Elite Status

An Empty Mileage Account After Several Years Of Loyalty

Written by Charlie

Frequent flyer programs fit different needs for different people. I would never expect anyone to follow the same path of frequent flyer programs that I do just because it is what I have done. Needs are different based on flying patterns, home bases, award desires, partner flights, etc. Each traveler needs to decide what a program offers and if those offerings on earning and redeeming match the traveler’s goals and desires.

Empty Delta Mileage Accounts

So, with that being said, an airline that I have had elite status with for several years now sees an empty balance of both elite miles and award miles. That airline is Delta. Delta was the very first program I earned elite status with and I have held every level of status they offer as I was Silver for a few months before climbing the ladder to Diamond status the very first year they offered it. My last year of status with Delta was Gold Medallion.


My empty Delta mileage account – no status for 2015 and no award miles!

While I have always enjoyed the onboard experience with Delta and their people, the frequent flyer program has been gutted over the last year. It is true that award availability has actually improved on many routes. It is also true that award calendar has made huge steps and the addition of one way awards have been very helpful. In fact, it was those three factors that helped me to liquidate the remaining miles in my Skymiles account.

Being outside of the US and originating in Europe (where Delta adds fuel surcharges) also has helped with my decision to leave Delta. It has been a culmination of this with the changes that has pushed me away from Delta’s frequent flyer program. It is actually quite surprising to me to now see empty balances on both my elite numbers and award numbers – well, I do have 400 award miles left. The surprising part about that is that I now have more miles in my Spirit Airlines account than Delta’s Skymiles. 🙂

Does this mean I will never fly Delta again? Absolutely not! If the flights are the best option, I will buy the ticket. But, those flights will be credited to my Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan account! 🙂 Of course, I can always transfer SPG Starpoints or Amex Membership Reward points to Delta but they are no longer a favorite for me. However, there are some routes that will make for good transfers – but that is for another post!


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About the author


Charlie has been an avid traveler and runner for many years. He has run in marathons around the world for less than it would cost to travel to the next town - all as a result of collecting and using miles and points. Over the years, he has flown hundreds of thousands of miles and collected millions of miles and points.
Now he uses this experience and knowledge to help others through Running with Miles.


    • It is a good option and one that I will likely use again at some point. It is just at this point that there are other partners of the Membership Reward program that can work better for my travels than Delta. Of course, having that as an option will be the only way I will have Skymiles to use in the future. 🙂

  • Even with somewhat better availability of award seats, it will be almost impossible for ordinary passengers to earn free round-trip domestic (much less international) flights by flying delta. That is why delta is now offering one-way awards. That will be the best many can hope for.