Delta Diamond and Platinum Medallions annually can elect Choice Benefits. The benefits become available upon elite qualification and and can be redeemed until January 31 of that program year, meaning 2015 benefits (those earned in 2014 for 2015 status) must be redeemed by tomorrow, January 31, 2016.
Nope, Delta won’t remind you to use them. I once had a discussion with SkyMiles representatives and when I asked about this, they said the one time they reminded customers, naturally redemptions were high. The SkyMiles P&L that month took a huge hit which was not to be repeated. Be educated and alter when you are a Delta customer!
Among the benefit options there is timing strategy to consider with many, some are valid in the program year, while other are valid 12 months from date of selection.
Valid only in program year (through January 31, 2016):
- Delta Sky Club executive membership upgrade
- Gifting medallion status
Yes, that means if you gift someone status today they will only have the status for 1 day!
Valid for 12 months from date of selection:
- Upgrade certificates
- Delta Sky Club one-day passes
- Travel vouchers/gift certificates
For maximum flexibility you may wait to redeem for upgrade certificates until you know you can use them. You can redeem separately for Platinum and Diamond benefits.
I am in that boat. I have not redeemed any of my 2015 (or 2016) benefits. I have most been avoiding Delta flights so have been uncertain on upgrade use. The Diamond global upgrades can be used on Air France or KLM subject to fare class restrictions.
I am leaning toward choosing the 20,000 bonus miles for my Platinum and the 4 global upgrades and 25,000 bonus miles for my Diamond. If I had more NYC-LAX/SFO travel I might consider the regional upgrades. I don’t highly value upgrades on typical domestic planes.
Readers, what Choice Benefits are you choosing for 2015? How have your upgrade certificate experiences been?