Delta Downgrades fare class against instructions-refuses to correct error

Discussion in 'Delta Air Lines | SkyMiles' started by jbcarioca, Dec 9, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    I bought a "B" class fare GIG-ATL-LAX-MSP-STL. When I had a flight change the Diamond Desk reissued as a "M" fare, dropping me from 150% MQM to 100% MQM in the process. Advised that I had a tiny credit coming I asked how, had she changed the fare class? She assured me the fare class remained the same. I only understood about the downgrade after the flights were completed.

    I protested and sent a formal request to Delta which was promptly and instantly denied. I was told that if they honored my request, no matter how much they might want to, it would create a precedent to do the same for others.

    Now what should I do? I am quite irritated by that, more so because my Delta Reserve American Express $30k and $60K 15k MQM each posted as ordinary miles and they seemingly don't want to correct that one either.

    I'm suspecting DL may want to drive me away. They may succeed.
     
  2. DiverDave
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    DiverDave Gold Member

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    I suspect you already know this: the Reserve RDMs post automatically, but you have to claim the MQMs via delta.com.

    That's quite a loss on the B to M fare downgrade. That's something that Kevin Pinto would have fixed PDQ. :( You might be able to make a case for some goodwill RDMs from your fare being downgraded against your wishes, but the MQMs are likely a lost cause at this point.

    David
     
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  3. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    I did not know that but I did put in a request., which also had a negative response. Is there some specific procedure one is meant to use for that? It would be nice were they to advise customers of that situation.
     
  4. mattsteg
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    mattsteg Gold Member

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    http://www.delta.com/deltareservemqm/
     
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  5. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    When you've hit the spend thresholds on the Reserve card, you get the RDMs automatically but for the MQMs, you must go into the website and select whether to keep them for your own account or gift them to another DL FF account. If you don't do this, the MQMs are supposed to go into your account in about 90 days.

    Can you try a credit card dispute if you purchased a B fare but DL converted it to an M fare? You did not receive the product that was purchased. Of course, don't do this until after the last segment on the ticket has been flown to avoid trouble at airports.

    OTOH, in the unlikely event that the ticket was purchased before March 1, you would have an argument to get the 150% MQMs on that basis.

    Were you using or attempting to use miles or SWUs to upgrade, so that the DL agent might have understood your question about whether she was changing the fare class to be about upgrade eligibility (although a DM agent should certainly understand what fare class means)? Have you asked DL to try to pull the tapes from your call?

    It's too bad that you didn't notice the change from B to M when the ticket was reissued and (I assume) the new receipt was emailed to you. Also, the difference between M and B should certainly be at least about several hundred dollars on international long haul, so I wonder whether your B (as most B fares do) allowed stopovers but the M ticket was based on segments rather than a RT. What would it have cost to make the changes but keep the B fare? Have you compared the old and new fare rules? IMO an airline agent should never change the fare class without the person's explicit permission.

    Does the loss of MQMs affect your DL status for next year? The answer indicates how much you should/must fight this.
     
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  6. redtailshark

    redtailshark Silver Member

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    No surprise here. Welcome to the best in class service! Why expect anything different? DL is awful with its corporate arrogance and a dismissive attitude to customer complaints, including ones where purchased service/product wasn't delivered (in your case, 50% bonus MQM via purchase of B-class fare, as advertised at time of purchase).

    If I flew DL any more I'd be organizing a wiki for those downgraded on falsely-labeled "FIRST CLASS" A fares during irop or other situations, to contact DoT. They are going to get fined ultimately, when someone does this. That's the only way entities like DL will conform. There's a reason why DL and BA compete in the category of customer-hostile non-service.

    Meantime, I had irop on UA, wrote 1K - although their response wasn't exactly magnanimous, it at least addressed the core of the complaint, and resulted in 20k RDMs posting to my account and Shark Jrs (14 hour delay pre-Thanksgiving). Germane to your case, I also requested ORC including PQMs as per booking COS/check-in, and these were promptly granted. Asking DL to honor its published commitments similarly results in these kind of brushoffs, in violation of their own published T&C. In terms of FFP benefits, flying them is like playing roulette against the house.

    You want action, don't waste time with DL. Complain to DoT about a purchased air carrier product that was not delivered and that no restitution was offered in spite of evidence. You may need to quantify the cost gap between purchase and delivery, so if DL doesn't move, why not demand the B-M fare difference as a refund prior to taking it to DoT? When they deny you, document it. That way you can show evidence of specific lack of performance against legal requirement. If your delivered fare was 100% MQM and you bought the more costly B fare b/c of the 150% MQM, and otherwise performance was the same (upgradeable), then there's still a deficit. Copy your DoT complaint to Jeff Robbo and Rick. It tends to energize them more than following the DL channels.... which they imagine and desire to be operated by their CS "shutdown corner" :)
     
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  7. DeltaExpert
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    DeltaExpert Gold Member

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  8. DiverDave
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    DiverDave Gold Member

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    You should have gotten an e-mail from Delta with a subject line of : 15,000 Medallion Qualification Miles are Yours

    It would include the below text and a link to claim the MQMs. The MQMs do not deposit automatically, as you have the option to gift them to somebody else.

    You've earned 15,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) and 15,000 bonus miles for spending $30,000 with your Card within the calendar year. Your bonus miles have already been deposited into your account. If within 90 days, a MQM recipient is not designated, the MQMs will be deposited into your account.

    I believe Delta did refund some piddling fare difference.

    David
     
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  9. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    I flew only a few hours after booking and the receipt was emailed while I was enroute so I saw it only after completing the travel in question.
    I was using SWU's and explicitly asked for Fare Class 'B', even questioned the credit voucher ($170) because it was implausible to me that a credit could result. I was assured that it would still be 'B' and that the routing change produced this result. I have requested twice that they review the tapes. They do not respond to that request.
    No, I am already requalified thanks to the Reserve MQM's. Thus it is the matter of carry over and principle only.
     
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  10. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    Thanks to all of you for posting the link. I did not receive that email, but the link worked and the MQM's posted. 30,000 handy MQM's, so thanks again to all of you. Who says MP doesn't have content?

    Yes, $170 was credited on the $4,450 original ticket.
     
  11. DiverDave
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    DiverDave Gold Member

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    I was going to say you still got cheated on your 50% RDM bonus, but then looked it up on the table. How weird that Delta dropped the 50% MQM bonus on M fares and kept the RDM bonus.
    David
     
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  12. jbcarioca
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    jbcarioca Gold Member

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    I thought that was weird too. Luckily I noticed it before I actually encountered M fare availability, which is why i was so insistent to get B fare. I since have noticed that in some situations B can be cheaper than M. If I see this accurately the fare construction procedures for the two classes are different. Structurally M is meant to be more restrictive than is B, obviously. That is still weird that the RDM and MQM accrual buckets are different. No wonder their employees have problems getting this correctly.
     
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  13. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I've noticed B international itineraries being cheaper when I need a stopover. As a bonus, these triangular trips only require two rather than three SWUs to upgrade.
     
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