Discounted Delta Business Class Awards To Europe

A bit over a year ago Delta eliminated their award charts altogether, which was a rather controversial move. Their argument was that it’s easier for customers to simply go to delta.com and see how many miles a ticket requires, rather than having those pesky charts which show the costs. They argued that revenue tickets work that way, and award tickets should as well (bringing them yet another step closer to a revenue based redemption program, given that they’re basically trying to turn SkyMiles into a fixed value currency). That logic is especially problematic since Delta’s website doesn’t actually price award tickets correctly.

The reason I mention the above is because Delta has a sale for business class awards to Europe at the moment, at least as much of a sale as a company can have when they don’t actually publish award costs. 😉

Delta-Award-Sale

Here are the major terms to be aware of:

  • Valid for bookings through April 21, 2016
  • Valid for travel between June 3 and October 29, 2016
  • Minimum stay of seven days required
  • 50 day advance purchase required
  • Through this promotion, saver level roundtrip business class awards are being discounted from 125,000 SkyMiles to 105,000 SkyMiles
  • Valid exclusively for travel in Delta business class on select routes, and not for travel on partner airlines, like Air France, KLM, Virgin Atlantic, etc.

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Delta One cabin on Boeing 767-300

The promotion is valid in select markets, and there are some further blackout dates involved, which can be found at this link.

On the surface it might seem backwards for Delta to discount award tickets to Europe in summer, given that it’s peak travel season. The logic is that Europe is popular among leisure travelers in summer, but there aren’t many business travelers that time of year. In other words, economy cabins to Europe in summer are full, while the demand for business class isn’t as high.

Delta’s award availability this summer is quite good at the saver level, so there are lots of great opportunities here. Redeeming 52,500 miles one-way in business class is a great value, assuming there’s availability in a market which interests you.

Delta-Awards

If you do have your choice of aircraft, I’d definitely go for an A330 over a 767. The A330s feature reverse herringbone seats, while the 767s just feature staggered seats, which aren’t nearly as comfortable. Either way, Delta’s soft product is probably the best of any US carrier, so you can expect pretty good food and service.

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Dinner in Delta One to London

Bottom line

This promotion won’t be for everyone, given the limited markets available, minimum stay requirements, blackout dates, etc. That being said, there are some great values to be had, so it’s worth at least glancing at the list if you have SkyMiles and are looking to travel this summer.

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Amsterdam

With Delta clearly doing everything they can to switch to a revenue based redemption system, it’s interesting to see them discounting business class tickets, rather than increasing the cost of them.

Will you be able to take advantage of Delta’s business class fare sale to Europe?

Comments

  1. “In other words, economy cabins to Europe in summer are empty, while the demand for business class isn’t as high.”
    What?

  2. Air and hotel demand for Europe is down across the board compared to the same time period of 2014 and 2015. Delta is responding to slack demand during the summer and fall. I mean, who doesn’t want to visit occupied France ( thousands of machine gun toting troops patrolling the major cities in France)?

    The end of billin dollar profit years for airlines is fast approaching.

  3. Ben you are so funny:
    “they’re basically trying to turn SkyMiles into a fixed value currency..”

    Uh, those of us who’ve been around the block with the Shame of Atlanta long enough know that value has been asymptotically approaching ZERO for years. The only worthwhile inventory that shows on a DL Awards Search is the Alaska award space, where you can occasionally find domestic one-way space for 10,000 or 12,500.
    On DL metal? I generally find AA and UA inventory but seldom any DL at reasonable levels.

  4. Hey – I didn’t book this, but found an Amex Gold Delta promotion for EWR to CDG for 42K miles in coach. Bought two of those & upgraded to Delta “comfort” ( better leg room, entertainment & free cocktails) for $99 each way pp. No lie flat seats, but a very cheap way for two people to get to Europe with a little extra room. Just FYI – Delta plays games on their site with availability and pricing if you search more than once for a given fare or promotion. To avoid this clear out your cookies before doing multiple searches.

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