pezzy669
Topic Author
Posts: 135
Joined: Sun Oct 28, 2012 10:30 pm

DL - Basic Economy review

Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:09 am

So wanted to check in an give my experience of using Delta Basic Economy quite frequently (~18 segments of 26 segments this year). My company uses AMEX Concur travel and we are absolutely required to book the lowest cost fare which typically ends up with me in Basic Economy on all but some shorter advance purchase segments (seems like 21 days is the cutoff where BE closes out).

2 areas that matter to me where Delta Basic Economy is not an advantage is the lack of seat assignments and no boarding time on your pass. But despite these little annoyances it has not been all bad.

Seat assignments - DL has typically accommodated my profile preferences (window) with the seat assignments. Out of the above 18 segments there were 3 or 4 segments I was in a middle seat. Yeah I will typically end up in the back which is not a huge issue unless I am on a 757-300, but there were 3 occasions where I either ended up in Comfort+ or a preferred exit row. I would rank this as a 75/100 success.

Boarding time - Until you get a seat assignment you don't get a boarding time either via the app or via printed boarding pass. I have just started applying the general rule of 35-45 minutes prior to departure which seems to be the standard.

One area that DL beats out AA and UA is that you still get free overhead space on a BE fare. I recently booked away from UA and talked my manager into booking away from UA on the same flights due to their forced check bag due to not being allowed overhead space on a BE fare, DL was ~$50 more on an ATL-DEN turn ($250 on UA vs $300 on DL) but we would have paid $50 R/T more to check bags on UA because of the no overhead space BE fare on UA so it was a wash. But it skirted my company rules of no paid checked bags unless you are staying 2+ nights and DL still got the extra $50.

Anyways - that is my experience traveling on DL basic economy quite a few times. Honestly it really is not all that bad and the only major difference I have noted versus pre-BE fares is the lack of seat assignments.
 
IPFreely
Posts: 1615
Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2006 8:26 am

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:29 am

pezzy669 wrote:
But it skirted my company rules of no paid checked bags unless you are staying 2+ nights


This sounds like a bad employer for employees who have to travel. Really bad.
If any employer I've worked for had such micro-managing penny pinching policies, most employees I know would have quit or at least refused to travel.
 
B747forever
Posts: 13263
Joined: Mon May 21, 2007 9:50 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:45 am

IPFreely wrote:
pezzy669 wrote:
But it skirted my company rules of no paid checked bags unless you are staying 2+ nights


This sounds like a bad employer for employees who have to travel. Really bad.
If any employer I've worked for had such micro-managing penny pinching policies, most employees I know would have quit or at least refused to travel.


I don’t see anything wrong with such policy. Unless you need to transport work related material, there is absolutely no need to check in a bag for a 2 night trip.
Work Hard, Fly Right
 
pezzy669
Topic Author
Posts: 135
Joined: Sun Oct 28, 2012 10:30 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Wed Oct 11, 2017 3:51 am

IPFreely wrote:
pezzy669 wrote:
But it skirted my company rules of no paid checked bags unless you are staying 2+ nights


This sounds like a bad employer for employees who have to travel. Really bad.
If any employer I've worked for had such micro-managing penny pinching policies, most employees I know would have quit or at least refused to travel.


We are still a pretty small company (~80 employees) and ~10 of us average ~30-40 segments/annually that are just 24 hour turns that could be easily accommodated via a carry on overnighter sized bag. We have another ~10 employees outside of us that do require 2+ night travel along with some 24 hour turns and they probably are double our segments at probably 60/annually. Yeah the rule is there but a bag that is beyond overhead size is WAY overkill for an overnight trip, even my max overhead sized approved roller is way overkill for even a 2 night trip.

Our travel expenses get passed through to our clients so we try to keep our travel expenses reasonable. I would not say it is poor policy, it is more that we are trying to avoid unnecessary expenses for the people who pay for us to be there.
 
DaveFly
Posts: 207
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:35 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Sun Oct 15, 2017 4:14 pm

Before my retirement at a famous publishing company, I was the person who set up our CONCUR system. I used to attend their annual conferences, which were pretty good as far as conferences go.

We also required lowest fares possible, although we didn’t bill the clients. It was a publisher, not a consulting company. At any rate, I never heard of anyone ever quitting a good job because of cheap travel policies! There was some grumbling when the president would fly first class along with her feckless non-employee husband. But that’s life in the corporate world. Nobody quits because the perks suck!

Good to know about basic economy. But at this stage of my life, I spring for the extra Economy Plus. I need the legroom and it’s my money — can’t take it with you when you fall off the twig!
717,727,737,747,757,767,777,
L1011,DC8,DC9,DC10,MD80/90
A300,A319,320,321,330,340,
CRJ,E135/45/190,
DH8,Avro85,DHBeaver,AstarHelo,F100,ATR42
 
Frenchify
Posts: 28
Joined: Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:19 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Sun Oct 15, 2017 7:47 pm

Delta's basic economy isn't bad for a number of routes. I routinely fly routes with regional jet service, so it's window or aisle anyway, and sometimes, not having to be dead set on looking out and seeing the scenery can save $70 to $100. Twice now, this year, because of weather and other delays, my flights wound up getting cancelled, and each time, Delta was right on the ball with rebooking me automatically, the first time bumped me up to Comfort Plus on the return, and then re-routed me through a hub, with mainline service, AND gave me a first class seat because it was the only one left.

On another rant, it amazes me how companies come up with these travel policies and then stick with "following them by the book" despite paying more in a number of travel situations. Common sense seems to be forgotten.
 
DaveFly
Posts: 207
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:35 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Sun Oct 15, 2017 9:41 pm

Frenchify wrote:
Delta's basic economy isn't bad for a number of routes. I routinely fly routes with regional jet service, so it's window or aisle anyway, and sometimes, not having to be dead set on looking out and seeing the scenery can save $70 to $100. Twice now, this year, because of weather and other delays, my flights wound up getting cancelled, and each time, Delta was right on the ball with rebooking me automatically, the first time bumped me up to Comfort Plus on the return, and then re-routed me through a hub, with mainline service, AND gave me a first class seat because it was the only one left.

On another rant, it amazes me how companies come up with these travel policies and then stick with "following them by the book" despite paying more in a number of travel situations. Common sense seems to be forgotten.


You’re very lucky. Or I’m very unlucky. Two weeks ago, I showed up at SWF for my flight to SWF-DTW-DEN. Skywest was badly delayed, so I would’ve missed any connections. Delta didn’t do squat for me. I had to brainstorm to come up with EWR-MSP-DEN the following day. It really screwed up our family vacation.
717,727,737,747,757,767,777,
L1011,DC8,DC9,DC10,MD80/90
A300,A319,320,321,330,340,
CRJ,E135/45/190,
DH8,Avro85,DHBeaver,AstarHelo,F100,ATR42
 
DiamondFlyer
Posts: 2671
Joined: Wed Oct 29, 2008 11:50 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Sun Oct 15, 2017 9:46 pm

DaveFly wrote:
Frenchify wrote:
Delta's basic economy isn't bad for a number of routes. I routinely fly routes with regional jet service, so it's window or aisle anyway, and sometimes, not having to be dead set on looking out and seeing the scenery can save $70 to $100. Twice now, this year, because of weather and other delays, my flights wound up getting cancelled, and each time, Delta was right on the ball with rebooking me automatically, the first time bumped me up to Comfort Plus on the return, and then re-routed me through a hub, with mainline service, AND gave me a first class seat because it was the only one left.

On another rant, it amazes me how companies come up with these travel policies and then stick with "following them by the book" despite paying more in a number of travel situations. Common sense seems to be forgotten.


You’re very lucky. Or I’m very unlucky. Two weeks ago, I showed up at SWF for my flight to SWF-DTW-DEN. Skywest was badly delayed, so I would’ve missed any connections. Delta didn’t do squat for me. I had to brainstorm to come up with EWR-MSP-DEN the following day. It really screwed up our family vacation.


Make your complaint known that Skywest is a terrible carrier... The more people who make noise, the more Delta might be inclined to try to fix the situation.
From my cold, dead hands
 
Frenchify
Posts: 28
Joined: Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:19 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Mon Oct 16, 2017 1:08 am

DaveFly wrote:
Frenchify wrote:
Delta's basic economy isn't bad for a number of routes. I routinely fly routes with regional jet service, so it's window or aisle anyway, and sometimes, not having to be dead set on looking out and seeing the scenery can save $70 to $100. Twice now, this year, because of weather and other delays, my flights wound up getting cancelled, and each time, Delta was right on the ball with rebooking me automatically, the first time bumped me up to Comfort Plus on the return, and then re-routed me through a hub, with mainline service, AND gave me a first class seat because it was the only one left.

On another rant, it amazes me how companies come up with these travel policies and then stick with "following them by the book" despite paying more in a number of travel situations. Common sense seems to be forgotten.


You’re very lucky. Or I’m very unlucky. Two weeks ago, I showed up at SWF for my flight to SWF-DTW-DEN. Skywest was badly delayed, so I would’ve missed any connections. Delta didn’t do squat for me. I had to brainstorm to come up with EWR-MSP-DEN the following day. It really screwed up our family vacation.


My re-arrangements came from cancellations. I received the re-booking information texts while I was on on the phone with Delta. Each flight had been delayed up until 3 hours until cancellation.
 
DaveFly
Posts: 207
Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2016 9:35 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Mon Oct 16, 2017 2:06 am

I don’t want to go too far off your topic, but Skywest’s reliability is pretty suspect, in my experience. At SWF, we’re very limited in options. And EWR is quite a hike. So my question is — is American Eagle/Air Wisconsin a better carrier than Skywest? I could just as easily fly to PHL for a connection, rather than DTW. I use quite a few different airlines, but haven’t been on American in a looong time. I never had a single good experience on USAir, but maybe American has improved?
717,727,737,747,757,767,777,
L1011,DC8,DC9,DC10,MD80/90
A300,A319,320,321,330,340,
CRJ,E135/45/190,
DH8,Avro85,DHBeaver,AstarHelo,F100,ATR42
 
IPFreely
Posts: 1615
Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2006 8:26 am

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Mon Oct 16, 2017 3:26 pm

DaveFly wrote:
I don’t want to go too far off your topic, but Skywest’s reliability is pretty suspect, in my experience. At SWF, we’re very limited in options. And EWR is quite a hike. So my question is — is American Eagle/Air Wisconsin a better carrier than Skywest?


Performance of all carriers’ regional airlines is mediocre at best. But Delta Connection is by far the worst. And, as you experienced, Delta is the worst when it comes to re-accommodating you, usually it’s “come back in a day or two” or “no way to get you there, a refund is on the way.” Then on your way out of the airport you’ll be treated to posters, banners, and ads touting “100 perfect days” and “we’re cancelling cancellations”...with “mainline only” in tiny print at the bottom. If you don’t believe me just ask anyone who tried to travel to and from Juneau on Delta with any regularity over the past year or two.
 
MSPNWA
Posts: 2266
Joined: Thu Apr 23, 2009 2:48 am

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Mon Oct 16, 2017 5:06 pm

pezzy669 wrote:
My company uses AMEX Concur travel and we are absolutely required to book the lowest cost fare which typically ends up with me in Basic Economy on all but some shorter advance purchase segments (seems like 21 days is the cutoff where BE closes out).


DL's BE is currently limited to lower fare buckets, and hence BE sometimes goes away on uncompetitive routes 21 days out. Other routes it sometimes goes away around 14 days out. But I've seen BE available up to the day of departure. It just depends on the route and fare.
 
PI4EVER
Posts: 718
Joined: Wed May 06, 2009 10:29 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Mon Oct 16, 2017 7:49 pm

I recently flew AA to TPA and the before departure my flight from PHL had Basic Economy seats on sale for $34.
A week prior the seats were not available so I suspect Revenue Management adjusts inventory to generate some cash flow if seats are open
The flight (on an A321) had 7 seats open at departure from gate after clearing 5 non-rev's. A good load factor for a Wednesday even to FL.
watch what you want. you may get it.
 
irelayer
Posts: 1072
Joined: Wed Jul 06, 2005 4:34 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Mon Oct 16, 2017 11:08 pm

B747forever wrote:
IPFreely wrote:
pezzy669 wrote:
But it skirted my company rules of no paid checked bags unless you are staying 2+ nights


This sounds like a bad employer for employees who have to travel. Really bad.
If any employer I've worked for had such micro-managing penny pinching policies, most employees I know would have quit or at least refused to travel.


I don’t see anything wrong with such policy. Unless you need to transport work related material, there is absolutely no need to check in a bag for a 2 night trip.


Not the point. Just your opinion. Travelling for work shouldn't be a PITA for the employee. There are lots of situations where someone would want to check a bag (taking cosmetics, toiletries over 3oz, having back problems, taking heavy winter clothes, etc etc). Bad enough they FORCE you to book BE fares for domestic travel (my company filters them out and warns you against booking them) which sounds awful.

Bottom line is, employees usually don't CHOOSE to travel they travel because it's required by their job. Ergo, it shouldn't be a hellish experience.

-IR
 
IPFreely
Posts: 1615
Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2006 8:26 am

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Tue Oct 17, 2017 4:15 am

B747forever wrote:
I don’t see anything wrong with such policy. Unless you need to transport work related material, there is absolutely no need to check in a bag for a 2 night trip.


As irelayer pointed out, not many people would agree with you. Some people may need to take extra clothes or shoes for business and/or social functions, some people can not or do not want to deal with the TSA liquid rules, and many people do not want to haul all their luggage through an airport when making a connection. When people at my employer travel to/from customers for business there is a lot of business involved -- tens or hundreds of thousands in sales, or more, and tens or hundreds of thousands in profit. Good employers do not send employees to a customer to close a $100k deal or come up with a solution that saves $50k in business and tell them that they cannot afford a $25 baggage fee. A fee that is usually less than airport parking, ,taxi fares, and most or all meals during a business trip. If that $25 is so critical to a company's bottom line, that company will probably not be around very long.
 
pezzy669
Topic Author
Posts: 135
Joined: Sun Oct 28, 2012 10:30 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Thu Oct 19, 2017 1:35 am

IPFreely wrote:
B747forever wrote:
I don’t see anything wrong with such policy. Unless you need to transport work related material, there is absolutely no need to check in a bag for a 2 night trip.


As irelayer pointed out, not many people would agree with you. Some people may need to take extra clothes or shoes for business and/or social functions, some people can not or do not want to deal with the TSA liquid rules, and many people do not want to haul all their luggage through an airport when making a connection. When people at my employer travel to/from customers for business there is a lot of business involved -- tens or hundreds of thousands in sales, or more, and tens or hundreds of thousands in profit. Good employers do not send employees to a customer to close a $100k deal or come up with a solution that saves $50k in business and tell them that they cannot afford a $25 baggage fee. A fee that is usually less than airport parking, ,taxi fares, and most or all meals during a business trip. If that $25 is so critical to a company's bottom line, that company will probably not be around very long.


You are applying one business travelers purpose with a broad brush to everyone who flies for business. Myself and everyone in my department travel consists of visiting out of state properties, taking a few hundred photos of each property, meeting with vendors, meeting with tenants who are already locked into multi-year iron clad leases and writing a site visit report for the execs on return. Building these face to face tenant relations in my position has no hard monetary value to my company so our travel is strictly an expense item with no income attached to it, yeah there may be 5% of our visits (insurance carrier inspections or move outs) that may provide some tiny returns on lower premiums or minimizing losses however those savings are hardly measurable in the grand scheme of things.

Sure we could blast our travel budget through the roof but those expenses are rolled into the variable expenses that our tenants pay for, in my departments case it would be highly irresponsible and against our better interest to increase a tenants variable cost for something trivial like travel versus a tangible property improvement that will benefit my tenants and the resale value of our properties.

On the other hand we are allowed and encouraged to use either the company cars or a rental for any drive travel to avoid piling miles onto our personal cars and we get at minimum intermediate level cars with our preferred rental company. The department in my company that brings in new business typically travels to sites for 3-7 days so is allowed a checked bag.

I guess my company is an anomaly since they have been around 16 years and our staff and property count have grown ~15% in 2017 alone. Yeah we are not going to be around long......:rolleyes: Get a grip armchair CEO.
 
IPFreely
Posts: 1615
Joined: Sun Dec 24, 2006 8:26 am

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Fri Oct 20, 2017 8:34 pm

pezzy669 wrote:
Building these face to face tenant relations in my position has no hard monetary value to my company so our travel is strictly an expense item with no income attached to it, yeah there may be 5% of our visits (insurance carrier inspections or move outs) that may provide some tiny returns on lower premiums or minimizing losses however those savings are hardly measurable in the grand scheme of things.


I guess employees shouldn’t complain about a policy if they’re just spending money with no return on investment for the company.

I have to say I have no real experience with employees and business travel that has no value. All employers I’ve worked for or are familiar with try to hire good employees and have them do value-adding activities. Employees and travel that are just expenses that add no value are usually eliminated.
 
ryanov
Posts: 53
Joined: Sat Nov 03, 2012 4:38 am

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Sat Dec 09, 2017 9:00 am

Carting luggage around the airport and putting up with the latest TSA nonsense is not my idea of a good time. I think I'd opt not to travel if my employer tried to play those games.
 
thaiflyer
Posts: 277
Joined: Mon Oct 29, 2007 6:55 pm

Re: DL - Basic Economy review

Sun Dec 10, 2017 11:30 pm

The company i work for (big international oil company) has a policy that business class is used if the total travel time (combined flights) is over 4 hours. ( we also use concur)
It is more expensive of-course but their justification is that the employees have to be rested when arriving at the work location and can start working straight away if required.
The criteria is that the most direct route and earliest opportunity departure is used. (departure time is more important then route)
We can provide preferred airline or route and as long the price deference is not to great it is not a problem.
Also any required ad-on or airport hotel is not a issue.
I would not dream of flying basic economy for a extended time and then to be expected to work straight away when arriving.

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