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Delta companion ticket small print decoded

by on Sun July 7, 2013 • 21 Comments
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Delta SkyMilesSome Delta SkyMiles credit cards offer a popular companion ticket feature that can save you several hundred dollars, if you know how to play the rules. But they can also be quite frustrating if you don’t know what you’re really getting. Here are answers to some of the most frequent questions we get about the fine print that’s on the certificates:

  • What credit cards offer the ticket? The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® and Delta Reserve credit cards offer one companion ticket each year you renew the card. The Platinum lets you get free coach travel. The Reserve lets you get either coach or first class. The Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card used to offer the feature, but no longer does. Existing Gold cardmembers get one more certificate this year (2013) before the program is terminated.
  • Where can you travel? Your travel must be entirely in the lower 48 United States. The exception is residents of Hawaii, Alaska, and Puerto Rico, who can use it for travel to the lower 48 United States. Residents of the lower 48 *cannot* use the ticket for travel to Hawaii, Alaska, Mexico, the Caribbean, or Canada. Just within the mainland United States.
  • How can you book a ticket? You can log in to Delta.com with your SkyMiles number to view your certificates and book them. Click here for an illustrated walk through of how to book a Delta companion ticket.
  • What kind of ticket must be available? There is no minimum dollar amount you must spend, but there must be availability in specific fare ‘codes.’ The lettered codes that are eligible are ‘L, U, T’. For the Reserve, which allows first class companion tickets, the codes ‘A’ and ‘I’ are also eligible. These are the lowest fares Delta offers, so not every flight will have space at these fare codes left. If you plan ahead though, you have a good shot at finding them. When you search at Delta.com after selecting your certificate, it will automatically only show the fares that are eligible for the discount, so you don’t have to remember the codes.  Most of these fares require an advance purchase of up to 14 days, a 3 night minimum stay and a 30-day maximum stay.
  • Changing the ticket. There is a $200 fee for each passenger to change dates, for $400 total. The eligible fare codes must be available on the new flights you are requesting.
  • What happens if you lose your certificate? No worries, the certificates are available online. Just follow this link at Delta.com and you can look them up by your SkyMiles number.
  • What if one person can’t travel anymore? Unfortunately, if one person can’t travel, both tickets will be cancelled. There is a $200 fee to have the remaining value of the cash ticket you paid for saved for a future flight. The companion ticket will be void and can’t be reapplied.
  • Who can use the companion ticket? You can assign the companion ticket to anyone. In fact, you the cardholder don’t need to be flying, and don’t need to use your Delta credit card to purchase your ticket.
  • Will you earn miles? Yes, you will earn SkyMiles® on the first, cash paid ticket. But you won’t be eligible for Medallion elite upgrades if you are an elite member of SkyMiles.  You also can’t use your miles to upgrade either ticket.
  • Can you return from a different city? No, your travel must be a pure round trip to and from the same two cities.
  • Can you travel in first class? Only the certificate from the Delta Reserve card allows you to book tickets in first class.

Application links

> Delta Platinum SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express

> Delta Reserve Card

 

 

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21 thoughts on Delta companion ticket small print decoded

  1. Erika

    My friend and I would like to travel together but she’s in DC and I’m in Atlanta. Can she use my companion certificate from her location and meet me?

    Reply
    1. MileCards.com

      @Erika – Unfortunately the companions need to be on the same flight. But if she’s flying with a different friend on the same flight you could book them with the companion certificate so she and the other friend can fly together.

      Reply
  2. Jennifer

    I purchased a ticket and used my companion ticket but now need to change destinations (planned family visit, now family is moving). One Delta rep said I could change the destination but when I called back to make changes, was told that’s not allowed. I know there will be a change fee for both tickets, but I don’t see anything in the fine print about not allowing destination changes. thanks for the help.

    Reply
    1. Jennifer

      I called again and today’s agent let me change the destination …. yay for me, but seriously Delta, need to get the story straight!

      Reply
  3. Nellie

    Can the companion ticket be given to a friend and they use it to book their own tickets, or do i need to book under my account?

    Reply
  4. Chris

    Booked a companion flight, but my wife needs to get home earlier than planned. I have to stay for the entirety of the trip. What happens then?

    Reply
    1. Todd

      Did this work? I have the same situation happening tomorrow. My companion is flying on our original tickets, booked with a companion pass, but I’m on a separate flight from another city now. Hoping she is able to still fly on the companion ticket without me being on the flight.

      Reply
  5. Therese

    HI,

    Can the first ticket be bought using SkyMiles and still get the 2nd ticket via Companion?
    Or the 1st one has to be cash paid?
    Thanks!

    Reply
  6. Michelle

    Can the companion ticket be used on a multi stop trip? Will be departing from and returning to same airport but want to spend a couple days in two different cities.

    Reply
  7. Richard

    I tried to use my delta reserve card companion ticket purchase to SFO first class travel beginnig 6/18 the price quoted was for 2700+ using my ticket. Booking on line at the lowest fare same flight same
    Day same class of
    Service the price was 1300+ each.
    Price was more using companion ticket. A and I class is not the lowest. The game
    Is rigged you have Zero flexibility.

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Richard – Good point. What’s happened is the airlines have started selling some coach fares as ‘instant upgrades’ and as you found these are cheaper than the lowest true ‘First Class’ fares. The only catch on those ‘instant upgrade’ fares is if your flight gets delayed and you have to switch there is no guarantee they will put you in First Class on another flight.

      Reply
  8. Richard Olson

    Using a Delta Reserve “companion cert”, what if the primary account holder has change of business plans during the trip and buys a separate ticket to return at a later date? Will the companion have any trouble using the companion ticket and checking in alone? Or would it help for both to check in for the return trip online?

    Reply
    1. MileCards

      @Richard – Shouldn’t be an issue – just check in online. You will each be given separate boarding passes. If one of you misses the return flight, well that happens…

      Reply
      1. Todd

        Did this work? I have the same situation happening tomorrow. My companion is flying on our original tickets, booked with a companion pass, but I’m on a separate flight from another city now. Hoping she is able to still fly on the companion ticket without me being on the flight.

        Reply
    2. Todd

      Did this work? I have the same situation happening tomorrow. My companion is flying on our original tickets, booked with a companion pass, but I’m on a separate flight from another city now. Hoping she is able to still fly on the companion ticket without me being on the flight.

      Reply

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