How to Get a Free Upgrade on Delta

Written by khalidah tunkara
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Getting a free upgrade on any airline is usually reserved for the frequent business traveller, however, due to the rise of flight comparison sites, passenger review boards as well as a severe dip in flight revenues, airline honcho's are now vying for passengers at every turn. This article will show you how to get a free upgrade on Delta airlines with minimal haggling.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • Delta reservation number
  • Passenger itinerary information
  • Delta ticket
  • SkyMiles account

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Go to Delta.com and register for a free SkyMiles membership (see Resources).

  2. 2

    Call the Delta reservation hot line at 800- 221-1212. An automated prompt will ask if you are a SkyMiles member and you will be prompted to enter your SkyMiles account number. After your logged into the SkyMiles account system, you have the option of selecting the domestic or international flight prompt. Continue through the prompts until you are able to select the "representative" option.

  3. 3

    Provide your previously purchased ticket information and flight confirmation number to the Delta representative. Request to be upgraded. If you have a medallion status (a section of the frequent flyer program), you should receive the free upgrade right away. If you are not a Medallion status member, request to be placed on the standby upgrade list for SkyMiles members. The upgrade list can be viewed up to one day before the flight is scheduled to depar (see Resources).

  4. 4

    Confirm your new seating arrangement online at delta.com and arrive at the airport at least two hours early to check in your luggage and take your new upgraded seating assignment.

Tips and warnings

  • Be persistent yet polite. Be prepared to show a good reason for requesting a free upgrade.
  • Have your identification and boarding pass ready to show when requesting an upgrade.
  • Arrive early to the checkout counter and wait to see if other passengers in first class have arrived. If there are unused seats available and the standby list is clear, you may be able to request a free upgrade to a first-class seat on this fact alone.
  • Simply arriving at the checkout counter and requesting an upgrade with no strategy for receiving the upgrade will usually lead to the reservation agent simply telling you no.

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