Delta SkyMiles changes

This item appears on page 4 of the April 2014 issue.

Currently, members of Delta Air Lines’ SkyMiles program earn frequent-flyer miles based on the distances they travel, but under the new program starting in 2015, the number of miles earned will be based on the cost of the ticket.

The changes will most reward those who fly less often on costlier trips. It also will benefit those who book trips on short notice and cannot take advantage of bargain tickets. 

Other changes announced include more availability of reward seats for lower-mileage customers, one-way trips for half the miles needed for a round-trip reward, and more options to combine miles and cash when purchasing tickets. 

Though not the first to do so, Delta is the largest airline to change its frequent-flyer-miles program to one based on ticket cost rather than distance flown. The mileage programs of Virgin American, JetBlue and Southwest Airlines all are based on ticket price.