Delta is joining American Airlines and Southwest Airlines as the third major brand to deny travel startups access to users’ frequent flyer accounts for the purpose of tracking airlines miles and rewards. Startups affected include TripIt (reportedly*), MileWise and AwardWallet (confirmed) and others. Here’s the situation in a nutshell: the airlines think your rewards data is theirs. Users think they own their own data. Imagine that!
What’s worse, is that airlines are actually pissing off some of their most important customers – frequent flyers – when they do things like this. It’s a group that’s critical to airlines’ bottom line.