Delta SkyClub Guesting Cost Increasing To $39

Filed Under: Delta

Airlines love to increase the cost of lounge access every so often, justifying it by referencing the “investments” that they’re making in the guest experience. Well, Delta has just announced their latest such price hike, though it doesn’t impact the “primary” members directly.

Delta increases SkyClub guesting cost

As of January 30, 2020, Delta will be increasing the cost to guest people into SkyClubs, which impacts those with basic SkyClub memberships, as well as those entering with credit cards:

  • Currently the per guest cost is $29 or 2,500 miles
  • As of January 30 the per guest cost will be $39 or 3,900 miles

As you can see, they’re increasing the cost by 34% when paying cash, and by 56% when paying with miles. It’s also interesting to see Delta go from valuing each mile at ~1.16 cents to valuing it at one cent, which is in line with the trend from the airline.

Who does this really impact?

Delta is unique in how they go about selling lounge access. With American and United, club memberships allow you to bring in two guests or immediate family, and even club memberships issued through credit cards have those same privileges.

Delta takes a very different approach. With Delta, only SkyClub Executive members (including lifetime members) can bring in any guests for free. For anyone who buys a basic SkyClub membership, or who accesses a SkyClub through an Amex Platinum Card or Delta Reserve Card, you don’t get any free guests.

Just the cardmember can access the lounge, and then additional guests need to be paid for. That’s who the price hike impacts.

On top of that, the Delta Platinum Card offers discounted SkyClub access, so those members would be paying the new, higher cost.

Bottom line

On the surface price hikes are never good, though at the same time Delta does have an issue with lounge crowding at some airports.

Whether or not this development is positive obviously depends heavily on how you access SkyClubs. If you’re someone who never guests anyone into SkyClubs then arguably this is good, since it will reduce crowding. Meanwhile if you do, this is obviously bad.

What do you make of Delta’s move to increase the cost of SkyClub guests?

  1. Delta is getting ridiculous. They’re better than American and United (such a standard I know) and they charge significantly more $$$ than everyone else and it’s not close. I live in ATL and am become disenchanted by Delta’s need to nickel and dime for everything and charge 25%+ more than everyone else. Losing faith.

  2. Never mind, I’m the idiot lol disregard my previous comment. I’m sorry, genuinely. But for real delta… sigh.

  3. Wow, that top photo looks so institutional. Why would anyone pay for the privilege of sitting there for a couple hours and eating mediocre food?

  4. It’s funny how Delta keeps reducing access to SkyClubs (no longer selling day passes, removing paid access to Gold cards, increasing guest prices) and yet they are still quite full (at least at some airports). I doubt this will have too much of an impact other than maybe a family or 2 were paying for that many guests will add up, but we’ll see.

  5. I have two or three trips a year with my family in tow (partner + two kids). I just use my Amex credit to get the guest fee reimbursed (Delta is my preferred airline for my Amex Biz Platinum). But this still stinks because I’ll now hit that $200 mark a bit quicker.

  6. Good move! Those clubs are frequent travelers traveling for business. Ps watch out Delta 4m360 is coming. So sorry Diamonds!

  7. Good move! Those clubs are for frequent travelers traveling for business. watch out: Delta 360 is coming. So sorry Diamonds!

  8. Delta now added three guest passes to the AmEx Delta Reserve Card. That’s about the number I normally bring in (at my expense) each year.

  9. They should keep increasing the price to test the level where people will stop bringing guests and leave the lounges less crowded. It is impossible to find an empty seat on Delta lounges.

  10. Part of The reason delta sky clubs are crowded is because they sell discounted memberships to their employees for around $400 per year which that can use when they non rev on any delta flight. Some of them live in the lounge for the day when they don’t make their planned flights. Hopefully discounting discounted employee access would be the answer I think.

  11. I’m okay with this but Delta needs to allow guest passes to be good for the full day at any Sky Club, not just where it’s purchased. $78 for a guest on a connecting itinerary is outrageous.

  12. Was this a setup for the next post regarding Amex cards or did @Lucky missed the memo few months ago.

    Either way missed or not, for the sake of readers next post should be Last chance to apply or upgrade DL Amex cards before higher AF applies.

    The guest pass is just two not three.

  13. If their lounges are over/crowded, then Delta is making the financially smart move to raise prices until demand drops and the lounges are only moderately full.

    It’s Economics 101… If the demand exceeds supply (of some product or service), you can keep raising the price until demand falls just below supply. This is the point of maximum revenues. Like them or not, it’s a savvy move by Delta. They’re not making record profits because their management is stupid.

  14. @Richard

    lounges aren’t for people travelling FOR business but for people flying IN business class.

    Big difference

    Lots of people travelling for business reasons fly in economy. On your basis they should get access but the leisure flyer paying to be in the business cabin should be barred from entry because they aren’t flying for business reasons.

    Increasing access fees and reducing guests is an easy way to reduce the numbers that sometimes crowd lounges

    Next will be to reducing the numbers of elite status fliers by increasing what they need to do to earn status.

  15. I have no issue paying $39. The reality is, my wife and I will each have something to nibble on, and 2-3 drinks like we did at PHX the other day, and we would have spent more than that sitting in an airport restaurant.

  16. Not sure even raising the day pass to $200 would make much difference. On virtually every pass thru ATL their huge lounge near B17 is swamped. But I assume it’s mostly Reserve and Platinum(non-Delta) cardholders. When checking in with agents I rarely see someone actually paying.

  17. Kids are the issue. It stinks kids can’t get an American Express before the age of 13. Should be allowed.

  18. This is DL cheap-o getting worse! The $29.00 charge cost DL at least 10 paid F tickets from us. . It annoys my wife so we fly a different carrier instead. She has a bad back and needs the lounge but feels bad that I have to pay extra for it with my Amex Platinum for her to get in so our family flies UA, or AA in a pinch. I used to be elite on DL but am happy enough with Lifetime 1K on UA and MM on AA

  19. @Mark S.

    Nobody cares about your wife. DL won’t miss you that’s for sure. Your logic of buying F on domestic AA or UA won’t get you lounge access either moron, so your whole drivel about DL losing out on your “10 paid First tickets” is a bunch of baloney.

  20. Hopefully the lounges will be less crowded as a result. Between status, credit cards, etc, the lounges are so busy… Last week I was in Atlanta and could barely find a seat….

  21. The pass should be good for all day connection lounges esp if you are paying for the 3 year old who eats a few carrots and some water!!!

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