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Big Warning: Delta!

post #1 of 42
Thread Starter 
I flew into the US a few days back, and used Delta for my US connection. At LAX, when I checked my very modest baggage in, the lady took the 62 inches, thing VERY seriously, measured my board bag (containing ONE pair of 163cm skis) and then wanted to charge me excess. Excess for this was $100.

After I argued, and the supervisor said let it through, I noticed on the Word printed out notices outside for kerbside checkint, it said that normal baggage was up to 50LB. Anything between 50lb and something not much above that was $25. Then it went up again, exponentially.
Anything between 62 and 80 inches in length was subject to excess fees of $100.

now, my skis are 163cm, and they were ABOVE the 62inch threashold. SO, if you are flying Delta with skis, beware! had the Supervisor not said to let it through, it'd be up for 100 bucks extra, despite having massivly low baggage weight.
To fly here (US) for 5 months, I had 2 bags, one weighing 15 kilos and one weighing 17 kilos (times by 2.2 for pounds). Yet they still wanted to do me for having a ski bag. At LAX, a major airport. And their printed notices very firmly said that if your bag is over 62 inches, you WILL be up for 100 bucks excess baggage.

This is not good, since Delta service many ski gateways. you need to check with them what the go is, and then still run the gauntlet of drones who are either following Delta rules, or IATA rules. $100 US is no joke.
post #2 of 42
You need some anger management, Ant.

Where ya at this year??

We just went from Albany to Denver, and not a peep about a huge ski bag stuffed with socks and fleece on both ends of the bag...and extra 2 feet beyond the ski lengths.

Nothing broken, nothing bad happened. We're in for it on the way home, though.:
post #3 of 42
I also hate Delta and Northwest and most other US airlines. But since I live in the US I have to use them. The service sucks. They are all bankrupt so they charge extra money for bullsh**t reasons and have bad service. They also change the rules. With NW you used to get unlimeted firstclass upgrades with the silvercard and when they went bankrupt they suddenly changed it to onle a couple free upgrades. they have no respect for their customers even those that fly with them for 10+ times a year. They know that in the us you are stuck with them and that they can get away with treating you badly.
post #4 of 42
Thread Starter 
When I got to LAX, I rummaged around to check things, and my coffee plunger was intact. It was packed in amountst socks and things.
Yet after a short jump, it was smashed, and my bag was a very weird shape.
This is a small beer-can size plunger, a person-sized one.

I bought a new one yesterday but it is annoying to have to do so.
post #5 of 42

You should send a nasty to Delta

1: Delta allows ski bags, it is an override to the 62" Suite case rule. I would have thought they would see allot of ski bags @ LAX.

2: the weight limits are strictly enforced these days (Revenue generation)
But!! The limit is 50lbs per bag for domestic flights and 70lbs for international travel so if you booked your travel from New Zealand? to SaltLake you were allowed 70lbs per bag. If you booked two separate trips? One international and then recovered your bags and then check into LAX for a new domestic flight? Well then they would pull the 50lbs thing (Something to remember).

Sounds like you got jerked around sort of? Good thing the supervisor let you through, because that agent was misinformed about her own baggage policies (SHE WAS WRONG)

Also due to the fact that your bag was mishandled after having a baggage issue? I would complain and report the damage. They may be directly related, you might get some compensation from Delta.

Glad you made it here in one piece Welcome back.
post #6 of 42
I've had a lot of success with complaining. Two years ago I got through to the VP of Marketing at United. I found his name by calling up Investor Relations (always a great way to get info, just say you're a stockholder.)

Marketing cares. I got exactly what I wanted from him.

On a side note, with telecoms, ISP's etc. I ask for the Customer Retention department. I've gotten all sorts of exceptions made this way. Asking for a "supervisor" doesn't work these days. A "manager" is better, but these Customer Retention departments are very helpful.

Squeaky wheel gets the grease. You don't have to be nasty with them, in fact being nice has worked really well for me. Just confident and insistent.

Ant, I bet you could get a free flight out of them if you try.
post #7 of 42

me too

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bolander
I also hate Delta and Northwest and most other US airlines. But since I live in the US I have to use them. The service sucks. They are all bankrupt so they charge extra money for bullsh**t reasons and have bad service. They also change the rules. With NW you used to get unlimeted firstclass upgrades with the silvercard and when they went bankrupt they suddenly changed it to onle a couple free upgrades. they have no respect for their customers even those that fly with them for 10+ times a year. They know that in the us you are stuck with them and that they can get away with treating you badly.
I have been travelling all over this planet for the last several years building up tons of mileage. My employers typically send me economy. Never seemed to bother me. I wanted to upgrade last month on a vacation trip to the Phillipines from Amsterdam. KLM is a partner to NW, Delta and Continental where I have most of my 6 figure miles. Because my tickets were all non-upgardable economy (I thought for the flight in question, not once it became part of the aggragate!), ... NO CAN DO! Rules changed last year apparently. SO what is the point of keeping your mileage? Certainly us normal folk can't afford to fly regularly non - non-upgradable!?!?! There are only so many magazine subscriptions one can absorb!

ANT - Glad you are back here (there - I am still in Europe!). I hear there is a fabulous history making early season. Do some turns for me and chuck up the Delta experience to just another travel story. All the best - z

FYI - I have had some great success with managers and supervisors as well. But not at the airport. Mostly caused by Travelocity and other online agencies. Recently I have decided that going to a travel agent is so much easier than the online agencies ... and at worst commensurate in price.
post #8 of 42
I plan to carry a printout of this page, just in case I have to argue with the airline:

http://www.delta.com/traveling_check...oods/index.jsp
post #9 of 42
I haven't flown to ski in almost 10 years. Will be going twice this winter. Years ago you could fill your ski bag with clothing (in addition to your skis). Is this still the case or should the bag (soft side) be skis only. Boots will be carried on, the rest checked.

In case it matters Southwest out of Albany and Contential out of Newark.
post #10 of 42
Hi Prag...,

I usually pack my ski clohtes around my skis and poles in the ski bag. It serves as protection and saves space in my other duffel. Never had a problem, although it has been a few years and things are changing, seemingly daily, in the airline biz. Check with the carrier. I hear SW is pretty cool.
post #11 of 42
I don't work for an airline, but i have some insight into the industry. Here's a couple of things to ponder while we're ranting and raving about getting jerked around by the airlines.

Fact #1: The major airlines lose money on every non-refundable discount coach seat they sell. They sell seats at a loss to maintain market share and hopefully gain your business travel fares. The legacy airlines are losing money because of their costs for highly-paid pilots and mechanics as well as their pension plans. Why should they go out of their way to provide you with good service when you're a source of lost profits, especially if you're only an occasional flier?

Fact #2: The FAA is coming down hard on the airlines about excess baggage weights. For anybody that flew for the military, you know how seriously you have to take weight and balance. The airlines didn't take the time; they simply used an average bag weight and multiplied that by the number of bags to get their W&B calculations done. A small commuter plane crashed at Charlotte a couple of years back because of overloading. The FAA is now requiring the airlines to do more precise calculations and so that requirement is passed on to the consumer. It's not just about the increased cost of jet fuel to fly the overweight bags around. See Fact #1 above.

Fact #3: The airlines pay their counter help very poorly. Most of these people are working part-time with no benefits and usually very lousy hours. Not significantly different from the ski shop tune techs that are the subject of much ranting on this forum.

Opinion #1: Does anybody remember what it was like to fly in the days before de-regulation of the airline industry? That's what everybody seems to want nowadays, but is unwilling to pay for that level of service. De-regulation is the root cause of the decline in service.

Opinion #2: The old addage is true: you get what you pay for.
post #12 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by bjohansson
I don't work for an airline, but i have some insight into the industry. Here's a couple of things to ponder while we're ranting and raving about getting jerked around by the airlines.

Fact #1: The major airlines lose money on every non-refundable discount coach seat they sell. They sell seats at a loss to maintain market share and hopefully gain your business travel fares. The legacy airlines are losing money because of their costs for highly-paid pilots and mechanics as well as their pension plans. Why should they go out of their way to provide you with good service when you're a source of lost profits, especially if you're only an occasional flier?

Fact #2: The FAA is coming down hard on the airlines about excess baggage weights. For anybody that flew for the military, you know how seriously you have to take weight and balance. The airlines didn't take the time; they simply used an average bag weight and multiplied that by the number of bags to get their W&B calculations done. A small commuter plane crashed at Charlotte a couple of years back because of overloading. The FAA is now requiring the airlines to do more precise calculations and so that requirement is passed on to the consumer. It's not just about the increased cost of jet fuel to fly the overweight bags around. See Fact #1 above.

Fact #3: The airlines pay their counter help very poorly. Most of these people are working part-time with no benefits and usually very lousy hours. Not significantly different from the ski shop tune techs that are the subject of much ranting on this forum.

Opinion #1: Does anybody remember what it was like to fly in the days before de-regulation of the airline industry? That's what everybody seems to want nowadays, but is unwilling to pay for that level of service. De-regulation is the root cause of the decline in service.

Opinion #2: The old addage is true: you get what you pay for.
If I stipulate to every single word you just wrote and my ski and boot bags weigh less than a combined 50lb. and Delta still jerks me around, will you stipulate that the person jerking me around is still a meathead?
post #13 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by jstraw
If I stipulate to every single word you just wrote and my ski and boot bags weigh less than a combined 50lb. and Delta still jerks me around, will you stipulate that the person jerking me around is still a meathead?
Sure. That's the point of fact #3. What incentive does a person making $8.00/hour that works split shifts and has to get up at 3 am to get to work have to be anything other than a meathead?
post #14 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by bjohansson
Sure. That's the point of fact #3. What incentive does a person making $8.00/hour that works split shifts and has to get up at 3 am to get to work have to be anything other than a meathead?
As long as we're on the same page.
post #15 of 42
From looking at the Delta policy, it looks like you only get one pair of skis. Anybody have experience with two pair in a double ski bag? I wouldn't want to have to leave my Mantras home! Many years ago, I stuffed three pair in a double bag for a Canada trip and: didn't get charged extra. But, the handles ripped off in transit. :
post #16 of 42
In the past, I have flown Delta with an Atomic 4 pack wheeler (4 pr. of skis) with no problem. Now, they it is in reorganization, we can be at the whim of the airport agent. I would call ahead and ask.
BTW, I just got ****ed by Continental. Although, I am an "elite" member, who flys about 50,000/yr. with Continental, it chose to bump be off of a Feb. non-stop flight to SLC and place me (and my family) on a flight that connects in Houston. Can they say "compensation"? After enough persuasion, we will be flying non-stop and getting an extra day of skiing in. It seems like everyone needs a fight before doing the right thing.
post #17 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Canyons
In the past, I have flown Delta with an Atomic 4 pack wheeler (4 pr. of skis) with no problem. Now, they it is in reorganization, we can be at the whim of the airport agent. I would call ahead and ask.
BTW, I just got ****ed by Continental. Although, I am an "elite" member, who flys about 50,000/yr. with Continental, it chose to bump be off of a Feb. non-stop flight to SLC and place me (and my family) on a flight that connects in Houston. Can they say "compensation"? After enough persuasion, we will be flying non-stop and getting an extra day of skiing in. It seems like everyone needs a fight before doing the right thing.
I'm using a 3pack wheeler for the first time this season flying AA. Any experince with them? I called AA last week and the lady said I should be fine but I really think it'll depend on the person checking your bags.
post #18 of 42
I fly a reasonable amount to ski - mostly on Northwest. Both Northwest and Delta have a similar ski baggage policy. I have copied the Delta policy below. Theoretically you are allowed only 1 pair of skis. In practice I have never been charged for carrying 2 pairs (and in the past this was for both myself and kids). I am careful to keep my ski bag below 50 lbs., however, to avoid any issues coming up. (I always carry my boots and a set of clothing with me, otherwise combined boot and ski weight need to be 50 lbs., even though they incorrectly usually consider the weight limit on each item separately).

Airline counter employees vary widely in their knowledge and understnading of these policies. While that is perhaps a sad comment it is reality. I suggest that it doesn't hurt to print and carry a copy of the ski luggage policy (although I have never had to do this).



Conditions of Acceptance for Ski or Snowboard Equipment:

One item of ski or snowboard equipment is accepted as part of your free checked baggage allowance.
One item of ski or snowboard equipment is defined as:
  • One ski/pole bag or one snowboard bag, and
  • One boot bag
These combined items must meet the standard free baggage allowances for weight and number of pieces or normal excess baggage charges will apply.
post #19 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by Si
I fly a reasonable amount to ski - mostly on Northwest. Both Northwest and Delta have a similar ski baggage policy. I have copied the Delta policy below. Theoretically you are allowed only 1 pair of skis. In practice I have never been charged for carrying 2 pairs (and in the past this was for both myself and kids). I am careful to keep my ski bag below 50 lbs., however, to avoid any issues coming up. (I always carry my boots and a set of clothing with me, otherwise combined boot and ski weight need to be 50 lbs., even though they incorrectly usually consider the weight limit on each item separately).

Airline counter employees vary widely in their knowledge and understnading of these policies. While that is perhaps a sad comment it is reality. I suggest that it doesn't hurt to print and carry a copy of the ski luggage policy (although I have never had to do this).



Conditions of Acceptance for Ski or Snowboard Equipment:

One item of ski or snowboard equipment is accepted as part of your free checked baggage allowance.
One item of ski or snowboard equipment is defined as:
  • One ski/pole bag or one snowboard bag, and
  • One boot bag
These combined items must meet the standard free baggage allowances for weight and number of pieces or normal excess baggage charges will apply.
Note that the definition clearly does not limit you to a particular number of skis. As long as your ski bag (and if applicable, boot bag) has a total weight under 50lb. you're good to go.
post #20 of 42
My experience over the years (international skiing trips) has been reasonable - so far. I have managed 2 pr. of skis on a few occasions without excess although when changing airlines (on international legs), what the first airline allowed doesn't necessarily translate to free on the second. Example - years ago I travelled Australia → Singapore → Switzerland changing from Qantas to Swiss Air in Singapore. Qantas allowed my luggage on free but Swiss Air wanted to charge an excess (some whining on my wife's part saved the day though).

I'm using Air Canada in a few weeks and their policy seems similar to Delta's (aren't they all?) and I hope I don't get caught up in the 50lb/70lb domestic/international dilemma as I am changing @Vancouver to Jazz Air for the internal connecting flight. If worse come to worse - I'll carry on my boots I imagine and tell 'em that my daypack is simply a growth
post #21 of 42
Welllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll,

The intent of the policies is ONE ITEM of equipment per person. When they started this crap, many agents were trained specifically to watch out for double ski bags. I specifically got dinged for a combo ski/board bag the first year they changed the rules. We've heard stories of agents trying to charge a couple extra for trying to carry both their skis in a double bag. I wouldn't count on having a copy of Delta's web page as proof that 2 skis/person is ok. I've run into "Nazi" type agents who would force you to pay and fight for a refund later. I've also run experienced widespread confusion over what the rules are and noticed that agents have a lot of leeway. If you're persistent, patient and nice about it, you can often get away with a little extra.

I've also found that I can't fully pack my ski bag with clothes without going over the 50 lb limit. I now pack my bag and weigh it before going to the airport. I also don't do multi gear flying trips anymore because I can't pack both sets of gear without incurring PER FREAKING segment overcharges. The next time I need to do multi gear, I'm going to ship one set ahead. The only thing I have not played with is packing my heaviest crap in carry on luggage. Only a couple airlines have/enforce weight limits on carry on luggage.

Hmmm - now that I think about it, here's another thing I have not tried. Buy an extra ticket to get the extra weight allowance (that's often cheaper than the surcharges). It would be wicked funny when they tried to put a standby passenger in your "extra" seat. I wonder if they have a rule covering this.
post #22 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by bjohansson
Fact #1: The major airlines lose money on every non-refundable discount coach seat they sell.
That all depends on how you look at costs. Once you're flying the plane, the marginal cost of putting an additional person on it is virtually zero. So the last seat you sell for $100 makes you a $100 profit. That is, of course, assuming you're flying anyway ... which gets into a whole range of issues, like what sort of schedule you need to fly in order to sell business tickets, etc., etc.

The post made good points, but I felt compelled to throw in that note for some obscure reason.
post #23 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by therusty
Hmmm - now that I think about it, here's another thing I have not tried. Buy an extra ticket to get the extra weight allowance (that's often cheaper than the surcharges). It would be wicked funny when they tried to put a standby passenger in your "extra" seat. I wonder if they have a rule covering this.
I'd bet they do.

Just as they do for people who try nifty tricks with round-trip fares, then don't use half the ticket.
post #24 of 42
The rule that covers this I believe is that all ticketed passengers must board the plane. As there will be only one of you flying, the other seat would be considered unused and given to someone else.

If you put your luggage on a flight and don't fly it they will remove the luggage, this policy is to prevent terrorists from putting a bomb on a plane in a suitcase and not fly the plane. (Alas there are too many suicidal maniacs for that rule to help much.)
post #25 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by therusty
I wouldn't count on having a copy of Delta's web page as proof that 2 skis/person is ok.
"I pity da foo!"
-B.A. Baracus

"Don't make me angry, you wouldn't like me when I'm Angry"
-Bruce Banner
post #26 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiMangoJazz
The rule that covers this I believe is that all ticketed passengers must board the plane. As there will be only one of you flying, the other seat would be considered unused and given to someone else.
What about extremely obese people buying 2 seats because that's how much space they take up? I heard some airlines (Soouthwest?) were REQUIRING this. I'm gonna go a rule huntin'
post #27 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by therusty
What about extremely obese people buying 2 seats because that's how much space they take up? I heard some airlines (Soouthwest?) were REQUIRING this. I'm gonna go a rule huntin'
Interesting. I was at a concert the other night and avery obese man had the two seats next to me.

Let us know what you find!
post #28 of 42
Quote:
Originally Posted by SkiMangoJazz
Interesting. I was at a concert the other night and avery obese man had the two seats next to me.

Let us know what you find!
Blues Traveler? Meatloaf? Vince Neil?
post #29 of 42
Bartok

(Boston Symphony Orchestra)
post #30 of 42
Bela Bartok was not obese.
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