Soft-dollar benefits in airline relationships traditionally don’t get the same kind of play as negotiated discounts, but they’re worth real money too. A few years ago, Delta Air Lines created a banking system that assigned value to waivers and favors, and now American Airlines is automating the concept. Delta and United Airlines also expect to soon make waiver requests self-service.

In the past, clients or their agents always had to place phone calls to airlines for these policy exceptions. That's still the case in many situations.

AA in an early June memo to . . .

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