Delta Extends Medallion Status to 2023 as Mea Culpa for Long Hold Times


Delta is Extending Medallion Status to 2023, as an apology to its frequent flyer elites for the long hold times even elites have encountered when calling in. Some travelers have reported hold times of 6 or more hours (see Sick of Delta Air Lines' Long Hold Times? Email the CEO). During the height of the pandemic, Delta let go much of its call center staff to preserve cash, but that decision has meant that its reduced call center staff is overwhelmed with the sheer call volume of ordinary passengers as well as frequent flyer elites calling in to do things that aren't possible to accomplish online. Perhaps CEO Ed Bastian only understood the sheer scope of the problem once his email was circulated and emails poured in from travelers unable to devote hours of time on hold. While it will take time to fully train all the newly hired call center staffers, Delta has at least provided some SkyMiles Medallion goodies in the meantime as an apology. Even better, no action is needed, all the following are supposed to be extended automatically:

Delta Medallion Benefits

  • Delta Medallion Status for 2021 will be automatically extended for 2022.
  • All Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) will roll over to 2022, qualifying for 2023 Medallion Status.
  • All Members will continue to earn toward Status on SkyMiles Award Travel through Dec. 31, 2022 – extended an extra year.
  • All Global and Regional Upgrade Certificates will be extended for travel through Jan. 31, 2023.
  • Members who earn Status in 2021 will receive additional benefits, as a special thank-you for their continued flight activity: Starting Feb. 1, 2022, those who earned 2022 Medallion Status will clear for Complimentary Upgrades ahead of those at the same tier level whose Status was automatically extended, and Platinum and Diamond Medallion Members who have earned Status will be able to select Choice Benefits.
  • All current Delta 360 Members will be able to enjoy their exclusive Membership in Delta's invite-only program for an additional year through Jan. 31, 2023. All Delta 360 Members will be able to select Diamond Choice Benefits.

Earlier in 2021, Delta announced a Medallion Fast Track offer to enable elites to earn up to 75% more towards Medallion status with Delta tickets; 50% bonus on regular tickets, and 75% bonus on premium tickets such as Delta One, First Class, and Delta Comfort+. Note that these bonuses are for elite qualification, not for regular SkyMiles earning. The offer applies for travel until 12/31/21.


Additionally, Delta is allowing passengers in Basic Economy to make free changes for travel until December 31, 2021. This is for Delta Basic Economy tickets booked from May 1-December 31, 2021, for travel July 28-December 31, 2021. All rebooked travel must begin no later than 12/31/22. Normally, Basic Economy fares do NOT allow any changes.

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