Delta is making it a little more difficult to get into its lounges, with the odd caveat that the new rules start in 2019, not 2018 (giving you the choice to renew before they go into effect).
No Ticket, No Entry
Airline lounges are a great place to relax for your flight and Delta has definitely improved its product, after a big price increase a few years ago. But it’s going to be a little tougher now for you to use it.
Starting in 2019, you will have to be flying Delta to gain access to the Sky Club, regardless of your means of entry. In other words, even if you bought the membership outright, as opposed to getting it for free from a credit card or elite status, you’ll no longer be able to get in if you aren’t flying the airline that day.*
One other big change: Currently, membership gets you access to partners’ lounges. Yeah, not so much in 2019.
When Too Many People Buy Your Product
Delta has a problem that most companies would love to have: too much business. The issue that they’ve run into is that they’ve sold Sky Club access to so many people that the lounges are overcrowded and customers are complaining. The price increase a few years ago served to thin the herds a little bit. I don’t know how many people use the lounges on days that they are not flying Delta, but I can’t imagine it’s many. Still, a less crowded lounge is a better lounge.
HT: A lot of different blogs. We’ll credit this one to View From The Wing.
*Beginner’s Hint: Currently, travelers who get Sky Club privileges through their credit card have Sky Club access, which means that they have the right to use the lounge if they are flying on Delta or a partner. If you purchase the membership, you have the right to use the lounge no matter which airline you are flying. With the change in policy, I no longer see the advantage of paying for it. It’s now much easier to get it for free by getting a credit card that offers it. The American Airlines premium credit card will be the only one that allows you entry regardless of who you are flying.