Delta Air Lines announced today that it has eliminated mileage expiration as of January 1, 2011. Members can leave unused miles in their accounts as long as they wish without any activity and not have to worry about their Sky Miles vanishing due to account inactivity. I have to admit that I’m not sure how I feel about the move. Certainly, it seems good on the face of it. But isn’t a loyalty program about rewarding loyalty for using your product, or doing things (spending on linked credit cards, dining out, online shopping) that add to your loyalty program balance?
Overall, I guess it’s a net plus (maybe 🙂 ), and Delta is certainly the only big airline that has made non-expiration of unused miles a benefit of their program. This may be attractive to some people. What would really attract me is better availability, and a better award calendar, and a better award booking engine. Some of those, Delta promises to come in 2011 as part of other improvements to Sky Miles. I’ll watch with interest.