Delta Air Lines was one of, if not the first, US airline to pioneer premium gate to gate transfers for high value customers. Utilizing a fleet of Porsche vehicles, the airline launched a trial service in Atlanta in 2011, that expanded to Los Angeles, New York-JFK, and Minneapolis. According to Delta, they’ve transferred an incredible 35,000+ customers using the Porsche service in the last year! With the expanded service, Delta will capture high value traffic in some of its biggest markets.
Unfortunately for us wannabe Platinum Medallions, the service cannot be requested or reserved but is provided to Diamond Medallion customers based on a number of factors including the day’s flight operations, connections times between flights for customers and a member’s status. Once customers are added to the priority list for the service by Delta’s Elite Services team, they are greeted at the aircraft boarding door and escorted with their baggage to an awaiting vehicle and on to their connecting gate.
Personally, I think Delta does a great job of catering to high value customers, and their Porsche transfer service is just one example. While I don’t hesitate to pick on Delta when I think they deserve it, I don’t think one can reasonably argue that they aren’t running the best airline operation in the US. As I’ve said before, the underlying service an airline provide matters more to me than their frequent flyer program. My top three reasons for preferring Delta are:
- A reliable airline matters.
- I continue to be pleased with the level of care I receive as a SkyMiles Medallion.
- I’ve never walked off a Delta flight and said “wow, I can’t wait to fly someone else.”
And I didn’t even have to get a ride in one of those Porsche’s to say that!
Here’s a fun video that shadows one of Delta’s Elite Services Representatives as she shuttles some of Delta’s customers to their flights.