I have to say I overall had a good impression of Sandeep Dube when I met him at Atlanta. He was at just about all of the events including the Freddie Awards. He listened. Really listened. I respect that, but as with all things Delta actions speak much more than anything else.
The above was part one of the e-mail that Diamonds got. You may have gotten a slightly different one depending on your status level, but first let’s see what this one said.
The same info was basically repeated on the lower half of the e-mail. But is the marketing verbiage true or did it make you giggle? The reaction from a number of readers was “rolling eyes”. I get them, but it depends also where you are and how much you are willing to game Delta at their own game if you will. Let’s look at the main points:
Most first class seats. On the “Truth-O-meter” this, at first glance, gets a “waah-waah-waaa” as we all clearly know Delta does not, domestically or otherwise, have a 1st class seat. Delta has OFCMB seats and none of them are a really 1st class seat. If they say “the most business class seats”, that would also be up for discussion as well. If you take a look at American that has 1st class, and business class and you add them all up, I am sure they will give Delta a run for their money. Now to be fair, I do like the new slim-line Delta business class seats (not everyone does). I like power in front of me and so on. Oh, and even Delta says they are harder to get this year (yeah we know). On to point two.
More time to upgrade. “Truth-O-meter” says NO as this also gets a bit of a failing grade largely because of FCM that is First Class Monetization. Had he said, “this year we will offer many less upgrades 6,5,3&1 days out so we have time to sell more seats cheaply as upgrades and you will likely see more gate upgrades than ever before in your history of flying with NWA/Delta” then I would agreed that it got an A+ on the “Truth-O-meter”. We must move…
More Miles earned. This ridiculous falsehood just makes me sick. No, Sandeep, most of top-tier elites are NOT getting more miles (just ask them – I do – they are truly upset). Everyone knows this is just a joke, and on top of that, even if it were remotely registering on the “Truth-O-meter” it would fall flat since we all know Delta has cut the redemption side for elites. If you do change things and do really reward elites with more miles (maybe like AA does right now). Next, how about fixing the hopelessly broken award page. Let me know when you get this done. 😉
Best in class lounge access. “Truth-O-meter” asks: what class are you comparing it to? If you are comparing it to Southwest, they don’t have lounges so you win. But compared to Centurion clubs you are not even in the same league. Now I know the Skyclubs are getting better so this one I think is the best part of the e-mail and the one closest to a pass of the above PR spin.
Now let’s move on to the e-mail that my wife, who as of right now holds no status with Delta (have not gifted her GOLD yet and may not), received and see how that one holds up to scrutiny.
Miles that don’t expire. Yes that one gets an A+ on the “Truth-O-meter”. It is good that we have lots of time to search for LEVEL 1 seats (See E7 & E21 posts for how to). We thank you Delta for this perk that just about no one else has. Well done. This is #KeepClimbing
More award seats. “Truth-O-meter” SUPER DUPER #FAIL and a monster “waah-waah-waaa”. How could they even send this to us. We know Delta is charging 2-3x what a ticket should cost and others in your management team are 100% fine with this. Oh sure 5,000 – 10,000 point one way awards are nice, but when they come with 750,000 point award tickets I say NO THANKS! This one just makes my skin crawl. If Delta is talking more coach award seats, again, no thanks, there are better ways to do that!
Easier to use miles. I guess this is sorta true depending on how you look at it. It IS MUCH EASIER with the “all new award booking page” to flush your SkyMiles down the drain at rates never ever seen before in history. But, I say, no thanks. I will stick to what works, that is, leg by leg and not use Delta.com to relive me of my SkyMiles at over inflated prices. How about you change the wording back on allowing mixed cabin awards and my miles WILL be easier to use.
More ways to use my miles. Shudder – oh my – Shudder. You mean like THIS? Yeah, spending my SkyMiles this way is a sure fire way of getting even LESS value than ever before. Here is an idea, make it simple to find LEVEL 1 seats and you would not have to come up with all these other worthless ways of depleting our points.
Maybe giggle was not the right word for this post – maybe crying is a better word. Our new VP Sandeep is from a strongly bank and credit card background so one would think he understand the value of points. He needs to be reminded that loyalty = value and right now value is lacking on the SkyMiles side.
Bring back things like stopovers on award tickets. Offering more LEVEL 1 business class awards (and un-hide the award charts). Fix the award page so you don’t charge us 2 or 3 times what the price of a ticket should cost. Now those bullet points would be an e-mail I would forward to everyone I know and would blog for all the world to hear.- René
PS – Don’t forget TIME IS RUNNING OUT to get the 60,000 point limited time < — LINK Delta AMEX offer!