Yesterday I posted about how Delta quietly updated the terms & conditions of the SkyMiles program to add the following restriction:
Award Tickets that do not originate or end in the United States or Canada have a three-day advance purchase requirement. This includes routes like Paris (CDG) connecting through New York City (JFK) to Sao Paulo (GRU), or Shanghai (PVG) to/from Tokyo (NRT). No Exceptions. The advanced purchase applies to all Award bookings in the affected markets.
As you can see, with this change all award tickets not originating or ending in the United States or Canada had a three day advance purchase requirement.
This was in addition to Delta SkyMiles recently expanding a rule requiring in-person ticketing for certain types of awards. Delta SkyMiles awards issued within 72 hours of departure for travel originating in China, Russia, Indonesia, Singapore, Vietnam, Brazil, and any country in Africa, must be booked in-person at the airport.
View from the Wing now reports that Delta claims this was a mistake, and they’ve updated their terms & conditions to undo this. Now the terms once again say the following:
Award Tickets purchased for travel within or originating in China, Russia, Indonesia, Singapore, Vietnam, Brazil and any country in Africa require a 72-hour advance purchase. Members desiring travel within or originating in these markets within 72 hours must go to the airport to purchase their ticket, including reissues. No Exceptions. The advanced purchase applies to all Award bookings in the affected markets.
So the same restriction that was added earlier this year applies, but nothing new has been added.
This further illustrated the problem with Delta SkyMiles’ lack of transparency. I trust that other programs, like American AAdvantage, would provide notice of any major changes to the program. That’s not the case at Delta SkyMiles, though. They don’t have award charts, and don’t publish extensive rules regarding what type of award tickets you can book. As a result, both members and reservations agents are left in the dark, and just have to work with what the computer allows.
This isn’t the first time that Delta has changed rules or award prices only to roll them back the next day, only to claim they’re an error. All that would be fine if they were transparent and we didn’t have to assume that whatever appears is correct, but that’s what we’re left with, unfortunately. It has gotten to the point where we’re unfazed by these types of situations.
I’m also not sure how the terms & conditions of a program “accidentally” get updated?
Still, in this case I guess it’s good news that this further restriction hasn’t been added.