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Anyone switch from Delta Diamond to United 1K?

Anyone switch from Delta Diamond to United 1K?

Old Nov 16, 20, 11:30 am
  #1  
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Cool Anyone switch from Delta Diamond to United 1K?

My cities and corporate pressure may force me to look at doing this....anyone able to jump to United 1K from Delta Diamond? Good decision/experience? Been with Delta so long (2M miler) wondering if this is just greener pasture stuff...
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Old Nov 16, 20, 6:12 pm
  #2  
 
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I did. About three years ago.

Pluses for 1k. You get up to 8 in comfort plus. You also get a free snack and one more global upgrade.

Minuses are no club (you have to pay for it). and most importantly you are no longer king. The global service people trump you and you will often lose upgrades to them.

if upgrades are not super important to you and you travel in cities with direct flights then it isn't all that bad. If you like the trappings of diamond you will be somewhat disappointed I think.
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Old Nov 16, 20, 6:16 pm
  #3  
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There are plusses and minuses. There's this thread over in the UA forum which is a few years old, but still has some recent activity in the later pages: UA vs DL....share your perspectives Also the importance of some of the plusses/minus is different in COVID times (e.g. getting to pre-board as 1K, after GS and military/families)

Also, FT search sucks, but this is the type of thing where doing a regular Google search with "site:flyertalk.com" as one of the search terms can be fruitful, something like "site:flyertalk.com 1k vs diamond" and so on. Although you'll get a bunch of old threads too.

If timing/non-stop convenience is important then that usually trumps everything else though.
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Old Nov 16, 20, 8:42 pm
  #4  
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Plenty of old threads. Ive been both the past three years, in the end I think DL does a better job operationally. Id go with them unless your routes dictate otherwise.
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Old Nov 16, 20, 8:48 pm
  #5  
 
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Originally Posted by FlyingBeanCounter View Post
I did. About three years ago.

Pluses for 1k. You get up to 8 in comfort plus. You also get a free snack and one more global upgrade.

Minuses are no club (you have to pay for it). and most importantly you are no longer king. The global service people trump you and you will often lose upgrades to them.

if upgrades are not super important to you and you travel in cities with direct flights then it isn't all that bad. If you like the trappings of diamond you will be somewhat disappointed I think.
Just as Global Services will trump a 1K, a DM360 will trump a DM! However we don't know how many UA GS vs DL DM360 are out there, but I assume that there are many more GSs as they even have their own dedicated check-in counters!
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Old Nov 16, 20, 9:11 pm
  #6  
 
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Having been both, Delta Diamond experience is better than the 1K experience. I say this as a predominately international flyer in business class - if you do all domestic or all economy, YMMV. Overall, I’d put DL ahead of UA except for these three areas:

Mileage Plus has seemed like a better program for award redemptions. SkyMiles are pretty much garbage. United has devalued, but Delta has consistently led the way in devaluation.

Star Alliance carriers generally seem superior to SkyTeam. There are only about 5 Skyteam members I’d be willing to fly on. Star Alliance has about twice as many that I’d be willing to consider.

Polaris lounges are better than any thing DL offers on the ground.

But otherwise, DL is better. Much better food, much better beverage selections, better operational reliability, better crews, better service recovery, better consistency of the experience.
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Old Nov 16, 20, 9:15 pm
  #7  
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Originally Posted by FlyingBeanCounter View Post
Pluses for 1k. You get up to 8 in comfort plus. You also get a free snack and one more global upgrade.
Additionally, you do not have to wait to be "upgraded" to E+ shortly after booking (for PM and DM) -- if there are seats available, you can pick them. I have strong feelings about DL treating C+ as having an upgrade list in the same was as F and making GM wait until 3 days out...

UA changed their upgrade system to be points-based, where the class of service, length of flight, and the fare purchased influences how may of your 320 PlusPoints it takes -- if you are upgrading discount long-haul Y to J, you effectively only get four one-way upgrades. They also provide the opportunity to earn more PlusPoints through spending, which may influence some people's decisions.

If you prefer complimentary domestic upgrades, note that UA does not provide any CPUs on its domestic business routes (EWR-LAX, EWR-SFO, soon from JFK as well). If you want an upgrade on UA on these routes, you'll need to use miles or PlusPoints. DL provides complimentary medallion upgrades to domestic D1 on the day of departure, and AA uses the standard upgrade windows.

If you are flying long haul international business, the Polaris lounges are supposed to be quite nice.

Originally Posted by audidudi View Post
Just as Global Services will trump a 1K, a DM360 will trump a DM! However we don't know how many UA GS vs DL DM360 are out there, but I assume that there are many more GSs as they even have their own dedicated check-in counters!
I was under the impression that the upgrade priority for Delta 360 was the same as DM -- DL has never said anything publicly about it, but that's based on what's on the internet about it and conjecture.
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Old Nov 16, 20, 10:51 pm
  #8  
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Originally Posted by VFR View Post
I was under the impression that the upgrade priority for Delta 360 was the same as DM -- DL has never said anything publicly about it, but that's based on what's on the internet about it and conjecture.
Would be pretty foolish of DL not to give 360 members upgrade priority over DMs...
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Old Nov 17, 20, 3:59 am
  #9  
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Grass not greener. IMO the only reasons to choose UA over DL are more convenient service on routes you regularly fly and/or heavy international travel, since *A options are generally far superior to ST.
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Old Nov 17, 20, 4:01 am
  #10  
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Originally Posted by SEA-Flyer View Post
Having been both, Delta Diamond experience is better than the 1K experience. I say this as a predominately international flyer in business class - if you do all domestic or all economy, YMMV. Overall, Id put DL ahead of UA except for these three areas:

Mileage Plus has seemed like a better program for award redemptions. SkyMiles are pretty much garbage. United has devalued, but Delta has consistently led the way in devaluation.

Star Alliance carriers generally seem superior to SkyTeam. There are only about 5 Skyteam members Id be willing to fly on. Star Alliance has about twice as many that Id be willing to consider.

Polaris lounges are better than any thing DL offers on the ground.

But otherwise, DL is better. Much better food, much better beverage selections, better operational reliability, better crews, better service recovery, better consistency of the experience.
Agree with all this. I went the other way, from 1K to PM. Much better!
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Old Nov 17, 20, 5:38 am
  #11  
 
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Originally Posted by audidudi View Post
Just as Global Services will trump a 1K, a DM360 will trump a DM! However we don't know how many UA GS vs DL DM360 are out there, but I assume that there are many more GSs as they even have their own dedicated check-in counters!
Tons more GS especially in cities like SFO. 1Ks cant reliably get upgraded there on any major route.
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Old Nov 17, 20, 6:24 am
  #12  
 
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Originally Posted by audidudi View Post
Just as Global Services will trump a 1K, a DM360 will trump a DM! However we don't know how many UA GS vs DL DM360 are out there, but I assume that there are many more GSs as they even have their own dedicated check-in counters!
It was a given I would never get upgraded on a hub to hub flight. The GS types were EVERYWHERE. And worse, there were two tiers of GS. There were always 4-5 getting on the plane when they called boarding. And there were about 50 1k's too.

Other than the order of boarding platinum on UA is just about perfect. Platinum still gets the economy + (up to 8) and there is a slim chance of an upgrade on occasion. walking up the jet way 2 minutes earlier and losing upgrades at the gate probably isn't worth it in the grand scheme of things.

It all comes down to what people value. Upgrades? the phone line? free booze and snack? Status doesn't buy much anymore and you can buy most of the stuff individually. The idea that we are getting something for nothing is nonsense. The airlines want to reward us for blind loyalty by feeding us table scraps when it suits them. I travel on OPM now and even with that I still go back and upgrade most of the time. The upgrades really aren't that much money and extra few dollars are almost always worth it to me. If its a short flight then I lump it.
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Old Nov 17, 20, 9:03 am
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Skyjumper View Post
Tons more GS especially in cities like SFO. 1Ks cant reliably get upgraded there on any major route.
+1...there are loads of GS in SFO, EWR, and ORD, and even more 1k.
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Old Nov 17, 20, 9:15 am
  #14  
 
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Most big corporate contracts with United gives away free 1K nominations. Not sure what Delta does on their side.
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Old Nov 17, 20, 9:53 am
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Originally Posted by Skyjumper View Post
Tons more GS especially in cities like SFO. 1Ks can’t reliably get upgraded there on any major route.
Don't think that's any different than a Delta DM at a major DL hub (especially ATL) unless you're flying super off-peak hours so hardly a fair comparison.

I was a 1K for a while - was pretty good. The snackbox and free drink was a nice perk that I wish Delta would replicate (but don't see that happening since Delta falsely assumes a DM will at least be in C+). I got a lot more upgrades but that is because of the reverse commute being based on ATL.

On upgrades - one nice thing was instant upgrades on a Y/M/B fare. I pretty much only fly M or B fares on Delta so if Delta had a similar program I could have taken advantage of it and would at least acts as a counterbalance to C+ availability for late bookings.
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