That Time Delta Wouldn’t Let Me Book an Award and Then Rubbed It In

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I found out last minute I needed to be in New York yesterday, so I immediately started looking into my award ticket options. I could get from DCA to JFK for only 4500 Avios but for the return my only option was on Delta for only 12,500 miles.

And when I went to book the Delta award ticket I got an error message on the payment page. I tried again and it returned the message that the flight was no longer available. A third try and on the final page it was pricing at 32,500 Skymiles. Definitely not worth it.

I happened to find a cheap enough flight to buy my ticket on American and that was that.

Until that afternoon when I was in the lounge waiting for my American flight. I got a text about my Delta flight.

delta award reservation with no ticket flight delay text alert

Huh. That was strange. I guess I accidentally signed up for flight updates before my reservation was denied? Then I got an email telling me my Delta flight was delayed. With a confirmation number.

delta award reservation with no ticket flight delay email alert

Panic. I was pretty sure the reservation hadn’t been finalized. And I certainly hadn’t received a confirmation email. But had I somehow booked the flight for 12,500 Skymiles without knowing it?

I logged into my account. It registered I had a flight. But no Skymiles had been deducted.

delta award reservation with no ticket

I attempted to click on it for more details and was even taken to the seat selection page but told I couldn’t select 24 hours out.

delta award reservation with no ticket seat selection unavailable

Pulling up the Delta customer service number I decided to also see if I could check into the flight. And at that point “no reservation can be found.”

delta award reservation with no ticket check in

Phew. So apparently a reservation had been created for me but no ticket attached.

Still. It was rather unsporting of them. 🙂

And the updates continued…


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  1. Ben

    July 25, 2015 at 2:21 pm

    So did your SkyMiles account get deducted?

    • Keri Anderson

      July 25, 2015 at 2:22 pm

      Nope, it was apparently a ghost reservation

  2. Mary Rezek Akkerman

    July 25, 2015 at 2:59 pm

    Crazy! Reminds me of the time I tried to call Delta from St. Kitts and Nevis to check on complications with my flight to ATL from St. Kitts, and Delta told me that the airline did not serve St. Kitts and Nevis 🙂

  3. shaun

    July 25, 2015 at 3:18 pm

    Maybe another change they didn’t tell us about? They’ll let you book an award flight….you just can’t fly it. 🙂

  4. Angela

    July 25, 2015 at 4:32 pm

    I have had a similar experience. Just last month I traveled from SLC to LAX. I purchased 2 tickets back in March one for me and one for my 4 yr old son. Both tickets were showing up on our respective delta accounts and I even picked out seats for both of us. Then when I showed up at the airport the counter told me that I had a ticket but my son didn’t. Im sorry what? We both have seat assignments how does he not have a ticket? All I got was an “I dont know, I need to call my supervisor”. After waiting for 30 min they supervisor told her that she could just re-charge my credit card for his ticket, thankfully at the same purchase price from March. So I know how that goes….

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