours and hours.
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 1:50 pm
  #2523  
 
Join Date: Oct 2022
Location: GSP
Programs: AA EXP
Posts: 242
I am EP, but I would expect if I ever met the threshold for CK (don't think I will), doable and reasonable/minimal cost and effor things that AA could do for me and all CK's would be:
1) First choice on meal ordering after the pax who have pre-ordered - pre-orders should be reserved. Likewise first served for PDB, in-flight beverages, and meals given only 1 Woodford Reserve (or drink of choice) may be stocked on a given flight. This especially matters given CK are usually high volume fliers and during IROPS may have to be bumped to new flights. On that new flight after the frustration of IROPS and flight changes, if a meal is served I would hope the CK would have first dibs. It would mean a lot to me if I were in the CK's shoes in that setting.
2) Preboard prior to disabled/military boarding, in their own group. The FA's and pilots should know that this is the first group of people (or first person) to get on and that they as CK should be greeted and treated appropriately. This would be a good time to facilitate taking orders per #1 above, or while the disabled or military are boarding; as not often more than a very small handful of CK on a flight I would think this would not be a major hindrance to getting the cabin doors shut so the FA's can be on paid time.
3) Thank you cards to be given to CK when boarding or seated (handwritten preferred for CK from captain/crew, though this would admittedly take more time and effort; generic non-hand written could be given to CK and possibly EP on every flight regardless).
4) Acknowledgement all the way through the process. As an EXP (albeit a low volume flier) since October 2022 I recall the one time that a gate agent thanked me personally by name for being EP and for my business and the times on two separate flights FA's thanked me for being an EP by name, including one who struck up a conversation with me selectively during the flight and just made my experience more pleasant. Those small interactions were memorable and meaningful to me among the hordes of other pax who were less than EP. I would not expect the aforementioned for every EP necessarily since there are sometimes 20 on a given flight, but at least for CK, the ticketing agents, GA's, FA's should say thanks for your business and acknowledge you by name, even if a thank you card is not handed out.
5) Chocolates or a small token of value was mentioned earlier; this would be one thing that might cost a bit more for the airline, but that expense would be minimal.
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 2:24 pm
  #2524  
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: AUS
Programs: BAEC Gold, AA PPro, Hyatt Globalist, Amex Plat
Posts: 7,172
Originally Posted by Rossodio
<snip>
3) Thank you cards to be given to CK when boarding or seated (handwritten preferred for CK from captain/crew, though this would admittedly take more time and effort; generic non-hand written could be given to CK and possibly EP on every flight regardless).
It is always fascinating to see what motivates certain personalities. Were I too become CK (also unlikely), I can safely say that "handwritten cards" from the captain/crew literally would not fall into the top 50 things I'd care about...

Regards
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 2:35 pm
  #2525  
formerly wchinchen
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Honolulu
Programs: AA CK, UA 1K, Hyatt Globalist
Posts: 1,496
I really do wish they allow CKs to purchase flagship first dinning passes for domestic flights. I see it as LP choices, which is a plus, but why not have AA make some extra money off of CKs.
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 2:37 pm
  #2526  
 
Join Date: Oct 2022
Location: GSP
Programs: AA EXP
Posts: 242
Originally Posted by scubadu
It is always fascinating to see what motivates certain personalities. Were I too become CK (also unlikely), I can safely say that "handwritten cards" from the captain/crew literally would not fall into the top 50 things I'd care about...

Regards
Fair point - why I mentioned at the least a generic card or something like that as a much lower effort offering. For someone like me, this kind of attention would certainly not affect my loyalty to the airline, though I would still remember it and others on the flight who see it or who are on my reservation who see it with the personality you are describing might be more inclined to use AA in the future. I don't understand that type of personality myself, but if it is a near-zero cost/effort thing for the company - the generic cards at least for CK - that has even a slight chance of increasing someone's loyalty, even if someone seated across from the CK who doesn't know them and who is grumbling about their GS status not getting that kind of attention - it should be a no brainer for the airline.

Consistently excellent and personalized help with IROPS and tight connections I would expect would be tops on the list followed by priority for upgrades, meals/drinks as mentioned in my list, and then the other perks.
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 4:26 pm
  #2527  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Programs: AA CK, UA 1K, Hilton Diamond, Marriot Plat, Hyatt Globalist
Posts: 285
Originally Posted by snydert
The Five Star point is interesting. I've been on two flights in the last 12 months (1 LAX, 1 DFW) where there was a Five Star customer. The same premium services representative called me forward to board with them, but this sounds different from other folks' experiences. I was pleasantly surprised though.

The IRROPS is the best attribute of CK hands down IMO. once again it saved me last week on a return from RNO that was delayed 5 hours. Put me in First on another flight (with an additional backup option in First) that saved me hours and hours.
If you notice, the agents with CK or Five Star have red scarves or ties. They are the same team. It is just who they get paired up with. I always introduce myself to the agent and let them know I am CK so it isn't a s**tshow when boarding starts and they have their preboards near by. It is different in LHR when they separate their 5 Star and CKs into different SUVs to go to other terminals, which I don't quite understand but ok. As long as can hitch a ride and not take that train I am good!!
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 4:30 pm
  #2528  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Programs: AA CK, UA 1K, Hilton Diamond, Marriot Plat, Hyatt Globalist
Posts: 285
Originally Posted by HaleiwaFlyer
I really do wish they allow CKs to purchase flagship first dinning passes for domestic flights. I see it as LP choices, which is a plus, but why not have AA make some extra money off of CKs.
This is a really interesting idea. Before COVID, we always got 4 passes a year as a CK for first dining when we were not on a flagship first itinerary. Then it went down to 2. When everything closed for COVID, the passes expired. They did not any extension even though you could not use them. When some of the FLs opened up with the first dining (LAX, which is my airport is still closed) we couldn't access them. I was at DFW a couple of times where there were maybe 2 people in the restaurant and had a 2 hour layover and begged to get a pass. They have not given anymore out and they do not extend access SO having them as an LP award or fee is interesting. For whatever reason they keep them pretty empty.
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 4:37 pm
  #2529  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: DFW
Programs: AA ConciergeKey, Marriott Ambassador Elite
Posts: 406
Originally Posted by astebel
If you notice, the agents with CK or Five Star have red scarves or ties. They are the same team. It is just who they get paired up with. I always introduce myself to the agent and let them know I am CK so it isn't a s**tshow when boarding starts and they have their preboards near by. It is different in LHR when they separate their 5 Star and CKs into different SUVs to go to other terminals, which I don't quite understand but ok. As long as can hitch a ride and not take that train I am good!!
Definitely pay attention to the red!
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 4:39 pm
  #2530  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Programs: AA CK, UA 1K, Hilton Diamond, Marriot Plat, Hyatt Globalist
Posts: 285
Originally Posted by scubadu
It is always fascinating to see what motivates certain personalities. Were I too become CK (also unlikely), I can safely say that "handwritten cards" from the captain/crew literally would not fall into the top 50 things I'd care about...

Regards
TBH ---- I really don't like being called out as a CK, although I do keep the luggage tags on my bags, but they are really nice. First, men tend to push me out of the way when I start to board because, well, I guess women could never be a CK or people gawk at you and ask how come you got to CK and they didn't. A lot of times, they will call my name to preboard and that is fine. I don't need the recognition or special service inside the plane, although it is nice and I always give candy to the crew and get more attention because of that. I like the help I get from CK when I have problems, FL access and the majority of the time, SUV or cart transfer. As well, flagship check in for any itinerary getting me escorted to the front of the line as been great as travel picked up this year. I got dropped as a CK this year and went to UA. I was called and asked to accept a challenge to regain my CK with American. If I chose to accept that challenge, it had to be AA or UA. I don't fly enough to get both GS and CK so I chose to accept that challenge. So my top 50 would be the things the things I have received and discussed above, other than, I would like access to first dining. I am glad we have access to Concord now at LHR, if there is time.
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 5:44 pm
  #2531  
formerly wchinchen
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Honolulu
Programs: AA CK, UA 1K, Hyatt Globalist
Posts: 1,496
Originally Posted by scubadu
It is always fascinating to see what motivates certain personalities. Were I too become CK (also unlikely), I can safely say that "handwritten cards" from the captain/crew literally would not fall into the top 50 things I'd care about...
Originally Posted by astebel
TBH ---- I really don't like being called out as a CK, although I do keep the luggage tags on my bags, but they are really nice.
From my own perspective as a low-key personality type of person: I agree with not being called out as a CK, and prefer a more discreet boarding process. I do value the ability to board first, start work, and then maximize sleep.

Out of everything, I value human relationships the most, not just a customer service gesture. For example, coming from HNL, the AA staff at the Sakura/AA Lounge treat me like family, and vice versa. Similar to repeat CK agents that I meet on golf cart rides. Some of the DFW morning front desk FL staff greet me by name, and I value that personalize touch much more than trinkets, because it takes genuine effort to do so. That is why I would push for anything that increases the humanistic service side for CKs, such as starting with a signed post card. My biggest wish is to have AA make CKs feel like family when we are away from family. Perhaps more interactions and feedback sessions with the CK leadership teams to help improve the experience, and for them to implement the suggestions.

Secondly, time is valuable, so to improve efficiencies at the airport is important (ie. partner with CLEAR even though DL/UA have a stake in it; partner with ancillary luxury options such as spa/massage/Blade helicopter/tarmac transfers/private suites/private transfer options after you leave the airport such as Uber Black). AA can provide CKs with exclusive rates or partnered access. All they have to do next, is to link these services on to their app, and start making money off of these micro-transactions.

Last edited by HaleiwaFlyer; Aug 7, 2023 at 5:54 pm
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 6:12 pm
  #2532  
formerly wchinchen
 
Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Honolulu
Programs: AA CK, UA 1K, Hyatt Globalist
Posts: 1,496
Originally Posted by astebel
They have not given anymore out and they do not extend access SO having them as an LP award or fee is interesting. For whatever reason they keep them pretty empty.
Looks like maximum of 3 FF Dinning Passes can be redeemed via LP rewards. One pass at 400k, 550k, and 750k levels.
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 7:52 pm
  #2533  
 
Join Date: Aug 2014
Programs: AA CK, UA 1K, Hilton Diamond, Marriot Plat, Hyatt Globalist
Posts: 285
Originally Posted by HaleiwaFlyer
Looks like maximum of 3 FF Dinning Passes can be redeemed via LP rewards. One pass at 400k, 550k, and 750k levels.
I am almost at 400k. Gosh. I hadn't seen those before. I usually take the $250 trip credit but....... if only LAX would reopen. Then it would be a no brainer. Thanks for pointing that out.
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 9:05 pm
  #2534  
 
Join Date: Dec 2018
Location: DFW
Programs: AA ConciergeKey, Marriott Ambassador Elite
Posts: 406
Originally Posted by astebel
I am almost at 400k. Gosh. I hadn't seen those before. I usually take the $250 trip credit but....... if only LAX would reopen. Then it would be a no brainer. Thanks for pointing that out.
It's beyond irritating that LAX hasn't gotten with the post-Covid program and reopened their FFD facility. It's feeling lazy at this point.
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Old Aug 7, 2023, 10:05 pm
  #2535  
 
Join Date: Nov 2022
Programs: Frequent AA Flyer
Posts: 176
Interesting to read all the comments today regarding what types of perks or recognition CK and potential CK members find or would find valuable. I've been CK for quite a while, and what strikes me the most is how much has changed between the time before and after COVID. Before COVID, the types of things I would experience fairly regularly included:

-Meet and greet at the gate. I got to know the CK reps at the airports I most commonly flew out of as I would see them so often. Whilst it was a nice gesture it was also generally unnecessary when there were no IRROPS.
-Recognition from FA's and Pilots. It was quite common for the FA's to thank me for my business, and many of them would say things like "you probably fly more than I do".
-First choice of meal regardless of where I was seated. FA's would routinely come up to me and quietly tell me that because I was CK, they wanted to be sure I got my preferred meal option before they ran out of anything.
-Preflight monitoring. I'd often get a call or text on the way to the airport telling me that my flight is on time but that they're monitoring it in case there are any issues.
-Small things like extra blankets on TATL flights, or offers to bring me meals from economy if they didn't have something I wanted from the F or J menu.

Now, all of the above are quite rare, even though I'm actually flying more frequently now than I did pre COVID. I don't recall the last time anyone on board mentioned my CK status or offered me first choice of meal selection, or reached out to me before my flight to let me know they were monitoring it or that it was on time, and meet and greets at the gate occur probably less than 25% of the time.

Having said all that, there are still some things that I find very valuable, such as:

-IRROPS assistance. This is still the primary benefit of CK for me, but even this has become less consistent. I used to get texts or calls the moment there was a problem, and often times alternative flights, and backups to alternatives, were already booked by the time I landed or arrived at the airport for a departure. There seems to be less proactive assistance now, and I find myself often having to call the CK line to get help, rather than them contacting me first with a solution already in place. And sadly sometimes the help I do get is not as accurate or efficient as it used to be.
-CK phone line. I still find having my call answered in a few rings, as opposed to the sometimes hours long wait for call backs that EP's apparently can experience these days, to be immensely valuable, and not just with IRROPS.
-Early boarding. I still appreciate this, though as has been discussed recently, the crush of passengers waiting to board most flights can make actually getting to the front of the line a bit of a challenge and not worth the hassle sometimes.
-One of my favourite perks is being able to request a cart to take me from the Cathay Pacific or AA club at LHR to the distant gates, as that airport is always too hot for me and it can be quite a long walk to the furthest gates at T3, so that cart ride is something I definitely look forward to as I travel to London more often than I'd prefer.

I don't really expect the CK experience to revert to the way it was before COVID. I'm not sure why so much has changed, though no doubt the pandemic seems to have been a primary cause, or at least it offered the opportunity for AA to allow the program to become what it is today. And, as my travel patterns continue to align quite well with AA's network, I suspect I'll keep giving them my fairly significant business, as the other carriers simply don't offer the convenient non stop options to my most frequent destinations that AA still does.
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