It would appear we have our winner (s) for the little $50 Amazon Gift card for the current most expensive Delta SkyMiles award ticket that can be found by simply doing a search from A-B on Delta.com and it is:
That is beyond mind numbing and shocking and is for just one single award ticket in business class round trip.
I was beyond nauseated when the over 500,000 SkyMiles one was posted from NYC to South Africa and really did not expect anyone to beat it by much but, true to form, it would seem that Delta.com’s award page, being beyond busted and all but worthless to use, has priced a simple round trip as two one-way award at LEVEL 5 business class at the top of the still currently used award charts of 375,000 x 2 = 750,000 for a round trip ticket.
This really is so telling and gives us a bunch of very useful knowledge. Let’s look at it point by point so we can all benefit from it.
First off Delta.com does not understand it’s own rules, that is, less than 4 hours domestic is NOT a stopover and less than 24 hours internationally is NOT a stopover (Delta no longer allows stopovers that is, one longer than 24 hours). So, and I have done this MANY times now, if you search for this:
6:PM Paris to Amsterdam flight (overnight)
6:AM Amsterdam to Atlanta flight
It will most times price them as two awards even though you are CLEARLY inside the rules of NO stopover as you are only spending 12 hours in Amsterdam on your trip home.
How to fix this. I have posted and shown that calling, and getting a good rep, does work. If you search leg by leg, that is, city by city, to find flights and keep them all domestically under 4 hour connections and if an international connection is included then each flight less than 24 hours between connections the Delta reps will be able to plug them in and it WILL price correctly that is, NOT charge you for two tickets. Is it really that simple? Mostly.
Most times a rep is trained to just push buttons, that is, you want to go from Pairs to Atlanta that will be 300,000 points (for example). You then have to explain to them that you have found LEVEL 1 award flights and can you give them to them one by one. They will then sometimes balk (a notice to you to HUCB) but if not they will try to search one by one plugging them in. Then, they will say let’s price this and see what the computer says and the right number will (most times) spit out and they will tell you what you want to hear.
I have, in my quest to book almost 1 million SkyMiles in awards this year had reps over and over thank me SO MUCH for helping them find those seats and doing their jobs for them. Well, yes, we have to since Delta.com is working against us to find cheap LEVEL 1 seats (including hiding the award charts). We have to do the work ourselves (see E7 & E21 posts). We have to work to not let Delta over charge us anything other than LEVEL 1 award pricing (or lower if possible).
Will there come a day when we see award tickets higher that 750,000 that is, the day Delta really goes to a “true” 1 cent per SkyMile value? I do think it could happen, that is, I do think Delta could be “that” dumb and do that. Then again, maybe, just maybe, seeing insanity like 750,000 point single round trip awards on Delta.com has been enough to wake the airline up! – René