Fare Downgrade and Upgrade Policy

Downgrades | Upgrades

Fare Downgrade Policy

Completely unused published fare tickets may be downgraded to a lower published fare provided all rules are met. Partially used tickets may not be downgraded and refunds/credits will not apply for previously flown travel.

When a new published fare is introduced or a current published fare is reduced in a market, ticketed passengers may downgrade prior to departure of the origination flight under the following conditions:

  • No changes are permitted to the flight, date, origin, destination, or stopover point.
  • Existing reservation must already be confirmed in or rebooked in the appropriate class of service for the new fare. Overbooking is not permitted.
  • Passenger must re qualify for the new/reduced fare by meeting all restrictions, including advance reservations and ticketing requirements.
    • If the new fare has a ticketing deadline, the ticket must be reissued by that date.
    • If the original ticket was nonrefundable and the new ticket is refundable, the nonrefundable provision and amount of the original ticket must be maintained. Indicate nonrefundable amount as an endorsement. Example: NONREF/$345US
  • Travel agents can downgrade an agency issued ticket, with a published fare, provided the agency originally issued the ticket. ASC fee applies. Agency should issue a nonrefundable MCO valid for future Delta services.
    • The MCO is to be issued to the passenger named on the ticket and the applicable Administrative Service Charge (ASC) applies.  
  • Travel agency refund to original form of payment for nonrefundable tickets – not applicable.
  • Web fares are eligible for downgrades. ASC fee applies

Administrative Service Charge

The Administrative Service Charge fee for a downgraded ticket will be the same amount as the change penalty based on the rule of the fare being downgraded.

The Administrative Service Charge is not waived under ANY CIRCUMSTANCES and is subject to the following conditions:

  • No change may be made to the origin, destination, connection, stopover points, flights, dates shown on the original ticket.
  • All conditions of the new fare must be met including and advance ticketing requirements and rebooking in the correct booking class if not already in that class.
  • The Administrative Service Charge or its equivalent converted at the BSR will be applied to ALL ticketed and unticketed PTA’s presented for downgrade.
  • Original ticket must be all Delta coded flights.
  • If the original ticket had a nonrefundable penalty the original nonrefundable penalty amount will remain nonrefundable.


A USD 400 ticket with a USD 150 penalty is downgraded to a USD 300 ticket with a USD 75 penalty. The ticket holder cannot at that point request a refund and only pay the USD 75. The USD 150 penalty will follow the downgraded ticket.

Note: Do not confuse non-refundable penalty with non-refundable tickets. They are not the same.

Travel agents may downgrade tickets as long as they were the original issuing agent of the ticket and the original ticket was not totally non-refundable. If the ticked issued by the travel agency was non-refundable then the passenger must have the ticket reissued by Delta.

Administrative Service Charge for Downgrades Applies:

  • Going to Transatlantic, Transpacific, South America, and Central America fares.
  • Coming from the United States of America, Mexico, Canada, Caribbean, Bermuda, and the Bahamas.
  • Coming from the United States of America, Canada, and Mexico to the Caribbean.
  • Coming from the United States of America, Canada, and Caribbean to Mexico.

Note: Caribbean does not include San Juan, and St. Thomas and the areas between Central America and South America.

Domestic Upgrades

Effective January 13, 2011, Delta's previous upgrade policy was discontinued. Normal fare rules will apply when any changes are made to a restricted fare; the ASC will apply for voluntary changes on fares that have an ASC.


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