Delta has sneaked in another devaluation into their SkyMiles program, affecting one of the last remaining redemption sweet spots – using miles for drinks (especially Champagne) at the SkyClub.
SkyMiles members used to be able to redeem 1 mile for 2.0 cents (US$) value but Delta has now reduced this value to 1.5 cents or in picture language one bottle of Dom Perignon at 13,000 miles.
With the value of Delta Skymiles being rather low it has become popular among members who like to have a glass of champagne to redeem miles for a nice bottle prior to their flight.
Several blogs (such as Lucky where I first read about it) and members on bulletin boards already talked about the devaluation and the implications this has on the redemption options with Delta (and the liver of their passengers).
You can access the Delta SkyClub website here to find more details.
For comparison, this is the old menu showing the prices for champagne with the ratio of 1 miles : 2.0 cents:
And the new one which must have been rolled out recently but without notice:
This program was rolled out back in 2016 and quickly became popular with those who find the Delta redemption options for air tickets rather lackluster (for a reason) or outrageous in terms of pricing.
I’d argue that it’s a much better value to redeem 13,000 SkyMiles for a $195 bottle of Dom Perignon than a random domestic ticket or even several hundred thousand points for an international award ticket in DeltaOne, all while the same redemption is available for a quarter of the miles through Virgin Atlantic or Flying Blue.
I leave it to you to decide how to value Delta Airlines miles these days. I personally think that after all the cutbacks, devaluations and flexible pricing schemes SkyMiles introduced, redeeming miles for a bottle of Dom Perignon or Premium drinks might not be a bad value after all.
Delta has further devalued their SkyMiles program by taking on yet another sweet spot in their award portfolio, premium alcohol redemptions at their SkyClub. One mile is now worth 1.5 cents, down from the previous 2.0 cents.
Seems like Delta feels emboldened to pull the screws tighter and tighter. After all they have decimated the program over the years and people are still sticking with them. So who is to say the lemon can’t be squeezed a bit more?