Am I the only one who clear as day understands Delta Comfort Plus is just NOT worth it at ANY price?

This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We will receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our Advertiser Disclosure, and advertiser partners, such as American Express, CreditCards.com and others visit this page.
 
Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

 

price for comfort plus in points

As I have shown before during the “launch” of branded C+ seats on Delta, the price to (cough, choke) “upgrade” to this seat is a 40% premium over a LEVEL 1 C- or coach seat.

Delta 767-300 domestic comfort plus seat 1 Delta points blog

No matter how pretty the leather Delta uses, or overhead tiny dividers made of whatever, or anything else the Delta PR team attempts to use to convince you – the seat is the same seat as the rest of coach. Unlike other airlines that have a LARGE seat, Delta does not. C+ = C- folks, and that is the simple truth.

But you say WAIT, what about all the extra perks like a super tiny bit more leg room. Maybe some more pitch in the seat. Maybe reserved overhead space unless it is filled up. Maybe a snack basket if my flight is over 900 miles long. Maybe more than one free drink if the FAs come by more than once. Maybe a free movie if Delta Studio happens to be working on your flight or with your device. Maybe a free movie if the aircraft has upgraded IFE. Yeah, that is a lot of maybes for a 40% up-charge for a fake “upgrade” seat. Do you see my point?

Let’s break down this cost to spend your SkyMiles for this whiz-bag-wanna-be “upgrade”. If we follow Delta’s President Mr. Glen Ham Sandwich’s math formula then we know a SkyRuble is worth 1 cent each (since that is what you can spend them for in some $KyPubs). So 5,000 points to upgrade one-way from C- to C+ costs you $50. Yes, $50 one-way.

If you take $50 and spend it on-board what can you get? Well first off if you have any of the 3 Delta AMEX cards you get 20% off so you spend $50 but it only costs you $40 but for now we will use the $50 to compare. You could buy:

  • 3 Drinks at $8 each
  • 1 Movie at $8 on Studio
  • 1 Set Delta Billboard Headset at $2
  • 1 Beef Sliders $10 (yeah, I know, really 9.99 )
  • 1 Can Pringles at $4 (yeah, I know, really 3.49 )

So you are STILL, will all this, ONLY up to $48 all-in. If you are ANY kind of elite you can choose an exit row free and enjoy the same seat as those way up in C+ are enjoying (yeah about 4 or 5 rows up).

Delta-767-300-economy-comfort-seats-Delta-Points-blog-review

Am I wrong here or am I right that Delta has just spun this in a way that folks are falling for it. I even had one respected news man tell me he wanted C+ for the bigger seat? Really? Yes, I think that is part of Delta’s plan as when it was Economy Comfort it was understood it was “just” an economy seat, but now that it is “Comfort Plus” it does sound bigger like other airlines larger “Premium Economy” like those on Singapore Air or even Skyteam partner Air France. I bet if you asked 100 members of the general public if “Comfort Plus” is a larger seat than Coach 90% of them would say YES (I may have to do my own sampling next time I fly in the gate area).

So you tell me. How long will Delta be able to get away with selling C+ as something special when it is just the same coach seat just “branded” in slightly pretty leather? – René

 

 

 

 

Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

 

33 comments

  1. If Delta really was serious about C+ as a separate product, they’d offer a light meal on longer routes, and block off middle seats.

    Only then would the price be worth it. No one is paying $200+ for the product as it currently is.

  2. @William – THANK YOU! I was thinking the same thing as I wrote the post. If middle seat were blocked it would be a HUGE upgrade over C- but then why not change the seats. Also I think the light meal idea would be a VERY smart move.

  3. Rene, you write about the wonders of exit rows seats, but do you mean by doors? Aren’t these seats narrower because of the folding tray tables? Same with bulkhead seats. I never sit in those rows if I can help it. I know… lose some weight and it wouldn’t be such a tight fit !

    C+ seats are worth it if 1) you get if complementary or 2) it is a +8 hour flight.

    When I told a DM help desk staff that I wasn’t pleased with the new policy of DM having to wait 5 days out for a C+ upgrade she said, “But we want to give low level medallion members a chance for those seats as well.” I told her to please stop telling me Delta values my loyalty when they continue to pull benefits from the “most loyal” ones.

  4. I can see long flights being marketable. We’re in C+ for CVG-LAX-HNL and OGG-LAX-CVG soon and I’m glad to be there versus in the back. That said, I’m with you in that most flights in the Delta domestic system are just too short for the value proposition is worth the extra unless you’re miles and/or rich. As far as the cash fares, I’m seeing domestic F being very tempting instead of C+. They seem to be aggressively pricing F on 1-2 hour mainline flights especially on leisure routes.

  5. The only time I paid for the C+ seats was when I flew my wife to meet me in the UK. She was on DL while I had company paid for Premium Economy on Virgin 747s. The seats on Virgin reminded me of the standard domestic First Class (not Delta One) seats.

    But then my wife called DL and spent another 80k of my miles to fly business class. Think I lost the money I paid for the C+ seats, but it just went to my $200 of DL spend on Amex :).

    Gregg

  6. I never paid for a Comfort+ seat even before the latest increase in the upcharge. I’d choose an exit row seat before I’d pay for C+. I always carry HOOU coupons for emergency because if I were ever to get stuck sitting in the back of the bus I’d pull a Dierks Bentley… I’m getting drunk on a plane.

  7. I’m about 6’2″ and much prefer leg room to free drink(s) and the snack basket, so I’ll sit in the exit row if not UGd. (In fact, I’ve been on LAS-LAX short hops where there wasn’t even cabin service in Y, so a lot of good paying for C+ would’ve done…)

    If the person in front of me reclines their seat back (not starting or partaking in a seat reclining war here!), I’m pinched in almost as much as regular Y. So unless I can grab bulkhead C+ seats or ones with only a curtain separating Y and F, I usually stay in the exit row. I’ll pay for a couple drinks and avoid the hassle — especially when my traveling companion may get split from me come 5/16.

  8. Rene, the other day I booked a flight from CLT to PVG via DTW using my GU’s for a trip in Oct. The very last leg from DTW to CLT was not open for my GU so she put in my coach. But here is the kicker. I thought we were not allowed to be confirmed in C+ until the 5 days out, unless we bought it. But the Diamond Desk rep said it was a matter of ticketing the booking first, then afterwards we can go in and grab a C+ seat. Which she did. Have you heard that yet?

  9. Honestly, how do you even know that people are actually “falling for this trick”?

    My guess is the C+ seats are most likely almost entirely occupied by elites and those without seat assignments on oversold flights, IRROPS situations etc.

    I doubt people are paying for this.

  10. I contend there are people paying for C+. But, they are only doing it once!

    When I get stuck in C+, I ALWAYS hear someone complain… “I paid extra for this?” or “Is the FA not coming back? I thought I was supposed to get free drinks throughout the flight?”.

  11. @DR. John – I think you are so spot on it is scary. Fool me once, shame on you but fool me twice (well that is not going to happen so)!

  12. Does anyone really believe DL these days ? Tricky Dick might be leaving but his legacy stands. I remember DL when it was a great airline and more importantly “trustable”

    There are some great Premium Plus products out there that is doable but Delta NO

  13. Rene — I have the option of moving up closer to the bathrooms on an elderly 767 300ER from CDG for $119. I’ve got a small $$ credit to burn, so I might actually do it. Let’s see — same seat, 4″ more legroom, misaligned window, outhouse smell, hmmm. Am I looking at it as an upgrade?? Not!! Are you right: NOT worth it at ANY price? oh, yeah!!

  14. I’ll bite. I’ll gladly take the upgrade and if I can’t get the exit row seat I’d strongly consider paying for C+ on flights > 2 hrs. I’m 6’8″ and standard seats just do not work. At least I get some air between my knees and the seat in front. So come 16MAY, gonna get interesting as Rene says!

  15. Hi, what about KLM, business class from say manchester,UK to Amsterdam, a free drink,? and newspaper, with a seat in the middle, free, that can cost 1–% extra for an hours journey, and econ comfort, is say $15 extra for row a bit nearer the front,. On international flights KLM, econ comfort is worth the extra, especially on the 747, if you get a good seat,

  16. To answer your question, René: no, you are not the only one.

    Comfort + is great as a free benefit to Medallion elite status level members of the SkyMiles frequent flier loyalty program; but I would not pay a SkyMile or a penny extra for it.

    The problem is that there are people who would — and apparently do — pay for it. You know that the point these days is for Delta Air Lines to make as much money as possible while offering as little as possible in terms of amenities and benefits. As long as passengers still think that their front-line employees are better than any other domestic airline, they will keep choosing Delta Air Lines as their preferred airline — no matter what else is done to decimate the perceived “loyalty” to the airline…

    …but the Delta Air Lines of today is not the Delta Air Lines of old years ago where blind loyalty was appreciated — let alone rewarded. It is not that Southern airline in which customers are part of the family. You will not see a chief executive officer take in a stranded passenger into his home like C.E. Woolman had purportedly done.

    Nope. Today, the airlines are about the almighty dollar; and Delta Air Lines is gambling on you paying extra for their product and service — and apparently it is working; because if no one did pay extra, Delta Air Lines would no longer charge extra.

    It is as simple as that.

  17. @Brian Cohen – Txs for your thoughtful comment (it got stuck in spam, sorry). Gosh when I re-read your comment I want to cry! 🙁

  18. I’ve considered purchasing C+, but have never pulled the trigger. I have yet to find it priced competitively. Sometimes for what DL is asking, the difference to buy up to F is not that much more. I really value extra legroom, but if I can’t fly F/D1, usually I can get an exit row.

  19. I would add that certainly some people see the value. My mother (who has no status on any airline) purchases B6 ELR seats on every flight. She likes the extra legroom and early boarding. She is going ROC-LGA on DL, and I noticed she purchased C+ on the outbound and return. Now, she doesn’t pay out of pocket for this, but in her mind it’s a good investment for priority boarding and a seat with more legroom. I would agree.

  20. The only time I’ve paid for Comfort Plus or Economy Comfort was back when the exit row seats were part of EC/Comfort Plus on the 767 TATL planes. Thank goodness now they are flying Airbus and exit row is behind EC seats. Last trip, I had the free exit row and moved up to a Comfort Plus seat to check it out and to be able to use IFE during taxi. It was cramped (I’m 6’8″) and I’d only ever consider Comfort Plus over the free exit row if there was no seatmate in EC.

  21. I’m only a silver medallion, so I can almost never access C+ for free not even 24 hours before. However my strategy has been, wait until I’m at the gate and listen for the agent to announce the names of those whose upgrades have cleared. Then check the app and see if any C+ seats opened up due to the previous occupants being upgraded. If I see seats have opened (and this happens very frequently) I’ll waltz on up to the agent and asked to be switched to one of the C+ seats.

  22. @Dustin – Oh sure for FREE I will take C+ but not middle seat and not paying for it! Well done btw! 🙂

  23. Aisle exit row trumps all ( except first class) for leg room. And, there is the added bonus of the person in front of you not being to recline their seat into your “space”. Comfort is a joke and anyone who pays for it is a fool.

  24. I totally agree C+ is not an upgrade in any manner, but there are so many people that seem to be duped into thinking it is. There are so many that think the seat is better simply because it looks different. The extra legroom is nice, but not worth the price they want for it.

    The vest majority of the medallions I speak to when I fly have no clue about the horrible change coming in May. They are shocked when I tell them you can get “upgraded” to a middle seat, which most frequent fliers I know feel is the worst possible seat.

  25. Question..

    Come May 16th and I a “free” Emergency Row aisle seat, will Delta automatically “upgrade” me to a middle C+ seat?

    Thanks,

    Gregg

  26. Before I had status, I would pay for the upgrade to C+ every now and then for a couple of reasons: 1.) I usually do quick layovers closer to the exit means I get off the plane faster and I’m more likely to have less stress about making my connection, 2.) I never check my luggage so the extra assurance that I’ll be able to put my luggage above/near my seat is nice, 3.) With longer legs, the extra inches are actually a big enough difference for me that makes my trip SO much more comfortable, 4.) there’s enough space for me do work on my laptop (I can’t tell you how often in coach someone in front of me reclines their seat so far that I can’t even open my computer screen far enough to see anything). I’ve always gotten the snacks on 900 mile flights, so there’s never been a “maybe” for me there. But I’ve also scored 4 drinks in a 2.5 hour flight before, so perhaps I just have had outstanding C+ service luck. As a silver, I get free upgrades to C+ about 98% of the time. Trouble with exit rows is sometimes the leg room is worse than standard coach (like it was in the 717-200 I was in this week and seat guru didn’t note that) and you can’t recline in some exit rows.

  27. It I had a shot at C+ for free, I’d stop paying for it, but as a Silver out of ATL, I’ve never been above 28 on the UG list, so I pay for C+ (unless the flight is 1 hr. or less). I do it just for the legroom, and it’s worth it to me. I’m only 5’9″ but I get claustrophobic if I can’t cross my legs and in regular coach, that is impossible. I can’t imagine being over 6′ and trying to sit in those seats!

  28. I sometimes will pay for C+. I have *no* status with DL and can’t see paying for F on a Mad Dog. Other than it being quiet, F on and MD88/90 isn’t even remotely first class.

    So why/when do I pay for C+? Orlando. You have more Kettles and gate lice there than anywhere I’ve ever flown through, so I’ll begrudgingly pony up the $ to board earlier in MCO and ensure my carry-on doesn’t need to be gate-checked, especially on tight connections at ATL.

    Do I think C+ is a rip? Absolutely. C’mon, at least leave the WHOLE can of Coke for the C+ people. Even JetBlue does that for everyone. There’s just not enough “benefit” to justify the price. Actually, what are the benefits again other than barely earlier boarding due to all of the elites/credit cards and more legroom? I wish they’d let you book it by segment instead of considering it a whole new fare class.

  29. C+ is a joke. They want to market it as premium econ, yet it’s not even remotely in the same category as true premium econ.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *