Delta sent out the following email to SkyMiles members this morning:
We hope you’re enjoying your Delta Sky Club® experience, including more than $50 million in recent investments in expanded seating, renovated Clubs in Atlanta, New York-LGA and Los Angeles, the opening of the New York-JFK Terminal 4 flagship Club and The Sky DeckSM at Delta Sky Club at New York-JFK and Atlanta.
Even with these investments, we occasionally hear that overcrowding can be an issue. To maintain the Club’s exclusive atmosphere, the following changes are being introduced:
- Effective immediately, membership price is $695 annually. This Executive Membership will continue to allow two complimentary guests.
- For those customers who rarely need guest access, an Individual Membership at the current rate of $450 will be introduced Spring 2014. This membership will allow guest access for $29 per visit.
- Beginning May 1, 2014, all customers who receive complimentary Delta Sky Club access as a benefit of their eligible credit or charge card will no longer receive complimentary guest access. A $29 fee per guest will apply.
If you are an existing Club member, you now have an Executive Membership for the duration of your current membership agreement.
We hope these changes will provide a more comfortable and productive experience for customers like you. Please visit delta.com/skyclub to learn more.
So to recap:
Delta is no longer allowing complimentary guests for those entering through an American Express Platinum or American Express Delta Reserve Card
Previously you could guest in two people or your immediate family members, though now only the cardmember is allowed in, and will have to pay $29 per guest. This is another huge hit for the value of the American Express Platinum Card, given that they’re also losing access to American Admirals Clubs and US Airways Clubs as of March 22, 2014.
Individual memberships will cost $450 and not allow complimentary guests
So basically if you want to keep paying the current SkyClub membership rates you’ll go from being allowed to have two guests or your immediate family, to being allowed to have no guests. You can guest in additional people for $29 each.
Executive membership will be the only one that allows guests
The executive membership will cost $695 and have the same access rules as members currently have, whereby they can bring in two guests or their immediate family. Through March 1, 2015, Gold members receive a $50 discount on this rate, while Platinum members receive a $100 discount.
Downgrade in Diamond Medallion lounge access benefits
Diamond Medallion members presently get a complimentary SkyClub membership. Through March 1, 2015, it will become an executive membership, though at that point it will be converted to an individual membership.
Don’t get me wrong, these changes totally suck. At the same time, I see a lot of frequent flyers are also somewhat happy about this since the SkyClubs are really crowded. I suppose this will help prevent that somewhat, but at the same time it sucks to pay more for the same product just so it’s not overcrowded. Really I think this is the biggest loss for the American Express Platinum Card, given that a few years ago the card lost access to Continental Presidents Clubs, then in a couple of months it’s losing access to American Admirals Clubs and US Airways Clubs, and around the same time guesting privileges will be lost at Delta SkyClubs. Ouch.
It’ll be interesting to see if other airlines follow…