Loyalty as a Matter of Priority


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Really? Priority boarding, for me?

Apparently so, beginning last Thursday. As a Delta Skymiles member with an American Express gold card, I am now entitled to priority boarding benefits, along with a 20 percent discount on all in-flight cocktails, food, movies and other items.

I stumbled upon this factoid in a New York Times story, but assume I’ll get the good word from Delta soon enough. It is the latest perk I have received as a member of its Skymiles plan, following free checked bags, which were offered in 2010. Further, I get one annual companion pass, which allows a friend or family member to travel with me anywhere within the United States for $100.

As someone who has yet to rack up 100,000 new miles on her card, I am delighted by the recognition. I also see it as a savvy marketing move by Delta, which used to give away food and drinks (internationally, anyway) for free. But priority boarding? Boy howdy, I am on board with that.

Of course, none of this is really for free. I pay $95 a year to hold my gold card. But Delta, realizing the value of its relationship with Amex, wants its loyalty members to be happy. At a time when many consumers have trouble distinguishing exactly what benefit or value they get from their loyalty memberships, this is a welcome move.

That said, I am not sure this will be a welcome move for Delta’s many elite status members, who also get priority boarding. We loyalty members can add up to a bunch of additional bodies.

But perhaps new perks will come their way, too. Pre-priority boarding, anyone?

Lisa Biank Fasig
Lisa leads the creation of editorials and feature stories for COLLOQUY and oversees the work of contributing editors and writers. With 18 years of reporting experience, most in business and specifically consumer behavior, she is highly skilled at researching data and teasing out the trends. A background in graphic design enables her to see ideas in three dimensions and tell the story visually.



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