Delta Air Lines and Northwest Airlines have finally announced their long-awaited merger this evening. No big surprises in the news release. We knew the Northwest name would be retired, and we knew how this would be spun.
Northwest is trying to assure its best customers that there’s only an upside to this deal. Here’s what its frequent fliers received this evening:
As a valued Northwest Airlines customer and WorldPerks® member, I wanted you to be among the first to hear that we have announced a merger with Delta Air Lines. Subject to regulatory review, our two airlines are joining forces to create America’s premier global airline which, upon closing of the merger, will be called Delta Air Lines.
By combining Northwest and Delta, we are building a stronger, more resilient airline that will be a leader in providing customer service and value. Our combined airline will offer unprecedented access to the world, enabling you to fly to more destinations, have more flight choices and more ways than ever to earn and redeem your WorldPerks miles.
You can be assured that your WorldPerks miles and Elite program status will be unaffected by this merger. In addition, you can continue to earn miles through use of partners like WorldPerks Visa®. And once the new Delta Air Lines emerges you can look forward to being a part of the world’s largest frequent flyer program with expanded benefits.
The combined Delta Air Lines will serve more U.S. communities and connect to more worldwide destinations than any global airline. Our hubs – both Delta’s and Northwest’s – will be retained and enhanced. We will be the only U.S. airline to offer direct service from the United States to all of the world’s major business centers in Asia, Latin America, Europe, Africa and around North America.
Both airlines bring tremendous strengths to this new partnership. Our complementary service networks form an end-to-end system that is truly greater than the sum of its parts. This is a merger by addition, not subtraction, which means all of our hubs – both Northwest’s and Delta’s – will be retained. In addition, building on both airlines’ proud, decades-long history of serving small communities, we plan to enhance global connections to small towns and cities across the U.S.
All of these positive benefits of our combination mean that we can:
* Offer a true global network where our customers will be able to fly to more destinations, have more schedule options and more opportunities to earn and redeem frequent flyer miles in what will become the world’s best and most comprehensive frequent flyer program.
* Continue to serve our current roster of destinations and to maintain our hubs in Atlanta, Cincinnati, Detroit, Memphis, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York, Salt Lake City, Amsterdam and Tokyo.
* Improve our customers’ travel experience, through new products and services including enhanced self-service tools, better bag-tracking technology, more onboard services, including more meal options, new seats and refurbished cabins.
While we work to secure approval of our merger, which may take up to 6 to 8 months, it will be business-as-usual at both airlines. We will continue to operate as independent airlines and the people of Northwest will remain focused on providing you with the very best in safe, reliable and convenient air travel. At the same time, both airlines will be planning for a seamless integration of our two airlines, one that delivers to you the enhanced benefits that will earn – and retain – your preference.
As we work through this process, we will keep you informed at every step along the way. Thank you for your business and we look forward to serving you on your next Northwest flight.
Managing Director, WorldPerks
No disrespect to Bob, but I don’t know if I’m buying any of this. Are you?