MileValue is part of an affiliate sales network and receives compensation for sending traffic to partner sites, such as This compensation may impact how and where links appear on this site. This site does not include all financial companies or all available financial offers. Terms apply to American Express benefits and offers. Enrollment may be required for select American Express benefits and offers. Visit to learn more.

Note: Some of the offers mentioned below may have changed or are no longer be available. You can view current offers here.

Update 11/17/14: To book a stopover on an international award, you need to call Delta because the functionality has been removed from the website. I speculate that starting 1/1/15, Delta awards will not allow stopovers.

One Mile at a Time reports that Delta has stealthily eliminated stopovers on awards.

That’s not quite correct, but something very fishy is going on. Here’s how I know it is not true.

Screen Shot 2014-10-28 at 11.04.43 AM

Above is a roundtrip award from Washington DC to Los Angeles. On the outbound, there is a one week stopover in Minneapolis. The award prices at 25,000 miles + $16.80, which is the same miles as it would cost without the stopover in Minneapolis–hence a free stopover. (This is $5.60 extra in taxes than if you didn’t stop in MSP.)

Screen Shot 2014-10-28 at 11.04.53 AM

But he does a larger point that many awards are not pricing with a free stopover when they should.

  • A look at the evidence
  • Delta’s explanation
  • What’s the deal?


Here’s a simple award that should price at 70,000 miles in economy with a free stopover.

Seattle to Seoul roundtrip, with a stopover in Tokyo on the return
Seattle to Seoul roundtrip, with a stopover in Tokyo on the return

Instead priced it at 85,000 miles today.

Screen Shot 2014-10-28 at 10.36.26 AMScreen Shot 2014-10-28 at 10.36.32 AMThat is 35,000 miles for each long leg and 15,000 miles for Seoul to Tokyo, which is the one way price of each segment (assuming you booked a roundtrip award.)

But we should get a free stopover, so it should just price as 70,000 miles roundtrip as if Tokyo were just a layover.

I called Delta and tried to book the same flights. The agent confidently quoted 85,000 miles. When I inquired why that was the price, the wheels started to fall off. She cited:

  • flying Korean (“Partners always price at the Saver level, ma’am.”
  • the stopover (“We get a free stopover, ma’am.”)
  • availability (“That’s all Saver award space, ma’am.”)
  • that’s just the price (“A roundtrip to Northern Asia in economy is 70,000 miles according to the chart, ma’am.”)

So she went to the rate desk, and came back with the explanation that I was exceeding the maximum permitted mileage (MPM.)

This is, of course, bogus.

I am flying Seattle to Seoul direct, so there is zero chance that exceeds MPM. A return via Tokyo is fairly direct and is under 5,600 miles. MPM for Seoul to Seattle is over 5,700 according to her.

So I have no clarity on why I am not getting a free stopover on this routing, and no one seems to know. It’s almost like Delta eliminated the free stopover in their computer without telling us, the agents, or the rates desk.

Similar international dummy bookings got me the same results.

Right now, it looks to me like international awards are not being allowed a free stopover but domestic awards are.

Because even Delta agents don’t seem to know that stopovers have been eliminated, I am hoping this is a glitch. I will reach out to Delta for further clarification.

Follow MileValue on Twitter and Facebook. And sign up to receive one free daily email every morning with all of the day’s posts!

Earn 75,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.

Just getting started in the world of points and miles? The Chase Sapphire Preferred is the best card for you to start with.

With a bonus of 75,000 points after $4,000 spend in the first 3 months, 5x points on travel booked through the Chase Travel Portal and 3x points on restaurants, streaming services, and online groceries (excluding Target, Walmart, and wholesale clubs), this card truly cannot be beat for getting started!

Editorial Disclaimer: The editorial content is not provided or commissioned by the credit card issuers. Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of the credit card issuers, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the credit card issuers.

The comments section below is not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved, or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser’s responsibility to ensure all questions are answered.