Delta Air Lines made the big decision yesterday that they would extend elite status another year – again. This was an acknowledgment that travel has still not returned to the stage that they and many had anticipated. For those Delta flyers, especially business travelers, this is good news but it also means that next year could be the hardest year ever for upgrades and other elite perks!
Delta Extends Elite Status and Perks Another Year
Here is Delta’s statement about their extension:
“Your loyalty to Delta has never been more important. We’re committed to earning it as we move into the recovery and beyond. That’s why we’re extending your 2021 Medallion Status (as of December 31, 2021) an additional year through January 31, 2023, along with several other changes:”
These changes that they are making are that they are allowing all active and unused Global and Regional Upgrade Certificates (which Diamond and Platinum members can earn) will be extended for us to be booked and flown before January 31, 2023. For those at the ultra-elite Delta 360° level, those members will have their status be retained until January 31, 2023.
Any Delta American Express Platinum or Reserve cardholders will also see their companion certificates be extended until January 31, 2023 as will the Delta Club One-Time Guest Passes and the $100 Delta Flight credit that Delta Gold cardholders receive.
Delta is continuing to let people earn elite miles on award travel until December 31, 2022. Also, all Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) will continue to roll over into 2022 so this means that many of you are going to have a huge jump on 2023 elite status!
- We know how important Global and Regional Upgrade Certificates are to our Diamond and Platinum Medallion Members, so we’re giving you more time to use them. All currently active, unused Global and Regional Upgrade Certificates will be extended so that they may be booked and flown by January 31, 2023.
- All current Delta 360°TM Members will be able to enjoy their exclusive Membership in our annual, invite-only program for an additional year through January 31, 2023.
- Delta SkyMiles American Express Card Members with the following active, unused benefits will be able to enjoy these benefits through January 31, 2023: Companion Certificate (Delta Platinum and Delta Reserve Cards), Delta Sky Club® One-Time Guest Passes (Delta Reserve Card), and $100 Delta Flight Credit (Delta Gold Card).
- Your ability to earn toward Status on Award Travel, an industry-first move, is being extended for an additional year, through December 31, 2022. Terms apply.
- For the second year, all Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) in your account balance at the end of this year will roll over into 2022, helping you get an even bigger jumpstart on earning 2023 Medallion Status next year.
These extended benefits and status levels will be updated by February 1, 2022. See more details at this link here.
Delta Air Lines is essentially making 2021 a non-event year for them with elite travel. They are extending elite status and perks another year while also giving people a much easier track to elite status this year. This means that 2022 could end up being a big year – with travel likely gaining much greater traction and floods of elites in their air, upgrades could be much higher to come by. They have not been as easy in the past few years anyway due to first class monetization so just keep this in mind!
I would guess that American Airlines and United Airlines will not be far behind in this status extension play. All the airlines need business travelers and this could be a critical point for flyers who are looking at which airline they want to go with in the next couple of years.
What do you think about this status extension?