DELTA AMEX worth more than Medallion status for low level award seats?

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With a big HT to John “fti” on Flyer Talk, who will be speaking about Delta at the Chicago DO btw, reports that either by plan or by bug Delta is giving out lower award seats to those who hold a Delta AMEX card of any flavor. I always try to hold a Delta AMEX and plan to add my 2nd one with my next round as I blogged about this morning, but this is truly shocking news if AMEX gives you better access to low level seats over Medallion members.

I have an e-mail in to my Delta contact about this, but have not as of the time of this post had an answer. I will be sure to update the blog when I have more info. All of us have been upset by the fact that Delta has been making program changes and not telling us until after the fact; this may be the same type of thing or not. Time will tell.

I would love reader feedback on this so feel free to report back either here at the blog or at the Flyer Talk thread. And if this does come to pass as an “upgrade” to the program, it will be yet one more reason to have and HOLD a Delta AMEX card! – René


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  1. I’m not surprised, Delta [edit] out SkyMiles to Amex a long time ago.

    I work for a big company and all of my travel has to be charged on the company Amex card. I don’t get the luxury of choosing to put it on a Delta branded card and turning it in for reimbursement.

    I guess a guy with a Delta Amex card in his wallet is worth more to Delta than a guy with 82K MQMs YTD.

    And if this does come to pass as an “upgrade” to the program, it will be yet one more reason to switch to UA or AA.

  2. I honestly DO NOT believe this. I have held an Amex by DL for years, change it every 12 months bouncing between cards and levels and NEVER before have I got a different award level logged in vs not logged in. I have seen the award level changes over a matter of hours (people’s hold expiring, inventroy changing, etc.) but NEVER a difference from being logged in or not. Maybe the guy on the original flyer talk post found an Alaska flt vs the DL flight. After all it was Sea-MSP and that is an AS route.

  3. I got a Delta Amex over the summer and this is one of the things I noticed immediately. It only applies if you check the “I’m travelling” box. I toggled back and forth between two different browsers simultaneously and with the “I’m travelling” box checked I got a great deal better seats than without. I’ve compared logged in and logged out before as well. It’s definitely happening — though I don’t think it’s any better than what’s available to medallion status holders.

  4. It’s too complex for me to see any patterns, but I’ve been able to find lower awards several times by loggin out of delta (I’m PM) and logging in with a different browser or a browser after clearing cookies. Just one more thing to make the award search engine more difficult, I guess. I have to try 9 different times (3 browsers, each regular, no cookies, logged in) to know whether I’m getting the lower price. Not sure whether the amex card gave me some benefit when logged out or not.

  5. If it really is a bug that is providing this benefit to DL AMEX cardholders, why bring it their attention and get it shut down?

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