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Delta Reinstates Automatic Upgrades — But Are They Clearing?

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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 Air Lines resumed automatic Comfort+ upgrades Wednesday. But I heard the process isn’t running quite as smoothly as one may wish.

That’s at least somewhat understandable, I guess, given the capacity controls in place.

I heard from reader “Bob” — a Diamond Medallion — that C+ upgrades for his upcoming trips were stubborn to clear.

He emailed me Wednesday morning and said, “’I’m still in main cabin for my [September] trip… I tried to move up to C+, but it’s only offering me the option to buy up.

Bob then called the Diamond Medallion line to see if they could help.

It took 45 minutes on the phone with [an agent] but I got seats in C+. The agent had no clue that upgrades were resuming today. He then went back and forth with the ticketing department. The agent never found the announcement of the resumption of the upgrades. I had to point him to it on Delta’s media release website. After 35 minutes on and off hold, the music-on-hold went away & he stopped coming back for updates. I went into the record on the app at 45 minutes. Seat assignments were gone and everything but C+ was grayed out. I was able to book the seats at no charge. I only asked about this one trip. I have another upcoming trip on which I’m still not upgraded.

Bob added that he heard from a few other Medallions in his circle. A few ended up paying for the upgrade (not something we’d do in most cases, but OK.) Others said upgrades cleared at the gate immediately before their flights. He also heard another received a battlefield upgrade to first class.

What to Do if You Have Upcoming Trips

If you’re a Medallion and have upcoming Delta flight reservations and want a Comfort+ upgrade, go into your trip’s upgrade preferences. Make sure you’ve selected the option to upgrade — and opt-out of the middle seat. (The middle seat option may be available for flights in October, November, or December, for example.)

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Also, keep in mind that some upgrades may not be available because of Delta’s 60% seating cap in coach.

Did you have any problems upgrading to Comfort+? Have you been automatically upgraded to first class? Please tell us in the Comments section!

— Chris

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.


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11 Comments

  1. Jane Kramer Reply

    More importantly was the plane jammed? Did it seem safe? Did everyone wear masks? What about the bathroom. Etc??? I’m debating flying to Florida to quarantine so I can see my 93yo mother. Or drive.

  2. Had the same problem described above, this morning. As of this afternoon, the future reservations hadn’t auto-upgraded yet, but I could go in, and click a C+ seat, and selecting that showed it was “free,” and that was that. Thirty minutes later, the upgrade e-mails came, so how knows….all’s well that ends well. 🙂

  3. I have a trip to Vegas at the end of the month (booked it on Sunday). My upgrade didn’t clear automatically as it usually does after booking and I couldn’t change to a C+ seat either; however, I was upgraded automagically this morning to C+ for the first leg. I was able to go into the reservation and choose a C+ seat on the return as well.

    • So I am flying to Nashville next week for a job interview. Return flights upgraded to C+ moved the ATL-FLL back to ER aisle as they gave me the wok dow seat in front of the bathroom. All middle seats are empty and on the 717 it looks like only the window is selectable on the 2 side.

  4. None of mine were auromatic. I had to go in to each reservation and click on the specific comfort+seats I wanted with companion and the charge to upgrade to them was listed as FREE.

  5. I booked a fathers day weekend Award flight Memphis to Phlley to see my daughter..im diamond and have all segments upgraded to C+ within 24 hours, fingers crossed for first class out of pure principal. Lol

  6. I’m a DMMM and my wife is GM and I can’t even see an option to move to C+ or 1st, the entire plane is showing gray, meaning no seats yet a couple days ago when I checked the entire C+ and 1st was open, for a fee like others are sharing. So the system is not quite what it used to be or supposed to be now. Regardless of where we sit, more worried about a clean, safe flight than anything.

  7. Christine K Reply

    A few days ago, I was sitting in Main Cabin for my September flight and Delta wanted $179 for the C+ seat (AMS-DTW). Today I was able to go in and select the C+ seat I wanted for free. Did not clear automatically.

  8. Didn’t clear any of mine on the midnight stroke going onto the 10th, but all of mine cleared this morning on the 11th. Heck, even my waitlist for global upgrades came through. Just be patient.

  9. I flew from IAD to ATL on last night and my C+ cleared when I had to visit the ticket counter about modifying my return on next Tuesday. FC is 5 people plus one flight attendant as the 717 only have 12 FC seats. FA is in one of the seats to do “social distancing” on the employee side. None of the PMs who were on my flight were high enough to get FC at the gate due to cut capacity. Believe the only people who will get FC is DM level and it will be based on spend/CC, etc. Mostly everyone wore a mask with the exception of when drinking/eating. Purell is making a lot of money from Delta as each passenger received at least 2 sanitary items (wipes and santizer). Upon arrival into ATL, i did stop by the SkyClub on A17 and it was packed as Delta only have a few open. The line for alcohol was crazy as the club will be the place to be for an adult beverage. Everything in the Club is disposable and a nice selection of snacks/healthy food options. Know this thread was about the automatic C+ upgrade but I wanted to address one of the comments and provide my recent observations as well.

  10. The automatic upgrades are not working from my past week experience being in MAIN cabin as a DM and MM last flight i was #1 for FC upgrade and FA looks good and he even called the GA ==no Upgrade with 3 rows of FC seats open I WAS #1 ON 4 OTHER SEGMENTS and the flights went out with rows of FC seats open .. another trip upcoming i booked all FC but ended up in Main on one segment…called DM line told i did not have the right class so no upgrade unless i paid $99 more to go to C- before I HUCB i asked for a Supervisor after 15 minutes more of waiting agent came back and said i could get a C- seat for free but i DID PAY FOR ALL FC SEATS,,,

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