ATLANTA, Nov. 5, 2008 – Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) today announced the alignment of policies and fees for customers traveling on Delta- and Northwest-operated flights as the airline works to ensure a seamless and consistent customer experience during the integration of the two carriers.
Some of the changes to align Delta and Northwest’s policies and fees include:
- Elimination of SkyMiles and WorldPerks award ticket fuel surcharges – Effective immediately, Delta will eliminate the $25-$100 fuel surcharges assessed for SkyMiles and WorldPerks award ticket travel originating from the U.S. and Canada. The surcharges were instituted earlier this year by both airlines in response to unprecedented fuel costs.
- Reduction of Reservation Sales Direct Ticketing charges – Delta, effective Nov. 6, will reduce the fee assessed for tickets purchased over the phone from a reservations sales representative from $25 to $20 consistent with Northwest’s policy. Delta will also reduce the fee collected when customers redeem either SkyMiles or WorldPerks award travel over the phone with a reservations sales representative from $25 to $20. As always, there will continue to be no charge for customers who book tickets and redeem award travel online at either delta.com or nwa.com.
- Elimination of curbside check-in administrative fees – Delta, effective Dec. 5, will discontinue the $3 curbside check-in administration fee. With this change, customers no longer will incur an administrative fee for checking bags via skycaps for Delta- and Northwest-operated flights at airport locations worldwide, consistent with Northwest’s policy.
- Alignment of first and second checked bag fees – Effective immediately, for travel on or after Dec. 5, customers flying within the United States will be charged $15 for the first checked bag and $25 for the second checked bag when traveling domestically, consistent with Northwest’s existing policies. Customers who purchased Delta tickets on or before Nov. 5, 2008, and who are traveling on or after Dec. 5, 2008, will be charged $50 for a second bag, but will be permitted to check their first bag without charge pursuant to Delta’s previous policy. All customers flying in First or Business Class, including SkyMiles Medallion members and WorldPerks Elite members, will receive up to three checked bags, up to 70 pounds each, for free. SkyMiles Medallion members and WorldPerks Elite members flying in Coach Class will receive up to two checked bags, up to 70 pounds each, for free. All customers traveling in full fare (Y) Coach Class, as well as customers traveling internationally will receive up to two checked bags, up to 50 pounds each, for free. U. S. Military personnel on active duty with travel orders will continue to be able to check up to 10 pieces of luggage on Delta- and Northwest-operated mainline flights or up to four pieces of luggage on Delta Connection flights, up to a maximum of 100 pounds each, free of charge.
- Addition of “Coach Choice Seats” on Delta flights – Last week, Delta began offering customers the opportunity to purchase “Coach Choice Seats” on select Delta and Delta Connection flights when they use self-service check-in within 24 hours of their scheduled departure time. A service currently offered at Northwest, the program offers “Coach Choice Seats” for $5-$25 based on distance traveled and seat location. Additionally, SkyMiles Medallion members, WorldPerks Elite members, SkyTeam Elite members and passengers confirmed in Y or B class may select a “Coach Choice” seat at no additional charge when checking in online or at a kiosk within 24 hours of departure. Coach Choice Seats represent less than 10 percent of all seat assignments available on Delta-operated flights. SkyMiles Medallion and WorldPerks Elite members will continue to enjoy access to preferred seating (i.e. select bulkhead, exit row and forward cabin-seating) without a charge at the time of booking.
Most other Northwest baggage policies and fees will be aligned to Delta’s structure, effective Dec. 5. Travel on Delta and Northwest tickets purchased prior to the announcement of these changes will continue to be governed by the prior Delta and Northwest policies. Additional details about Delta’s newly aligned policies and fees can be found at delta.com.
“The increase in bags being carried on board Delta aircraft this year tells us that customers are not differentiating Delta as the only major airline not charging for a first checked bag,” said Steve Gorman, Delta’s executive vice president and chief operating officer. “As we align customer policies and fees to simplify the travel experience for our customers throughout the merger, Delta is adopting proven practices from both Delta and Northwest that have been broadly accepted in the marketplace.”
Although Delta and Northwest policies and fees are being aligned over the next 30 days, customers are reminded to continue checking in for flights and doing business directly with the airline operating their flights just as they did before the merger. Delta will continue operation of the airlines’ separate Web sites, www.delta.com and www.nwa.com, as well as the two airlines’ reservations systems and loyalty programs. The companies will be integrated through a thoughtful process with customer benefits continuing to roll out over the next 12-24 months.
Delta Air Lines is the world’s largest airline. From its hubs in Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, Memphis, Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York-JFK, Salt Lake City and Tokyo-Narita, Delta and its Northwest subsidiary offer service to more than 375 destinations worldwide in 66 countries and serve more than 170 million passengers each year. Delta’s marketing alliances allow customers to earn and redeem either SkyMiles or WorldPerks on more than 16,000 daily flights offered by SkyTeam and other partners. Delta and its 75,000 worldwide employees are reshaping the aviation industry as the only U.S. airline to offer a full global network. More information about the new Delta is available online at news.delta.com.