Delta’s latest perk for frequent flyers: Upgrades to private jets

WASHINGTON — The first-class upgrade is so pedestrian.

For select globe trotters who have gobs of miles with Delta, the next upgrade could be to a private jet.

The airline calls the option to fly private “a new surprise-and-delight program” limited to Medallion members traveling on select commercial Delta flights. Being a Medallion member on Delta requires a minimum silver-level spend of $3,000 per year and 25,000 miles or 30 flight segments. The highest level of membership requires a $15,000 spend per year and 125,000 miles or 140 flight segments.

A couple from Cincinnati recently became the first to ascend from ordinary commercial travel to the extravagance of a private jet, Bloomberg Business reports.

Bruce and Jeanette Rogovin, both Delta SkyMiles Medallion members, had booked a traditional flight from Cincinnati to Atlanta. The night before departure, they got a surprising email.

Delta offered to upgrade them to a private jet. They accepted, naturally, according to Bloomberg Business.

On board the 10-seat Falcon 2000, the Rogovins enjoyed champagne, chocolate-covered strawberries and lunch.

They didn’t report trouble finding overhead space or securing a blanket.

The private upgrade opportunities will be limited to select passengers in specific markets where an available Delta Private Jets aircraft is otherwise not in use, the airline said.

The cost of the upgrade is between $300 and $800.

Delta hopes that once passengers experience private travel, they won’t want to go back.

“If you’ve never been on a private jet, it’s very difference from what you experience in the commercial space,” Delta Private Jets president Erik Snell told ABC. “You’re essentially buying the entire plane, whereas on the commercial side, you’re buying a seat.”

ABC News Radio contributed to this report.

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