I regularly dine for miles in NW's program. Would you consider the merger to be certain enough that I might as well join the DL dining program to get a first dine bonus that will add to my balance after the merger? Is the Feeling Grand bonus (http://skymiles.rewardsnetwork.com/bonus.htm?id=DL72&detail=y)of 1000 miles for a $25 dine the best that I'm likely to get, do you think?
Aug 7, 08, 10:06 pm
So, does no one care to advise anything?
Aug 8, 08, 4:35 am
I don't know how to evaluate "certain enough" for you.
I can tell you, however, that over the course of any given year, Delta offers tons of SkyMiles dining bonuses, while NW offers none outright (instead only qualifies dines to earn 5 points in their frequent point-colleciton-based bonus programs).
So if you only use SkyMiles Dining when they have bonuses, you still may get all the way to enough Delta miles just through dining during those bonus periods to get an award (which you can then redeem on NW if the merger happens not to go through).
And Delta offers other kinds of bonuses too. So much so that, in one year, I earned 45k Delta miles just by jumping on bonuses which were too good to pass up even though it's not my first choice or second choice or third choice or fourth choice or even fifth choice airline to collect with! 4000 bonus miles for joining through Starwood last summer, several thousand for getting a Delta Amex with no annual fee the first year, 1000 miles per car rentals during a few promo periods, etc. But sitll, a lot of those 45k miles were from their dining bonuses over the past year.
So that'll add to my 140k or so NW miles assuming the merger goes through. But just in case it doesn't, it more than enough to use a number of different ways.
And, btw, keep in mind that, assuming the merger goes through, which is still months away at least, it'll then likely take them a year or more after that before they can merge the FF programs. So they still may have separate bonus approaches all that time.
Aug 8, 08, 7:52 am
To join Delta just to get 1000 miles after your first $25 dine is not as good as it sounds, as you will only be earning 3x miles instead of 10x (5+5) miles with Northwest (Assuming you are already VIP status with Northwest and rate your dines).
If you have a $25 dine, you will earn 75 Delta miles or 250 Northwest miles, with the (250 mile) bonus you are +75 miles.
If you have a $35 dine, you will earn 105 Delta miles or 350 Northwest miles, with the (250 mile) bonus you are +5 miles.
If you have a $36 dine, you will earn 110 Delta miles or 360 Northwest miles, with the (250 mile) bonus you are even in miles.
If you have a $37 dine, you will earn 115 Delta miles or 370 Northwest miles, with the (250 mile) bonus you are -5 miles.
Any dine higher than $37, you lose more miles.
Any future bonuses you try for, you will still be at 3x miles with Delta. If they stop the Rate your dine bouns, then it becomes more favorable (3x vs 5x) instead of 3x vs 10x.
Aug 8, 08, 12:01 pm
Thanks. You say 250-mile bonus, shouldn't that be 1000 miles? So if I join DL and go to a place where I spend around $30, that would be 1090 DL miles or 300 NW with the rating. I've dined weekly in summer but don't expect to keep up the pace in fall (I'll be in Europe some of the time), so I wouldn't try to have 12 DL 3-mile dines to up my status for 2009 (I have it with NW). By the new year I expect we'll know if the merger is happening and what the state of the dining programs will be.
Aug 9, 08, 8:33 am
I've dined weekly in summer but don't expect to keep up the pace in fall (I'll be in Europe some of the time), so I wouldn't try to have 12 DL 3-mile dines to up my status for 2009 (I have it with NW). By the new year I expect we'll know if the merger is happening and what the state of the dining programs will be.
1. Having been with Northwest so long, where there are no WoldPerks Dining bonuses ever, you seem to not appreciate that this is likely to be far from the last DL dining bonus of the year! DL tends to have some sort of bonus most months of the yea!r (It's hard to predict when the next one after this will be and what the nature of it will be, although it could be quite soon, based on info in another thread.)
2. Given the above, the point of getting to 11 or 12 (has RN fixed that bug? they always say it takes 12 but give you top status at just 11!) is to get top status for the rest of 2008 (for the other bonuses coming up this year), not just for next year.
3. You don't need to do full "dines" to get your qualifying 11/12. You can buy a cup of coffee or whatever at a participating restaurant every few days. While the bonus dine must be of a specific amount, the qualifying dines for getting to elite have no minimum.
4. Since you're already with Northwest, but had to register a different card for Dleta, here's yet another way to get to your qualifying 11/12: On future Northewest dines, ask them to split the bill between your earn-to-NW card and earn-to-DL card, putting say $5 to the DL card and the rest to NW.
Although I too don't get ColoradoWizard's math, I agree with the point of his post: With a perfect $25 dine, you only get 1075-500=575 extra miles over at DL compared to dining at NW. That's something, but I wouldn't think it's worth it if it's the only DL miles you're going to earn before the merger completes. (For one thing, the merger completion might take so long that your DL miles would expire before the merger, if you did nothing else.) I think it only makes sense if it's part of a phillosophy of "from now on I will pay attention to all DL bonuses, and use them when they're more lucrative than NW bonuuses, if they don't cost me anything".
Exiled in Express
Aug 9, 08, 9:17 pm
I consider NW to be my primary program and have been doing a DL buildup in anticipation of the merger, I am not a fan but see it as nearly certain. Worst case the merger falls through and you can slowly feed the account until you get to award level. Delta will still be a Skyteam partner even if there is no merger.
Oct 3, 08, 1:51 pm
Thanks for suggesting this OP. I maxed out on the AA promo in Sept, so decided to sign up with Delta and bought a $25 gift card. So an easy 1075 miles for $25 or 43 miles/$ spent.
And this will count as activity on my Delta account since I rarely ever fly with them.
Oct 18, 08, 1:12 pm
When can I expect Delta to pay out bonus miles? My dine was on Sept 29 (for $25) and miles posted on Oct 7 (75 miles). Still have not seen the 1000 bonus miles. Has anyone else received this?
Oct 18, 08, 8:42 pm
The page, linked in my OP, says 4-6 weeks after the dine. I hope you made sure to register for the promo in addition to joining the program. They told me I didn't register, in spite of my clear intention, and they may be right that I missed that step when joining the program and moving a card over while preparing for a trip to Europe.
Oct 19, 08, 12:31 pm
Aaargh ...! I don't remember. I thought it said I was automatically enrolled. Just sent an e-mail to SkyMiles Dining. Guess I'll find out that way.