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Delta Air Lines Plans to Make Sky Clubs More Exclusive

Interior photos of the Terminal B Delta Air Lines Sky Club at Hartsfield Jackson International airport on Thursday, September 22, 2016. © 2016, Chris Rank, Rank Studios

To “help preserve the premium experience,” Delta Air Lines is planning to crack down on who can enter the Delta Sky Club by reducing purchased memberships and increasing fees on invited guests.
Delta Air Lines will soon limit how and when travelers can enter their Sky Club lounges after the airline says their 2022 expansion “resulted in a record number of visits.”  


The Atlanta-based carrier announced new access rules for Delta Sky Clubs, cracking down on who can purchase memberships and when guests can enter without paying a fee.


Rules Cut Access to Elites in Main Cabin, Basic Economy Flyers and Limits Memberships

Most of the new rules will take effect in February 2023, coinciding with the airline’s new benefit year. Under the new guidelines, the carrier plans on only offering entry as a benefit to the travel experience.


To begin, memberships will only be available to Delta SkyMiles Medallion elites starting on January 1, 2023. Current members who are not Medallion elites will not be allowed to renew their memberships. Those who are a Silver Medallion elite or higher can pay for an individual membership at the increased rate of $695 or 69,500 miles, or an Executive membership for $1,495, or 149,500 miles. Companion members of individual members will be charged $50 or 5,000 miles to join the member in the lounge.


The cost of buying a membership for Diamond Medallion elites is going up as well. Individual membership and Credit Card Guest Pass access will no longer be available as a choice benefit starting in the 2024 Medallion year, while the cost of an Executive membership will increase from two to three Choice Benefit selections.


Entry will also be based on which cabin a flyer is traveling in. Starting on February 1, 2023, Delta Sky Club members will not be admitted into the lounge unless they already have the benefit from a qualifying American Express card. Gold, Platinum and Diamond Medallions won’t be able to access a Sky Club if they are flying internationally in the Main Cabin or Delta Comfort+ sections, unless they have a benefit from a membership or American Express credit card.


Finally, the fee for companions entering with a guest holding a qualifying American Express card will increase as well, from $39 to $50.


Move Comes as Sky Club Rolls Out New Features

The shift in Delta Sky Club access comes as the airline hopes to create a more exclusive experience for their most loyal customers and forward cabin flyers. New features coming to Sky Clubs include a dedicated priority entry lane for Diamond Medallions, Delta 360 members and Delta One customers, continued partnerships with emerging chefs across the country and a lounge occupancy tracker within the Fly Delta smartphone app.

Share your thoughts on the Delta Sky Club access changes on the FlyerTalk forums

hockeystl December 16, 2022

Standing in a Disney World-like queue to enter definitely screams "PREMIUM EXPERIENCE".   Get a grip Delta and increase spend thresholds for the AmEx crowd which is what's jamming the lounges over capacity.   So foolish to punish loyal Medallions.....

JumboJetPilot December 7, 2022

Simple way to make the SkyClub profitable - make it such that dollars spent in the club counts as MQD's. Suddenly people will be paying for their drinks in vying to make their next minimum MQD echelon. 

MitjaPod December 6, 2022

Bait and switch class action of all the FFs that already fulfilled GM, PM and DM reqs by this announcement

Monroe Wright December 5, 2022

Taking away the best perk (access to club on overseas travel).  Big disappointment.

Keyser December 5, 2022

International Diamond Medallion members will be the ones taking the biggest hit due to these changes. International members don't have access to the credit cards to get them entry & most don't fly domestically enough to end up using the lounge more than a dozen times a year. To force them to spend almost $700 for individual membership or use all 3 choice benefits to get executive membership is unfair given their limited use of the lounge.