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Airline credit cards are ideal for people who frequently book flights with the same airline. With its slew of cardholder benefits, the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card works best for those who fly with Delta often. However, it also offers something for road warriors and occasional flyers alike.
|Bonus rewards on everyday food purchases||High annual fee|
|An annual companion certificate||Companion certificate begins your second year and has some limitations|
|Free checked bags and priority boarding||No free airport lounge access|
|No foreign transaction fees|
|Customer service contact info|
P.O. Box 15298
The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card is one of four American Express Delta cards available to individuals. Of those four, this card has the second-highest annual fee ($250), but the card's perks help make it worth it. For instance, you can use the card to earn Delta Medallion elite status, and the cardholder benefits can lead to significant savings for anyone who flies at least once a year.
Earn SkyMiles and Progress Toward Elite Status
Using the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, you can earn Delta SkyMiles (which you can redeem for rewards flights) and Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs), which help you progress toward elite Delta Medallion status.
You can earn:
- 3 SkyMiles per dollar on Delta purchases and hotel stays when you pay the hotel directly (for example, not prepaying with an online travel agent).
- 2 SkyMiles per dollar at U.S. supermarkets and restaurants worldwide including takeout and delivery.
- 1 SkyMile per dollar on other eligible purchases.
- 10,000 MQMs if you spend $25,000 during a calendar year and an additional 10,000 MQMs if you spend a total of $50,000 or more during a calendar year.
New cardholders may also be eligible for an intro bonus, which consists of bonus miles and MQMs, after meeting an initial spending requirement.
The number of miles you'll need to redeem for a flight will depend on where and when you're flying, along with the class of seat. However, the Delta SkyMiles are often worth a little more than 1 cent each.
The MQMs you can earn can help you achieve elite status in the Delta Medallion frequent flyer program. To qualify for the lowest tier (Silver), you'll need 25,000 MQMs or Medallion Qualification Segments (MQSs) from flying, plus $3,000 Medallion Qualifying Dollars (MQDs) or an MQD waiver.
While you can't earn status with the card alone, the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card offers two relevant benefits. The first is that you can earn MQMs by using the card in addition to flying. Earn 10,000 MQM when you spend $25,000 with the card; this reward can be earned twice a year. As a cardholder, you'll also receive a waiver for the MQD requirement if you make at least $25,000 in purchases during a calendar year.
Due to the coronavirus pandemic's effect on air travel, Delta has taken several steps to extend its benefit program. The two biggest takeaways:
- 2020 Medallion Status has been extended to January 31, 2022, for Medallion Members.
- Cardholders will be able to hang on to MQMs earned in 2020—they'll roll over into 2021.
The elite-status benefits will primarily benefit big spenders. However, the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card's other benefits can help everyone.
The Big Benefit—an Annual Companion Certificate
Perhaps the most exciting benefit that comes with the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card is the annual companion certificate.
The certificate can lead to significant savings, even if you only travel with someone else once a year. You also receive the certificate as long as you remain a cardholder, even if you don't frequently use your card. However, there are a few requirements to keep in mind:
- You don't receive the certificate when you first receive the card. Your first certificate will become available during your card's renewal month.
- The certificate is good for one round-trip main cabin ticket for flights within the 48 contiguous U.S. states. However, if you live in Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico or the U.S. Virgin Islands, you can book a flight from there to one of the 48 contiguous states.
- You have to pay taxes and fees for the companion ticket, which can be up to $75 for a round-trip domestic flight if both ways have layovers.
The restrictions, such as having to book a round-trip ticket, limit the savings opportunities. However, the companion certificate could still provide a lot of value and save some cardholders even more than the card's $250 annual fee. There are also additional benefits that you can use on this, and other, Delta flights.
Cardholders Benefits Can Save You Time and Money
While the rewards rates and companion pass may be the main selling points of the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, there are plenty of other perks that make the card appealing:
- Global Entry or TSA Precheck credit: Once every four to four and a half years, you can receive a statement credit to offset the cost of enrolling in Global Entry ($100) or TSA Precheck ($85).
- Free checked bags: Get a checked baggage fee waiver for you and up to eight travel companions on the same reservation every time you book your Delta using your card.
- Priority boarding: Get Main Cabin 1 boarding for you and up to eight travel companions on the same reservation.
- Discounted Delta Sky Club entry: You can purchase entry for yourself and two guests for $39 each when you're flying on a Delta or Delta partner flight.
- Statement credit for in-flight purchases: Get 20% back as statement credit on in-flight purchases of beverages, food and audio headsets.
- Trip delay and baggage insurance: If you use your card to make travel arrangements, you may be able to get reimbursed for expenses if your trip is delayed by more than 12 hours, or if your bags are lost, damaged or stolen.
These benefits can help make your travels more comfortable, save you time and could lead to significant savings—especially for large families that frequently check a lot of bags.
You can also use the Amex app on your iOS or Android device to manage your account. In addition to the basics, such as checking recent transactions, the app lets you split purchase costs with others by connecting PayPal or Venmo, add Amex Offers to your card and set up alerts. These can let you know whenever your card is used for a purchase, which can tip you off if someone steals your card's info.
|Purchase APR: 15.74% - 24.74% (variable)||Grace period: 25 days|
|Transfer APR: N/A||Annual fee: $250|
|Cash advance APR: 25.24% (variable)||Balance transfer fee: N/A|
|Minimum interest charge: None||Cash advance fee: 5% ($10 minimum)|
|Foreign transaction fee: None|
|Late payment fee: Up to $40|
|Returned payment fee: Up to $40|
You can add an authorized user (American Express calls it an additional card member) to your account at no extra charge. The person will receive a card that's associated with your account, and any of their purchases and transactions will get added to your account's balance.
You'll be responsible for the entire bill, including the transactions that the authorized user initiated. However, as the primary cardholder, you can also set spending limits on the authorized user's card.
The authorized user won't receive a companion certificate, priority boarding, a separate statement credit for Global Entry or TSA Precheck, or free checked bags. However, they can use their card to purchase entry into a lounge. The authorized user's purchases will also count toward your spending bonuses for MQMs and the MQD waiver.
Is This Card Right for You?
The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card requires a significant investment as the $250 annual fee makes it more expensive than many travel cards. If you frequently fly with Delta, live near a Delta hub or take an annual trip on a Delta flight, the cardholder benefits and companion certificate could make this a great fit. But you can also look into less expensive Delta cards, other airlines' cards or a more general travel rewards card.
Find out if you are matched to this card, and others like it, by signing up for Experian CreditMatch™. This free service considers your unique credit profile and guides you to credit card offers based on that profile.