Tom Brady is used to criticism, but in the wake of drastic changes made by Delta Air Lines, the seven-time Super Bowl champ was on the end of criticism of a different kind.
Delta has received backlash by announcing plans to cap the number of entries to its lounges and tighten the qualifying criteria for customers to earn frequent flyer status.
The airline announced the controversial move Wednesday – just seven days following a release wherein Brady was named as a strategic advisor.
Frustrated customers took to X and suggested Brady had some hand in the imminent alterations. Naturally, this is not known to be fact.
‘Tom Brady redefines what it means to be ‘Elite’ at Delta,’ one account wrote, referencing his status as perhaps the greatest football player of all-time. Amusingly, a mock up of the ‘new’ requirements for Medallion Status was posted, stating customers need 25,000 medallion qualification miles or ‘2 Super Bowl championships’ to qualify.
Those hoping for diamond status need 125,000 MQMs or seven Super Bowl titles — of which Brady is the only person in NFL history (player or coach) to do so.’Tom Brady starts a partnership with Delta and SkyMiles goes to s*** — who’s to blame here,’ one woman wrote.
While Brady’s remuneration for his brand ambassadorship and advisory role have not been revealed, some took aim at the fact the future Hall of Famer was on the books at all.
‘Hey @Delta maybe dedicate the money you’re using to pay known millionaire @TomBrady to walk back the embarrassingly bad #skymiles changes you’re trying to roll out.’
From February 1, 2025, travelers will have their access to the Atlanta-based airline’s swanky Delta Sky Clubs cut to as little as six visits a year.
Those who book a basic economy ticket will no longer be allowed into the lounge at all from January 1, 2024 – even if they hold an American Express Platinum card or any other premium credit card.
From early 2025, American Express Platinum and Platinum Business cardholders will only be able to visit the Delta lounge six times a year to enjoy access to free meals and drinks and a space to relax before their flight.
Delta Reserve and Delta Business Reserve customers will be limited to 10 visits a year, the company announced. Brady has signed a ‘long-term’ contract with the airline and Delta CEO Ed Bastian vowed: ‘Magic is going to happen.’
Something has happened alright. Fireworks perhaps, thus far.
Brady’s role will involve helping to develop training and ‘teamwork tools’ for the airline’s 90,000-plus employees and ‘inspiring the next generation of Delta community leaders.’
His mother, Galynn, worked as a flight attendant during his childhood. Upon the announcement of the partnership, Delta hailed the ‘innovative new partnership’ as a chance to tap into his ‘expertise in teamwork, performance, and perseverance.’