Most reliable Delta SkyMiles award visibility?

Discussion in 'Delta Air Lines | SkyMiles' started by r0m8470, Jan 23, 2015.  |  Print Topic

  1. r0m8470

    r0m8470 Silver Member

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    Hi,
    outside of paid tools such as KVS and ExpertFlyer, what is the most effective means of searching SkyMiles award?

    I've used Delta.com (obviously) but I am not sure about the results. When I looked up similar route using FlyingBlue, I ended with sometimes completely different results. My assumption was that any partner airlines displayed by FlyingBlue at the lowest level will be displayed by Delta as well, but that is not case. Is my assumption wrong?

    Examples:
    1. I look up availability out of PRG to ICN, with Flying Blue, I found options with SU, KE, CZ and KLM and some combinations of those. With Delta.com, mostly I see KLM and KE combination, no CZ or SU.

    2. I look up availability out of ICN to SIN, with Flying Blue I found availability throughout July, mostly with CZ. With Delta.com I only see KE on limited dates. From 7/17 and beyond, availability is just non-existent.

    Anyone has any pointers about where I should look?
    Thank you.
     
  2. mattsteg
    Original Member

    mattsteg Gold Member

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    Reliable and showing all partners are different criteria.

    Delta.com relatively reliably shows what you can book online. Much of what you see on af you can call to book, except the af and kl showing there is not reliably available. The best plan is partner/region dependant.
     
  3. r0m8470

    r0m8470 Silver Member

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    OK, maybe I need to ask this differently.

    If I see the most basic options in FlyingBlue, can I assume that I can book those on Delta - over the phone?
     
  4. mattsteg
    Original Member

    mattsteg Gold Member

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    With some exceptions (af and kl have more availability than delta, other airlines like kq are known to have occasional issues with phantom availability). At a minimum it's worth calling up to say half a dozen times if you see something that works for you. Agents often don't know how to book partners.

    The airfrance id the best overall option. For airlines that expertflyer works with I check there too. There is no true one stop shop for skyteam, and delta has useful partners that are not in FB at all.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2015
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  5. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    Part of the problem might be the KE blackout dates. DL blocks award availability on KE *systemwide* on any date for which KE imposed a blackout on any route in any directions. As a result, there can be no KE award tickets using DL miles for about five months of every year.
     
  6. r0m8470

    r0m8470 Silver Member

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    OK, more Delta-related question since we're at it already:

    Does Delta limit number of segments? Say, if I wanted to travel from ICN to SUB, if I can piece together an itineraries such as ICN-TPE-SIN-SUB (last segment with Garuda), or ICN-CAN-SIN-SUB (again, last segment with Garuda), would Delta allow that?
     
  7. mattsteg
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    mattsteg Gold Member

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    4 segments per direction has been the limit for delta awards.
     
  8. WilliamQ

    WilliamQ Gold Member

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    You might want to note that stopovers are no longer allowed on Delta Awards from this year onwards. Is that the reason you wanted to have more segments?

    http://milepoint.com/forums/threads/delta-award-stopovers.105568/
     
  9. r0m8470

    r0m8470 Silver Member

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    It's actually not about the stopovers. It's about maximizing our Skymiles use. My wife plans to fly from ICN back to her hometown in SUB, and she wants to stop at SIN on the way. I know that GA is part of SkyTeam now, so I was trying to find a way for her to fly back to SUB with a SIN stop. Due to the date of our travel, I think she will run into the dreaded KE blackout period. SUB is also not recognized by Delta.com.

    When I checked Flying Blue - I found lots of availability to SIN, but they all involve 2 connections, ICN-PEK-CAN-SIN, leaving in 810am, arriving in SIN at 2230pm. I found lots of availability on GA and CI as well the next day from SIN-SUB, leaving at 1930pm or 2145pm so technically the SIN stop should not be counted as stopover. But that is a terrible itinerary IMO. I found a business class itinerary on CZ via CAN, with just 1 stop but that is a terrible waste of SkyMiles miles, flying business on 2 segments with regional jet with regular recliner seats.

    I may have to resort to using Avios, just fly CX from ICN to HKG, then CX again to SIN. That should cost about 20K Avios if I can find coach availability. Right now, it looks like a mixed one with one of the segment in Business. I can then have her continue from SIN to SUB with Garuda paid ticket, which if we bought through an agent in country it's actually a lot cheaper than online. The problem here - I need to collect more Avios since my balance is zero.
     

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