Very good COACH “Level 1” award seats from Delta “hubs” this summer to England, Scandinavia and Europe

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Delta 767-300 economy comfort seats - Delta Points blog review (9)

The above seats are from an international Delta 767 wide body jet. Delta has updated the leather with a newer look but you get the idea. All have IFE or in flight entertainment & power for your devices. Most of the time, here on the blog, I focus on ways to redeem your SkyMiles for DeltaONE or Business Elite seats to Europe and beyond. Personally I feel this is getting real value from your SkyMiles. But take a look at just one example for comparison.

price to buy a ticket to lhr from nyc with money

If we look at buying flights from the New York area to London, England this summer for a week vacation we are talking $1,800 range in coach and $3,000-$5,000 in business class. Neither is really “cheap” but if either choice can be booked with “Level 1” (or even slightly higher) redemption we can find value from our SkyMiles and in the coach example we are getting nearly 3 cents each in value (that is a lot, by the way).

I thought I would point out that there is really is good availability from a number of Delta “hub” cities this summer in June/July/August. Just look at these searches for 2 people I found:

skymiles nyc to london 1 week

nyc to stockholm skymiles

Choose either England or Sweden from the New York city area for 60,000 or Level 1 redemption on a number of open dates for a week (or so).

atlanta to london skymiles

Atlanta, you would think you would have a TON of choices but the best seems to be England to score Level 1

msp to lhr 1 week coach

Same goes for Minneapolis. Think England and then consider cheaper choices if you want to go onward to Europe.

sea to lhr in sept

sfo to lhr

lax to lhr

And same goes for West coast folks, that is, Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles – England is the place to go to find good space at either the lowest 60,000 point redemption or a tolerable 67,500 slightly higher price. Also note the Seattle dates are into September.

slc to lhr

Salt Lake, like hub fortress Atlanta, England is for you and not as many choice dates at Level 1 open space, but still not bad.

ord to ams aug

ord to cdg aug

Chicago is clearly NOT a Delta hub in name or practice but I thought I would toss it in for Midwest folks and even though most of the dates to Amsterdam and Paris are 67,500 redemptions, look at the taxes – they are low. So, even though you are paying a few more points you are saving on the tax side so one to consider.

Does this surprise you that this late in the year you can find this much space at the lowest level award from Delta? I am very surprised I have to tell you, but then again I spend most of my time looking for business class seats. There is some real value here flying coach for those who would rather spend their money at the  destination  rather than the travel experience getting there!

Some other important things to consider before we wrap this up. One of the EVIL things many credit card companies do is charge a foreign transaction fee, that is, some 1-3% (or more) of each and every charge to convert your charge from whatever currency the country is using to USDollars. Please don’t use a credit card that does this. The Delta Gold, Platinum and Reserve AMEX cards <– LINK no longer have this fee and I was pleased to see it go. With the strong US Dollar we are getting, for all practical purposes, very good value against the British Pound, the Euro and even the Swedish Krona.

Lastly, regular readers know Delta now “hides” their award charts from us online but they still use them to calculate the price of a ticket in SkyMiles. You can find copies of those hidden charts HERE on the blog – René
Editorial Note: This content is not provided by American Express. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by American Express.

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  1. A few weeks ago I snagged two BOS-OSL via LHR in BE at Saver level and had a huge choice of dates. So Boston is another east coast option for folks. A great use of skyrubles!

  2. Thank you for the great news you consistently provide.

    It’s very helpful having updates like this at ones fingertips.


  3. I used 135k miles for my fiance and I to fly JFK -FCO in three weeks. We were able to get a DL non-stop going and AZ and VS coming home via LHR, which is not the greatest but we have plenty of time in between to buy some bacon crisps and cheese quavers. (priorities!) VS will let PMs and DMs select seats in advance, even in economy+, but you have to call their 1800# in advance to confirm, and we had to pay for economy+ for my fiance who is only SM. While I wish we were going biz I figure I better save the points for the honeymoon.

  4. @René –

    Typically, when you see a lot of good coach (LEVEL 1) availability, does that also correspond to Business Elite (BE) & First Class (FC) availability?

    Wonder if you would consider doing that post following-up on this one?

  5. I’m not surprised that low level awards are available. I’ve noticed that for other routes low level awards are available in June when they previously were not. Since I see a lot of empty planes to some destinations it looks like they are trying to entice people instead of flying empty. Just minimizing their losses if they are predicting less sales.

  6. I am sure Delta is trying to keep up their international passenger counts (airport & gates) and hoping that they can counter the latest trend of losing international carrying capacities.

    As Andrew G hinted, I am sure they are just looking for ways to help pay for the fuel and (let us NEVER forget…) flushing SkyMiles out of the system!

    @René – You looked great, my friend, on Fox News!

  7. I got a multi-city Europe trip (YYZ-PMO, BRU-YYZ) in July for 60k miles and just a little over 100 bucks in taxes. For July. This is a great deal. The only catch? All flights are operated by partner Alitalia, haha. Should I be worried?

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