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Lifetime Admirals Club Membership: lifetime members, discussion

Lifetime Admirals Club Membership: lifetime members, discussion

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Old Nov 20, 19, 4:46 am   -   Wikipost
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Lifetime Admirals Club Membership is not currently offered.

NOTE: Admirals Club Lifetime members are exempt from the requirement of flying AA and qualifying partner airlines the same day of access that became active 1 November 2019.

When the Admirals Club, originally established as the Flagship Club at La Guardia Airport in 1939, it was to serve VIPs and “friends of aviation” selected by American Airlines CEO C. R. Smith as “Admirals of the Flagship Fleet”.

In 1967, the Admirals Club network opened to public membership. Fees then:

. . . . Annual Member: $25.00

. . . . Lifetime Member: $250.00

By 1992, Lifetime Membership was $2,500.

In ~1997, a member purchased a senior lifetime Admirals Club membership for $800

In 2005, another member purchased lifetime Admirals Club membership for $5,500

During the 2009 Admirals Club 70th Anniversary celebration, AA held a drawing for a lifetime membership to the Admirals Club. (They also offered a $70 renewal discount for 15 months). Ditto previously in 2007, 2008. Valued at $5,500 by AA.

There are several Lifetime Members among the FlyerTalk Membership. Some of them have multiple Lifetime Memberships in airline lounge schemes. See Any other lifetime Admirals Club members out there - (archived).

TWA offered lifetime membership to their Ambassadors Club, but AA did not acknowledge that Membership, extending a “current and next year. Admirals Club Membership, iirc.


Link to Admirals Club History, Logo, Name thread (FlyerTalk)

What is the Admirals Club?

by Claire Turrell, 18 March 2019, Blacklane — link

...The club was created by the American Airlines president C.R. Smith as a marketing promotion after he was made an honorary Texas Ranger. He wanted to make his particularly valued passengers feel like “admirals” of the American Airlines “Flagship Fleet”, which was marketed using a nautical theme. So in 1936, the first Admirals Club members were announced. Those invited to the club were celebrities, politicians, VIPs, and customers who had been particularly loyal to American Airlines.

At that point, there was no Admirals Club lounge, members simply received framed certificates they could place on their office wall. The world’s first airport lounge was created in 1939, when American Airlines turned New York Mayor Fiorello La Guardia’s press conference room at the airport into the first Admirals Club. The club lounge maintained its nautical theme – the receptionists were called “skippers” and the bar staff were called “stewards”.

If you’re a bit of a history buff, you might also be interested to know that the second Admirals Club was in Washington Airport, which didn’t have a liquor licence, so members stored their own bottles there. At one point the club was looking after 9,000 bottles.

Becoming a member of the Admirals Club was by invitation-only until 1967, when American Airlines decided to give everyone the chance to enjoy the VIP experience by paying a yearly membership fee (allegedly because the Civil Rights Act of 1964 could adversely affect AA because of the invitation-only policy).
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Old Aug 6, 18, 5:28 am
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Lifetime Admirals Club Membership: lifetime members, discussion

When I was in college, I flew alot as National frat president. It was prior to the advantage program. Was a VIT. Always first for me and friends with escort to plane. Private club prior to admiral's. Used to freak them out as flew "student standbye" but got auto first with the VIT. Those were the days
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Old Aug 6, 18, 6:05 am
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Originally Posted by BeatCal View Post
When I was in college, ... Private club prior to admiral's.
YIKES!! Dare I ask when you went to college? Admirals Club was founded prior to World War 2, I think. I joined when I was in college, either in 1971 or 1972. My first visit at an Admirals Club was at IAD. I wasn't flying, just wanted to see what it was like. They loaned me a blazer, which was required at the time.
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Old Aug 6, 18, 6:22 am
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Originally Posted by Dr. HFH View Post
YIKES!! Dare I ask when you went to college? Admirals Club was founded prior to World War 2, I think. I joined when I was in college, either in 1971 or 1972. My first visit at an Admirals Club was at IAD. I wasn't flying, just wanted to see what it was like. They loaned me a blazer, which was required at the time.
graduated Stanford 1970

Believe Admirals started as a lawyer sued to get in. I bought a lifetime membership in maybe '72 for $250
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Old Aug 6, 18, 8:19 am
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Originally Posted by BeatCal View Post
graduated Stanford 1970

Believe Admirals started as a lawyer sued to get in. I bought a lifetime membership in maybe '72 for $250
Your first paragraph is redundant, given your handle.

Admirals Club began in 1939, Though initially as “Flagship Club”. It opened to the public in 1967, a sequel to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Admirals Club History.

The $250 membership was a serious deal! Congratulations!
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Old Aug 6, 18, 10:47 am
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Originally Posted by JDiver View Post
The $250 membership was a serious deal! Congratulations!
No kidding. For fun I ran 250 1972 dollars through the inflation calculator and that's ~1470 USD. Which will get you 2-3 years in the AAdmirals club now (2-3 as the price varies by status)
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Old Aug 6, 18, 12:55 pm
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Originally Posted by Antarius View Post
No kidding. For fun I ran 250 1972 dollars through the inflation calculator and that's ~1470 USD. Which will get you 2-3 years in the AAdmirals club now (2-3 as the price varies by status)
Yeah but most people's 50-year investment strategy isn't just to keep pace with inflation. If he had put in in any decent index fund, the $250 would be worth tens of thousands. The real question is whether the poster would have come out ahead investing that amount and then buying annual memberships, but that's definitely a calculation I'm not willing to do here. (My guess is the poster came out ahead)
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Old Aug 6, 18, 7:00 pm
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Originally Posted by arlflyer View Post
Yeah but most people's 50-year investment strategy isn't just to keep pace with inflation. If he had put in in any decent index fund, the $250 would be worth tens of thousands. The real question is whether the poster would have come out ahead investing that amount and then buying annual memberships, but that's definitely a calculation I'm not willing to do here. (My guess is the poster came out ahead)
Look at the data below his handle. Do you really think he needed to worry about coming out ahead? 250 for a lifetime was an amazing deal, just not having to deal with re-ups. Your time is your most valuable asset.
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Old Aug 6, 18, 10:27 pm
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You'd have $800,000+ if you had spent that money on Berkshire Hathaway stock instead.
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Old Aug 6, 18, 10:47 pm
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Originally Posted by boerne View Post
Look at the data below his handle. Do you really think he needed to worry about coming out ahead?
and yet here he is like the rest of us schmoe's, on a web site trading & learning tips about trying to come out ahead when flying
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Old Aug 7, 18, 6:09 am
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Originally Posted by boerne View Post
Look at the data below his handle. Do you really think he needed to worry about coming out ahead? 250 for a lifetime was an amazing deal, just not having to deal with re-ups. Your time is your most valuable asset.
I wasn't saying the poster did the wrong thing; I clearly included such a caveat in my post where I said the poster likely came out well ahead. Since someone else had raised a point about the time value of an AC membership fee, I was just adding a little more to that discussion, that's all. I too am a fan of just having things "done with" and not having to worry about recurring fees or future risk.

Plus, if your argument is that small financial decisions don't matter to rich people, that's a pretty silly argument. Rich people don't get rich by making one stupid financial decision at a time. Most of them get there little by little; the small things add up and become big things over many years. Look at the people with seemingly modest means who end up surprising their families with huge estates, versus celebrities and athletes who can make tens of millions evaporate into thin air in a matter of years.
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Old Aug 21, 18, 3:02 pm
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Originally Posted by JDiver View Post
Your first paragraph is redundant, given your handle.

Admirals Club began in 1939, Though initially as “Flagship Club”. It opened to the public in 1967, a sequel to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Admirals Club History.

The $250 membership was a serious deal! Congratulations!
thanks. The Flagship Club and for the VITs to use. I did not realize it was the civil rights act related but I did remember it was because some lawyer sued
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Old Aug 21, 18, 3:04 pm
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Originally Posted by LovePrunes View Post
and yet here he is like the rest of us schmoe's, on a web site trading & learning tips about trying to come out ahead when flying
it is more fun to be a schmoe
(or is that schmock)
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Old Aug 21, 18, 3:21 pm
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My wife and I have Lifetime Admirals Club memberships. Until the merger and consolidation of the clubs, we also had Lifetime US Airways Club memberships as well.
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Old Aug 22, 18, 7:08 pm
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I'm one of those who bought a Lifetime Admirals Club membership back in 2005, although my card says "member since 2006."

Anyone else: have they ever sent a new membership card or luggage tags? My nearly 18 year-old card shows its age.
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Old Jan 14, 19, 10:38 pm
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DL this week rolled back the requirement of having to have a same day boarding pass on DL or partner airline for their Lifetime Sky Club members. I would hope that AA management values it's Lifetime AC members, and will adopt the same policy.
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