It's something that I have thought on occasion when I really lay into Delta... Am I being unfair to them? It's an excellent question, since most of my problems with them have to do with past experiences and their terrible loyalty program. It may be that Delta isn't as bad as I think they are.
First off, lets tackle the loyalty program issues. It sucks, point blank, there is no way around how absolutely awful Delta is to its loyal customers, and they just seem to be on a track to making it worst as often as they can justify... which is apparently all the time. Sadly it seems that United is mildly in love with Delta and just follows everything they do with their loyalty program, American seems to be picking up some bad habits too. It's an unfortunate to turn on the people who fly with them and give them much of the revenue that makes Delta the most profitable airline in the world.
Beyond that, there was one glaring issue with Delta that I had problems with many times... Atlanta. Atlanta is a horrible airport in my opinion. Since it is the worlds busiest airport, it takes very little weather to completely back the airport up for hours. Transferring to any other flight takes the better part of an hour in most cases because of the sheer size and method of moving between gates.
Then there is the Delta staff... useless is about the only way I can describe it. Remember this is my experience from 5+ years ago, before I was a very seasoned traveler. Before I knew that carry on baggage was the only way to go, when I used to check luggage. At the time my company told me to take a company computer with me on my vacation... "just in case"... I took it, and vowed to not open it once. Since I was already overloaded on my personal carry on luggage, I checked the bag. As happened every single time I fly through Atlanta on my way home... my bags were lost... EVERY TIME, no exaggeration there. Well, once my bags were returned, my laptop bag was rather light, like missing a laptop light.
A Delta employee had stolen the laptop, and worse yet, Delta customer service didn't care. They just told me over and over that I wasn't supposed to check electronics, that they can't put me in contact with a manager... and the Delta employees were yelling at me, and hanging up on me. I remained calm the whole time, after all it wasn't my personal computer. It just struck me as odd that their excuse was that I wasn't supposed to check something, not that their employee was wrong to steal something. I wonder what would happen if I checked a camera, or a spare phone... is it ok for them to steal that too?
After Delta I started flying US Airways almost exclusively and stopped checking luggage. My experiences with US Airways were always good, never did I have an issue with US Airways, and never have I had an issue with American Airlines. To this day I refuse to fly Delta... though I did just grab a Delta credit card last week. I'll use them on an award flight, but likely little else. I will actually pay double a domestic fare, to avoid flying Delta... I did it last week.
Reviews of their actual flights show them as a great airline... my experiences are not the same though, and I wonder if I should give them a chance. Really though, I'd rather fly American, get my miles on American and maximize my award travel for now. We'll see what the future brings, but for now Delta rarely is even an option to consider for my flights.
So, am I being unfair to Delta? Have they changed?