Delta SkyMiles are referred to as “SkyPesos” for a reason. In most instances they’re worthless for award redemptions on Delta, though their partner Air France does release quite a bit of award space. While they’re not the best airline in the world, at least it seems SkyMiles are relatively useful for travel to Europe, since they release nine business class award seats on many flights.
However, the past few days I’ve noticed that Delta seems to be blocking a majority of the space Air France releases. I’m finding this space both by using Expert Flyer and Air France’s Flying Blue website, which in the past have matched the award space that Delta has access to.
I’ll assume it’s a system glitch, but I see virtually no award space, in particular in business class.
For example, take a look at these Air France flights from Paris to Washington Dulles, where both flights have at least nine business class award seats:
However, when you go to delta.com, they only show coach space for those flights:
I’m going to assume this is a system glitch as opposed to something intentional on the part of Delta or Air France, though I hope it’s fixed soon. In my experience there’s no way to get around the “blocking,” even by calling the SkyMiles award desk (not that they’re usually that helpful).
Anyone else running into similar issues?
It seems that Delta has removed or blocked a bunch of Virgin Australia biz availability as well. I wonder if it's related.
I ran into this issue yesterday. Saw plenty of availability on both EF and Airfrance.us for ORD-CDG-TLV flights, but DL could not see them.
It's super frustrating when they quote you 350K for a BE seat on DL, where you know that there ARE available AF award seats that would result in a low-level award (120K to TLV), yet DL can't find them!
Yes, I noticed this on Sun., 3/18, when it had not been an issue on Sat., 3/17. Biz seats are shown as available on AF but not on DL. Delta's Premium Service line couldn't find any biz bucket seats (O) for any day into the future on Air France or KLM. The rep said that the O bucket didn't exist on her system; it wasn't just that there were zero seats -- it appeared to...
Yes, I noticed this on Sun., 3/18, when it had not been an issue on Sat., 3/17. Biz seats are shown as available on AF but not on DL. Delta's Premium Service line couldn't find any biz bucket seats (O) for any day into the future on Air France or KLM. The rep said that the O bucket didn't exist on her system; it wasn't just that there were zero seats -- it appeared to her that all AF/KLM flights were operating only as coach (X). She called her help desk, and they called AF to no avail. The DL rep told me she was reporting it as an IT issue but that her IT rep said it wouldn't be fixed soon (overnight) but maybe by the end of the month! It's still an issue today, 3/20.
Some of us don't have a lot of choice in which airline we devote our travels to because of where we live and because we don't have unlimited amount of time to spend making connections and mileage running. So the endless posts about how much better MP is than SM, et al are basically pointless.
You can fly to Asia in business (with domestic flights in first) for 120K using SkyMiles. You just have to fly partners, which requires calling and a lot of patience. I'm OK with people having given up, as that means there's less competition for the seats I want.
I Love United Mileage plus gives you way more choice in First class/Business then Delta, for 50 % less miles on united to Asia First/Business only 120 k miles delta 180k to 220k RIP OF thats all i can say.
There's a DL reservations agent (who works the general member line!) who posts on FT (from home), and she was kind enough to investigate for us a bit. She reports:
"It's a BUG - KL/AF and ST have had some kind of sibling cat fight, and the systems are not talking to each other - IT is aware of the issue and both DL IT and the Joint Venture partners are working on it - no ETA for a fix, but they are working on it."
I have been tweeting them today and it is not going anywhere either. I sent an email to a contact at Delta and am awaiting a response.
I also tried @deltaassist over and over but they won't acknowledge issue, saying that AF controls their own seats and they may release some in the future.
@ MTKeller, thanks for pointing this out. I just got into the miles game this past summer and am still figuring out how the partner airline, codeshare partner thing works. I knew getting a round-trip flight for 40k miles was too good to be true.
One add'l quirk of this problem is that KLM's business class space shows as available on the DL website, but when you try to book it, it renders an error message about the flight having "just sold out." The DL rez agents, though, say they cannot see the space at all.
The AF inventory doesn't show up on DL's website or its reservations computers.
I just spent an hour on the phone with DL's Chisholm, MN rez office. They are about the best in the system. Those agents cannot see any KL or AF "O" class space on most flights. They acknowledge having internal IT issues last week with some technology conversions DL is dealing with, but the very senior agent I spoke to was unaware of this issue. To her credit, she did not try to convince me...
I just spent an hour on the phone with DL's Chisholm, MN rez office. They are about the best in the system. Those agents cannot see any KL or AF "O" class space on most flights. They acknowledge having internal IT issues last week with some technology conversions DL is dealing with, but the very senior agent I spoke to was unaware of this issue. To her credit, she did not try to convince me that I was mistaken, but simply said she could not see any biz class avail on the dates I was looking to travel, even though airfrance.us is showing 2+ seats on multiple flights on multiple dates.
@ Planereality -- You'll want to use Expert Flyer or Air France's website, as they'll display a calendar for you. If you're booking through Delta they won't show the calendar, as the calendar only shows availability for travel on Delta flights (and it's not a route operated by Delta).
@Ariana Just wanted to point out that you can't book Premium Economy seats on AF with DL miles. Also, you can't use the pricing on airfrance.us as the pricing DL will charge. 40K r/t in economy sounds like a [email protected], which is pricing only offered with FlyingBlue miles. 60K is the cheapest economy round trip from the US to Turkey that you can get from DL.
I am having the same problem! I have Business IAD-CDG RT booked on 7/4 and 7/16. I have been trying to change the return to 7/21, but only see economy. AF and EF show the cabin is almost empty. Platinum reservations is unhelpful. How can we get Delta to fix this?
I did contact @DeltaAssist about this. One nice thing about DL's twitter folks vs. reservationists is they don't try to convince you you're an idiot and they know everything when actually they are completely out of the loop.
He said "similar issues". It is similar. Just not an AF issue. ;)
Delta's system once blocked me from seeing economy award space from ATL to DCA. It would only show me business class awards. If I wanted to see economy, I had to manually book each flight.
I've had the same issue. I was able to find plenty of Premium Economy/Business seats on Flying Blue, but Delta showed nothing. Another thing I had an issue with: I found seats from SFO to Turkey on Air France in Economy for just 40k round trip. However, when I called Delta to book, they quotes me 92k points. I was counting on the points I'd accumulated, but now I'll have to buy my tickets instead.
An FTer has just reported that a diamond line agent said they couldn't process upgrades on Air France today because of some systems work on the Air France end. (Upgrades and awards for business class come from the same O bucket on AF.) That suggests that it is, in fact a temporary thing. In the past couple of days, AF O inventory has dropped from Flight Availability on EF and can only be seen in...
An FTer has just reported that a diamond line agent said they couldn't process upgrades on Air France today because of some systems work on the Air France end. (Upgrades and awards for business class come from the same O bucket on AF.) That suggests that it is, in fact a temporary thing. In the past couple of days, AF O inventory has dropped from Flight Availability on EF and can only be seen in Awards & Upgrades, so that's also evidence that some systems work is being done that's changed how things are accessed. I have no clue why X (economy) inventory is visible and O isn't, however, but it's SkyTeam IT, so nothing really surprises me.
Delta always says the AF flights "just sold out..."
Lucky- Do you have any insight into AF availability via DL.com for LAX-PPT (Tahiti)?
Or can you provide the link where you wrote about this previously? I always come up with 0 availability when looking at these awards on DL.com---- Thank you
I FREQUENTLY find availability on Air France that doesn't show up on Delta. However, most of the time the agents at Delta are able to book it. Ironically, this sometimes includes DL flights with DL flight numbers on DL metal.
I kept finding the same issue today Ben....I hope this isnt going to last......I will really,really be upset if it isnt temporary....
@eponymous_coward that's a CX issue but worth trying to (1) find AF O inventory, (2) confirm that DL is unable to book it both online and on the web, and then (3) confirm whether AS can book it...
Alitalia space seems gone as well?
Well KLM "O" space is still visible currently on DL.com so at the moment I think we have to assume its a glitch.
It seems like its not just an ex-US blocking issue either as MEX AF flights aren't currently showing on DL.com either.
Oh, Lucky, can you tweet DeltaAssist and see if they say anything? You typically carry some weight on Twitter, right?
This is really bad :(
Makes Delta miles pretty much completely useless if this persists. I really hope it's temporary, but to be honest I'm doubting it is.
The wall post in question was deleted, but that was their response about this. Figured I would share. Ugh.
From Alaska Airline's FB page, regarding their inability to book CX awards:
"We are just as frustrated as you with this ordeal. We have made ourselves fully available to Cathay Pacific to resolve the outstanding issues of their recent - and unexpected - change of reservations systems. We continue to push this issue as hard as we can for our customers, however Cathay has been uncooperative throughout this process. At this time, we don't have an ETA."