By now, we are used to United launching award sales (one going on right now – 60K to Australia), which is pretty much just them doing an off-peak chart without publishing a chart. Delta has done some one-off stuff in the past with some sales but it is a bit harder to do a sale when you don’t have an award chart! Without an award chart, it is just whatever it is, yet Delta is trying a bit and to that end they sent out an e-mail announcing an award sale of 45,000 miles roundtrip to London. But, is it a good deal?
Delta Award Sale: 45K Miles Roundtrip To London
Here are the details of the sale:
- Tickets: Tickets must be purchased no later than January 18, 2016.
- Travel Period: Travel must begin between February 1, 2016 and March 24, 2016. All travel must be completed within 3 months of departure from the U.S.
- Blackout Dates:
- New York-Kennedy, NY (JFK) to London-Heathrow, United Kingdom (LHR):February 2 – February 6, 2016
- London-Heathrow, United Kingdom (LHR) to Detroit, MI (DTW): March 19 – March 24, 2016
- London-Heathrow, United Kingdom (LHR) to New York-Kennedy, NY (JFK): February 2 – February 6, 2016
- London-Heathrow, United Kingdom (LHR) to Newark, NJ (EWR): March 19 – March 23, 2016
- Advance Purchase: All travel: 14 days
- Minimum Stay: Saturday night.
- Maximum Stay: 3 months (Edit: No problem there since it only lasts under 2 months!)
As you can see, there are some rules to this sale and some of them are not that great. The one I really hate is the minimum stay requirement. Seriously? That is one of the main reasons I like using miles to fly to/from Europe. Revenue tickets typically have a Saturday night stay requirement (except airlines like Turkish, Singapore, and low cost carriers) so if I need to be back by the weekend, I need to use miles. So to put that requirement on an award ticket is pretty bad.
But still, I was able to find a fair amount of availability from my home airport of Rochester to London on several dates. For only 45,000 miles roundtrip, that is not bad!
But Is It A Good Deal?
Cash vs Miles
Here is the problem – there are taxes and fees on this ticket that shove the cash component just under $200 for the ticket. Combine that with the fact that travel to Europe in the winter months is typically cheaper than the rest of the year and you may find yourself only redeeming the miles for a bit over 1 cent per mile, depending on where you travel from. That is not even taking into account the fact that this only applies if you want to travel to London and you don’t care about not earning miles on your trip.
AA Off Peak Awards
There is another thing to consider and that is that, until March 22, AA’s off-peak calendar for flights to Europe requires just 40,000 miles roundtrip and they can be booked as one ways as well. When you factor in the no minimum stay requirement, it could make more sense to go with AA over Delta, even with this Delta award sale.
However, at the end of the day, having options is good! If you have travel in mind for the next couple of months and London is on your list, I would definitely check out some dates with this Delta award sale if I were you. If you fly from a non-hub airport, this sale could save you a lot of money! Plus, I would use Delta miles for economy travel before I would use AA miles – at least until March 22.
So, what do you think of this sale? Will you get in on it?