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Overcrowding at lounges continues to be a problem. Lines are often snaking across terminals and efforts to create separate lines for premium passengers and top-tier elites has not helped with this problem. The Centurion Lounges and Delta Sky Clubs® seem to have the longest lines (my guess is because the quality of food and beverage is so much better than what United or American are offering). Solutions are being tested, but head to JFK or ATL at peak time and see how long it takes you to get into the lounge.
Delta announced a policy change this week that has angered many of its employees and pass riders. A memo was shared on Twitter by JonNYC. It reads:
Beginning Feb. 2, 2023, access to Delta Sky Clubs will be embargoed for all customers and employees using nonrevenue travel passes, including leisure and company business. This embargo applies to all employees and leaders of Delta and its subsidiaries, other airline employees, as well as retirees and registered pass riders. The employee discount on Delta Sky Club memberships is also discontinued.
While we understand that this may be disappointing, know that this decision was not made lightly. We are sure you’ll agree that delivering an elevated experience to our most loyal customers must be our priority. When we put our customers first and ensure that they have the best experience, they will continue to prefer Delta’s premium products and services – which ultimately benefits all of us.
The policy goes as far as to remove access from those that would have it from holding a credit card or holding a lounge membership. This seems rather punitive to employees who have paid an annual fee for either the card or lounge membership, especially since Delta used to discount these memberships for employees.
Anthony’s Take: Starting in February 2023, Delta is no longer granting Sky Club® access to any non-rev travelers. I don’t think this is fair for those that would have access based on a credit card or membership. It will be interesting to see how this plays out once enacted. We’ll see if it has any impact on the current overcrowding.
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I suppose to put this in perspective, Delta has repeatedly hosed engaged loyalty members so doing the same to employees is not exactly a surprise although not at least offering a prorated refund on paid employee memberships is distasteful even by Delta standards.