Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) today announced it has eliminated the SkyMiles mileage expiration, creating a new industry-leading benefit for all members. This program change is effective for all accounts as of Jan. 1, 2011, and makes Delta the only major U.S. carrier without mileage expiration.
Previously, miles expired 24 months after a member's last qualifying mileage activity, which required a member to earn or redeem miles within that period.
"Now that our massive frequent flyer program integration is complete, we are focused on smart ways to improve the SkyMiles program for all members," said Jeff Robertson, Delta's vice president – SkyMiles. "We know how much customers value their miles, so eliminating mileage expiration is a major win for them. This is yet another benefit that sets us apart from the pack, making Delta a clear leader in loyalty program benefits."
This change is the latest of several enhancements made to the SkyMiles program in the last year including the new Diamond Medallion tier with complimentary lounge access and Rollover Medallion Qualification Miles. These features complement other recent changes such as the elimination of all award redemption fees and a free first checked bag on Delta flights for Gold, Platinum and Reserve Delta SkyMiles credit card holders from American Express.
Members can look forward to more in 2011, including significant improvements to delta.com such as an upgraded award travel calendar, improved booking process and better flight information displays. Additionally, Diamond, Platinum and Gold Medallion members can expect several new benefits when flying select alliance partner airlines – including Air France, KLM, Alitalia and Alaska Airlines.
Now in its 30th year, SkyMiles is one of the longest-running and most successful loyalty programs in the travel industry. Last year, frequent flyers redeemed more than 264 billion miles in the SkyMiles program for more than 12 million award redemptions. In 2010, 8.3 percent of revenue miles flown on Delta were for award travel. Delta offers more ways to redeem frequent flyer miles than any other airline, including airline tickets, mileage upgrades, car rentals, hotel stays, Delta Sky Club memberships, merchandise and more than 30 types of gift cards. SkyMiles was named "Best Domestic Frequent Flyer program" for 2007 through 2010 by readers of Executive Travel magazine and "Best Frequent Flyer Program" for 2006 through 2010 by Business Traveler magazine. For more information on the SkyMiles program, Medallion status and mileage redemption options, visit delta.com/skymiles.
Delta Air Lines serves more than 160 million customers each year. With an industry-leading global network, Delta and the Delta Connection carriers offer service to 357 destinations in 66 countries on six continents. Headquartered in Atlanta, Delta employs more than 75,000 employees worldwide and operates a mainline fleet of more than 700 aircraft. A founding member of the SkyTeam global alliance, Delta participates in the industry's leading trans-Atlantic joint venture with Air France-KLM and Alitalia. Including its worldwide alliance partners, Delta offers customers more than 13,000 daily flights, with hubs in Amsterdam, Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, Memphis, Minneapolis-St. Paul, New York-JFK, Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Salt Lake City and Tokyo-Narita. The airline's service includes the SkyMiles frequent flier program, the world's largest airline loyalty program; the award-winning BusinessElite service; and more than 50 Delta Sky Clubs in airports worldwide. Delta is investing more than $2 billion through 2013 in airport facilities and global products, services and technology to enhance the customer experience in the air and on the ground. Customers can check in for flights, print boarding passes, check bags and review flight status at delta.com.
All SkyMiles program rules apply to SkyMiles program membership, miles, offers, mile accrual, mile redemption and travel benefits. The rules are subject to change. To review the rules, please visit delta.com/memberguide. Taxes for Award Travel are the responsibility of the passenger and must be paid at the time the ticket is booked. Award Travel seats are limited and may not be available on all flights or in all markets. Alliance partner airline benefits subject to change and subject to the terms and conditions of each partner. Offers and benefits subject to change without notice.