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Consolidated Delta Schedule Change Discussion Thread

Consolidated Delta Schedule Change Discussion Thread

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Old Aug 3, 22, 3:27 pm   -   Wikipost
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Delta rolls out schedule changes pretty much every Saturday, though the scope/impact can vary. During this time, seat maps may be locked out, may show the wrong aircraft layout, etc. while changes are occurring. If you are not traveling immediately, FT conventional wisdom is to wait until Sunday (or even Monday in the case of major schedule adjustments where things take longer) for things to settle down, then take stock of your upcoming itineraries to see what changes have occurred and what changes/refunds you may be entitled to.

You are entitled to a full refund to original form of payment, even for a ticket that was purchased as a non-refundable ticket, if any of the following occur as a result of schedule change:
  • departure or arrival delay of 2hrs or more
  • increase in the number of flight segments (non-stop to connecting, 1-stop to 2-stop, etc.)
  • change resulting in a connection below the Minimum Connection Time for a given airport (do a Google search for "site:flyertalk.com minimum connecting time XXX" with the airport code to find the relevant thread if one exists)
  • any change in operating carrier, i.e. operated by Delta mainline before the schedule change and Delta Connection after the change
    • it is also a commonly-held belief that a change from Delta Connection to mainline, or from one Delta Connection carrier to a different Delta Connection carrier, also qualifies for a full refund -- if anyone has documentation of this, a link would be great...

The airline would rather keep your money than refund it, so they will frequently accept any vaguely reasonable rerouting that you propose. This includes, by policy, changing origin and/or destination within 100 miles, rebooking +/- two days, and changing outbound/return date to keep the length of the trip the same post-rebooking.

If none of the above conditions for a refund is true, you may still be entitled to a free change -- in your trip summary there will be a notice about changes/refunds, and per the "conditions apply" popup link in that text:

If a Delta schedule or routing change has delayed your departure or arrival by more than one hour, you may be eligible to select an alternate flight at no additional charge. Note that the below conditions may apply:
  • Your origin, destination and travel date must remain the same
  • Alternate flights must be available, and you can only modify once as subsequent changes may result in additional fees
  • Voluntary changes to other flights not impacted by a Delta schedule change may result in additional fees
If possible, you may wish to try modifying your flights online first -- there have been data points where the site allowed a free rebooking even though it did not technically fall into the above categories. NOTE however that self-rebooking online is known not to work if you have (1) any trip involving upgrade certificates (whether cleared or not), (2) if you have self-upgraded by picking an upgraded seat that said FREE (instead of waiting for the automated upgrade system sweep to reseat you in an upgraded seat), this seems to inhibit self-rebooking as well.

Otherwise, suggested best practice is to research your preferred alternative rebooking beforehand (whether DL flight search, Google Flights, ITA Matrix etc.) so that you can speak with an agent already knowing what you want, and ask for it; this will be much more efficient than having an agent find alternatives for you.

Other notes/FAQs:
  • Even if you voluntarily choose a preferred rebooking, you have a high likelihood of success claiming Original Routing Credit since the original reason for the change was involuntary.
  • If you booked through a travel agency, including online travel agencies (OTA) such as Expedia, Chase Ultimate Rewards, etc. you will have to contact them, not Delta, to request rerouting if the automatic rebooking is not satisfactory to you.
    • There have been reports of an agency insisting that a change of 2 hours was required (per the "pro" site) for a free change, even though the popup on the DL site says 1 hour
    • You can sometimes get Delta to take over a travel agency ticket; this is subject to a $50 fee to take over the ticket, although sometimes agents decline to collect it
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Old Aug 8, 21, 6:31 pm
  #2101  
 
Join Date: Feb 2015
Location: ANC
Programs: DL PM
Posts: 1,180
Originally Posted by FlyerDigits View Post
Negative, when I search the page for "acknowledge" there are zero results. I should have also mentioned that the tickets were purchased via the Amex travel portal so I don't know if that is mucking things up. The Amex "manage trip" page already reflects the new flights.
It could just take another day or two for the system to self-clean itself and display only the correct/current flights. It sounds like to me your reservation is OK since the Amex Portal page is reflecting the new flights. I would wait a few days, maybe even a week (assuming your trip isn't within the next few days). If in a week it's still displaying oddly, I would call and have an agent manually "clean it up."
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Old Aug 8, 21, 6:50 pm
  #2102  
 
Join Date: Jun 2019
Location: ANC
Programs: Alyeska Choice Pass, AS MVP Gold 100K, Hyatt Globalist
Posts: 404
Thanks, GagaPilot, I'll check it again at the end of the week. We don't fly until November but we are on our third schedule change and I want to be proactive with our seats. The other changes didn't screw up the seating.
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Old Aug 8, 21, 9:17 pm
  #2103  
 
Join Date: May 2011
Programs: Delta PM, Hyatt Plat-ist, Bonvoyyyyyyed, Hilton $15 Daily F&B Receiver, Food Lion MVP
Posts: 1,093
Yikes, changes are still coming through now even for reservations I checked earlier in the day.
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Old Aug 8, 21, 9:21 pm
  #2104  
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Programs: DL Diamond, Aeroplan Elite 75K
Posts: 1,978
I could have sworn I got an email from Ed just last week stating, “Our network planning teams are focused on minimizing changes in our schedule as we gain additional insights into travel demand amid the recovery.”

What planet is he on?
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Old Aug 8, 21, 9:28 pm
  #2105  
formerly kjnangre
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: SJC/YUL
Programs: DL PM, Marriott Gold
Posts: 3,651
Originally Posted by DLASflyer View Post
I could have sworn I got an email from Ed just last week stating, “Our network planning teams are focused on minimizing changes in our schedule as we gain additional insights into travel demand amid the recovery.”

What planet is he on?
The Fall schedule was still a pre-covid schedule, a change was inevitable. Hopefully after this weekend, it will be left alone
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Old Aug 8, 21, 10:24 pm
  #2106  
 
Join Date: May 2019
Location: BOS YYZ
Programs: DL PM
Posts: 44
Looks like BOS-SFO nonstops are all 75S on the schedule. I booked an Oct. one upgraded with RUC to domestic F, yesterday the system rebooked me to D1.
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Old Aug 8, 21, 10:41 pm
  #2107  
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Programs: Hilton Diamond
Posts: 3,555
I was wondering what the hell was going on, I have two trips in the beginning of November that have already had schedule changes, this latest round makes them look very little like what I was looking for when I booked them
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Old Aug 9, 21, 6:08 am
  #2108  
 
Join Date: Sep 2017
Programs: Delta Platinum Medallion, Hyatt Explorist, Wyndham Diamond
Posts: 209
Had a D1 JFK-LAX flight in November on a 763 changed to a 764 due to schedule change Saturday. Quite happy going from an older D1 to the newer ones.
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Old Aug 9, 21, 7:26 am
  #2109  
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: NYC
Programs: DL GM, RIP SPG
Posts: 69
Officially taking my first non-Delta domestic flight in 10+ years thanks to this nightmare. Guess I'm a free agent now!
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Old Aug 9, 21, 8:03 am
  #2110  
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Washington, DC
Programs: DL PM; IHG PlatAmb; Hilton Dia; Marriott Plat; Radisson Gold; Hyatt Discoverist
Posts: 6,183
I know schedule changes are frustrating. But for perspective, Delta and United have made similar changes in the last week. https://crankyflier.com/2021/08/09/d...apacity-crazy/

I had a Southwest major change last week.

These are uncertain times. No one should be booking on any airline- particularly several months out- if they cannot handle the possibility of changes.
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Old Aug 9, 21, 8:18 am
  #2111  
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: NYC
Programs: DL GM, RIP SPG
Posts: 69
Originally Posted by Adam1222 View Post
These are uncertain times. No one should be booking on any airline- particularly several months out- if they cannot handle the possibility of changes.
I could just as easily rephrase your thought to read "no executive should commit $11.5B to stock buybacks if they cannot handle the possibility of macroeconomic events impacting the profitability of their business in the future."

I've absolutely ZERO sympathy for Delta. They expect privatized gains, and socialized losses. These schedule changes are to juice load factors and squeeze profits higher, not because they can't service these flights.
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Old Aug 9, 21, 8:35 am
  #2112  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Minnesota
Posts: 316
Originally Posted by Adam1222 View Post
I know schedule changes are frustrating. But for perspective, Delta and United have made similar changes in the last week. https://crankyflier.com/2021/08/09/d...apacity-crazy/

I had a Southwest major change last week.

These are uncertain times. No one should be booking on any airline- particularly several months out- if they cannot handle the possibility of changes.
Definitely. I had both directions of a Southwest itinerary changed up significantly (couple hours difference in each direction, and change in connection point in one direction.) Wound up cancelling and moving the reservation over to Delta since I couldn't find acceptable flights on Southwest and Delta had direct options available semi-reasonably on points. Luckily so far I haven't had a major flight change on the Delta side for the reservation.
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Old Aug 9, 21, 9:06 am
  #2113  
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Washington, DC
Programs: DL PM; IHG PlatAmb; Hilton Dia; Marriott Plat; Radisson Gold; Hyatt Discoverist
Posts: 6,183
Originally Posted by DrCordell View Post
I could just as easily rephrase your thought to read "no executive should commit $11.5B to stock buybacks if they cannot handle the possibility of macroeconomic events impacting the profitability of their business in the future."

I've absolutely ZERO sympathy for Delta. They expect privatized gains, and socialized losses. These schedule changes are to juice load factors and squeeze profits higher, not because they can't service these flights.
I'm not sure what that has to do with what I said; my point is that Delta is hardly the only airline adjusting schedules based on changing border restrictions and patterns in demand for travel. Feel free to hate Delta and fly the US carriers that do not aim to maximize revenue.
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Old Aug 9, 21, 9:34 am
  #2114  
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Chamblee, GA USA
Programs: SkyMiles PM
Posts: 249
my schedule change Saturday, Sunday, and Monday habits

  • Don't even look at anything on Saturday. Look on Sunday. Every Sunday, every reservation I have. If I happen to look on Saturday take it with a grain of salt.
  • On Sunday when I look scrutinize everything:
    • Date and time changes. Make sure the new dates and times work. If they don't work go find out what my choices are by trying to book a new reservation or using the Flight Schedules page on delta.com. Decide what flights I want. Don't try to guess what flights Delta might or might not give me, decide which flights I want.
    • Aircraft changes that cause my seat assignments to no longer be the seat assignments I want. Fix those online.
  • For date and time changes where I want different flights than I was given
    • Try to change it online. This usually does not work but try anyway.
    • If I cannot change it online make a note to myself to call during regular business hours on Monday. I do this based on my admittedly-too-small-of-a-sample-size-to-draw-any-conclusions experience that agents working regular business hours Monday through Friday are more expert. I have seen posts here to the contrary though so YMMV.
    • This past weekend I had a Main Cabin award reservation that got hammered. I was able to book a new reservation for the same amount of miles so I just did that and will cancel the old one when I get an agent today via text (reservation is for my older daughter using my miles so cancelling online doesn't work--some complaint about the wrong account--though I haven't tried to have her cancel online--that might work but I'm afraid to try that :-) ).
As an aside this past weekend's schedule change "hammering" actually resulted in better schedules for two different Thanksgiving reservations I had, the one for my older daughter, the other for the younger daughter, my wife, and me, the second one having got auto-changed correctly so no need to do anything.

Just sharing in case this helps anyone. Or if someone sees errors in my habits pointing them out would help me :-) .
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Old Aug 9, 21, 9:44 am
  #2115  
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Location: NYC
Programs: DL GM, RIP SPG
Posts: 69
Originally Posted by Adam1222 View Post
I'm not sure what that has to do with what I said; my point is that Delta is hardly the only airline adjusting schedules based on changing border restrictions and patterns in demand for travel. Feel free to hate Delta and fly the US carriers that do not aim to maximize revenue.
I'm just calling a spade a spade. Let's not delude ourselves and pretend this has to do with "border restrictions" these changes are to boost load factor. Are other airlines doing the same thing? 100%. Not claiming otherwise.

Delta has just been particularly aggressive in slashing routes. Coupled with the fact that I'm unable to make changes to lap infant itineraries any way other than over the phone, it's been an absolute recipe for misery on my end.
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