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Elite Status Based in PHX - stay with AA or defect to DL?

Discussion in 'questions. answers. conversations.' started by Phil in PHX, Nov 20, 2017.

  1. Phil in PHX

    Phil in PHX Reader

    First of all, long time lurker and first time poster. Thanks to Ben and everyone else for the tons of great info and posts. Please keep them coming!

    I started a new job last year that keeps me on the road almost most weeks, and being based out of PHX I chose to be loyal to AA given the hub. I had no interest in SW given the lack of int'l routes and partners. I have been Platinum Pro for the whole year (paid up like a fool), and while I've had my share of upgrades (mostly on shorter flights connecting via CLT or DFW), overall I've been underwhelmed by the experience as many here have, too.

    Anyway, I'm seeking advice on whether I should jump ship to Delta. I just earned EXP status and to be honest haven't given it much of a chance yet, but I'm getting fed up with old non-retrofitted US Air metal, the crowds, traffic, and general mayhem at PHX's T4, CLT, ORD, DFW, and never getting upgraded on longer transcon flights (e.g CLT, PHL, DCA). I know it's supposed to be a big leap from PlatPro to EXP, but wonder if it truly is given the EXP's based in PHX, and dwindling supply of unsold F seats these days. I travel nationwide but spend a good number of weeks on the east coast. YTD I'm @ roughly $15,000 in EQD and just hit 100,000 EQM.

    I'm wondering if requesting a status match and switching to Delta Platinum (and eventually Diamond, hopefully) would afford me max upgrade opportunities to and through Salt Lake, Minneapolis, and Detroit. Seems the consensus view with OMAAT is Delta's the best of the big 3, but i'm most interested in domestic upgrades and general overall flying experience and comfort, and care less about redeemable miles and award travel via SkyPesos.

    Thanks for anyone and everyone's insight and advice, particularly from those familiar with or based out of PHX. Happy Thanksgiving to all!
     
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  2. Gaurav

    Gaurav Well-Known Member

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    I think you're likely to see the same issues that you're seeing with AA with DL with a little better service and a little worse FF program. You'll probably stand a better chance of upgrades to the hub and then run into higher ranked flyers out of the hub. Everyone is trying to monetize their F cabins so the free upgrade issues are not limited to AA. I would try DL and see if their service justifies the additional connections for you otherwise base your decision on schedule.
     
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  3. rickyw

    rickyw Well-Known Member

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    I think you're also unfortunately based in an AA hub where they have a ton of legacy US Air planes based, which means no seatback entertainment/power ports/Main Cabin Extra/etc.

    So, while you're certainly correct that the situation is pretty poor for upgrades, I'd just take some of the onboard experience things with a grain of salt...
     
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  4. Gia

    Gia Active Member

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    Since you just earned EXP, I would give it a year to see how things work out. With your high EQD spend, you might do better than you think with upgrades out of that hub. If after a year as an EXP your upgrade percentage doesn’t improve then make the switch. I left Delta for US Airways back in 2010 and frankly I’ve never looked back. The electrical outlet issue with the legacy US Air 320,321 aircraft is a pain but I’ve survived over the years with a small remote power supply weighing 7 ounces. The 100 new 737s are scheduled for delivery in the next four years. You said you’re not interested in the reward program benefits but as bad as things have gotten with AA’s program I believe it’s still far superior to Delta.
     
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