Reap What You Sow

Old Mar 14, 20, 5:25 pm
  #1  
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Reap What You Sow

Am I the only one that is wondering if Delta is regretting cutting their elite member benefits, making it harder to reach status, cutting how many miles members earn, while increasing the award charts? As elites and their money departed for greener pastures over the last few years, (me to Alaska and others became "free agents") Delta can not depend on enough elites to save the day. Sure, when times are good elites are redundant and costly. During times like these, we are worth our weight in gold. Delta and other legacy carriers will be fighting each other for customers using low fares (decreasing margins) instead of depending on elite member loyalty (elites like me fly the same airline regardless of price).

I am giddy with anticipation of Delta's downfall. Airlines that actually like their "elites" can pick up the pieces, pennies on the dollar. Alaska has a benefit that no other airline has; it has the state of Alaska locked up. Most of the state depends on air carriers (everything and everyone has to be flown in) and Alaska is the only game in town in every small town and village, except the largest cities. Even in those large cities, Alaska is the preferred carrier of the people because they value their members. Alaska can survive and actually thrive in this market. No matter the economy, people need to eat and have supplies. I just hope there is no bailout. Delta can reap what it sowed.

Is this mean spirited? Yep. Delta deserves what it earned. In the good times, us elites were a luxury you did not think you needed.
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Old Mar 14, 20, 5:30 pm
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Originally Posted by iowaaggie View Post
Am I the only one that is wondering if Delta is regretting cutting their elite member benefits, making it harder to reach status, cutting how many miles members earn, while increasing the award charts? As elites and their money departed for greener pastures over the last few years, (me to Alaska and others became "free agents") Delta can not depend on enough elites to save the day. Sure, when times are good elites are redundant and costly. During times like these, we are worth our weight in gold. Delta and other legacy carriers will be fighting each other for customers using low fares (decreasing margins) instead of depending on elite member loyalty (elites like me fly the same airline regardless of price).

I am giddy with anticipation of Delta's downfall. Airlines that actually like their "elites" can pick up the pieces, pennies on the dollar. Alaska has a benefit that no other airline has; it has the state of Alaska locked up. Most of the state depends on air carriers (everything and everyone has to be flown in) and Alaska is the only game in town in every small town and village, except the largest cities. Even in those large cities, Alaska is the preferred carrier of the people because they value their members. Alaska can survive and actually thrive in this market. No matter the economy, people need to eat and have supplies. I just hope there is no bailout. Delta can reap what it sowed.

Is this mean spirited? Yep. Delta deserves what it earned. In the good times, us elites were a luxury you did not think you needed.
Not at all and the airline that I really feel is regretting their decision is UA. What a terrible time to completely change status requirements to be completely based on spend!
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Old Mar 14, 20, 5:45 pm
  #3  
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Originally Posted by MCO Flyer View Post
Not at all and the airline that I really feel is regretting their decision is UA. What a terrible time to completely change status requirements to be completely based on spend!
DL is all based on spend too? Sure MQMs but you still need MQD
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Old Mar 14, 20, 5:45 pm
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"I am giddy with anticipation of Delta's downfall."
"Is this mean spirited? Yep."


"Location: Alaska; Programs: Delta - Diamond; Choice Hotels - Diamond, Former AS MVP Gold-75"

What exactly did Delta do to piss you off so much? You don't sound mean spirited, you sound bitter.
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Old Mar 14, 20, 5:45 pm
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Originally Posted by iowaaggie View Post
Am I the only one that is wondering if Delta is regretting cutting their elite member benefits, making it harder to reach status, cutting how many miles members earn, while increasing the award charts? As elites and their money departed for greener pastures over the last few years, (me to Alaska and others became "free agents") Delta can not depend on enough elites to save the day. Sure, when times are good elites are redundant and costly. During times like these, we are worth our weight in gold. Delta and other legacy carriers will be fighting each other for customers using low fares (decreasing margins) instead of depending on elite member loyalty (elites like me fly the same airline regardless of price).

I am giddy with anticipation of Delta's downfall. Airlines that actually like their "elites" can pick up the pieces, pennies on the dollar. Alaska has a benefit that no other airline has; it has the state of Alaska locked up. Most of the state depends on air carriers (everything and everyone has to be flown in) and Alaska is the only game in town in every small town and village, except the largest cities. Even in those large cities, Alaska is the preferred carrier of the people because they value their members. Alaska can survive and actually thrive in this market. No matter the economy, people need to eat and have supplies. I just hope there is no bailout. Delta can reap what it sowed.

Is this mean spirited? Yep. Delta deserves what it earned. In the good times, us elites were a luxury you did not think you needed.
I assure you DL has more then enough elites. My upgrade percentage numbers as a DM show that.
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Old Mar 14, 20, 5:56 pm
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Delta has more elites than ever, and they probably gained more elites in the future by leading with their lax cancellation/refund policies. So the premise of the OP is off
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Old Mar 14, 20, 6:09 pm
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Spot on OP. You absolutely nailed it.

I can use my GUCs less than 50% of the flights and there needs to be accountability for that. Hopefully pilots and flight attendants lose their jobs and end up homeless over this. It is the only just outcome for Delta not meeting my entitled and unreasonable expectations.

Last edited by SecurityTheaterFanClubPresident; Mar 14, 20 at 6:09 pm Reason: bad spelling
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Old Mar 14, 20, 6:20 pm
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DL has plenty of elites. If, as it is reporting, it is cutting capacity to match demand, you should expect roughly the same pricing, upgrade percentages, and other algorithm-based events. The same will be true for UA & AA. So, the people at UA & AA swearing that they are gleeful as well, either also won't jump ship or they will head over to DL while you head over to the same mess elsewhere.

Face it, as an individual, you have zero market power and savvy travelers in this crisis (if they are traveling at all) are looking at price & convenience.
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Old Mar 14, 20, 6:21 pm
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Originally Posted by vincentharris View Post
DL is all based on spend too? Sure MQMs but you still need MQD
Well on DL, there is the MQD waiver. UA this year not only removed their version of the MQD waiver upped all the speed requirements needed for this year which in return already upset many longtime UA fliers. Id assume UA has to do something for helping those impacted
to reach status this year or they could risk loosing even more elite fliers once this is all said and done.
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Old Mar 14, 20, 6:22 pm
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Delta is overflowing with elites from both AA/UA. If you think the state of Alaska is going to carry AS in it's current size, I don't know what to say. There's a reason AS branched out and built bigger hubs at SEA/PDX. Out of all the US airlines, I'd say WN & DL are the safest bet with survivability in these times.
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Old Mar 14, 20, 6:32 pm
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Originally Posted by iowaaggie View Post
Am I the only one that is wondering if Delta is regretting cutting their elite member benefits, making it harder to reach status, cutting how many miles members earn, while increasing the award charts? As elites and their money departed for greener pastures over the last few years, (me to Alaska and others became "free agents") Delta can not depend on enough elites to save the day. Sure, when times are good elites are redundant and costly. During times like these, we are worth our weight in gold. Delta and other legacy carriers will be fighting each other for customers using low fares (decreasing margins) instead of depending on elite member loyalty (elites like me fly the same airline regardless of price).

I am giddy with anticipation of Delta's downfall. Airlines that actually like their "elites" can pick up the pieces, pennies on the dollar. Alaska has a benefit that no other airline has; it has the state of Alaska locked up. Most of the state depends on air carriers (everything and everyone has to be flown in) and Alaska is the only game in town in every small town and village, except the largest cities. Even in those large cities, Alaska is the preferred carrier of the people because they value their members. Alaska can survive and actually thrive in this market. No matter the economy, people need to eat and have supplies. I just hope there is no bailout. Delta can reap what it sowed.

Is this mean spirited? Yep. Delta deserves what it earned. In the good times, us elites were a luxury you did not think you needed.
I doubt that Delta is regretting it. We'll likely see some sort of easing of requirements in a LOT of places for this year (VS just extended status renewal deadlines by six months, for example), and DL might well be among them. There are a few models: I've seen at least one hotel chain dropping their night requirements by about a third (I think it was IHG) while Cathay Pacific is currently partially crediting current elite members with status credits based on their existing tier. Based on this, Delta could easily choose any of the following options, depending on how long the disruption lasts:
(1) Drop status qualification requirements by 10-20%
(2) "Comp" existing elites, say, 10% of tier requirements for each month of "gross disruption" in the US (not a legal term, just a sense of what we'd be looking at)
(3) Partially "rotate" the mileage year into 2021
(4) Simply roll everyone forward at existing status for a year (possibly with some asterisks on Diamonds)
(5) Initiate a Q3/Q4 "push" promotion to try and drive traffic (extra MQMs/MQDs for flights in the fall, for example)
(6) Fiddle with the credit cards so as to help with MQMs or make the MQD waiver a hair more accessible

(4) is basically a nuclear option but it is "clean" and would probably sow some goodwill. (1) is probably the easiest to administer while (5) has decent commercial prospects (especially since persistently low fares might cause status renewal problems for folks without the card). (2) is something of a variation on (1), if a bit more of a pain to administer, but I could see it. (3) is probably the least likely because of the hassle of doing so logistically. (6) seems somewhat unlikely, but it might end up being p

My guess is that if travel restrictions are extending into April or May, we see (1) or (2). If it carries into June, the chances of (4) start rising. (5) seems probable/plausible regardless, particularly if things are running bad for a while.

Edit: By the way, if anyone is going to bleed out from the gut on this it's gonna be American, not Delta, if only because AA was looking like it was in mounting trouble before this hit (the Latin America mess particularly leaps to mind). DL's balance sheet is stronger, in particular.
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Last edited by GrayAnderson; Mar 14, 20 at 6:39 pm
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Old Mar 14, 20, 6:35 pm
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Traveling to Alaska isn't the same as traveling to Europe, Asia, Australia, etc.
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Old Mar 14, 20, 6:37 pm
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Originally Posted by iowaaggie View Post
I am giddy with anticipation of Delta's downfall.

Good for you. Reap what you sow indeed. Perhaps one day you will be in dire circumstances beyond your control and will wonder why people are giddy at your downfall.
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Old Mar 14, 20, 7:05 pm
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Is DL regretting a global crisis that has halted air travel and left millions (maybe even billions at this point) quarantined in their home / city / state / country and has caused the cancellation of thousands of events and grounded millions of corporate travelers?

Are you telling me if DL had been really generous with elites, those elites would suddenly be defying those government orders and keeping the planes in the air?

I believe that AA is in the weakest position here, but grounding 40% of the fleet while air travel drops by 70% or more is enough to kill even the strongest airline so anyone who assumes DL is going to survive this (without government support) in the current state isn't recognizing how serious this really is.
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Old Mar 14, 20, 7:06 pm
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Originally Posted by iowaaggie View Post
Is this mean spirited? Yep. Delta deserves what it earned. In the good times, us elites were a luxury you did not think you needed.
Some customers are too expensive to keep.
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