Delta Air Lines today announced positive changes to its SkyMiles program that hopefully both United and American soon match.
SkyMiles award redeposit and change fees are waived immediately. Also, there is no longer penalty for changing or canceling awards within 72 hours of departure.
You can access Delta’s page for the announcement here.
Here’s the announcement:
Delta Sky Club Memberships, select Delta SkyMiles Amex Card benefits extended further into 2021
No fees to change or cancel a domestic award ticket for all SkyMiles Members
No 72-hours-before-departure deadline to change or cancel a domestic award ticket for all SkyMiles Members
SkyMiles Members can now enjoy more choice and control over their travel plans as Delta is again extending loyalty benefits and adding more flexibility.
“From extended loyalty benefits to improving award travel, customers now have even more flexibility for upcoming trips and more time to enjoy benefits when they’re ready to travel again,” said Sandeep Dube, Senior Vice President – Customer Engagement and Loyalty, and CEO of Delta Vacations. “We are dedicated to ensuring customers’ health and safety during travel above all else, and these changes show how we are continuing to find new ways to be there for them as the pandemic continues.”
To give customers additional time to enjoy their benefits, Delta is extending benefits for some Delta SkyMiles American Express Card Members, Delta Sky Club Memberships and more – doubling down on the industry-leading Medallion Status extension and Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) rollover announced in April.
The following extensions will happen automatically in the coming weeks, with no action needed from customers.
Delta SkyMiles American Express Card Members will see select benefits extended through the end of next year:
- Delta SkyMiles Gold Card Members who earn a $100 Delta flight credit will have the expiration date for that credit extended to Dec. 31, 2021.
- Delta SkyMiles Platinum and Reserve Card Members with unused Companion Certificates will receive an additional extension to book and travel using the Companion Certificate by Dec. 31, 2021.
- Delta SkyMiles Reserve Card Members with unused Delta Sky Club guest passes will have expiration dates for those passes extended to Dec. 31, 2021.
These extensions are for eligible Card Members with benefits issued Jan. 1 – Nov. 30, 2020.
Delta Sky Club Memberships (that were active as of March 1, 2020) will be extended again for Members to enjoy through June 30, 2021.
Diamond and Platinum Medallion Members who selected Upgrade Certificates, Delta Sky Club Memberships, Delta Sky Club Guest Passes, or Delta Travel Vouchers or gave Medallion Status through Delta’s exclusive Choice Benefits for the 2020 Medallion Year will get to select new Choice Benefits starting on Feb. 1, 2021 (the start of the 2021 Medallion Year) or as they earn Medallion Status (like they normally would).
Additionally, SkyMiles Select Members will receive an additional six-month extension to the benefits, including any unused drink vouchers.
More Flexibility for Award Travel
In times of constant change, all SkyMiles Members can enjoy greater confidence in booking travel and more easily change or cancel their plans.
Effective immediately, Delta is making the following permanent changes for travel within the U.S. (including Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands):
- Eliminating the $150 redeposit fee to cancel an award ticket and the $150 reissue fee to change an award ticket for all SkyMiles Members. This covers travel on all tickets, excluding Basic Economy fares.
- Allowing changes and cancelations on award tickets before departure for all SkyMiles Members, excluding Basic Economy fares. No longer will changes and cancelations made within 72 hours of departure result in the loss of miles on domestic award tickets.
Waiving award redeposit and change fees is a positive development. I hope that both United and American match it.
Delta’s rule of not allowing any changes to award tickets within 72 hours of departure has always been arbitrary.