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Discussion in 'Delta Air Lines | SkyMiles' started by Delta Points, Jan 17, 2012.
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I have been asked by many to take this down and keep this off MP. So be it! Disappointing.
I won't dispute that DL has some good points.
The difficulty for most people in using the online booking interface, and the amount of miles they usually want. Also, the method in which DL treats its elites, both in promising to fix the online booking system years ago, and the stealth changes are disheartening.
And some of the tips you give I believe are not always intentional on DL's part. I've seen people post about such great deals, only to find the loophole closed soon.
I will not take down the blog!
I don't see how taking advantage of this is much different from AA's North American gateway stopover rule, to add a free flight to Hawaii. In fact, a co-founder of Milepoint recently blogged about that particular loophole published award ticket rule.
If anything, planning this out requires a ton of patience and following of existing rules (like T-72, finding only low-level segments, MPM, etc.) and makes FFP members more interested in certain programs, meaning they'll keep coming back to that airline. I'm a DL flyer and am somewhat unhappy with SM, but if they were to mess with the open-jaw/stopover policy that I've used several times, I'd jump ship in a heartbeat.
It only works if you originate/terminate in a city that is part of published routings. So it doesn't work for us folks in HSV, for example.
You need to get more creative! HSV has service to ATL, DTW, and MEM, yes? Then it's on a ton of valid international routings! I've constructed on DL.dumb (but not purchased) a routing from SoCal to Europe with a stopover in FAR, since you can do something like LAX-SLC-FAR(stop)-MSP-LHR and stay within the MPM for LAX-LHR. I'm sure that you could pull similar things off with HSV, especially if you check the routing rules to find out the TPDs. Often connecting via ATL or CDG will give you a couple hundred extra miles to work with. (My favorite bizarre TPD is LON-YHZ, which has a 1200 mile TPD for travel via BOS. Thinking I might get creative with that when heading to a conference in YHZ this summer.)
You are correct regarding domestic-only itineraries, of course. The only big problem comes in when you want to stop over in a city with service from only one DL hub. I've seen revenue fares priced on ITA (no clue if they're actually ticketable) that allow retransiting a hub on a single fare component, but all reports I've seen are that you can't do it on an award ticket.
Guess I need to go to the Chicago seminars!
I can't understand why the OP received requests to take this suggestion down. It was a simple explication of how published T&C can be used for award tickets.
Just before the Borg crushed us, I did use "DL SM" [actually, moving the SM via NWA.COM before it disappeared] to generate:
TUS-IAH-EWR-(24 hr layover)-EDI-(24 hr layover)-AMS-CDG-OTP/OTP-CDG-LHR-(stopover)-CDG-JFK-ATL-TUS
for 80k, with TUS-OTP in coach and OTP-TUS in biz. Because of the CDG pingpong, the taxes amounted to about 300 USD but it was a great use of the 80k miles. I ticketed the itin with no issues on NWA.COM first time around, as advertised. I was supposed to fly on the AF380 to JFK but an icy jetbridge delayed us and AF reissued me in J on the next 772 with no issues. It all went very smoothly.
I had several more available segs that I could have played with (e.g. routing back via SU through SVO for layover) but the trip was already scoped at 11days duration.
In late 2009, the fact that relatively few people seemed to be taking advantage of moving their mountains of SM to NWA.COM to redeem them thusly told me..... that few DL people knew how valuable WP was.
In theory something like this could still be done with SM, but the trick would be pricing and ticketing it on DL.COM. As we all know, this doesn't even price the most straightforward routings correctly. Calling this in to the SM agents for assistance would not help to construct it, no doubt there would be legendary obfuscations and denials of availability in the usual ways.