How would you describe the best Delta Mileage Run ever? Let me show you mine☺

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SBN south Bend Airport delta points mileage run

I you were to layout the perfect “fun run” it would look something like this. First, would be great flying weather. Next, all upgrades clear. How about a fun person to fly with? Time to enjoy the experience. Oh, a ton of points and even a bump along the way to make the run either free or really discounted. How could a trip to “nowhere” like this not be fun? Let me tell you about my day last week.

First, I found, out of SBN, a trip to San Diego for just $302. That is an amazing price. I also let readers know they could join me if they wanted to and one did, Chris from Detroit who drove down to join me on the run.

Our route was simple. SBN-DTW-ATL-SAN-DTW-MSP-SBN. That, for the price, will give us a bunch of rewards in MQMs and Skymiles but I am getting ahead of myself. All of my upgrades had cleared before the trip other than the ATL-SAN leg and all for Chris, a fellow DM but one without the Delta AMEX Reserve card (yet another data point of the value of the card) had not cleared DTW-ATL but did clear at the gate. Detroit was a quick connection. On the next flight, in 1B, I find another reader (you all are everywhere) but we had little time to chat as he had to catch his next flight. Next time!

chair massage delta A17 skyclub delta points blog

In Atlanta Chris & I first went to the “F” club as I was under the impression the new snack and massage goodies would be there. They were not so we went over to the A17 club to try it out. Garrets popcorn, nummy, and 10 minute massages free was nice. You can sign up again and again if you have time. The reps are up from XpressSpa and run 2-7pm. There were also two reps compared to one in DTW last visit through. I really like this and when you compare the cost of even a 10 minute chair massage you can begin to justify the higher price for a visit to the club for your +1. Without this, and the other perks, not worth the upcharge.

Now in the opening I told you a perfect run would involve a bump. The ATL-SAN was oversold. We offered our seats but at the last minute were told to board. Ratz! Chris and I make the “walk of shame” back to coach but at least in my favorite seats 26EF on a 767-300 (the best coach seats on the jet). Then I get on twitter and this unreal chat via GoGo follows:

tweets with Roberto

What are the odds to meet a great reader, who I was personally REALLY wanting so to meet, happened to be sitting a few rows in front of me on the same flight. Just unreal. Roberto, it was SO great to at long last to meet you. Then, when I was back chatting with FA’s, I meet another reader on the same flight. This was an amazing flight!

AA lounge SAN airport delta points blog

Landing at SAN we had some time. There is a very nice Skyclub that I have never been to but instead, thanks to the 100k point Citi AA card, why not check out how the other ½ lives.

The Admirals club is being renovated I was told. Snacks just OK and nothing special. Service, on the other hand, was out of this world good. It could have been that we were almost the only ones there but still. Oh and guess what, two other people came into the club the whole time were there, and one was a blog reader, strange, you bet!

rene running into blog readers on a delta mileage run

I did have time to quickly check out the Skyclub but did not take any shots (getting sleepy at this point sorry). It is a small but very nice club and better than the AA one. Also in the Skyclub, I got to meet some of the band Switchfoot. They happened to be on the same flight, in 1st class, with us to DTW. What a class act these guys are and it was so fun to meet you Tim (and thanks for being a blog reader too) and all the other readers along the way as well.

fruit breakfast DTW skyclub A delta points blog

We had some time in DTW and I got to try out the fruit medley breakfast, not great, but better than the all carb other options. Also had time for a shower and it helped a ton. On to MSP and a short nap on the way.

crj200 from msp to sbn delta points blog

Then the real fun began. We bump off the flight from MSP to SBN (who does not do a happy dance when a CRJ leaves without you 😉 ). We reroute to get home at almost the same time via DTW but I end up bumping again in DTW. A double bump is just about the best trip ever.

westing DTW Detroit airport club lounge delta points blog

The results was a dinner voucher and a stay at the DTW Westin that I really like but less so this time as with most SPG properties most do not understand the perks of CrossoverRewards or even a Platinum SPG member. It did all work out and other than the fact that I had a small room across from the elevators as an SPG Platinum I did get some sleep! After peeking at the club breakfast offer, I used my voucher for breakfast at the Westin and then the manager was nice enough to credit the rest of the bill toward the continental breakfast option I should have been offered as an SPG Platinum.

So at last, a day later, I make it home. How did it all end up? Just about perfect! Let’s break down the numbers:

My totals for my SAN mileage run from SBN

  • Total MQMs earned was 6,498 resulting in 4.3CPM rate
  • Earned 14,621 Skymiles worth at least $146 bringing my net CPM down to 2 cents!
  • (Under Skymiles2015 I would have earned just 2,607 Skymiles as a Diamond Medallion)
  • Scored a total of $900 in vouchers.

Now I do not count credits until I redeem them (just a personal thing) so those will help bring down the cost of my next trips and I will share tomorrow how I spent one of the two. Overall it was just about, as I said at the opening, a perfect trip from my home airport. I had a blast, ran into many readers along the way and got to test many of Delta’s new amenities and even debunk some rumors. Also do keep in mind, under Skymiles2015, I would still have earned every single MQM as I did today. That will NOT CHANGE next year (at least at this point).

This Wednesday I am flying to Des Moines, IA and back for the day to try to debunk yet another FlyerTalk rumor regarding earning MQDs when you spend Chase Ultimate rewards points. I have blown 18,000 points just to prove a point – I can’t wait! – René

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  1. Nice work! I was able to score a bump this weekend too! When did Delta stop giving MQM’s on pay with miles tickets btw?

  2. Should’ve booked 1st! Interesting…never used PWM before, but it was the cheapest way to go on this this trip.

  3. How did the bumps payout Rene’. $450 each…seems like they keep trying to reduce amt of voucher

  4. That was a great trip. I like the rocking chairs on the balcony at the SAN skyclub. 🙂 Any tips on getting bumps? Your guide for bumping is helpful. Do you go to the gate early to get on the list?

  5. Why does Delta force you to actually FLY on a mileage run? I mean, let you “buy” the miles — which you are essentially doing — but let you stay home and stop wasting time flying all over the place with no other point than to earn miles.

    Heck, they could even re-sell your seat for MORE money.

    The whole thing seems silly when you/Delta could win/win with the scheme above.

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