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Guide to Flagship Lounge Access (in revision)

Old Feb 16, 2017, 2:34 pm
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Last edit by: seawolf
NOTE: Flagship Lounges and Flagship First Dining closed March 20, 2020. They will begin reopening in September of 2021, as discussed in this thread (link). This thread will reboot as the Premium facilities begin reopening and as AA announces any changes including access rules.


Beginning in spring 2017, AA began introducing their completely renovated or new, larger Flagship Lounges completely redesigned for qualifying First and Business Class customers.

Rules for expanded access to Flagship Lounges were published June 2017.

Features
  • More room for you to spread out and relax
  • Larger buffet with premium, fresh meals
  • Premium beer, wine and spirits
  • Updated interiors with additional power and privacy options
  • More staff in each lounge for the highest level of service


As well, Flagship Lounge access policies changed.

American Airlines has expanded access to the Flagship Lounges (but reduced access to Flagship Dining within the Flagship Lounges):

Expanded access

In the new Flagship Lounges (not to be confused with Flagship Dining), eligible customers are:
  • First and Business Class customers (on qualifying international flights or 3-class transcontinental markets*)
  • AAdvantage Executive Platinum (including Concierge Key), Platinum Pro and Platinum members in any cabin (on qualifying international flights*)
  • oneworld Emerald and Sapphire members in any cabin (on all qualifying flights**)

Qualifying transcontinental flights

3-class non-stop flights between:

  • New York (JFK) and Los Angeles (LAX)
  • JFK and San Francisco (SFO)
  • JFK and Orange County (SNA)
  • LAX and Miami (MIA)
  • LAX and Boston (BOS)

Qualifying other domestic filghts

Flights with seats ticketed as Flagship between:

  • Dallas Fort Worth (DFW) and Honolulu (HNL)
  • DFW and Kona (KOA)
  • DFW and Maui (OGG)
  • Chicago (ORD) and HNL
  • Charlotte (CLT) and HNL
Guest Access

1 guest (children over 2 count as a guest)

*Qualifying international flights are those between the U.S. and Europe, Asia, Australia, New Zealand, and South America (excluding Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Peru, Suriname, and Venezuela) only. Qualifying transcontinental flights are defined as non-stop between New York Kennedy (JFK) and Los Angeles (LAX) or San Francisco (SFO). All other international destinations are excluded from this benefit. Departing flight must be the same-day (or before 6 a.m. the following day).

**AAdvantage Executive Platinum, Platinum Pro and Platinum members traveling solely on North American itineraries (other than flights mentioned immediately above) will not qualify. North America is defined as the United States (including Hawaii and Alaska), Canada, Mexico, Bermuda, the Bahamas and the Caribbean.

: An exception usually exists for First and Business passengers on AA Flagship (three class aircraft actually sold as three classes), such as the seasonal MIA-LAX 77W and LAX-BOS A321T.

NOTE: Flagship First Class customers on Americans 3-class international and transcontinental flights will have exclusive, complimentary access to Flagship First Dining. Qualifying international passengers may bring one guest; qualifying domestic passengers are not allowed any guests.

NOTE: Flagship First Class and Flagship Business Class passengers traveling on 3-cabin transcontinental flights between JFK and LAX/SFO are allowed entry to the Flagship Lounge both upon departure and upon arrival (e.g. A passenger traveling business class nonstop from JFK to LAX will have access to the JFK Lounge and the LAX Lounge). However, passengers on this itinerary will not be allowed to bring in a guest if they are not also in the Flagship cabin

Link to relevant "Flagship Lounge" aa.com page

Link to 2017 and 2018 posts archived from this thread.






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Guide to Flagship Lounge Access (in revision)

Old Jan 8, 2020, 11:35 am
  #166  
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Austin
Programs: AA EXP +2MM- LT PLT! HH Diamond
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Originally Posted by costa85
New to FlyerTalk and a first time poster. Greatly appreciate all the helpful information folks are sharing here!

1. Might somebody know the current operating hours of the Flagship Bridge at JFK? I read a while back it opens at 1pm. Is that still the case?

2. Are there any data points on whether non-AA OW Sapphires/Emeralds may use the Flagship Lounges on arrival? I know it's possible on certain direct transcon flights in C, but obviously, this is a different scenario.

Many thanks!
Welcome to FT costa85!

I don't know the answer to your first question, but unless you are connecting to a OW flight, only those arriving on the 3 class transcons have access the the FL upon arrival. No access otherwise as standard OW lounge rules apply, thus it is a "departures" lounge.
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Old Jan 16, 2020, 12:41 pm
  #167  
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I am PLT. We will be arriving from EZE-MIA flight at 4:49 AM, connecting to MIA-MCO at 6:50 AM
The FL access info says "Departing flights must be the same day or before 6 a.m. the following day"
Does the qualifying international arrival at 4:49 AM on the same day count, or does this mean I had to start my international flight on the same day? (Flights are both AA, PE for the international, economy for the hop to Orlando)
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Old Jan 16, 2020, 12:43 pm
  #168  
 
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Originally Posted by mvoight
I am PLT. We will be arriving from EZE-MIA flight at 4:49 AM, connecting to MIA-MCO at 6:50 AM
The FL access info says "Departing flights must be the same day or before 6 a.m. the following day"
Does the qualifying international arrival at 4:49 AM on the same day count, or does this mean I had to start my international flight on the same day?
You'll have no problem with access.
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Old Jan 16, 2020, 1:17 pm
  #169  
 
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Originally Posted by mvoight
I am PLT. We will be arriving from EZE-MIA flight at 4:49 AM, connecting to MIA-MCO at 6:50 AM
The FL access info says "Departing flights must be the same day or before 6 a.m. the following day"
Does the qualifying international arrival at 4:49 AM on the same day count, or does this mean I had to start my international flight on the same day? (Flights are both AA, PE for the international, economy for the hop to Orlando)
It's always about the arrival date. Otherwise most people flying long haul, for example from US to Europe wouldn't have access when connecting, same flying to Asia from the US and connecting. So yes, you'll have access.
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Old Feb 19, 2020, 11:50 am
  #170  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Posts: 32
For purposes of Flagship Access, flying MIA-DOH in J on QR. In and outbound to/from MIA-ORD on a separate ticket. Only AA GLD at the moment.

Will I have access to the Flagship lounge upon returning to MIA? The last few posts seem to vary on whether Flagship lounges can be used as an arrival. I'm 95% certain I've done so before (JFK and LAX allowed, though I've never actually tried ORD T5-T3 as it's home), but I don't recall if it was same PNR – also I'm typically PPRO. Put another way, is OW status what would permit for international arrival/connecting lounge access or is it class of service?

I passed on any buy-up back to PLT/Emerald as this plus one additional trip early March should get me back to PPro (busy month) and didn't think I'd miss anything before questioning it now...
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Old Feb 19, 2020, 11:58 am
  #171  
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Originally Posted by Lasvegasgamer
For purposes of Flagship Access, flying MIA-DOH in J on QR. In and outbound to/from MIA-ORD on a separate ticket. Only AA GLD at the moment.

Will I have access to the Flagship lounge upon returning to MIA? The last few posts seem to vary on whether Flagship lounges can be used as an arrival. I'm 95% certain I've done so before (JFK and LAX allowed, though I've never actually tried ORD T5-T3 as it's home), but I don't recall if it was same PNR also I'm typically PPRO. Put another way, is OW status what would permit for international arrival/connecting lounge access or is it class of service?

I passed on any buy-up back to PLT/Emerald as this plus one additional trip early March should get me back to PPro (busy month) and didn't think I'd miss anything before questioning it now...
Both oneworld status and class of service allow lounge access during a connection to/from a qualifying long-haul flight (assuming your next/onward flight is also oneworld).

So, you will have no problems accessing the MIA FL after arriving from DOH-MIA in business before your connection to ORD. Separate tickets doesn't matter for lounge access, still no problem, though obviously hang on to your DOH-MIA boarding pass to show for entry since it won't show up automatically when you check in.
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Old Feb 20, 2020, 9:21 pm
  #172  
 
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Hi,

How strictly is the "before 6 am the following day" rule enforced? Next month I am flying
CX HKG-LAX in F, arriving around 10 pm, then
AA LAX-PDX in F, departing around 9 am the next day - this is the first possible connecting flight, i.e. the shortest layover.

If no access to FL how about the Admiral's Club?

Thanks!
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Old Feb 21, 2020, 5:10 am
  #173  
 
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Originally Posted by Loran
Hi,

How strictly is the "before 6 am the following day" rule enforced? Next month I am flying
CX HKG-LAX in F, arriving around 10 pm, then
AA LAX-PDX in F, departing around 9 am the next day - this is the first possible connecting flight, i.e. the shortest layover.

If no access to FL how about the Admiral's Club?

Thanks!
If they were going strictly by the rules, you'd have access to neither. However, I would think that the folks at the FL would be more accommodating than the AC, as they deal with mostly Int'l travelers and the nuances that are inherit vs. the AC which is for domestic members primarily. They might be a bit more understanding of your circumstances.
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Old Feb 21, 2020, 5:58 am
  #174  
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Originally Posted by Loran
Hi,

How strictly is the "before 6 am the following day" rule enforced? Next month I am flying
CX HKG-LAX in F, arriving around 10 pm, then
AA LAX-PDX in F, departing around 9 am the next day - this is the first possible connecting flight, i.e. the shortest layover.

If no access to FL how about the Admiral's Club?

Thanks!
Yea, many lounge agents are either not 100% familiar with or just do not enforce the "before 6am" thing when it comes to lounge access on an itinerary that spans more than one day.

When you go into the Flagship Lounge, just hand them your LAX-PDX boarding pass on top with your HKG-LAX boarding pass right behind it, and say something like "just came in from HKG, on the way to Portland" then just let them go and see what happens, more times than not you will be let in without a problem.

What you DO NOT want to do is say something like "Hi, I came in from HKG last night, my flight to Portland is after 6am, I know this is outside the rule but I was hoping you could make an exception" or anything like that. That's just highlighting that you are technically not within the rules when the agent may have not even known that in first place.

Also, at LAX T4 the FL and AC share the same entrance and 'gatekeepers', so it won't make a difference re: trying access at the FL vs. AC etc.
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Old Mar 9, 2020, 6:38 pm
  #175  
 
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I am an AA EXP. I am looking at buying an LAX-NYC flight, but I really want access to the Qantas First Lounge on departure and then Flagship Lounge on arrival. Does an economy ticket give me access or do I need a business class seat on that flight? Based on previous posts, it seems that a business seat is necessary. Is that correct?
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Old Mar 9, 2020, 6:44 pm
  #176  
 
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Originally Posted by dmtx
I am an AA EXP. I am looking at buying an LAX-NYC flight, but I really want access to the Qantas First Lounge on departure and then Flagship Lounge on arrival. Does an economy ticket give me access or do I need a business class seat on that flight? Based on previous posts, it seems that a business seat is necessary. Is that correct?
For AAdvantage members unfortunately the lounge access for premium transcons is based on class of service not status. That means that for Qantas F you need to be flying F. With a J ticket you get access to the FL and to the oneworld J lounge, and with Y you don't get any lounge access even with EXP.
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Old Mar 10, 2020, 10:25 pm
  #177  
 
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As a Plat Pro, if I was flying through MEX to another city in Mexico (AA marketed 4O flight) would I have access?

Last edited by Aero137; Mar 11, 2020 at 10:29 pm
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Old Mar 10, 2020, 10:38 pm
  #178  
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Originally Posted by SEA737
For AAdvantage members unfortunately the lounge access for premium transcons is based on class of service not status. That means that for Qantas F you need to be flying F. With a J ticket you get access to the FL and to the oneworld J lounge, and with Y you don't get any lounge access even with EXP.
QF F lounge will not let a domestic F pax in (even on three-class transcons) unless they are a non-AA OWE (like BA Gold). If they are non-AA OWE, they can get in, no matter what class. QF F lounge is very strict about this. They only look for non-AA OWE status or international OW F ticket.
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Old Mar 11, 2020, 4:38 am
  #179  
 
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Originally Posted by BlooJoo
QF F lounge will not let a domestic F pax in (even on three-class transcons) unless they are a non-AA OWE (like BA Gold). If they are non-AA OWE, they can get in, no matter what class. QF F lounge is very strict about this. They only look for non-AA OWE status or international OW F ticket.
This must be new - in late October I went to QF F lounge on a transcon F ticket.
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Old Mar 11, 2020, 6:11 am
  #180  
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Originally Posted by Aero137
As a Plat Pro, if was was flying through MEX to another city in Mexico (AA marketed 4O flight) would I have access?
If you are flying say DFW-MEX-XYZ, then you get FL access at DFW. The fact that you have a connection in MEX doesn't matter.
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