I Didn’t Know About This Cheap Delta Airlines SkyClub Policy

by joeheg

Delta Airlines has been “adjusting” its admission policies for the Delta Sky Clubs to account for the increased number of people who have access. Besides those who pay for membership with cash or Delta Skymiles, many other travelers have access to the lounges through their American Express cards.

One of the changes to the admission policy is that American Express Platinum (personal or business) or Delta Reserve AMEX (personal or business) cardholders only have access for themselves. If they want to bring up to 2 additional guests, they must pay $39 each. Delta Skymiles Platinum AMEX cardholders can pay $39 each for admission for themselves and 2 guests.

There are situations when it makes sense for us to pay $39 for both of us to enter a SkyClub, such as when we have a long layover as we did in Los Angeles or when we arrived at the airport early for our flight from Orlando to New York.

In that instance, I figured my AMEX Platinum airline credit would pay the entrance fee. That’s the same trip where I forgot to bring the Platinum card with me and I paid for entrance with my Gold SkyMiles Business card. While that did allow us entrance to the club, I’m not getting the money back (which I’ve not told Sharon until now) (Note from Sharon: Then we shouldn’t have gone. Or just you should have gone since you get in for free, and I would have gone on the 6-mile long Starbucks line). Hey, I paid $39 for each of us to get a decent coffee and a hot breakfast of cheese omelets and turkey sausages in an empty SkyClub.

a room with chairs and tables

When we landed at LaGuardia, we passed the entrance to the new Delta SkyClub.

a wall of wood with a logo

I wanted to check it out but since we were on a tight schedule, Sharon said I should run up to look around and she’d stay downstairs.

I scanned my boarding pass and was allowed entrance. On my way upstairs, I asked the agent that was helping people check in a question. Since I paid for Sharon to get into the SkyClub in Orlando as a guest, could she also come to the NY club with me?

He smiled. Then he said that unfortunately the entrance fee for guests is limited to the club where you paid the entry. If I wanted to bring a guest into the club at LGA, I’d have to pay an additional $39. He added that back in the “Golden Age” the entrance fee was good for 24 hours but Delta did away with that policy several years ago.

I found that interesting because when we paid for entrance to the AAdmirals Club at Austin Airport, the agent informed us that we’d be able to stop at the Orlando club upon arrival for a drink or a snack.

I understand Delta is trying to limit the number of people in SkyClubs. But if you’re going to charge people to a guest into a club, it should count for the whole trip instead of having to pay for access to each lounge on your itinerary.

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Gregory M Friesen October 13, 2022 - 8:14 pm

Recently I bought a First Class ticket for a domestic Delta flight. I attempted to access the SkyClub Lounge but was turned away because I did not have the correct American Express card. So I learned that First Class is not really First Class after all. Why are First Class patrons not allowed in to the Sky Ckub lounges?

joeheg October 14, 2022 - 2:49 pm

Delta only allows access to lounges for Delta One passengers or if you’re on a domestic flight connecting to an international Delta One flight. Domestic first-class passengers do not get lounge access.

MunichMan October 14, 2022 - 2:05 am

Time to eliminate ALL guesting for those entering with credit card access. These Delta clubs are woefully overcrowded and something must be done. Time to focus on actual DELTA guests who have access via status, ticket purchase or Club membership.

Jon October 14, 2022 - 4:22 pm

The non-transferable SkyClub entrance fee has been in place since 2017, I believe. I remember being turned away with a receipt at SAN

Bill G October 14, 2022 - 8:29 pm

The inability to enter domestic clubs on a first class tickets is not limited to Delta.

baldthoughts October 19, 2022 - 12:55 pm

While this policy is frustrating, it is completely understandable. If you visit two different places, you need to pay two different admission fees. Similarly, if you visit Disney World in the morning, then fly to California, you can’t get into Disneyland for free just because you paid for a ticket to Disney World earlier that day. We should be grateful that American Airlines is generous with its policy allowing same-day admission at multiple clubs. And Joe & Sharon should remember to bring the right credit cards with them, so they qualify for free admission into the airport lounges. 😉

joeheg October 19, 2022 - 5:21 pm

It’s Joe’s job to bring the correct cards. He won’t forget again. 🙂


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