Is Delta Blocking Award Seats on Partners?

Discussion in 'Delta Air Lines | SkyMiles' started by RestlessLocationSyndrome, May 19, 2013.  |  Print Topic

  1. RestlessLocationSyndrome
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    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

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    So my wife has called Delta almost every day over the past week and has spoken to over a dozen different representatives and cannot seem to book award seats on China Southern that are shown as available on Expert Flyer AND the Air France site.

    She is a DL Diamond so there shouldn't be any award seats held back / restricted from her. Is anyone else experiencing this? Is this an issue with the fare class alignment across SkyTeam or is this something more dubious like SkyNet blocking?
     
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  2. NYBanker
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    NYBanker Gold Member

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    Nearly certainly it is agent error.

    It took me three agents to find some open China Southern seats earlier this year.

    Amongst the sources of confusion is a change in fare categories later this year. According to EF, China Eastern (MU) changes on July 1 and China Southern (CZ) on October 27.

    DL agents still sometimes dispute the carriers are SkyTeam members. (While people love to lament DL agents, I have lots of fun with UA staff convincing them that Aegean is a *A member...this is far from an exclusive problem with DL.)

    Once you establish the carrier you want to book on is a ST member, invariably, the agent has not heard of the port you're going to. (Hobart was a big stumper when I last called.)

    But, once you clear up those two, now this booking class switch-over is causing problems. What the successful agents have told me is that they need to search for the old fare categories still, even if it is for travel after the changeover date.

    I'd keep trying in rapid succession until you find an agent who is capable. I go so far as to politely ask them if they're aware of how to search for partner awards "with the change in fare classes coming up." This seems to get them to dig a bit.

    If in a few more days you've not had success, I'd be happy to give it a try for you. LMK.
     
  3. skyvan

    skyvan Gold Member

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    DL agents don't know how to book a CZ award, trust me on this, you can actually use this to your advantage if you have the patience though.
     
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  4. RestlessLocationSyndrome
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    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

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    As an update, it appears that the problem with CZ is with any aircraft that utilizes I/O classes for business. Any flight that has those has led to problems but we could find connecting flights from PVG-CAN on CZ that could book into P (First) for domestic two class planes.

    In addition, the agents are often times not seeing the I availability that Expert Flyer is showing in the new system vs. being able to see it in the old system.
     
  5. skyvan

    skyvan Gold Member

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    Keep trying and just HUCA...the issue is the agents aren't properly trained around it, not that Delta's systems don't see it.
     
  6. RestlessLocationSyndrome
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    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

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    Another update: My wife previously reached out to one of the bigger bloggers / award bookers out there and he is noticing something similar. There may potentially be a post about this in the future if he can figure out more about what the issue is and whether this is a problem with the fare class changes or something else.

    At this time, the best thing we've heard from the DL reps is that the old system for looking up CZ award availability (which is probably what Expert Flyer is linked to) does not match the new system for looking up CZ award availability that DL reps must make the bookings from.
     
  7. redtailshark

    redtailshark Silver Member

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    What does it mean, to ask "Is DL blocking award seats on partners"? Do you mean, "more than usual"? or "Compared to other FFP?" or "What could this practice be called?"

    #1: No. Anyway, not more than they usually do on their own metal. Which is a lot. So suck it up.
    #2: Yes. It's a new enhancement, even beyond previous SM obfuscation. You are hosed.
    #3: What, DL? But how could you forget that DL SM is..... [​IMG] best in class [​IMG]!
     

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