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Yesterday I posted about the further obfuscation of the SkyMiles program after Delta announced that starting June 1, 2016, the number of miles needed will change based on destination, demand and other dynamics. Delta also announced that it will increase the number of miles needed for upgrade awards and add more eligible fare classes, though there was no description of what these mileage upgrades will actually entail.

However, this Flyertalk thread seems to have some of the leaked info. Here’s the gist of what’s posted there:

Effective June 1, 2016, additional fare classes are eligible for SkyMiles upgrades. Within North America and northern South America, L, U and T fares are now eligible (previously only Y, B, M, S, H, Q and K fares qualified). For all other markets, S, H, Q and K fares are now eligible (previously only Y, B and M fares qualfied).

SkyMiles upgrade awards will also require more miles. Prices for the following markets are quoted by a reservations agent (Pricing is one-way):

Domestic (except JFK-LAX/SFO, Hawaii, etc.):
Y/B/M: 15,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 20,000 miles
L/U/T: 30,000 miles

Domestic Premium Routes (JFK-LAX/SFO)
Y/B/M: 25,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 35,000 miles
L/U/T: 45,000 miles

US-Hawaii
Y/B/M: 30,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 45,000 miles
L/U/T: 55,000 miles

US-Canada
Y/B/M: 15,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 20,000 miles
L/U/T: 30,000 miles

US-Puerto Rico, Mexico, Bermuda, Caribbean
Y/B/M: 15,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 20,000 miles
L/U/T: 30,000 miles

US-Northern South America
Y/B/M: 30,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 45,000 miles
L/U/T: 55,000 miles

US-Southern South America
Y/B/M: 60,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 80,000 miles

US-Europe:
Y/B/M: 60,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 80,000 miles

US-Northern Asia (Japan/Korea/China):
Y/B/M: 60,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 80,000 miles

US-Southeast/Southwest Asia, Micronesia, Southwest Pacific:
Y/B/M: 80,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 115,000 miles

US-Africa (incl. South Africa)
Y/B/M: 80,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 115,000 miles

US-Middle East
Y/B/M: 80,000 miles
S/H/Q/K: 115,000 miles

Delta is making some updates to their 2015 SkyMile program.
SkyMiles members won’t be too happy about Delta’s new mileage upgrade prices.

Should You Upgrade? 

On the positive side, Delta is adding more fare classes that are eligible for mileage upgrades. For domestic flights, you’ll now be able to upgrade L, U, and T fares. However, it will cost you 30,000 SkyMiles one-way. To put things in perspective, SkyMiles domestic coach awards start at 25,000 miles round-trip, so you’d be using more than that just to upgrade a one-way flight to First Class.

On the international front, Delta is making S, H, Q and K fares eligible for mileage upgrades, but some of these amounts are even more absurd. From the US to Europe, Delta wants 80,000 SkyMiles one-way to upgrade those fares. If you’re headed to Asia, it will cost you 115,000 miles one-way.

Overall, these new SkyMiles upgrade options appear to be extremely steep, and I wouldn’t encourage using them. What are your thoughts?

Hat Tip: Delta Points

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