Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Delta's 2015 SkyMiles Program

Aruba Bound
There has been much discussion online this week since Delta announced in a press release, Delta Introduces 2015 SkyMiles Program with New Mileage Earning Structure and More Redemption Options, that they were updating their 2015 SkyMiles Program. You can see Delta's FAQ about the program here.

With this move, on January 1, 2015, Delta will begin basing their frequent flyer program on ticket prices. Their frequent fliers will in turn have a bit more flexibility and expand on ways to use miles. Some tickets will require fewer miles, there will be one way awards and

New redemption structure will create more flexibility and expand on ways to use miles and offer additional Miles + Cash Award options. Delta has also committed to improving their delta.com award shopping tools.

Here are just a few of the ongoing discussions:

New Delta mileage system

Delta SkyMiles 2015 Revenue Based Program Details

Delta SkyMiles Going Fully Revenue Based

Delta Confirms Negative SkyMiles Program Changes Effective January 2015

Delta's revamped mileage program may end 'travel hacking'

In the past the travel hackers have received the greatest beneft for the least amount of money. Now Delta is going to be the first U.S. global airline to reward their customer's based upon the price they paid for their ticket. You can use their new mile calculator to approximate how many miles you will earn based upon the destination, ticket price as well as Medallion status.

I have not seen much emphasis on the fact that the miles earned with a Delta SkyMiles Credit Card will be based on the total ticket price whereas those not using the card will only earn miles for Delta flights determined by base fare and carrier-imposed surcharges. Our Aruba tickets purchased on our American Express Delta SkyMiles Credit Card last weekend for later in the year had $107 in taxes. At 5 miles for every dollar spent, this would offer us an additional 535 miles.

In using the calculator for the 3 itineraries our family travels most often and the usual price point we pay, our mile will come out about equal. One is a short haul flight, one is a more expensive flight and Aruba depends upon time of year. Off season flights to Aruba we are probably going to lose some miles, but during peak season to Aruba when the fare is $885 such as it is now, we will come out ahead.