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Excellent News: Delta Extends Upgrade Certificates & Makes Them Much Easier To Use

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With air travel still potentially months away from showing any real signs of recovery, Delta has announced that it will be extending the validity of all existing upgrade certificates and that it will be offering an amnesty to Medallion members whose certificates had recently expired. In further good news, Delta flyers now also have more ways in which to use their upgrade certificates.

Delta Upgrade Certificates Extended

In April of last year, Delta was the first of the US airlines to offer status extensions and, at the same time, the airline announced that the validity of unused upgrade certificates would also be extended. Upgrade Certificates with an original expiration date between 1 March and 30 June 2020 were extended through 31 December 2020 while SkyMiles Members with Upgrade Certificates that expired after 30 June 2020 were given 6-month extensions.

Since then, we’ve seen Delta offer extensions to Sky Club memberships and to select Sky Miles benefits but even as a significant number of upgrade certificates expired at the end of 2020 (and travel showed little sign of rebounding), no further Upgrade Certificate extensions were offered.

Yesterday, that finally changed when Delta announced that all unused, active, and/or previously expired Upgrade Certificates that were selected between 1 March 2019 and 31 December 2020 will be extended through the end of 2021 and can now be booked and flown by 31 December 2021.

Importantly, what this means is that not only will all currently valid Upgrade Certificates be extended, but any previously expired Upgrade Certificates will be reinstated and given a 31 December 2021 expiration date.

Delta says that the expired Upgrade Certificates will be reissued by Monday, 8 March 2021 and that all Upgrade Certificate extensions will be reflected in member accounts by that date.

Delta Makes Upgrade Certificates Easier To Use

Not only has Delta extended the validity of everyone’s upgrade certificates but it has also made them considerably easier to use….and in more than one way.

Easy To Find Upgrade Availability

Up until now, the only way to find out if an Upgrade Certificate could be used at the time of booking was to call Delta’s reservation agents and ask – a time-sapping and inefficient process. Now, however, Delta has pushed through a fantastic upgrade to its website so the flights available to upgrade can be clearly seen in the search results.

screens screenshot of a screen
Image reproduced with the kind permission of Frequent Miler

Note: This feature is available for domestic and international bookings but upgrade availability for partner flights is not yet being displayed.

Upgrade Certificates Are Now More Versatile

In further good news, not only can you now see which flights can be upgraded online, but you can also now use Delta’s Upgrade certificates on award bookings and Miles + Cash bookings too (historically, only cash fares have been upgradeable).

a screenshot of a computer
Image reproduced with the kind permission of Frequent Miler

As things stand, upgrades still can’t be processed online (a call to Delta will be required if you want to upgrade a flight) but these updates to Delta.com and to how upgrades can be used are unquestionably great news for Delta flyers.

Bottom Line

Delta has announced that it will be extending the validity of all existing upgrade certificates and that expired certificates will be reinstated and have their expiration dates extended too. The airline has also upgraded its website to allow customers to see which flights can be upgraded and it has expanded the usability of Upgrade Certificates to include award booking and Miles + Cash bookings too.

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