Delta Minimum Stay on Close-in Award Tickets?

Delta Minimum Stay on Close-in Award Tickets?

Recently on Delta’s Web site a change in policy was displayed that effective August 2010, award tickets on Delta booked within 21 days of departure will require a minimum of a Friday or Saturday night stay. Exceptions to the policy included awards booked by Diamond, Platinum and Gold Medallion members and Delta Reserve, Platinum and Gold primary credit cardholders. Also exempt were award bookings at the mid or high tier levels.

But the change in policy disappeared from Delta’s Web site within a few days of being posted. We asked Jeff Robertson about the change and he said that as part of Delta’s plans to eliminate award redemption fees within 21 days of departure, “we are considering placing a Friday or Saturday night stay requirement on award tickets issued within 21 days of departure, but only on some Saver reservations and only for non-elites and non-Delta SkyMiles credit card holders.” He continued, “Today, there exists no requirement like this for any customer or for any redemption type, and since it remains questionable whether we would implement this requirement on all or just some subset of these ticket types, we removed any reference to this from our Web site.”

Tim Winship of says an email he sent to Delta about the change received the following response: “The information related to overnight stay requirements for frequent flyer awards was published on our Web site in error. Delta apologizes for the unintended miscommunication as well as any confusion that it may have caused our customers. Overnight stays are not required for award redemptions. If this requirement changes in the future, we will communicate accordingly.”

Bottom line: Many think that Delta reversed the policy after seeing the negative response from members but we have no way of knowing if that is true.

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