DALLAS — Changes are in store regarding access to Delta Air Lines (DL) Sky Club beginning in January. At the start of the new year, the company will restrict access to its clubs in an effort to deal with overcrowding at its most popular lounges in major hubs like JFK and ATL.
Delta says that American Express Platinum and Platinum Business cardholders will no longer get unlimited visits unless they spend US$75,000 on the card during the calendar year. Until they hit that dollar amount, those cardholders will be restricted to six visits a year.
Similarly, Delta SkyMiles Reserve and Reserve Business cardholders will be limited to 10 visits per year unless they spend a minimum of US$75,000 on the card during the year.
Also, travelers who have Delta SkyMiles Platinum and Platinum Business American Express will no longer be able to access the Sky Club unless the cardholder purchases a club membership at a cost of $695 per year or has elite status with the airline, which includes a club membership.
The airline also said that any customer who books a basic economy ticket will not be allowed in the lounge, regardless of what premium credit card they carry.
“We want customers to be able to receive status with activity beyond just air travel,” said Dwight James, Delta’s senior vice president of customer engagement and loyalty. “Some of the changes that we’re making ensure that we’re taking care of our most premium customers with our most premium assets, one of those being the Sky Club.”
Delta has also made changes to how travelers can earn elite status in its SkyMiles frequent flyer program. A traveler’s status will be determined by the amount of money they spend with Delta on flights, car rentals, hotels, and vacation packages, rather than on miles flown.
Delta SkyMiles Reserve and Reserve Business American Express cardholders earn 1 Medallion Qualifying Dollar (MDQ) for every US$10 spent, while Delta SkyMiles Platinum and Platinum Business American Express Card Members earn 1 MDQ for every US$20 spent.
To gain Silver Medallion status, a traveler now needs 6,000 MDQs and 12,000 for Gold Medallion status.
Likewise, a Platinum Medallion status requires 18,000 MDQs, and a Diamond Medallion Status is for those who earn 35,000 MDQs.
Featured image: Delta Sky Club Entrance. Photo: Delta Air Lines