Delta Airlines has altered its frequent flyer program to take into account dollars spent rather than miles flown. The goal of the change is to attract higher-spending clientele to the detriment of those who fly frequently by purchase economy seats. The decision is yet another reason to avoid commercial airlines and instead rely on charter services to get where you need to go.
Delta isn't the first airline to change its frequent flyer program in this way. JetBlue, Southwest and Virgin America have all made the same decision. The hope is to lure those passengers purchasing tickets last minute in first class, who provide a higher profit margin for the airlines, rather than focusing on customers who take the longest trips.
While these shifts in frequent flyer offerings are resulting in higher revenue for the airlines, they're punishing those customers who rely on air travel for their jobs.
This is part of a larger trend which has seen commercial airlines move away from customer service and focus more on nickel-and-diming customers. The airlines spin such changes as a way of providing more value to their passengers, but another way of viewing is that they're looking to increase revenue any way they can, and making frequent flyer programs less generous is the latest effort to do this.
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