Today, you’ll begin to read information through various sources about the 2015 SkyMiles program. We know how engaged you are with the program so we wanted you to be among the first to get the details of what’s in store as soon as we could share the details. Every SkyMiles member with an email address on file and any amount of account activity in the past 24 months will receive an email about these changes in the coming days with more information.
The items below don’t go into effect until Jan. 1, 2015 so that we are able to give you the most advanced notice possible, as well as to allow you to learn about the changes before making travel plans.
More details can be found at delta.com/skymiles2015, and we highly encourage you to visit the site for a comprehensive overview of the 2015 program.
Before we get too far into things, let’s begin with what’s not changing:
The way you earn Medallion status was already updated at the beginning of 2014 with the introduction of Medallion Qualification Dollars and isn’t part of these changes. All of the Medallion benefits you currently enjoy, like Unlimited Complimentary Upgrades, waived baggage fees, Priority Check-In and more will not change.
Miles don’t expire. Just like before, your existing miles and any earned going forward will not expire.
And now, here are the updates for 2015:
Miles for Delta-marketed or -ticketed flights will be earned based on ticket price instead of distance flown. This will make Delta the first U.S. global carrier to transition its frequent flyer program to a mileage earning model based on ticket price. You’ll earn 5 to 11 miles per dollar (USD) spent on base fare and carrier-imposed surcharges toward Award Travel depending on your SkyMiles status. General SkyMiles members earn 5 miles, Silver Medallion members earn 7 miles, Gold Medallion members earn 8 miles, Platinum Medallion members earn 9 miles and Diamond Medallion members earn 11 miles per dollar spent.
Delta SkyMiles Credit Card Members will continue to earn up to an additional 2 miles per dollar on Delta purchases with the Card.
Flights marketed and ticketed by Delta’s partner airlines will earn mileage based on a percentage of the distance flown as determined by the fare class paid. More details will be available later this year at delta.com/partnerairlines.
Certain tickets where the fare is not disclosed, including but not limited to bulk, consolidator, cruise, vacation packages (including Delta Vacations packages), inclusive tour and other opaque fare products, will earn miles based on a percentage of distance flown as determined by the fare class paid as published at delta.com/exceptionfares.
You can find more information about the 2015 SkyMiles program at delta.com/skymiles2015, including a Mileage Comparison Calculator to help you understand how this will impact you.
We encourage you to look at your typical travel patterns by adding origin, destination and an example fare in the calculator to see a side-by-side comparison of what this could mean for you.
Your top concern has been clear – you want it to be easier to redeem the miles you’ve worked so hard to earn, so we’re making Award Travel more flexible and giving you more redemption options. Just like today, you’ll be able to redeem miles for Award Tickets on any Delta flight — with no blackout dates, but the things you’ll be most interested in are:
We’re increasing Award availability at the lowest price levels and make it easier for you to find the seats that are most sought after. We’re also increasing the number of redemption levels overall to as many as five levels, giving you additional options requiring fewer miles.
One-Way Award Options. You’ve asked us for this consistently and starting in 2015, you’ll be able to choose Award options for a one-way ticket at half the price of a round-trip ticket.
Miles + Cash. You will be able to pay for a flight using a combination of miles and dollars. For example, a member may be offered the option to purchase an Award Ticket for 35,000 miles or a Miles + Cash Award Ticket for 25,000 miles + $159.
Improved shopping. We will improve our flight shopping capabilities to make it easier to compare a flight’s price in miles vs. dollars.
New Award calendar. We will launch an all-new Award calendar with expanded search capabilities and improvements to ensure it shows the lowest price for dates you select.
We know that you’ll have a number of questions about the changes, so we have a full list of Frequently Asked Questions available for you at delta.com/skymiles2015 but have also included a few here.
When will the changes happen? - Flights flown on or after January 1, 2015, will earn redeemable miles based on the ticket price. Also beginning January 1, 2015, members may book One-Way Awards, take advantage of Miles + Cash Award redemption options and enjoy new Award Travel shopping.
What’s changing with how I will earn miles? - You will earn redeemable miles based on your ticket price (base fare plus any carrier-imposed surcharges) instead of distance flown. This change applies to Delta-marketed (flight number with a “DL” airline code) or Delta-ticketed (the ticket number will begin with “006”) flights.
If I purchase a Delta flight in a currency other than USD, how many miles will I earn? - For flights purchased in a currency other than U.S. dollars (USD), the currency will be converted to USD based on the IATA 5-day currency exchange rate at the time of ticketing. Then the same mileage earn rates per USD will be applied.
How will I earn miles for partner airline flights? - Flights marketed and ticketed by Delta’s partner airlines will earn mileage based on distance flown and fare class paid. More details will be announced later in 2014.
When will the 2015 Award charts be available? - They will be available in the last quarter of 2014 and will be effective for new bookings beginning January 1, 2015.
As you can expect, we have a team of SkyMiles experts in Atlanta and across the organization who are actively reading your responses in the coming days so that we can address any points of clarification as quickly as possible.
We look forward to bringing you a better SkyMiles program in 2015.