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Powerful Combination: Delta Platinum + Free Award Stopovers + Award Upgrades for GM+

Powerful Combination: Delta Platinum + Free Award Stopovers + Award Upgrades for GM+

Old Dec 21, 10, 3:41 pm
  #1  
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Powerful Combination: Delta Platinum + Free Award Stopovers + Award Upgrades for GM+

In the interest of not killing the goose with the golden egg, I'll pull back the specifics of my post.

Suffice to say that I realized the power PM award changes + award stopovers + domestic award upgrades... If you're a PM+, invest some thought here and you'll be glad, very glad you did.

Last edited by msp2msy; Dec 21, 10 at 6:00 pm
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Old Dec 21, 10, 4:54 pm
  #2  
fti
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I totally agree with you. It takes some thought and some advance planning, but I use the stopover feature on both domestic and international flights a lot. And I have met others on FT who do the same.

Thanks for sharing.

Last edited by fti; Dec 21, 10 at 6:40 pm
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Old Dec 22, 10, 1:59 pm
  #3  
 
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Anymore details you could share on the stopover part?
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Old Dec 22, 10, 2:07 pm
  #4  
fti
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Originally Posted by Astriker View Post
Anymore details you could share on the stopover part?
As always, price out awards one way for what you want at the low level. Then piece them together using multi city and see if they still come in at the low level. I often travel to AK with stopovers. Last year I went MSP-ANC-ADQ-MSP. Next May I am going MSP-JNU-YAK-MSP and another trip MSP-ANC-AKN-MSP. Basically you get a "free" add on if you plan it right.

There are even more powerful options available but too complicated to explain (not to mention the goose mentioned above).
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Old Dec 23, 10, 6:19 am
  #5  
 
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Originally Posted by msp2msy View Post
I realized the power PM award changes + award stopovers + domestic award upgrades... If you're a PM+, invest some thought here and you'll be glad, very glad you did.
+1

This combo is especially useful for flexible/discretionary travel that is near-term. For example, if you were thinking of visiting some friends on the other side of the country and decided last minute to do so (say, 7 days out), and saw a 25K award available. You could snag it for no fees, and if you wanted to change/cancel/improve it, you could do so... even if it was the day of your trip and your only reason was a failure to snag a first class upgrade on one or more segments. I do something similar frequently, often for business travel too, and as a DM, I get upgraded 95%+ of my segments. Sometimes I even get a voucher, etc. out of it. No other domestic airline gives you this full combo, albeit parts of the puzzle are available elsewhere. Few people calling SkyMiles "SkyPesos" take this into account, as most of them think that international award travel (where Delta is indeed weak) is the only thing that matters.
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Old Dec 23, 10, 6:37 am
  #6  
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I'm guessing the OP's prior frame of reference was AA. AA used to allow stopovers on domestic award tickets, but went to one-way pricing (May 2009) and now 3 legs = 3x one-way pricing rather than the old 2x round-trip.

So, be careful what you ask for when calling for one-way awards at 1/2 of RT pricing.
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Old Dec 23, 10, 6:55 am
  #7  
 
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Originally Posted by mooper View Post
+1

This combo is especially useful for flexible/discretionary travel that is near-term. For example, if you were thinking of visiting some friends on the other side of the country and decided last minute to do so (say, 7 days out), and saw a 25K award available. You could snag it for no fees, and if you wanted to change/cancel/improve it, you could do so... even if it was the day of your trip and your only reason was a failure to snag a first class upgrade on one or more segments. I do something similar frequently, often for business travel too, and as a DM, I get upgraded 95%+ of my segments. Sometimes I even get a voucher, etc. out of it. No other domestic airline gives you this full combo, albeit parts of the puzzle are available elsewhere. Few people calling SkyMiles "SkyPesos" take this into account, as most of them think that international award travel (where Delta is indeed weak) is the only thing that matters.
I can see how this might benefit some people, but it certainly doesn't dillute the argument that SkyMiles are essentially useless for the really valuable rewards. In my book, SkyMiles are valuable for three things:
  1. Emergency, last-minute travel. Even if I have to do the stupid "pay with miles" thing, I can probably get from point A to point B in an emergency using SkyMiles. I may drain a ton of miles doing so, hence "emergency".
  2. Paying for SkyClub memberships (and just why did PMs lose the complimentary Crown Room Club membership benefit anyway? )
  3. International First Class travel. Oh, ooops, I forgot, Delta doesn't want me to be able to use SkyMiles to enjoy truly premium international travel experiences. Since Delta only wants me to travel in Business Class on the "what's leftover alliance" of fat chicks at the prom, I may as well either shop around for a cheap I/M fare, or else suck it up and fly coach, hoping for an op-up.
So, as you can see, practically speaking, SkyMiles have only one real use for me - the 40K/year for the SkyClub membership, which I make up with my personal travel.

Until Delta realistically rectifies #3 (and we used to have partners like Singapore Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, Emirates, and access to First Class and Concorde on Air France), SkyMiles will continue to be <<<< SkyPesos.
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Old Dec 23, 10, 7:30 am
  #8  
fti
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Originally Posted by mooper View Post
This combo is especially useful for flexible/discretionary travel that is near-term.
Actually I find it even more valuable for those planning in advance. YMMV.

Originally Posted by jimrpa View Post
I can see how this might benefit some people, but it certainly doesn't dillute the argument that SkyMiles are essentially useless for the really valuable rewards. In my book, SkyMiles are valuable for three things:
  1. Emergency, last-minute travel. Even if I have to do the stupid "pay with miles" thing, I can probably get from point A to point B in an emergency using SkyMiles. I may drain a ton of miles doing so, hence "emergency".
  2. Paying for SkyClub memberships (and just why did PMs lose the complimentary Crown Room Club membership benefit anyway? )
  3. International First Class travel. Oh, ooops, I forgot, Delta doesn't want me to be able to use SkyMiles to enjoy truly premium international travel experiences. Since Delta only wants me to travel in Business Class on the "what's leftover alliance" of fat chicks at the prom, I may as well either shop around for a cheap I/M fare, or else suck it up and fly coach, hoping for an op-up.
So, as you can see, practically speaking, SkyMiles have only one real use for me - the 40K/year for the SkyClub membership, which I make up with my personal travel.

Until Delta realistically rectifies #3 (and we used to have partners like Singapore Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, Emirates, and access to First Class and Concorde on Air France), SkyMiles will continue to be <<<< SkyPesos.
You can certainly have your opinion but when I can get the following for 125K miles $125 (starting in MSP), I can't complain (much!):

Two trips to Anchorage, one confirmed in F
One trip to NY in Y
One trip to MUC in J

So if you can only use your SkyPesos for the above three items, more power to ya.
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Old Dec 23, 10, 7:37 am
  #9  
 
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Dont forget the SDC option in here too
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