I say “play” as there are reasons for all of the things I am talking about and none of them are against the law, but they can affect how much you spend so please be aware. So many times the things I blog about affect me as a Delta flyer and so I write about them and these have all happened to me. Let’s get started.
1) The price jump at purchase. I had a post about this and even the Washington Post quoted me in a piece. It is frustrating that Delta IT cannot fix this, but as comments have shown, until they do, just call Delta and let them give you the price shown PRE price jump. They will and do and keep in mind they can see each and every click you make on Delta.com.
2) The ETV price jump. This is one I just don’t get and it can be somewhat random and frustrating. There is a FT thread recently talking about just this. What’s this? If you go to book a ticket on Delta.com and don’t start from your “My Delta” page and tell Delta.com you are going to use a voucher, there can be times you get a lower price NOT using a voucher vs the SAME FLIGHTS using a voucher. So, always check the price first without the voucher selected and then go back and make sure the price is the same with the voucher. Worst case, again, call Delta and have them waive any booking fees for the call as it is Delta.dumb’s fault yet again.
3) The BOGOF price jump. I really hate this one. Now I love my AMEX 1st / business class BOGOF certs from my Delta AMEX Reserve “Airline Travel Card” but the thing is this – like with the ETV issue – if you look for a business class ticket without the cert you will most times get a lower price than with the cert in the SAME FARE CLASS (sorta). Uh what and why sorta? Most normal people think if you see some fare class letter and you later see that same letter again it is the same. Well in the insane crazy world of airline fares not so much. Some fares can be an “UP” fare. What is that you ask? It is not “really” a business class fare but a coach fare “UP-ed” to a business fare. I could go on but it would make your head hurt and I don’t want to do that today. Just know an “UP” fare is not the same as the AMEX BOGOF cert fares that are not “UP” fares but the real fare (sigh). Still confused? Follow the theme here and call Delta if you find a lower fare and have them match it with the cert!
4) The all coach vs split IT issue price jump. The Delta price match guarantee is just wonderful if you could ever find the EXACT same fare at another site for less. The problem is, like we see from point 3, you can never really know if what you are seeing in black and white really “IS” the same fare class as they may just say it is not the same and then what can you do. But back to point 4 and that is the fact that on Delta.com you can only search for coach or 1st / business; you cannot search for a split ticket of coach and 1st. But, as you can see in the linked post, Kayak can. And at times it is CHEAPER to book part 1st and part coach. Sad that Delta.com cannot do what Kayak.com can do. Maybe they can add another bag fee for us to get enough money to buy Kayak and plug in their software to “enhance” our customer airline search on Delta.com.
5) The search for more that 1 seat price jump. This one really upsets me but like the rest I just am kinda “used to” doing these things as I know the Delta system and how to work around the ways they try to “game us”. Yeah, we try to game them so I guess it’s fair they game us back? Back on point. You see if only 1 seat is open in some fare class, and you search for 2, what do you think happens? My brain says you get one at the lower price and one at the higher price. That is not Delta math; you get two seats at the higher price. So, you need to always search for 1 seat, then 2 seats and so on for your family. If you need to, put up with two PNRs or itineraries if the price is worth it to you. Or, as is the growing theme here, call Delta and get them to adjust the price for your family to the lower price it should be.
6) Award jump at final page. This one is not about paying cash but points. Most DeltaPoints readers know and have looked at the Essentials Tab and know how to search and FIND low level seats for their award flights. But, there are times when you do that and put the 25k legs all into one trip and the price jumps to 32.5k when you can clearly show it should be 25k total all-in. Take screen shots and then, yes, sorry, call Delta to get them to force the 25k award. Oh, and make sure they do not charge you phone fees as it is not your fault DELTA.dumb does not work right.
I think this hits them all and continues my theme this week about reminders. Please be sure to be careful not to let Delta “play” with the final price of your ticket – get the best price you can.- René
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