Delta's wacky website, first class upgrades on sale, wi-fi at ATL, MQM-Sky Club bonus

Delta’s explaining page regarding changes to its website.

NEW DELTA.COM. Likey or no likey? We’ve all heard that sometimes change is hard—but eventually we get used to it and realize that the change was for the better. Is that what’s going on with Delta’s recently revamped website? It’s been two years since Delta last finagled with it, and now that you’ve had a few weeks to play around with it, what do you think? Many of the design elements are the same, but a new drop down twist is new and feels a little buggy.  Have you memorized your complicated new login password? How does Delta’s site compare to other airlines or booking sites you’ve used? Bummed that Delta did nothing to improve its broken online SkyMiles award booking site? Do you plan to “get social” with Delta and link to your Facebook or Twitter pages? Suggestions for the web designers? Here’s a link to Delta’s online introduction to the new site. Please leave your thoughts below.

PRECHECK NUMBER. With all the complaints about missing or incorrect profile info migrating to the new Delta site, PreCheck members should be certain that their GOES “known traveler” number is intact. But finding that is tough. Here’s how: Login at Delta.com, then go to your profile> in left hand column, open “Basic Info”> scroll to “Secure Flight Passenger Data”> click the “Edit” button to the right> click on the “Add Redress or Known Traveler Number” link> then check to be sure your known traveler number is there… and correct. Phew! I hope you get your three beeps!

DELTA FIRST CLASS FARE SALE. Delta’s offering a great deal on upgrades to first class on US and Canada flightsduring the busy holiday season– Dec 15 – Jan 5. Upgrades on the cheap! Details here. Not a bad idea to pony up a little extra cash as a gift to yourself (or others) for the Holidays!

WIFI AT ATL. FINALLY FREE. No more squatting on the floor outside the Sky Club to snag free wi-fi. ATL has decided to install free wi-fi beginning in the fall of 2013. As the airport adjusts to a heftier system to accommodate the increased demand, it will gradually lower the price of access until it becomes completely free. This revenue loss accounts for around $1.5 million to the airport, but with airports around the country offering it without charge, Atlanta has finally succumbed to the pressure.

MQM BONUS FOR SKY CLUB. Need to renew your Sky Club access for the coming year? If you do it now, Delta will throw in 1,500 bonus MQMs that can help with Medallion status in the coming year (or opt for two free months of membership added to your current Sky Club account). The offer is valid until Dec. 31. Details here.  If nothing else, it’s an easy way to snag some extra MQMs without having to book a last-minute flight somewhere before the end of the year. http://www.delta.com/content/www/en_US/traveling-with-us/airports-and-aircraft/delta-sky-club/membership/delta-sky-club-promotion.html 

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MORE SHRINKAGE IN MEMPHIS. Delta’s cutting back in Memphis once again, this time nixing nonstops to Birmingham, Jacksonville and Ft Lauderdale. It also will trim one daily round-trip flight between Memphis and the following cities: Jackson, Kansas City, Knoxville, Little Rock, Nashville, Raleigh/Durham,  St. Louis, San Antonio and Tulsa. As we’ve long expected, this adds fuel to the fire that both Memphis and Cincy will eventually not be Delta hubs at all.

What do you think of the mod, minimalist design of the front desk at the recently re-vamped Grand Hyatt San Francisco? Leave your comments below!  (Photo: C McGinnis)

SOUTHWEST TO THE KEYS. Southwest will take over AirTran’s flights between ATL andt Key West via Orlando and Tampa beginning in March 2013, making it Southwest’s 8th Florida destination.

DELTA SOARS IN CORPORATE TRAVEL. While it might be tough for Atlantans (most of whom love to complain about the 900-lb gorilla out at ATL), corporate travel buyers ranked Delta first among its peers for the second year in a row in the Business Travel News Annual Airline Survey. Delta says that the recognition is a result of its $3 billion investment in improving the flying experience—like upgrades to business class seats, the roll-out of economy comfort, pervasive inflight wi-fi, the re-vamp of multiple Sky Clubs, a new terminal at NY-LaGuardia and JFK. With United crippled due to a botched merger and American fighting with unions in bankruptcy court, Delta’s mopping up new customers all over the country—even in non-hub cities. What do you think? Is Delta getting better? Please leave your comments below!

At Las Vegas’s nice new Terminal 3. Have you seen it yet? (Photo: Chris McGinnis)

BUSINESS TRIP. What are the top five hottest, newest hotels and restaurants in Las Vegas…and have you heard what they are going to do the THEhotel next year? Do you love Vancouver as much as I do? Do you have any plans to travel to India’s capital city of Delhi… or have just wondered what it might be like to take a business trip there? Take a peek at the latest in my BBC Business Trip series to learn the answers!

AIRTRAN+SOUTHWEST INTEGRATION. An excellent look by the AJC at how the combination of the two carriers came about and how it is progressing through the eyes of AirTran’s co-founder Lewis Jordan: “A year and a half after the deal closed, the combination of the two carriers’ operations is still in progress, and the AirTran name is expected to remain in some form into 2015. AirTran still had roughly 170 flights a day from Atlanta this fall, while Southwest had about 20 daily flights. Next year, Southwest plans to connect AirTran’s route network with its own. Southwest has cut some AirTran routes as it gradually dismantles the AirTran hub in Atlanta to decrease the focus on connecting passengers.”

>Are you signed up for our Facebook page yet? We frequently break news on our Facebook page that eventually makes it into our monthly roundups. So if you want news when it happens, come on and get on our Facebook page.

NEW CHINESE PARTNER FOR SKYTEAM. Xiamen Airlines is set to join the Delta-led alliance later this month adding another option for travelers to Asia. The airline is a heavily domestic Chinese carrier and expands travel options for those flying to fast-growing but poorly served secondary and tertiary cities. While the addition is hardly cause to drop everything and plan your next vacation, SkyTeam is certainly becoming the market leader in China. Mileage earning and redemption will be in place by the end of the year.

HERTZ/SKYMILES PROMO. A new Hertz promotion for reservations between now and the end of the year offers bonus SkyMiles  based on the number of days of your rental. One to two day rentals earn a 500 mile bonus, three to four day rentals earn 900 extra miles, and five days or more brings in 2,000 bonus miles. Hertz already offers 100 miles per day for SkyMiles members (200 miles per day for Medallions), and these extra miles sweeten the pot. To reserve, visit the offer page.

TIME LAPSE ICE RINK. Southwest put together an interesting one-minute time-lapse video showing how they set up the ice skating rink at Park Tavern in Piedmont Park. Have you ever seen how they do this? Pretty neato!

>Do you follow TICKET editor Chris McGinnis on Twitter? Every day I sift through all the business travel news out there and tweet items that I think would interest my readers most.

POSH UPGRADE TO DELTA TRANSCONS. Too bad these flights don’t touch Atlanta… but if you are out and about…. Delta is upping its game against transcontinental competitors with true Business Elite service on these cross-country flights. Until now, Delta only offered its famous multi-course meal service and in-flight amenities (duvet, large pillow, noise-canceling headsets, menus, and amenity kits) on these high-profile flights. The 757s used had the recliner-style seats, but soon, all flights plying these routes will have full flat beds up front. Boeing 767-300ERs will be added to certain flights (the first starts in March 2013 and is timed to connect with the LAX-Sydney flight) while the 757s go in for a retrofit to flat beds. The addition of Seattle to the list of domestic Business Elite flights signals Delta’s heavy commitment to this market. Beginning in May 2013, all transcon flights with the new product will depart from JFK’s renovated Terminal 4. It will take two years for this change to be implemented across all transcon flights so be sure to book your flights accordingly. What do you think? Is a flat bed on a transcon all that important…or is it overkill? 

 

Dusk at SEA-TAC (Photo: Chris McGinnis)

DELTA + ALASKA. The code share agreement that Delta has with Alaska Airlines is proving to be a meaningful source of revenue as passengers can connect to a host of international cities from Seattle including Amsterdam, Beijing, Osaka, Paris, and Tokyo Narita. According to Alaska and Delta, there are as many as 1,200 daily connecting passengers between Delta and Alaska flights. Have you flown Alaska lately? What did you think?

TIME TO DONATE MILES?Even though Hurricane Sandy wreaked havoc on its northeast operations in early November canceling flights and tugging on profits, Delta made a hefty $100,000 donation to the American Red Cross’ relief efforts through the Delta Air Lines Foundation. In addition, Delta has a long-standing agreement with the Red Cross to provide cargo and seats needed during disaster relief efforts.Customers can also donate SkyMiles to the Red Cross or other charities here. 

Artwork in display at the new Holiday Inn next to London’s Olympic Park

CHRISTMAS IN LONDON. Is like something out of Dickens… And Delta is matching other airline’s promotions to offer a hefty pile of SkyMiles for passengers flying to London on full-fare tickets. Your first round trip will earn 15,000 miles; the second round trip earns 35,000 miles, and the third scores 50,000 miles. Three roundtrips equal enough for a free roundtrip award in Business Elite to Europe. Full fares including J, C, D, S and I in business class and Y, B, and M fares in economy. Register and fly before Jan. 31, 2013.

EASY 500+ SKYMILES BONUS. The holidays are the BEST time of year to avoid oversold on-airport parking lots…. so why not help out The TICKET, and our newest sponsor, Peachy Airport Parking, on your next trip? You’ll help yourself, too, since Peachy is offering TICKET readers 500 SkyMiles plus three SkyMiles per dollar spent. If you are tired of worrying about on-airport lot sellouts, long, dark walks to your car or the congested mess that is Camp Creek Parkway, just exit I-85 south at Sylvan Road, one mile north of the airport, and follow the signs to Peachy. Once there, you’ll find extra wide spaces in a secure, climate controlled indoor lot, afree car wash and a short two-minute shuttle ride to the airport. Daily rates are just $6.99 outdoor or$8.99 indoor. COME ON! Help keep The TICKET free by clicking on this link or on the ad to the right to learn more about ATL’s newest parking option. Note: You have to click on the link and print the page to get the SkyMiles! 

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  • http://none Max

    New format is very attractive but could content be more current? I spotted two things (Christmas in London and first class upgrades) that are no longer applicable. Had my hopes up, there, but they soon went away.

  • Rob

    I tried to book a flight to Jacksonville, FL but when i hit submit it didn’t recognize the city and gave me error. So i called to book online, told the agent i was having trouble with website. She booked and did not give me the online rate. i balked. she put me on hold and i finally had to hang up it took so long. logged onto Kayak.com and booked the same flight easy enough.

    I hate it for Delta, but they need to start over.

  • http://www.ffpis.com ed

    Worst redesign in history. Location of sign-on is sometimes unreachable on my MAC. New password requirements are irritant and it now takes more clicks to open pages I am looking for. I think the people that did the redesign travel by stagecoach.

    Incidentally, after using it for a few weeks I sent Delta a detailed e-mail with feedback and it is the first time I did not receive a response to my comments.

  • James S

    Horrible Java based design that takes too long to load and seems more interested in selling partner products than helping a business traveler fly on Delta. When the App on my iPhone is faster to check my flight status, check in and search for flights than the company website there is something wrong!

    Here is a fun test try checking in and looking for the flight status at the same time? I used to be able to click on the flight number to do it, now you cant. Navigate to any page other than the home page (Skymiles for instance) then look up a flight status? I had to use a search and found it under business? Next test download your itinerary to outlook? Anyone, anyone? Next time get a designer who actually fly’s Delta rather than computer programmers to come up with the design. When i hear terms like Whacky new website, i think fun…as a 15 year flyer and Diamond customer…nothing fun about this. I would also like to mention who’s brilliant idea was it to go to passwords rather than pins? Nothing like calling in to delta to find out i do not know my own access number and have to set that first before getting customer service? Take a tip from the app and go simple!

  • Dave M

    Here’s another example of Delta’s poor design. I get an email that check-in is available. I click the link in the email.

    Problem #1: Instead of the link including identifying information so that the Web site recognizes me and starts the check-in process, it brings me to a page to asks me to identify myself (https://www.delta.com/mytrips/).

    Problem #2: There’s no place to enter my Skymiles on this page. Nada. I can only enter confirmation number, credit card number, or ticket number.

    Problem #3: There’s no link for “home” or anything like that. I can’t figure out where to go so that I can log into the site and check in.

    If navigation around the country was as hard and poorly designed as navigation is around the Web site, Delta’s planes would run out of gas before they got anywhere.

  • J Kevin Buster

    Delta’s website is the worst I’ve ever seen. Period. They should go back to what they had before or find someone competent to design a really helpful, good one for them.

  • Dave M

    Beautiful … really nice graphic design. Unfortunately, functionality has taken a distant back seat (row 99, at least). I find myself clicking on the obvious and being take to the wrong place, then struggling to find the right place. For instance, in the list of upcoming trips, clicking on the large and bright ATL > JFK doesn’t drill into the trip; it tells you about the airport. You then go back and have to find the small ‘detail’ text (in light grey) hiding at the right edge of the screen. However, this is inconsistent, always bad thing for usability – when you are looking at My Delta, clicking the large ATL > JFK takes you to flight details.

  • Chip

    In this advanced day and age, how can a company like Delta possibly produce such an unfriendly, horrendous produc? I have been Diamond for three years, almost 2 million miles, and I actually love Delta, since the 1970′s. So my advice to them is: dump the new website, start over, and get it right.

  • JayT

    For me that worst mistake is the new seat maps…you’ll no longer see the entire seating configuration. You can’t tell where your seat is relative to all the bulkheads, galleys, exits, etc. (things you really want to know).. and sometimes you cannot even tell if you are in Comfort Economy. Just terrible. I flew internationally today from ATL and when i mentioned this to the check in desk, they said that they now have the same problem. They can’t tell either.

  • http://Theticket Burt Davis

    It is the worst website I have ever gone to. I have called and that was no help at all. The person on the phone had a problem with English.

  • Chris

    Scroll down and you should see it!

  • http://Delta Rob in FLL

    ….the new website is terrible…the receipt section is missing the very basic date and place of receipt…hyperlinks on current day’s trip itenarary are gone so you can not see the flight status without mutiple steps…in fact what was once simple in all most every area now requires multiple steps….the website which had progressed nicely over the last few years went backwards 2-3 years…as a diamond medallion I just gave up booking a muti-city trip for multiple family members the other day…too damn complicated on the new website…we are staying home !

  • jane

    New Delta website is slow, not user friendly, font too small, additional clicks to get to information….shall I continue? I have used the site for several weeks and do not find that it is better than previous version. They seem to have done “MORE” instead of “LESS is MORE.” Delta, I am a supporter but please rethink the current website version! More color and movement does not always a more user friendly website make!

  • http://www.mooresymons.com Sharon

    I followed your directions to add my Global Entry number. When I click on the edit, no place appears to add this number. Is there a place to add this?

  • Jason Henry

    Slow, user un-friendly, and complicated. I’m all about change when there is a benefit, but I don’t see it here. I’m working on the Windows 7 platform. Parent’s PC is still on Windows XP – so forget about doing anything in less than 15 minutes.

    I’ve heard that the Top 5% of Delta frequent fliers accounts for about 20% of their revenue – did they even bother to test this web site with that top 5% who actually travel for a living or leave it a corporate communications and marketing team who THINK they know what people want?

  • Dermot

    Hate. It.

    Who puts login at the bottom? Most good websites put the stuff you need/use most at the top, usually top right, and the “Contact Us” stuff at the bottom.

    Here Delta put the “complaints’ at the top right, where it is easy to find. Subliminal messaging, anyone?

  • Gregg

    Slow and Awful……

  • Gale tedhams

    I am also frustrated with the new delta website. It does not remember my info nor my already booked flights. Have to go search for the confirmation numbers. Time wasting clicks and log ons. Buggy on ipad. Not sure why they felt compelled to change.

  • Evan Torch

    There’s something just so Delta about it—troublesome for the sake of nothing discernible, no apologies or requests for feedback.
    Oddly, Firefox and Safari don’t work well on it at all, so Delta may have outsmarted itself.

  • CD

    They aboviously did NOT beta test this site with their FF. Delta’s site now is officially one of the worst travel sites on the web. I email them daily – my frustration level (as a Diamond) is beyond (polite) words. I could create a long list, but no need -everyone reading this know ALL of the shortcomings of the new Delta advertising website.

  • AT

    Worst website in the entire travel industry now! Gold Medallion for many years, worst ever change! I guess they really want everyone to use the Delta App, because the website is horrible! I called Delta several times and they could care less!

  • http://www.tohotenax-us.com John Fricano

    The new Delta website is an absolute disaster. It’s bulky, non-user friendly and just terrible. Delta had the best user friendly website before they made their “improvements”. Now its frustrating and the worst website I’ve ever tried to navigate around. The pop up menus suck and they’ve made everything more non-user frindly. I’ve not been unable to check in from hotels before I go to the airport half the time which creates even more frustration. Maybe Delta will wake up to the Keep It Simple Method and listen to their customers. I’ve even had Delta customer service representatives tell me that they don’t like it for the cumbersome design. One question for Delta if you can get and answer to “Why did they change something that worked perfectly???”
    Best Regards,
    John F.

  • MJ

    No Likey

    Awful – frustrating

  • TS

    Cumbersome, awkward and slow. And where did the automatic upgrade requests go?

  • Timothy

    Delta can change its website all it wants but until it changes the award calendar I will be frustrated. I’m a million miler, platinum level and there are NEVER 25000 award seats for my wife to be able to travel with me. And, it’s not like we’re trying to go to Hawaii either; we usually are trying to go flights like atl-cvg and conventions are usually planned months in advance. Guess delta is satisfied to take my 40000 points because it keeps us from truly using them on something like a Hawaii trip. I can’t wait for AirTran to integrate with southwest so that I have other choices besides delta!

  • Greg

    You’d think that smart people in Delta marketing would test drive their new web site before launching it. Site is frustrating in two critical areas 1) LOGIN box at bottom of page and small box to login versus previous prominent top of page login.
    2) Touigh to find skymiles award redemption ticket search.
    Lots of clicks.

    I also do not the graphics and “Look and Feel”.
    I expect more from Delta.

  • Sam

    Unfortunately, Delta–like many other ocmpanies–has succumbed to some consultant’s advice rather than following the #1 rule of software development–KISS! Keep It Simple, Stupid!! I think someone raised on ‘Logo’ has taken over the website design industry. “Fancy’ graphics take longer to load than text and small grapohics but they seem to think that big pictures are better–they’re NOT! In a word the new website is AWFUL. :-)

  • http://theticket tpo

    Site is fine, now worries mate!

  • Robert

    From bad to worse. Very quirky on IPad and difficult to locate features like manage account. Seems take an extra click or two, gotta be a revenue driver.

  • Rocky

    I think the new web site is awful. I think the old web site was one of the best airline sites I’ve used. I really don’t know why Delta felt compelled to change it. The old web site was clean and simple. The new site is neither. Please change it back.

  • Ron

    Doesn’t seem to work at all in Firefox. Can’t get past the pop-up asking for default country/language.

  • actoreye

    Gone are the simple good old days. You can’t see what you want, get what you want, and on top of all that you can’t sit where you want. It was like a foreign language. Not helpful or user friendly. Obviously they have hired a techie whose common sense isn’t common.

  • Lynne Peterson

    The new website is in tiny, tiny, tiny print in Chrome. I need a magnifying glass to read it. Navigation is passable when I can read it, but reading it is a challenge.

  • Jim6555

    Could not book an itinerary using a Delta companion ticket. Had to call Delta’s internet desk to complete the transaction.

  • Rene

    Graphically the new Web interface looks very nice, but practically it is a hot mess.

  • Chris

    Way too busy. Nothing more that a glitzy new advertisement distraction. Calendar doesn’t work on iPads.

  • Charles Marvin

    No likey…..I had a hekkuva time signing in to the new website. It finally took my efforts combined with a number of minutes online with a Delta tech person to correct contradictory differences in “information” that the new website had regarding me under My Profile as opposed to what I needed to provide in getting through the new Password (as opposed to Number) sign-in step.

  • http://www.michaeljdaugherty.com Mike Daugherty

    Annoying……been using it for weeks…….still annoying. I see change but no improvement.

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