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Using Delta skymiles for a first class ticket

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May 18th, 2004, 06:29 AM
  #1
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Using Delta skymiles for a first class ticket

We have used skymiles before to get econony class seats-have called 331 days in advance, put the first part of the itinerary on hold, etc....
Next summer we will have enough miles (75,000) to try for first class seats to Hawaii. Are those seats as limited as the economy class-will we need to schedule 331 days in advance?
I am also confused by skychoice/skysaver-would the 75,000 miles be a skychoice or would a ticket like that actually "cost" 150,000 miles (skychoice seems to be twice the miles)?
Thanks in advance for any help.
Laurie
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May 18th, 2004, 08:12 AM
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I don't know about availability, but:

1. Yes, Skychoice means 150,000 miles for a roundtrip. What it does is open up a lot of seats that are not available with the 75,000 miles Skysaver "standard" awards.

2. Delta uses domestic "First Class" service to Hawaii, with 40" pitch. The seats are highly inferior to its BusinessElite international service with 60" pitch, 160-degree sleeper seats. You should instead try to claim the miles on Continental. Same rate as DL, but CO uses its BusinessFirst product on Hawaii routes, meaning 55" pitch, 170-degree sleeper seat.
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May 18th, 2004, 08:18 AM
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Oh, and even NW's ancient DC-10 from MSP and SEA have their World Business seats with 60" pitch and 150-degree recline. Again, same FF miles as DL and CO. I'd take CO, then NW, then DL, in that order for "front cabin" service to Hawaii.
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May 21st, 2004, 07:33 AM
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I booked ours 331 days out. My husband and I are flying FC and the teens will be in coach. Initially when I called, I requested a flight into Maui on a Friday. It was only available after delayed connections and it turned 13 hours of travel time into 18. I declined that flight and opted instead to fly on a Wednesday, into HNL and out from Maui on a Thursday. While the seats were limited we were able to satify most of the first class segments. My husband is still waitlisted for FC from Maui and all three of the coach seats. Does anyone have any opinion on whether the first class waitlist will be satisfied. He is priority waitlisted.
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May 21st, 2004, 08:42 AM
  #5
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Thanks rkkwan and DawnCt for responding-looks like I will have to book early to get FC and only use 75,000 miles.
This is probably a dumb question but... if I wanted to try to book with CO using Delta miles would I still call Delta and they check for seats or do I call CO?
Thanks,
Laurie
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May 21st, 2004, 10:59 AM
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Yes, You have to call Delta. The dept. that manages the sky miles awards.
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May 21st, 2004, 11:48 AM
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One other thing -- SkyChoice is only good on Delta or Delta Connection flights, not for flights on partner airlines.
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Jun 2nd, 2004, 01:44 PM
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Actually Hawaii is even harder to get then Europe so call EARLY!
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Jun 3rd, 2004, 11:08 AM
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A related question, please.

331 days before depature or 331 days before return?

Keith
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Jun 3rd, 2004, 11:26 AM
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Keith,
The ansewer is both. You book the outbound at 331 and have them put it on old and then when the return opens up you call again and finalize the ticket.
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Jun 15th, 2004, 05:47 PM
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We just put a hold on a Skymiles first class reservation to Hawaii. I reserved 300 days ahead. Only one Skysaver award was available for any given flight combination. I reserved one seat at the Skysaver level and a second seat at the Skychoice level (total of 225,000 miles).

I don't see any seats blocked out yet for some of these flights (on Delta's online seat selection maps). I speculate that Delta may release one Skysaver seat at a time for the most desirable flghts.

I'm reading here that Delta first class to Hawaii (40" pitch) isn't as good as Delta's Business Elite (60" pitch) for international. Do any Delta frequent flyers out there have any recommendations? Would I be better off saving the miles for Europe? I'm basically choosing first class for the room (hope to sleep on the long overnight back home). Are the seats on the B767-400 sufficiently superior to Economy (leg room, recline, leg rests, etc.)?
(The Delta agent couldn't find any Business class seats on Continental for our dates, so I'm not pursuing that option.)


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Jun 15th, 2004, 06:23 PM
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It's not worth it to spend lots of Delta miles for First Class to Hawaii. Unlike other airlines, Delta uses standard domestic First Class seats to Hawaii, instead of the bigger and better International Business on other airlines.

If you can't get CO, you should also try NW, another partner of Delta.
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Jun 15th, 2004, 07:21 PM
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Thanks for you response, RKKWAN. I'll look into NW. We're still within the 14 day window before we have to ticket the itinerary I described above. So I'm still exploring options.
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Jun 16th, 2004, 04:48 AM
  #14
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jcnyc - I agree with rkkwan. Either try to redeem miles on CO or NWA or save the miles for Business Elite travel to Europe. I used to travel Delta frequently and have flown them first class to Hawaii a couple of times. While better than coach, first class does not compare to Business Elite. As mentioned, Delta's first class on the Hawaii routes is standard domestic first class. If you have Medallion status, block the emergency row exits as this will provide much additional legroom. This can be done via an agent or the Delta website prior to your trip.

Enjoy!
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