Talk me into or out of DL over AA

Old Nov 6, 19, 6:59 pm
  #1  
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Talk me into or out of DL over AA

Iím rdu based and ex plat on aa, but looking at downgrading to plat pro, equivalent of plat on DL. Iím looking at doing a status match to plat on DL right now

would really love recent AA refugees to give me your honest opinion of delta and why delta is or isnít better than AA please?

im really torn if I should jump ship for 2020 or stick it out with AA.

My travel patterns are either down to Florida, up the east coast or out to CA. Occasional international trip mixed in there but Iím looking at less international travel this coming year so although loosing AA173 will sting a bit I really care about domestic travel
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Old Nov 6, 19, 7:40 pm
  #2  
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DL has superior operational reliability and generally better staff/customer service, including IROPs rebooking.

Note however that DL generally doesn't do status matches, just (free) status challenges.
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Old Nov 6, 19, 7:47 pm
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I'm also RDU-based and have been relatively happy as a Delta Plat this year. I gave up on AA years ago, but if you fly to FL a lot, you will miss the direct flights to MIA, Delta flies direct to FLL though. I have found the rebooking and upgrades the best part of flying Delta. I very rarely miss out on flying 'comfort plus' or even biz class on most flights, even down to ATL. I also like being able to use the hubs of DTW or MSP if I want to avoid ATL or NYC. Finally, you have more direct flights to the west coast on Delta. I just flew their direct flight to SEA earlier this week actually.
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Old Nov 6, 19, 8:32 pm
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as with every other version of this question, this is largely a person preference. will you have to take more connecting flights on DL than you would on AA, and if so, are you ok with that? does the DL schedule meet your needs of when you need to be places?
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Old Nov 6, 19, 8:51 pm
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If most of your travel is to smaller cities (i.e. no nonstops), then for travel up the East Coast but south of New York, American is technically better - you have less out of the way connection options via PHL and DCA and less backtracking at CLT versus Atlanta.

For everything else, Delta is going to make more sense to you. Their route network is better out of RDU for nonstops, Delta's operational performance is better than AA, and your connection options out of Atlanta are insane (although CLT isn't bad connectivity-wise either).
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Old Nov 6, 19, 9:31 pm
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I’ve flown 6 AA flights this year, burning up my remaining miles. FC LAX-BNA-RDU and a RT business class RDU-CLT-LHR.
Observations - the AA flight attendants and agents were less friendly, with one exception. AA pilots didn’t interact with pax.
The CLT admirals club was dirty both times I passed through. Empty tables were uncleared; sky clubs used to be like that a lot, but DL has upped the game a lot, including better food. And there were no explanations for boarding delays in CLT; Delta GAs are in my experience pretty good at telling you what’s going on.
Based on that limited experience, I think DL is a better choice, at least now.
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Old Nov 6, 19, 9:46 pm
  #7  
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Originally Posted by Nuhusky View Post
Iwould really love recent AA refugees to give me your honest opinion of delta and why delta is or isnít better than AA please?
Do you really think this hasn't been discussed before?
Search <DL AA> in thread titles in the Delta and AA forums and you should see a handful of threads.
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Old Nov 6, 19, 9:50 pm
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Another very happy RDU-based DL PM.

With the addition of the RDU - CDG flight a couple of years ago and RDU's status as a focus city, it's easy to get to just about any major city in the world in one hop.

RDU gets pretty good planes from DL down here, SC is nice for the size of RDU (way better than the AC -- went in there for the first time in 2 years in September on an RDU - EZE J award ticket and couldn't find a seat to save my life).

Only annoying thing is for some reason RDU has a 45 min cutoff for checked bags (which makes no sense for the size of the airport and how quick things move) which is a mild annoyance on vacations when we check bags
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Old Nov 6, 19, 10:14 pm
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For me, a change in connection patterns etc is irrelevant ... I'm retired and fly on my own dime-n-time. Others need to consider flight time more seriously, but I'm all about the service. And with that in mind, I typically buy Discounted First....

DL wins hands down.
  • employee attitude. works wonders. DL has some bad apples and AA has some of the best, but over the course of time and day-to-day, DL wins again and again.
  • overall operation. DL has had some major hic-ups, but they keep you posted. AA doesn't realize the flight will be delayed until 15 minutes after departure and still no plane at the gate.
  • aircraft. Walk on-board one of DL's ancient Northwest 320s and you'll think you just stepped on a 6 month old plane. Board AA and .......
  • IFE. DL has video on most of their fleet. AA is ripping screens out. Yea, "streaming" content on your own device is the cool thing now, but I'd rather not worry that I can connect, get power etc. I'd rather just click the "play" button
  • Bag delivery. This is where DL irks me. They have a guarantee that if the bag isn't on the belt within 20 minutes, you get 2500 miles. I almost NEVER get to collect this . On AA, delivery within 45 minutes is "fast".
  • Lounges. Both AA & DL are crowded and seem to be drifting from casual elegance to IKEA Cafeteria AA has the same food at all locations (maybe a variation in the soup flavor) while DL has some "local flavors" and overall more selection.

If I had to think of some areas where AA is better, I think I'd be with minor things about the on-board food service (I'm talking First Class here).
  • AA on mid-range routes is more likely to serve a small snack plate (IE: hummus w/pita or cheese-n-fruit) where DL would have a snack basket.
  • AA allows meal selection at booking (if within the correct time frame) where DL sends an email a few days before departure.
  • AA is more likely to serve some warm nuts w/drink before dinner, DL might do a snack basket pass first, but is more likely to go straight to the meal.
Probably lots more to compare, but these things popped into my thick head first.
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Old Nov 7, 19, 5:21 am
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I always think, when choosing an airline, for your travels. pick one that suits your needs the best.
All airlines have they pro's and cons. along with employee's that can be nice and not so nice.
At the end of a the day, you are sitting in a metal tube getting to where you need to go.

(even though I live in a DL hub, I chose AA, because it suits my needs for where I need to go)
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Old Nov 7, 19, 5:55 am
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DFW-based Ex Plat who switched to DL PM at the beginning of the year. Iíve been very happy with Delta for all the reasons cited above, plus the fact that DL doesnít pitch credit cards inflight. The only time AA flight attendants seem to get enthusiastic about their jobs is when itís time to go to work for Barclays. This nasty import from USAirways drives me nuts, particularly when they interrupt the last 30 minutes of a movie.
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Old Nov 7, 19, 6:55 am
  #12  
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Thanks all. Feedback appreciated

what are the odds delta continues to grow in rdu? Focus city but not seen much by way of new long distance flights in the last few months

there was a Jax add but thatís far from exciting. How will the regional crew base impact things?
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Old Nov 7, 19, 7:02 am
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Originally Posted by Nuhusky View Post
Thanks all. Feedback appreciated

what are the odds delta continues to grow in rdu? Focus city but not seen much by way of new long distance flights in the last few months

there was a Jax add but thatís far from exciting. How will the regional crew base impact things?
My guess is RDU is pretty stable since ATL connects you to most places on the planet or the LAX flight gets you the couple missing like SYD.

The only thing really missing from is a direct to SFO or SJC (more likely IMO) -- AS dropped it but of course UA still has 2x daily on that route.

I wouldn't be surprised if once the A220 and A223 come fully online we'll start to see them in RDU on a couple of long, thin routes like RDU - SJC.

Personally as a former EXP and 1K (though wasn't really based out of RDU at the time for either of those apart from 2 months of EXP), I am quite happy with DL Plat -- and the 0-2 times/year I have to fly AA or UA, I am reminded of that fact.
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Old Nov 7, 19, 8:10 am
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[QUOTE=, plus the fact that DL doesnít pitch credit cards inflight. .[/QUOTE]

Wow, you have been lucky. I was just on a flight where the FA went on for about 8 minutes on the benefits or the Delta Amex cards. Funny thing is that a lot of
what he claimed was either "marginally true" or downright incorrect.
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Old Nov 7, 19, 8:29 am
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Originally Posted by Duke787 View Post
I wouldn't be surprised if once the A220 and A223 come fully online we'll start to see them in RDU on a couple of long, thin routes like RDU - SJC.

I wouldn't bank on it. What evidence have you seen that Delta wants to do long-and-thin? Out of all three major carriers, Delta does the least long-and-thin flying. United frequently flies regional jets halfway across the country (1500+ statute miles). Delta doesn't fly a single route that long with a RJ.

Delta will potentially use A220s in place of larger planes where they believe frequency and flight experience will drive PRASM (e.g. LGA<->DFW), but I don't see Delta starting any net new once a day routes with the A220.

Not trying to derail the thread, but also don't want to get OP's hopes up.
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