Reservations – Changes/Fees

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  1. Rene,
    Several weeks ago I booked a September mileage run Newark-Seattle-Hong Kong for an incredible $444. Applied my global upgrades to the SEA-HKG legs successfully, then when applying them to the domestic flights was told that could not be done since these were operated by Alaska Air. The original booking has listed Delta flight numbers with the small print noting AS operation.
    So what are my alternatives?
    -I paid Delta by Delta Platinum card for the original schedule.
    -There are many flights listed on Delta site that would work with my itinerary which would allow me to apply for the upgrades.
    -The AS flights don’t look heavily booked so bumping will probably not be an option.
    -Alaska Air has changed the time on the original scheduled return by half an hour but don’t know whether that’s enough to do anything for me.

    The Alaska Air wrinkle has me wondering what options I might have. Since the trip is still 6 months away I suspect your answer might be continue to wait and watch and see what happens. Then if nothing, call Diamond desk and see if they might be willing to change to Delta metal?

    Thanks for any advice you may have.

    • @Carol – Wait for schedule changes. If not, you still have shot at elite UG even on AS but read up on FT how to get them as DL elite.

  2. Hi Rene, have a trip scheduled for this weekend that I need to cancel. The flight looks completely sold out. Do you have any strategies to avoid fees? I am PM and paid cash.

    Should I wait until check in to see if I am offered a bump?


    • @Ed – The problem is you never know. It could go out full or empty. I would do this: call and see if they will cancel and wave fees and give you a credit towards another flight. They appropriate this and do it often. Then YOU must keep old ticket number to re-spend the credit later on (you have one year from date of issue old ticket)

  3. Matthew Cantu Reply

    Hi Rene
    I have a question regarding a reservation I have upcoming. I booked through third party (gov) on a flight to SOF and it’s all economy through Delta and AF. Last time I had a KLM flight I could pay for upgrades to their version of C+ or something better, but it seems when I try and do anything with AF such as upgrade to Premium Economy I cannot. Have you had any success in purchasing upgrades on an AF flight? Is this something that only works at the gate? Seems like when trying to do anything in the Skyteam alliance your delta status/miles are worthless to use for any upgrade. I know I am only a silver medallion but I would think Delta would allow you to purchase an upgrade on an AF flight or a ticket difference fee from going from economy to PE or even Business if the seats are still vacant. Any assistance would be much appreciated, thanks!

    • @Matthew – If offered it will be at gate on AF and KLM flights or in the airport lounge before flight.

  4. Hello Rene,

    I’m taking my first mileage run this coming weekend, PHX -> PDX -> NRT -> SIN and back on the same route. The PHX -> PDX and PDX -> PHX segements are on Alaksa AIrlines. I’m asking my question on this thread as I’m curious about how to get home sooner. I have a 10 hour layover in PDX on the way home. I’m assuming it’s because the only direct flight from PDX->PHX. DL has many different routes from PDX -> PHX that could get me home 5 hours sooner. When I get to PDX on the way home, how do I best attempt that? Do I chose a route and try standby with the gate agent, or call the PM line when I arrive and try to re-route through the phone reps?

    Second question is about the partnership (which I believe is ending soon) with AK. Do they pass along elite status to AK airlines when I booked the ticket on

    • @AZ Tim – Sky Club, GA, Phone or Twitter all should be able to put you on SDS list. I think you mean AS that is the code for Alaska. The divorce is final at the end of April. Expect nothing but nasty after that point (other than earning what was promised at ticketing).

  5. Hi Rene!

    I am proactively thinking about this: If I decide to reschedule a trip under an Irma weather waiver but my original flight included cleared RUCS would delta preserve the upgrade when re-booking under the waiver? If no, would they re-open the RUC or are they gone once I make a change?


    • @Max – If you make the change no. If they cancel or change flights maybe but you should be able to push it yes.

  6. I’m booked on a discounted Delta One/First flight from ORF-ATL-SEA-PVG on Oct 17. It’s a 767 over the water. There is a 747 nonstop from DTW to PVG that I covet since I LOVE the old plane! How can I get Delta to let me fly the 747 without paying thousands plus change fees? It has currently 24 Delta One seats available.

    • @Mclean – Unless you have had a schedule change or other such issue you can’t. Sometimes you can get them to wave change fee’s and just pay ticket price difference but it can be a ton.

  7. Rene, I read some of your FT comments about SDC by being able to buy up to the available fare class. I have tried this today for an outbound trip but both DM agents want to reprice the entire ticket- instead of letting me buy up. Details = L fare outbound need H. I have an M on the return but don’t want to touch the return. Is this HUCA or are the DM agents correct that I have to reprice at today’s price? Thanks!

    • @Gus – HUCB but could be new IT system causing pain as well.

      Update: Just confirmed with DM line that still works with new IT. Pay differance and wave fee and done.

  8. Rene, are same day changes allowed on award tickets? I am DM if that helps. (Guess I ought to know, but I don’t).

    • @Bill – Sure but same award level, same day, must be open. So… Good luck with that.

  9. HuntingtonGuy Reply

    Hi René,
    So I’ve been pretty busy and it seems I book a trip twice. Yep, bought seats and then used points to book similar but not identical seats for the same trip.
    As stupid human tricks go, I’m sure I am not the first person to do this…but, what is the best strategy to use when I call Delta and plead my case.
    To compound this, one of the legs ANC-SEA-DFW I booked for my son and used his SM # yet that flight shows up in my trips yet with his SM #. They’ve got me flying to DFK and JFK almost simultaneously.

    Just plead my case and hope for a good rep? Or is there a secret squirrel tip you can offer?

    I am a Plat, I carry AmEx Platinum, AmEx Delta Platinum and Delta Reserve.


    • Chris Carley Reply

      @HuntingtonGuy: <>
      That’s what I’d do. If you don’t like the answer you get, you can always hang up and call back. I bet they’ll help you out, though — especially because you’re a PM. Good luck!

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