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Delta’s Changing the Comfort+ Process for International Flights

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As of May 16, Delta’s extra legroom Comfort+ section on regional flights now includes its own fare class. At the same time, the process for elite members to “upgrade” to the extra legroom seats has become more complicated — rather than being able to select these seats at booking, Gold and Silver elites need to wait for an upgrade to clear, just as they do with first class. The process is even more complex if you’re traveling with a companion, but Delta’s working to improve the situation there.

Well, beginning with flights on September 19, Delta’s assigning a separate fare class (“W”) to Comfort+ on some international flights as well. As Delta’s Medallion Program Updates section states, the new fare classes only apply to certain markets:

Effective May 21, 2016 for flights departing on or after September 19, 2016, Delta Comfort+ will be a booking option just like Main Cabin or First Class for flights to and from the Asia Pacific and Latin America/Caribbean regions. This includes travel between the U.S 50 and Canada to the Asia Pacific region or within the Asia Pacific region, excluding China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan as well as travel to Mexico, the Caribbean, Central America, and markets in South America where First Class product is available (Colombia, Ecuador, and Venezuela).

So if you’re flying Delta to Europe or some parts of Asia, it’ll be business as usual when it comes to Comfort+ — for now, at least.

Delta's using a separate fare class for Comfort+.
Delta’s using a separate fare class for Comfort+.

As you may have guessed, having a separate fare class for Comfort+ means you’ll be paying more to select those seats during the initial booking process. For example, for the outbound leg of a round-trip from Seattle to Tokyo, Delta’s charging an extra $278 for the W fare class, compared to the base economy fare of $1,128.

You'll need to redeem more miles, too.
You’ll need to redeem more miles, too.

Award tickets are affected as well — if you want to book an extra legroom seat, expect to shell out even more miles — in this case, an extra 20,000 for the one-way flight to Japan, bringing the outbound leg to a whopping 90,000 miles.

Comfort+ seats add legroom, but they're just as narrow.
Comfort+ seats add legroom, but they’re just as narrow as regular coach.

And what do you get for that extra cash or miles? On domestic flights, Comfort+ passengers get free snacks and alcoholic beverages, but all economy passengers usually receive those perks on Delta’s long-haul flights, so there’s not much of an incentive, there. Comfort+ passengers do get to pick seats near the front of the plane, and the (up to) four extra inches of legroom will come in handy. Still, the value add is a bit light considering the high price.

What do you think about Delta’s latest Comfort+ changes?

H/T: One Mile at a Time

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