2016 SkyMiles year is here! Just what are the changes you need to know.

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delta 2016 medallion chart

Well it’s here. The good news is, at this point, Delta has not sprung any unannounced changes on us (I am truly shocked and rollover MQMs seems safe for another year). We had already found out that Diamonds will board with 1st / business class, that is “Premium” or PRE on your boarding pass, but that is now also a listed perk of that status level on Delta.com.

wrong date

my correct medallion status ends 1FEB17 rene delta points blog

Delta IT has made an error as to when the 2016 Medallion year expires on Delta.com but not in the APP that does show my status ending 1FEB17 correctly. I am sure they will fix this as my status is not for just one month next year ;-)

delta 2016 choice benefits

Choice Benefits have loaded. The rules are the same as last year and the only new choice that we already knew was on the way was to upgrade to full Skyclub membership vs individual membership. Clearly the most valuable choice is the Global Upgrade certificates and it is good news they were not cut. It would have been amazing to see MORE of them added but such an enhancement is not likely in the current environment.

The other great choice, if you have, like me, already earned your 2016 status, is gifting status to someone for almost 2 years! Notice if you give Silver or Gold away:

“Gifting Gold or Silver Medallion Status to a recipient: Gifted Medallion status can only be gifted to a recipient who currently has no Medallion status or status below the gifted level. Gifted Medallion status will be effective within 48 hours of selection and digital Medallion credentials can be found in the Fly Delta app. For selections made for 2015 Choice Benefits, recipient status is valid through January 31, 2016; for selections made for 2016 Choice Benefits, recipient status is valid through January 31, 2017.”

Again, to be CLEAR, for max value you are using your 2016 Choice Benefits. Also note, once selected, you can not make any changes and it will impact what other things you pick. Need more help? See this Choice Benefit post.

confort plus seats now blue

What else should we be alert to? The big push for Delta this year is all about Comfort Plus seats or C+ (and a change from green to light blue in the seat maps). Since first class and first class upgrades are going to be harder and harder to get from this point forward, a coach seat with a little more leg room and recline plus new perks matters. Delta has really backpedaled on the wording for the overhead space and now even tells us:

“Dedicated overhead bin space is subject to availability.”

A politician would be proud of this kind of wording. The “dedicated” space is only dedicated if it is there and no one else on the jets has used it. At least we know from the flight attendant instructions they are to find us space somewhere on the jet.

The next bit that struck me as “new” was the addition of the following wording:

“Delta Comfort+ fees are charged per customer per segment.”

Now this may NOT be new and I just missed it, but like first class upgrade sales, we are talking PER SEGMENT not per trip or one way trip. Have 3 connections? You are then paying 3x C+ fee to be in C+ from start to finish.

Lastly, no matter what your status, know you can not just switch to C+ seats after the boarding door closes.

“Complimentary Delta Comfort+ seats are not available for selection by any passenger while onboard the aircraft regardless of status or fare class.”

I am confident we are going to see the already announced selling of C+ seats happening this year. The technology is in place with the hand units, it is just finding the time for FAs to do this in addition to all of their other responsibilities! They are, after all, primarily there for marketing our safety. I really wounder what impact all these new tasks will have on the coming FA union vote.

Lastly, as of today, Medallions REALLY want to watch out for Basic E fares now because:

“Basic Economy (E) fares are not eligible to make same-day confirmed or same-day standby travel changes, regardless of Medallion or other elite status.”

I don’t care how much the savings is per ticket. I am not about to forfeit all my Medallion perks to save a few bucks on a ticket. I just feel really sorry for Medallions who have their company pick these fare classes for them!

So what do you think about the new Medallion year? – René
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Delta Points February Newsletter 2015

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Gosh I am happy February is a short month as I don’t know if my heart can take many more #KeepDescending events from the mothership! At least winter is just about over, spring is on the way and just maybe March will not come in like a LION of devaluations so many of us fear. For now, here is what you may have missed: ➥ Delta GOLD Medallion status & 30,000 SkyMiles for just 8 … Continue reading

I take it back, I do have to talk about the new Delta FA Comfort Plus instructions sheet :-)

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Last night I posted a copy of the instruction sheet that Delta has sent out to FAs, that is Flight Attendants. I said there is really nothing to say, but I take that back as there is LOTS to say now that I am fully awake. Let’s look at why. First off, it is really good Delta did something to let FAs know what they are to do. After all, training had been, up to … Continue reading

What are my favorite hotel cards? It really is all about perks and value!

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As you can see from the photo above, I hold three primary hotel cards and I use them! I use them for the points, the perks and all the other little bits that make staying away from home just a bit better (and more reasonable to afford). They are: Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express <—LINK Club Carlson Premier Rewards Visa Signature® Card <—LINK The Chase IHG Rewards Club MasterCard Let’s break these … Continue reading

Delta C+ instruction sheet to flight attendants. OY! OH, my. Enjoy?

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There really is no need to say anything but I think the mothership saw my post HERE! What do you think? Comments? Oh and please, this is a PG-13 blog so keep them clean! – René [HT to Twitter follower DSF.] . . Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express® Click HERE for more info  

Does Delta have to honor the MONSTER NYC billboard ads or can they say anything they want?

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The above photo from FlyerTalker landeej “outside the NYC Midtown Tunnel” clearly, without any fine print whatsoever, says: “Flat-bed seating available on all nonstop flights from JFK to LAX” – BOLD MINE As mentioned, I see no little star or asterisks or fine print that says that if irregular operations happen or an equipment swap, that is, another type of aircraft is flown, that you may NOT get a full flat bed seat in business … Continue reading

Delta Air Lines responds to award “pricing issue” where Medallions were overcharged!

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I have, at last, got an update from Delta SkyMiles PR representative Anthony Black who has advised me about yesterday’s award pricing issue I blogged about: “We found the pricing issue, corrected it and are now identifying the impacted accounts to refund the overcharge of miles. This was not an attempt to display higher pricing for medallion members.” I asked for additional information but this was all that was provided. The really sad part is … Continue reading

UBER + SPG combo on top of AMEX Membership Rewards = #WINNING!

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Talk about perfect timing. With the value of Delta SkyRubles going down and down each day, I find myself shifting to save much more valuable points like SPG StarPoints and AMEX Membership Rewards points from cards like the non-Delta AMEX Platinum card. Both points are valuable on their own and have tons of transfer partners. This latest cross company tie-in is really rewarding much like Delta’s Crossover Rewards. As you can see from the screen … Continue reading

Opinion: Delta needs to scrap SkyMiles 2015 & win back our trust. This is how to do it.

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My wife and I have been married a long time – almost 30 years. We rarely ever have “strong disagreements” anymore as when there is an issue we settle it quickly. But years ago, there was this one time when we were arguing and my dear bride began to see in this one case that she was flat out wrong, but she wasn’t quite ready to admit it completely. In the end she concluded the … Continue reading

Delta award calendar charging MORE FOR MEDALLIONS on awards than non-medallions! #KeepDescending!

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I think my head is going to explode. We have yet another bit of price fixing and gaming from Delta (we already know they do bait and switch with awards). Take a look at this search when I have the box “I am traveling” checked from Detroit to Chicago one-way in March. I get the “all-new Award calendar, it’s now easy to search for and see prices for Awards online” (Delta.com’s words). It shows me … Continue reading

What is the “fastest” way to get a bunch of SkyMiles to book an award ticket?

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One of the common questions I get either as a comment on the blog or via e-mail is how to quickly get some LARGE number of SkyMiles to be able to book some kind of award trip (especially in light of all the award changes going on with Delta this year). I mean, take a look at the graphic above. Even a smaller airline like Hawaiian, not only has SIMPLE, published award charts, but even … Continue reading

Delta pushing hard with ANTI-Union message – at airports, online & more! – BeDeltaBeDifferent.com

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On my way to the airport Saturday, just before my live radio spot from the “F” Delta Skyclub, I could not miss the advertising for BeDeltaBeDifferent.com on the back of the bus in front of us. Here is some web info about the site (run by Delta). Domain Name: BEDELTABEDIFFERENT.COM Registrar: WILD WEST DOMAINS, LLC Whois Server: whois.wildwestdomains.com Referral URL: http://www.wildwestdomains.com Updated Date: 28-jan-2015 Creation Date: 28-jan-2015 Expiration Date: 28-jan-2016 So this is Delta’s response … Continue reading

Delta FAs are not ready for 1MARCH seating changes! Expect confusion and issues.

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We learned back on 8DEC14 that Delta will be creating new sections on their jets. The seats are the same, but the names are new and perks will be adjusted. One of the biggest changes comes to what was called EC or Economy Comfort that will be in effect as of THIS SUNDAY the 1st of March. The perks you can (maybe) look forward to are: Dedicated overhead bin space. The problem is the FAs … Continue reading

Did you miss my live radio visit to Rudy Maxa’s World? Here is the podcast.

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Yesterday, from upstairs in the Delta “F” concourse Skyclub, I had the privilege to be back on the nationally syndicated radio show with Rudy Maxa. Rudy was asking about the ongoing shocking situation about Delta removing the award charts from the website for us to reference. If you happened to have missed that live broadcast you can hear the podcast of the part at the 33 minute mark HERE on Rudy’s site. Also, if you … Continue reading

Final thoughts & impressions about the run – 2015 Delta Mileage Run

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Planning and pricing of the run – 2015 Delta Mileage Run Sheraton Dallas Hotel by the Galleria – 2015 Delta Mileage Run Delta 767-300 domestic seat review – 2015 Delta Mileage Run DFW Dallas / Fort Worth “E” Delta Skyclub – 2015 Delta Mileage Run American Express Centurion Lounge LAS Las Vegas – 2015 Delta Mileage Run The CLUB at LAS (big and small) – 2015 Delta Mileage Run Final thoughts & impressions about the … Continue reading