Every so often, I’ll visit with a Delta Medallion status holder taking an international trip. I say something like, “Remember your SkyTeam Elite benefits. Especially if you’re Gold Medallion or higher and traveling with a companion. You can get into lounges and enjoy some other perks.”
“Nah, I already have a credit card that gets me into Delta lounges,” many inevitably say. “And I can’t bring guests. I’m Sky Priority and all that. So it doesn’t matter.”
Oh, yes. It does. So, if you’re a Delta Medallion member — or about to become one — you may find this interesting.
SkyTeam Elite (and Elite Plus)
SkyTeam Elite and Elite Plus statuses give members certain privileges. These vary by tier, of course.
When traveling an itinerary involving international flights, SkyTeam Elite members are entitled to:
- Priority reservation waitlist (when fares permit)
- Preferred seating (Hi, exit rows!)
- Priority check-in counters (think Sky Priority)
- Priority boarding or at your leisure
- Extra baggage allowance
SkyTeam Elite Plus members, get even better perks. In addition to preferred seating, priority checking, and priority boarding, these lucky folks get:
- Guaranteed full-fare Y-class reservation on sold-out long-haul flights, at least 24 hours prior to departure
- Access to SkyTeam partner airport lounges worldwide, whatever the class of travel, for members in possession of a boarding pass, accompanied by a guest.
- Priority baggage handling on arrival, whatever the class of travel
- Extra baggage allowance
Again, this is when traveling on an itinerary involving international flights.
Cool Story, Bro. How Do I Earn SkyTeam Elite Status?
Each level of Delta Medallion status (Silver, Gold, Platinum, and Diamond) is some kind of SkyTeam Elite member.
Silver Medallions are SkyTeam Elite members.
The other tiers (Gold, Platinum, and Diamond) are SkyTeam Elite Plus.
(It’s kind of like that Modern Family episode when Jay is all excited to earn Excelsior status in Las Vegas. But only after achieving that level does he learn there’s an Excelsior Plus tier and he gets all mad.)
What Are Some Real-Life Examples of Using SkyTeam Elite Perks?
I’ve used my SkyTeam Elite Plus perks plenty of times. I especially enjoy accessing SkyTeam partner airline lounges and SkyTeam-branded clubs.
For instance, my friend Tim and I flew to London via LAX-SLC-LHR. I then went on to Paris (CDG). We flew a combination of Main Cabin and Comfort+.
Because this was an international itinerary, both of us were able to access Delta Sky Clubs at LAX and in Salt Lake City. It didn’t matter we flew coach. Nor did either one of us need any Amex card. Tim is a basic SkyMiles member. His wife has a United credit card. None of that matters because my SkyTeam Elite Plus status got us into the lounge.
I flew home from Paris two days later and visited an Air France salon (that’s fancy for “airport lounge,” you know) before my Delta flight back to the United States.
On our way home, we flew LHR to Portland (PDX) to LAX. Again, SkyTeam Elite Plus status got us into the Delta Sky Club in Portland.
Two years ago, my buddy Rick and I flew to LHR via LAX and JFK. Again, a combination of Main Cabin and Comfort+. We enjoyed complimentary Sky Club access at LAX and JFK. On the return, we hit the SkyTeam Lounge at LHR before flying to Paris. Rick is a general SkyMiles member.
Don’t get all jealous if you’re a Gold Medallion member. You, too, have the same benefits on international trips! (To be fair, some of the participating SkyTeam lounges are accessible with Priority Pass.)
I’ve flown Air France several times between London and Paris. If there’s an exit row seat open, I’m able to snag it for free.
If you’re a Delta Medallion status holder, make sure you take advantage of your SkyTeam Elite or Elite Plus benefits when flying on an international trip with a SkyTeam carrier! Lounge access for you and a guest — regardless of which class you fly — can be an especially nice perk.
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