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Delta, Northwest Align Policies, Fees

November 6, 2008 By: George Dooley


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Delta Air Lines has aligned policies and fees for customers traveling on Delta and Northwest-operated flights. Delta said they are working to ensure a seamless and consistent customer experience during the integration of the two recently merged carriers. Delta and Northwest policies and fees are being aligned over the next 30 days.

Customers are reminded to continue checking in for flights and doing business directly with the airline operating their flights just as they did before the merger, Delta said. Delta will continue operation of the airlines’ separate websites, www.delta.com and www.nwa.com, as well as the two airlines’ reservations systems and loyalty programs. Integration will be rolled out over the next 12-24 months.

Most Northwest baggage policies and fees will be aligned to Delta’s structure, effective December 5. Travel on Delta and Northwest tickets purchased prior to the announcement of these changes will continue to be governed by the prior Delta and Northwest policies.

“The increase in bags being carried on board Delta aircraft this year tells us that customers are not differentiating Delta as the only major airline not charging for a first checked bag,” said Steve Gorman, Delta’s executive vice president and chief operating officer. “As we align customer policies and fees to simplify the travel experience for our customers throughout the merger, Delta is adopting proven practices from both Delta and Northwest that have been broadly accepted in the marketplace.”

Some of the changes to align Delta and Northwest’s policies and fees include:

*    Elimination of SkyMiles and WorldPerks award ticket fuel surcharges— Effective immediately, Delta will eliminate the $25-$100 fuel surcharges assessed for SkyMiles and WorldPerks award ticket travel originating from the U.S. and Canada. The surcharges were instituted earlier this year by both airlines in response to unprecedented fuel costs.
*    Reduction of Reservation Sales Direct Ticketing charges— Delta, effective November 6, will reduce the fee assessed for tickets purchased over the phone from a reservations sales representative from $25 to $20 consistent with Northwest’s policy.
*    Elimination of curbside check-in administrative fees— Delta, effective December 5, will discontinue the $3 curbside check-in administration fee. With this change, customers no longer will incur an administrative fee for checking bags via skycaps for Delta- and Northwest-operated flights at airport locations worldwide, consistent with Northwest’s policy.
*    Alignment of first and second checked bag fees— Effective immediately, for travel on or after December 5, customers flying within the U.S. will be charged $15 for the first checked bag and $25 for the second checked bag when traveling domestically, consistent with Northwest’s existing policies. Customers who purchased Delta tickets on or before November 5, and who are traveling on or after December 5, will be charged $50 for a second bag, but will be permitted to check their first bag without charge pursuant to Delta’s previous policy. Other rules apply to travelers flying in First or Business Class, including SkyMiles Medallion members and WorldPerks Elite members who will receive up to three checked bags, up to 70 pounds each, for free.



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