Why not exit January 2018 with a flurry of stunning bits of news and changes, shall we. One of the biggest ones is walking back, a little, the arrogance of the former CEO Richard Anderson when he chose only to “interline” with airlines that paid MORE than Delta would pay to carry other airlines passengers. United, being United, caved like a wet towel and agreed. AA said go pound sand. Well, after meltdown after meltdown over the years Delta has tucked its tail between its legs (it would seem) and is again, only under irregular operations, going to 1:1 put you and I on AA flights if Deltas jets are not up in the air.
All the details on this are not yet out and it seems like this will not be as good a deal for you and me compared to the UA one. That is, if just YOU have an issue don’t expect to be able to talk a Delta rep into putting you onto a AA jet to get you from A-B. I could be wrong on this but time will tell. My gut tells me if you are a Delta360 or a Diamond you may have more pull to get this done. But if your entire jet goes mechanical then I expect more flexibility. Give this one more time to see exactly what has been put in place.
The next one really is a MEGA WoW event (even if other bloggers don’t see this as mega). In the past GU and RU (Global and Regional upgrade) certs were only able to be used if both YOU and your +1 both burned one and both on the same reservation or PNR. All those rules are now out the window. You can even simply “link” reservations and use certs. Heck, you can even use them with PWM or pay with miles tickets and even, get this, with Amex BOGO certs (but then you must use 2 certs – one for each of you).
Folks, that really changes things. There can be times that you can work these new rules with amazing results. For example, if your company pays for you to fly biz and you wife / +1 joins you and you pay for their coach ticket. Then you link the reservations and use a GU or RU for them to hopefully get them up front with you. I could go on and on with so many examples but this is a sweet amazing change. Now as many have pointed out the amount of GU and RU space has NOT changed nor the ability for us to simply search what flights have GU and RU space so the fight to use these is just as hard as ever – I get that!
As a quick reminder you only have a few more days to spend your 2017 Choice Benefit (CB). Please, before you go clicking on stuff, understand what the 2017 medallion year CBs are. They are the ones you earned in 2016 for the 2017 medallion year that ends on 1FEB 2018. If you earned your status in 2017 for this year 2018 you have just over 1 year to spend those. You only have to “rush” for the older ones. You can log on to Delta.com and see just what year CB s you have spent (both Platinum and Diamond – Diamond get both fyi each year). Lastly, if you are spending the 2017 year CBs do not gift someone status as they will ONLY have the gifted status for a few days as it ends on 1FEB18. Oh, and if you do choose GU or RU certs and drop to a much lower status you can still use them for 1 year (even if you drop to no status at all). Questions on this, fire away below.
I have to touch on $DAL (the stock). I never ever buy or sell any airlines stock as a disclaimer but if you own any airline stock, including Delta, you should be paying attention to the price of oil north of $70 per barrel. If it hits $80+ it will be bad – really bad. Don’t expect that just because Delta has an oil refinery that all is roses in that business and that there will be big savings to pass on to Delta. Oh and I think the glory days of mega income from Amex is over with the constant devaluation of SkyMiles as well as the fare wars that keep heating up. As for myself I have already this year flown 22 segments on Delta and my price per segment is down about 10% over last year’s average (yes I am very frugal but still).
If you like the MSP Escape lounge and hold the non-Delta Amex Platinum personal or business card you have a chance to vote for them on the annual USA today top 10 list. I think any number of other lounges should have been on this list but I am a fan of the escape lounge and will vote once a day for them to win.
Why should we care if ugly United is resurrecting old CRJ200s from the Arizona dessert to fly again (more)? Folks,
Delta may never get the CS100/300s due to Boeing (EDIT: Then again, WAHOOO) and the real threat exists that Delta may, in trying to compete with UA and AA, also either bring back more CRJ200s or fly the existing ones much longer. I just hope the ever increasing pilot shortage keeps these horrid jets rusting in the sand where they belong.
Well can you believe the new Medallion year begins on Thursday? Will you end up higher or lower in the elite ranks? Are you going for higher or lower status this year? Also any other Delta news I missed? Be sure and leave a comment below! – René
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