Thinking of dropping AA for Delta

Old Jan 13, 20, 9:48 am
  #1  
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Thinking of dropping AA for Delta

Hello,

2020 is a year with a lot of travel for me and I'm trying to figure out what airline to focus my travel on. I'm currently an AAdvantage Platinum.

I'm based out of Miami so I fly out of MIA for the most part. MIA is an AA hub airport, so I always fly out of the D terminal and my travel is very convenient. I was doing lots of international travel in 2019 so I took advantage of the Admirals Club and Flagship Lounge access at that airport. Recently I got an AMEX Platinum card so I'm using the Centurion Lounge in MIA, which I prefer.

This year I'll be doing mainly domestic travel but very often. I'm flying between Boston and Miami primarily. On Friday, I did my first BOS-MIA flight with AA and was disappointed. Since I was flying internationally for so long, I took Admirals Club access for granted. I was granted access to the Admirals Club in Boston as a mistake and was then embarrassingly kicked out unless I wanted to put $600 on my card immediately for an annual membership. It was almost boarding time so it wasn't a huge deal, but I noticed that that was my only lounge if I were to fly AA. There are no other lounges in that terminal and the other BOS terminals aren't connected, so I'm SOL even with my PP and AMEX.

I'm flying this route with Delta in February and did the Status Match challenge. I was granted 3 months worth of Gold Medallion status with Delta which I can easily keep if I do 2 round trips between BOS-MIA. I haven't flown with Delta in years, but if the experience is decent I might take up the status match challenge.

I'm very loyal to AA and oneworld. I'm on track to being Executive Platinum with AA if I keep flying with them at the frequency that I am. I feel like having OW elite status is something I value especially when flying BA or LATAM for example, but flying Delta would give me SkyClub access in Boston that I wouldn't otherwise have. I don't think I'd get anything else out of SkyTeam elite status other than priority boarding and the lounge access (not sure if I'd be allowed in just for being Gold Medallion or because of my AMEX).

Not sure what to do. Ideally I'd want to maximize my AA elite status while maintaining status with Delta but that won't work forever. Then with that I guess I'll just book the cheapest flight with either, but giving preference to Delta when leaving Boston. Or flying Delta BOS-MIA oneway and MIA-BOS with AA oneway, but I don't know if that's the most convenient/economic way to go. Thoughts?
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Old Jan 13, 20, 9:58 am
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On MIA-BOS American offers much greater frequencies than Delta. In addition, they are flying a daily 777-200 starting in the spring, which should be an easy upgrade.
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Old Jan 13, 20, 9:59 am
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You could consider picking up the Citi Executive AA card. For a $450 annual fee, you get admirals club access + a 50k AA point bonus. For me, the frequency of flights would matter much more than domestic lounge access. For my domestic non-stops, I try to completely minimize the time in the airport and skip lounges all together.

https://creditcards.aa.com/citi-exec...rlines-direct/
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:06 am
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Id base my decision purely on flight convenience, reliability and comfort. Lounge access can be bought
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:14 am
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The OP should go with flight convenience first and lounge access second. The issue with splitting flying is would the OP still be able to make EXP by year end? Would flying DL mean a connection, which could be problematic in the summer time when thunderstorms roll in and out of both MIA and ATL.
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:20 am
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Originally Posted by ggonzaga View Post
Hello,

2020 is a year with a lot of travel for me and I'm trying to figure out what airline to focus my travel on. I'm currently an AAdvantage Platinum.

I'm based out of Miami so I fly out of MIA for the most part. MIA is an AA hub airport, so I always fly out of the D terminal and my travel is very convenient. I was doing lots of international travel in 2019 so I took advantage of the Admirals Club and Flagship Lounge access at that airport. Recently I got an AMEX Platinum card so I'm using the Centurion Lounge in MIA, which I prefer.

This year I'll be doing mainly domestic travel but very often. I'm flying between Boston and Miami primarily. On Friday, I did my first BOS-MIA flight with AA and was disappointed. Since I was flying internationally for so long, I took Admirals Club access for granted. I was granted access to the Admirals Club in Boston as a mistake and was then embarrassingly kicked out unless I wanted to put $600 on my card immediately for an annual membership. It was almost boarding time so it wasn't a huge deal, but I noticed that that was my only lounge if I were to fly AA. There are no other lounges in that terminal and the other BOS terminals aren't connected, so I'm SOL even with my PP and AMEX.

I'm flying this route with Delta in February and did the Status Match challenge. I was granted 3 months worth of Gold Medallion status with Delta which I can easily keep if I do 2 round trips between BOS-MIA. I haven't flown with Delta in years, but if the experience is decent I might take up the status match challenge.

I'm very loyal to AA and oneworld. I'm on track to being Executive Platinum with AA if I keep flying with them at the frequency that I am. I feel like having OW elite status is something I value especially when flying BA or LATAM for example, but flying Delta would give me SkyClub access in Boston that I wouldn't otherwise have. I don't think I'd get anything else out of SkyTeam elite status other than priority boarding and the lounge access (not sure if I'd be allowed in just for being Gold Medallion or because of my AMEX).

Not sure what to do. Ideally I'd want to maximize my AA elite status while maintaining status with Delta but that won't work forever. Then with that I guess I'll just book the cheapest flight with either, but giving preference to Delta when leaving Boston. Or flying Delta BOS-MIA oneway and MIA-BOS with AA oneway, but I don't know if that's the most convenient/economic way to go. Thoughts?
First, just to clarify... I assume you mean that you prefer the Centurion Lounge in MIA compared to the Admirals Club (not the Flagship Lounge), correct? In my opinion, the MIA Flagship Lounge is far superior to the Centurion Lounge, although I could see the reason one may pick the Centurion over the Admirals Club, except I hate the Centurion Lounge crowds. DL lounges are virtually always crowded, in my experience, by the way.

I also see a fair amount of value in OWE status, and it's certainly far superior to anything with SkyTeam, although if you're not traveling internationally, it probably doesn't make much difference.

I'm somewhat curious exactly what happened to you at the BOS AC -- could you provide further detail about that? You mean they initially admitted you to the club and later hunted you down and made you leave? Did they basically publicly shame you in front of others in the club and escort you out?
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:21 am
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Originally Posted by dickinson View Post
On MIA-BOS American offers much greater frequencies than Delta. In addition, they are flying a daily 777-200 starting in the spring, which should be an easy upgrade.
Just saw this, wow that flight also takes off at the perfect time for me. Do we know yet if the first class will be the lie flat seats like on the 767? I did PHL-MIA once on that 767 and was great for a domestic flight. Unfortunately I've had pretty bad luck with the upgrade list. I almost cleared from PE to Business on a MIA-LHR flight (first 4 cleared but was 5th in line) and that was the closest. I was #10 on the upgrade list last BOS-MIA flight. Hopefully becoming Plat Pro or EXP would help with that though. I hate that they added Plat Pro to the mix... give me EXP already
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:26 am
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Originally Posted by adunker View Post
You could consider picking up the Citi Executive AA card. For a $450 annual fee, you get admirals club access + a 50k AA point bonus. For me, the frequency of flights would matter much more than domestic lounge access. For my domestic non-stops, I try to completely minimize the time in the airport and skip lounges all together.

https://creditcards.aa.com/citi-exec...rlines-direct/
I've thought of this and will look into it, but I already have 2 credit cards in the US and I'm not a US citizen. It was a pain in the neck to get approved for the AMEX Plat because I don't have a SSN, I wonder if it'll be a struggle too with this Citi card. I know 2 cards isn't much but feels like a lot when you have to put in the work to prove your identity since I don't have a SSN to provide them.
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:28 am
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Originally Posted by beachfan View Post
Id base my decision purely on flight convenience, reliability and comfort. Lounge access can be bought
I found out I can buy day passes for the ACs. Depending on how often I fly out of Boston it might make more sense to get the annual membership. Just $600 that stings to spend haha
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:30 am
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If you move to DL, your regular AmEx Plat charge card gives SC (= DL lounge) access when flying DL the same day, including use as an arrivals lounge in airports where security lets you get to the door.

Your GM status (normally 50,000 status miles and $6000 spend required) also gives access to SCs and SkyTeam partner operated lounges when flying a SkyTeam international itinerary, even in coach or on award tickets. GM also can get you into lounges when flying bilateral partners such as VA and VS, but the rules are more complicated regarding who can use which lounges.

If you try to split your MIA-BOS tickets rather than purchasing RTs, be aware that you will pay two change fees if a trip is cancelled.
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:30 am
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Originally Posted by newyorkgeorge View Post
The OP should go with flight convenience first and lounge access second. The issue with splitting flying is would the OP still be able to make EXP by year end? Would flying DL mean a connection, which could be problematic in the summer time when thunderstorms roll in and out of both MIA and ATL.
I'm flying to Miami on Valentine's Day and had to go Delta because AA didn't have a flight that got me there on time, it either took off too soon or too late. I'm flying first class with Delta on that route since that's the only thing available. AMEX Travel rep did some sorcery to find me the last seat in that flight. Delta has quite a few direct flights but I wouldn't fly with them if it weren't nonstop. And I'm also not a huge fan of getting one way flights, they're usually more expensive in the long run and then I don't think I'd even qualify for EXP.
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:31 am
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I wouldn't necessarily think the 777 flight will be an easy upgrade. As a PLT PRO I've haven't cleared the upgrade list on the 777 MIA/DFW flight for the last 3 flights.
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:51 am
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I switched from AA to Delta last fall despite AA having a much more frequent schedule out of my home airport, ABQ. The bottom line is that I prefer Delta because the AA response to IRROPS was repeatedly a giant middle finger to me as a PLT. Having frequent flights from DFW to ABQ did me no good at all, if I was sitting in DCA pleading with surly customer facing employees about getting a seat on a flight that had tickets for sale, after a mechanical cancellation.

Having now flown on Delta for about six months, I have to say the ONE thing that I miss from AA, as a former PLT, is MCE access at time of booking. Delta does that wrong, treating Comfort+ as an upgrade for GLD and PLT that might or might not happen after booking.

saunders111
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:55 am
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Originally Posted by dickinson View Post
On MIA-BOS American offers much greater frequencies than Delta. In addition, they are flying a daily 777-200 starting in the spring, which should be an easy upgrade.
Not sure I agree on this. If its a widebody, a lot of FFs will target that flight as being desirable.

On the other hand, a 772 will have PE. And domestically, PE is sold as Y. Its as good as domestic first. Which means, for the most part, if I don't get upgraded on MIA-BOS on a 772, or DFW-LAX on a 789, its not the end of the world - at all.
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Old Jan 13, 20, 10:59 am
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Originally Posted by saunders111 View Post
I switched from AA to Delta last fall despite AA having a much more frequent schedule out of my home airport, ABQ. The bottom line is that I prefer Delta because the AA response to IRROPS was repeatedly a giant middle finger to me as a PLT. Having frequent flights from DFW to ABQ did me no good at all, if I was sitting in DCA pleading with surly customer facing employees about getting a seat on a flight that had tickets for sale, after a mechanical cancellation.

Having now flown on Delta for about six months, I have to say the ONE thing that I miss from AA, as a former PLT, is MCE access at time of booking. Delta does that wrong, treating Comfort+ as an upgrade for GLD and PLT that might or might not happen after booking.

saunders111
The OP is considering buying an AC membership. I've found that the AC staff will be very proactive in helping with re-routes compared to a TA or GA that just wants you to go away and accept whatever you are being told. It's AC staff that will make a telephone call to make something happen. Doing your own research helps them help you. The AC staff can also find out the true story behind a mechanical delay other than the detail less story you get from a GA.
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