Hey Delta, I Have a Possible Way Out For You

Dear Delta SkyMiles Management,

As you no doubt know by now, Delta Air Lines as a going concern is in serious jeopardy. Your decision to eliminate award charts is not only evil and a direct and unabashed insult to frequent flyers everywhere, but is certain to lead to catastrophic financial failure.

Don’t believe me? Read for yourself:

Where Have Delta’s Award Charts Gone? – One Mile at a Time
CONFIRMED! Delta will NO LONGER display award charts for award tickets! #KeepDescending move of the year! – Rene’s Delta Points
Delta Has Lost Their Minds – No More Award Charts – MommyPoints
Delta Has Removed Their Award Charts & Why That Move Could Be Terrible For Our Hobby! – Miles to Memories
Delta Just Eliminated Their Award Charts Without Notice. Here’s Why That’s a Blow to the Heart of the Program. – View from the Wing
Is What Delta Did Really That Evil? – Pizza in Motion
Delta’s Missing Award Chart Is the Death of Aspirational Travel – Travel Codex
Delta Messes Up So Bad, They Cannot Even Keep Up – Running with Miles

Yeah, that’s some bad press. My guess: even United won’t follow you on this one.

But I’m not here to pile on, I’m here to help you out. I feel for you, I really do. I don’t want to see your spouses leave you. I don’t want you to only be able to see your kids on the occasional weekend. Despite what pretty much all of the other bloggers say, not to mention your soon-to-be former customers, I don’t think you deserve that fate.

So what do you do about it?

Presumably you don’t want to lose your jobs. I mean, really, if you lose your jobs over this where are you going to go? It’s not like having “Delta SkyMiles Manager” listed on your resume is going to get you a lot of interviews with other airline programs after this debacle. And it isn’t clear how your “skills” at managing an airline loyalty program are transferable to other industries.

Let’s face it, McCafe Specialist might be your best option after this.

Fortunately for you I have an idea.

Perhaps on your award search engine you could add a feature that shows users additional possibilities when it comes to reducing their award cost. For example: Let’s say someone searches for an award from, oh I don’t know, let’s take MommyPoints IAH to AMS example. If the 102,500-mile option comes up in their search you could add a note saying something like:

View optional times/dates to reduce this award to as low as 60,000 miles.

Heck, maybe that note could even be a link that would take users to a list of optional dates/times.

And what if there are no available options that price out at the lowest mileage price? First of all, that would be unfortunate and you should look into fixing that. But in rare instances where that is the case you could add the following addendum to the message:

While Delta SkyMiles lowest mileage-redemption price on this route is 60,000 miles there are no seats available at that price within X weeks of your selected travel dates.

And here’s the good news, when the user finds an award at the lowest possible price you could congratulate them and make them feel all warm and fuzzy – and also add a call to action:

Congratulations, you have found an award at the lowest mileage-price for this route. Book it now to lock in this great deal!

So there you have it. That’s your out. I mean, it still sucks that you aren’t going to publish award charts anymore, but if you make these changes at least you can deflect the majority of the criticism – and maybe just keep Delta flying and, as a bonus, keep your jobs.

You’re welcome. And because I’m sure you will want to reward me for this advice, I accept cash only, no checks … and certainly no SkyMiles.

Good idea?” by Mindy Johnson. CC BY-SA 2.0.



  1. Y’all need to listen to yourselves. This is going to lead to “catastrophic financial failure”? Really? I’m not sure you understand how economics works.

  2. What am I missing here? Those award charts are useless any way. In a way, they were false advertising because most of the levels on the chart were never available.

  3. I’ve got 1 more Award redemption in 2 months and probably enough for a 2nd Award I’ll save for a emergency.
    But I used 2014 to get rid of 500K+ miles and then I’ll be done with them also.
    It was a good 15 yrs with NWA/DL but the changes got to me after being PL and GM over these years. I tried AA twice last year and found no difference except I saved money. Also I saved thousands of $ using up my FF miles last year so thanks.

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