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Delta Award availability to Europe is not loaded even within 331 days of travel
I have enough SkyMiles on two separate accounts to get 2 roundtrip business class tickets from BNA to BUD towards the end of September 2017. I waited until the return date opened up on the “reservation calendar” on delta.com, and then tried to book it. However, there was no availability at all, even though it was within that (I believe) 331 days window. I tried other dates, and it seems that you can only book tickets until the end of August 2017. Is it norm for Delta to not immediately release any award seats within the 331 days? What is your experience with them – when do they open up the schedule. I am used to dealing with aa.com, where as soon as the schedule open up for reservations (whether revenue or award), I immediately see availabilities. Thanking you.
Sorry, mis-typed “Europe” in the title, and cannot edit it 🙁
Are you searching segment by segment and/or have you verified that space exists using another search tool?
Fixed the title 🙂
It’s a bit of a myth that airlines always release space right at the window. American does for AAnytime availability, but not for Saver, other airlines just trickle space out gradually, etc.
Budapest is also a rather under-served airport the past few years, so that could be part of the challenge. I see LHR > JFK space on the very last day the calendar is open, for example, and also space on Aeroflot BUD > SVO > JFK.
[USER=29]@David W[/USER]. I tried JFK-BUD as well, but I also called Delta, and the agent said that she saw some availability between JFK and AMS, but when tried to reserve it, it turned out to be phantom (I never thought that an agent would also see phantom space). So the Delta agent could not find anything either. I will, however, do some segment search as well.
[USER=7]@Tiffany[/USER]. Thanks for fixing the title! I think I have been (maybe uncharacteristically) lucky with AA, since in the last 3 years I managed to book a lot of AA Saver Award seats for us to BKK, PEK (and back of course – always on CX), then 2 BNA-EZE tickets on AA metal, and 2 roundtrip BNA-BUD (one on Finnair, the other on BA, although the latter was on AA metal between JFK-LHR), always using the saver awards. I always do the “crazy” thing of booking those AA tickets at around 2.00-2.30am when the schedule opens up and is actually populated with “real” flights.
With regards to the Delta award seats I am seeking: I think the only thing I can do this time is just wait – it has to show up sooner or later.
Yes, search segment by segment. JFK-BUD isnt something Delta operates so youre going to want to search US-Europe direct flights and the intra-Europe segment into BUD separately. While Delta’s search shows almost all SkyTeam airlines, I always feel like theyre biased towards Delta (obviously but still…) and connecting itineraries throw it off.
I also hate that Delta doesnt let you sort awards by price. I have to scroll all the way down past awards on Delta that price at over 200k to see the regular saver awards on partner carriers. Seriously, WTF?!
[USER=29]@David W[/USER]. I know that unfortunately there is no direct flight from any US gateway city to BUD. Several years ago, for a short time, there was an AA direct flight and before that a Delta direct flight, but not any more. We have been used to connecting twice for at least 15 years now, so no big deal. I used to be a Platinum Medallion member for 3 years, but the way Delta treated me several times was just unbelievable (rude), sometimes they deliberately screwed me and then laughed at me (I do not want to go into details). That is why I avoid them now as much as possible, but I got those Delta card for the bonuses, so…..free miles are free miles……I think I wait, because last year when I checked for September flights, those were available. I am hopeful that it will open up. Thanks for your and Tiffany’s input.