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#KeepDescending Delta HOOUs gone as of today CONFIRMED! Plus, the real effects of FCM with Fly Delta APP!

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Rene’s Points For Better Travel, a division of Chatterbox Entertainment, Inc. has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Rene’s Points For Better Travel and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

delta boarding pass hoou have one on us drink snack coupon for elite medallion flyers delta points blog

I hate being right. All day reports have been coming in that HOOU that is “Have one on Us” coupons have not been printing. Was it maybe just a bug? Delta on-line TECH support was worthless and just told me to ask for one at the airport. Right!  Then I just got this from Delta Assist!

“I’ve spoken with a support area, actually, effective December 6, 2014, Sky Priority “Have One On Us” coupons will no longer be issued. Any coupons printed before 12/6/14 may still be accepted until the expiration date printed on the individual coupon.” – Delta Assist

I was so hoping that Delta would be improving the medallion program, not take things away from us, but I as I talked about what I expect going forward would be cutting more as money has to come from somewhere when you have sold everything there is to sell. Always know Delta has your “Back” – Pocket! 🙁

delta tweets

So many were upset when Delta took away non-perishable choices with HOOUs now just being gone – stinks. Many other airlines simply give elites free drinks when they fail to upgrade. Not Delta, they want to extract more money from their elites (they are ham sandwiches after all according to the VP’s ya know)!

fcm app upgrade

Again I hate being right. I talked a while back about how “giddy” the Delta CEO was about the coming up-sell choices Delta was soon to make. Then I blogged about the all out sales pitch on the Fly Delta APP ( never mind that the iPhone roll out resulted in tons of crashes today). The result will be less and less upgrades for elites. There really is nothing stopping Delta from holding as many upgrades as long as possible and selling all the seats they can at the 24 hr check-in time on the phone app. If you became a Delta elite for upgrades I think we are going to see a bunch less in 2015.

Lastly, I have also been told and seen about the web that something BIG is about to be announced Monday from Delta. Will it be something good? Consider the way this year is going – I bet NOT but would love to be wrong. At least now with Delta I always expect the worst so if something good happens it is an amazingly refreshing surprise. – René


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Rene’s Points For Better Travel, a division of Chatterbox Entertainment, Inc. has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Rene’s Points For Better Travel and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

René de Lambert is a contributing writer and the founder of RenesPoints. He is an avid Delta and SkyTeam flyer who has held Delta’s top Diamond Medallion status for many years and flown millions of miles.


  1. René,

    This is ridiculous! I have 4 flights next week and 2 are upgraded with tons of seats available for upgrade on the other 2.

    Not anymore!

    Calling AA in the morning to get details.

  2. René,

    How do we get their attention? I just submitted a comment via the webpage, but their has to be some other way.


    • @BFronte – Get ready for bad info and canned cut-N-paste response! Best choice is to send Delta via USPS mail a copy of your buying OTHER airline tickets because of changes!

  3. Nothing more than I expected from DL management. I feel sorry for all the FA’s, GA, and working DL people but DL is being run by bean counters not smart management thinking long term!
    With fuel prices what they are they should be falling all over the Elites to make them happy.

  4. I’m beyond livid. Im booking flights for myself plus 7 employees tomorrow for a job in PHX soon and I’m tempted to book AA. I don’t need the MQM next year to keep DM with my CC spend plus rollover from this year. Forget it. Delta are you reading this? Stop this crap. Just stop it. You think I won’t take my business and my company spend to another carrier? I’m not hub captive in TPA. MCO is right down the road. Expect a return receipt letter with copies of 8 flights on AA. Or US Air. Or Alaska. Or Southwest. But never United because they truly stink.

  5. hey everybody, the HOOU was a great benefit for sure (my favorite thing about flying Delta actually before I left them back in 2010) so that’s really really bad news. AA is now the most generous: they give complimentary sandwiches to Executive Platinum members. UA gives free drinks to 1k members (useless if you don’t drink alcohol, like me). Will DL really give nothing??
    As for the upselling of first class seats, I think that’s a good thing for everybody but especially lower-level elites. On UA people complain about it, but then they secretly buy the $100 upgrade 🙂 I wish complimentary upgrades were abolished and airlines would rather focus on creating a bidding system for upgrades, especially for international flights. And give out more upgrade certificates to their top tier elites. Having so many upgraders has made the first class product worse. Just take a look at business/first class on flights within China (on Air China, China Eastern, for example Shanghai to Beijing) to see how different it can be if there are no upgraders! You get a full, delicious full 3-course meal, slippers, newspaper, are greeted by name, all the things that they used to do in the US back in the day. And it’s not even a long flight.

  6. I should clarify that 1k members on UA just get a limited number of free drink certificates a year, something like 15-20, I don’t remember. I always give them away to friends as gifts.
    the AA thing is something I noticed on the inflight purchase menu: it mentioned on the menu that one snack (even a fresh, warm, perishable one like a burger) is complimentary for an exec plat member.

  7. Pingback: Delta Eliminates Free Drinks for Elites in Coach, Effective Immediately - View from the Wing - View from the Wing

  8. Geezes you all are demanding and self centered. It was a nice perk, but things change. I found it forced me to print out a ticket vs. use my phone… and for what, a drink I really didn’t need anyway? As a status Delta flyer turned non-rev I’d be just as happy some of you fly someone else. Less gate lice with their pretentious Diamond tags to contend with.

    • @JD – Wow! You have mentioned in the past your hubby is a Delta pilot. Does he share your feelings that Diamonds are pretentious gate lice? You are right that there will be more non-rev seats for you if many elites go to other airlines.

  9. Hi Rene,

    Why are you still flying Delta? If this doesn’t show you that Delta will continue cutting in other areas, nothing will. Continuing to fly them only rewards their behavior.

    Sending Delta copies of other airline tickets you’ve purchased isn’t going to change anything – you’ll get the same cut and paste “We’re sorry you are disappointed with our customer focus group tested enhancements” email that everyone else gets.

  10. is DL’s upcoming “big news” about Comfort+? is it their way to charge elites for econ plus, that has been upgraded similar to econ+ on transcon — add pillow, blanket, food (wrap+frozen treat). taking away the HOOU makes the pd comfort+ upgrade more valuable

  11. @JD, how did it “force you” to print out boarding pass? If you don’t care about HOOU just use your phone for boarding pass like many others do.

  12. Wow. I fly 60~80 segments a year, half international. Probably only about 1 in 10 flights will I be in the back and want to enjoy a beverage. I can’t believe this is costing Delta so much to impact the bottom line. Anderson is listening to 1st year MBA’s who know nothing about customer retention / satisfaction. They are really pushing their luck.

  13. I agree with one of your readers. I think we need to do something to get Deltas attention. I don’t mean just complaining. How about setting up a web site or Tweet site called “We’re Fed Up with Being Treated Badly” and asking for National News coverage.?
    We need their attention and concern over bad publicity!

  14. William Finger Reply

    Gate Lice? Too Funny!! Actually most hign-level medallions I have met are pretty laid back and courteous. Just a few (as usual) give them a bad rep for some. Feel sorriest for the Silver Medallions, their perks are almost non-existent now.

  15. Hi Rene, the hits just keep coming. Are you keeping track of the number of defectors? Perhaps your reporting to DL on the number of customers they are losing will be heard.

  16. I’ll tolerate most of these changes. I’m one of those silly drunk on MQM people. I have to fly to keep my status, so as long as they don’t change MQM’s to revenue-based, I’m okay. Or at least I thought I was. The minute they start taking away top-level elite benefits, they’ll lose me in a hot minute. I mean, AF/KLM/most euro carriers don’t offer complimentary upgrades. If Delta made ANY sort of step towards that (which…who knows…) I would be outa here and over to AA. LAX is my home airport…they can’t even begin to tell me that they’re my only option. They need to just stop RIGHT here. I have half a mind to MR to Diamond and ditch it now if that’s what they’re going to do. I have no problem canceling my flights for next year at a loss and rebooking with the competition.

  17. I’m also “drunk on MQMs” to keep up status. I am MM and have been PM for about 15 years straight. But in the end, if having that status doesn’t get me much, then what’s the point of keeping the status? I used to fly a lot of full-fare J to Europe/Asia, but now mostly domestic mid-to-low-tier fares. With the new mileage formula, I won’t be getting substantial mileage anyway, so if you combine that with minimal benefits for status, then the whole program is pretty much decimated for me. I suppose I’ll might give it another year, but I won’t make the effort to get DM for 2015, rather have the 30+k rollover MQM so I can combine with CC MQMs for 2016 status in case I decide on another airline in the interim.

  18. Corbett Kroehler Reply

    Remember when snack boxes were removed and we groused? We also said that if enough people were unhappy, Delta could kill the HOOU benefit entirely. Someone was psychic! Without excusing Delta’s change, I can tell you that I’m not a big drinker. If snack boxes never return, I won’t feel too bad about this. On the other hand, I know that Delta would like us to print our boarding pass at home. If doing so no longer yields an HOOU voucher, I see no point and will continue to apply wear and tear on the kiosks.

  19. Hm…. I left Delta once before when they had gone to the ½ MQM for discount fares. I spent the next almost 4 years flying on Us Air.

    I was hoping to make platinum this year, but two trips fell through and I will miss by about 15k, so not worth trying to do a mileage run. One would have been FLL-LAX and the other to Singapore.

    But if Delta is going to make upgrades harder to get and reduce the number of miles earned on a trip I might as well just start flying airlines for the price only.

    I am Platinum at Marriott, which gives me free silver at United and I have a Citi AAdvantage Gold MC which will give me early boarding at AA.

    So Delta I ask, what are you doing to make me want to stay? If Delta wants to reply to me on this, if they happen to watch the comments, @deltaassist can find me @goldsteingregg. I will be flying to PDX early Friday morning from FLL to take him to the audition camp for the Oregon Crusaders (A world class DCI drum corps). And assuming they give him a contract will have 4 trips to there before summer. I would love to give them to Delta, but may start my airline shopping sooner than later.


  20. As a Gold I’ve got nothing to lose. Spent $8200 on Delta flights this year on 48 MQS’s. Got 1 upgrade all year. Looking for alternate airline flying out of ATL. I will send Delta copies of my used US Airways tickets. I don’t care that I don’t have status with US or anyone else. I just won’t give my money to Delta in 2015!

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  22. I feel as if they are trying to do away with their loyalty program all together. This saddens me as I do enjoy flying Delta but due to all the devaluations I am looking into flying AA and others. 🙁

  23. My guess is the biggest losers here are those who rely on AMEX MQMs to achieve medallion status. They have no real option but to stay with Delta. Those who actually EARN upper-tier status with BIS miles can take their business elsewhere.

    Me – I barely squeeze out a Platinum after getting 30k MQM from AMEX each year. My BIS miles come from deep discount int’l fares, so Skymiles 2015 really kills me. Unfortunately, though, the alternatives aren’t any better and the Delta hard product is much better. Printed HOOUs really don’t matter to me that much, since I barely used the ones issued with the Platinum SM card each year.

    I am a DFW hub captive, but still choose Delta. The main reason is that they take care of me when something goes wrong. AA makes bad situations worse – every time – unless perhaps your are an EXP, but I have no hope to achieve that level with them.

  24. I have started the process of buying solely based on airfare. I do not travel any longer via air for work so the MQM earn is not there… This year, due to cancelled trips, I’m going to end up falling about 10K short of Gold (been Gold or higher for last 7 years)… I’ve decided not to bother… I don’t have the time for a MR nor do I feel like handing DL a $1200 no interest loan… Will I miss free domestic Economy Comfort or whatever? Yes. Can I live with that? Yes.

  25. dotti cahill Reply

    the HOOU deal stopped as of dec 1 i had printed out my boarding pass on nov 30th for the 1st and VOILA no coupon and no upgrade i’m only Platinum so does not mean anything… to them

  26. @Dotti: You could be right that it took effect for flights on Dec 1. I traveled on Nov 30 and received mine. Makes sense to be on the 1st and not the 6th, though not sure why Delta would tell someone it started on the 6th.

    Anyway, it wasn’t a published benefit as far as I know, and not a huge loss to me. The bigger loss was dropping the snack boxes from the HOOUs. 🙁

    • @Andrew – It was published by Delta PR folks under the OFFICIAL Delta handle on FlyerTalk as a Sky Priority perk.

  27. dotti cahill Reply

    @Andrew it makes sense what doesn’t make sense to to try to book a 3 or 4 leg trip on first class to have one leg only economy–esp when i checked seats and there are 3 or 4 in first class left??? annoying since i do not want to pay more to not get it all 1st Class????

  28. @Rene: Interesting. I only discovered it by accident one day and it was a nice benefit. But now I definitely understand all the pouting. 😉

    Anyway, most of these changes suck, but indicate a well-performing airline that can afford to thin the herd – and I think that’s a good thing. I realize I’m hardly of much value to them, so I’m thankful for the AMEX partnership which allows me Platinum level benefits, changing though they may be. Certainly more than AA will do for me.

    And if HOOUs are valuable enough to them to be cut, there’s probably a reason. For me, I’m happy it’s those and not C+ discounts, which I use regularly on Int’l long hauls. That extra recline is critical!

  29. Gee, I must have missed the press release from Delta!

    From this day forward, we need to refer to them as they should be named….

    Nickel and Dime Airlines

    and the new marketing slogan…

    ” we really can squeeze water (cash) from a rock!”

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  34. Wow. I’m a PM on Delta but have had to travel often on other airlines. Delta is by far the best airline out there and they really go the extra mile when things go wrong. Sure, the HOOU were a nice perk, but I’m certainly not going to defect from Delta because of their disappearance. There is no other term to label that strategy than “crazy”. DL will continue to be profitable and attract new business. I doubt many “leaving” delta over a drink coupon will be very happy with AA, UA or SW. Does anyone honestly think they will get better service on AA or UA? Just wait until AA is in full swing after the merger, it won’t get better. I hope you all find what you’re looking for in an airline. I know as a frequent business traveler, it makes a difference. Good Luck.

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  36. Pingback: Is it really smart for an airline to make passengers despise the airline? Let's review the #KeepDescending Delta & SkyMiles devaluations over the past few years. - Delta PointsDelta Points

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