Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card Review
Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card
CardRatings Editor's Analysis: Pros & Cons
- Earn 40,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new card in your first three months. Plus, earn a $100 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new card within the same time frame.
- Earn 3x the miles on purchases directly with Delta as well as on purchases directly with hotels; 2x the miles on purchases at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets; and 1x mile per $1 on everything else.
- Rack up extra MQMs by meeting specific spending thresholds on your card each year (details below).
- As with any airline-branded card, this option is only right for you if you're truly loyal to the brand. If you're someone who prefers to shop for the lowest fare rather than stick with a consistent airline, a more general travel rewards card is likely a better option.
Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card Essentials
The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card combines the benefits of a travel rewards credit card with flying perks that may make you feel like a jetsetter. American Express is a CardRatings advertiser.
The card's Delta SkyMiles and the airline's Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) help you save on flights and gain even more benefits.
You use your Delta SkyMiles to get discounted or free flights on Delta. As long as you have at least 5,000 miles per passenger, you're able to book your flight and get a discount. For instance, if you have 5,000 miles, you can get $50 off. If you have 10,000 miles, that's $100 off.
Meanwhile, the MQM program is a status program for Delta's most loyal customers. Gaining Medallion Status lets flyers gain more perks, such as complimentary upgrades and waived fees.
The MQM program has four levels: Diamond, Platinum, Gold and Silver. As Medallion Status members gain MQMs, they move up to the next level with more perks.
Cardholders earn 3X miles on Delta purchases and purchases made directly with hotels; 2X miles at restaurants and at U.S. supermarkets; and 1X mile on all other eligible purchases. New cardholders also have the opportunity to earn 40,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new card in your first three months. Plus, earn a $100 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new card within the same time frame. There is a $250 annual fee, but all of this and more helps to offset that. See Rates and Fees.
Thanks to Status Boost™ you can also earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 in purchases on your card in a calendar year, up to two times per year getting you closer to Medallion Status. MQMs are used to determine Medallion Status and are different than miles you earn toward flights. With earning potential like that, you could be enjoying Medallion status in no time.
- Earn a $200 Bonus after you spend $500 on purchases in your first 3 months from account opening.
- Earn 5% cash back on grocery store purchases (not including Target® or Walmart® purchases) on up to $12,000 spent in the first year.
- Earn unlimited 1.5% cash back on all other purchases.
- 0% Intro APR for 15 months from account opening on purchases, then a variable APR of 14.99 - 23.74%.
- No annual fee
- No minimum to redeem for cash back
- Cash Back rewards do not expire as long as your account is open
What Our Editors Like Best about the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card
The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card offers a generous rewards program, particularly when it comes to the opportunity to regularly earn MQMs, but another aspect that sets this card apart is its flight-related perks.
Cardholders receive a domestic main cabin round-trip companion certificate each year after your anniversary of card membership; that alone could offset the $250 annual fee (See Rates and Fees).
The card also gives you priority boarding so you can get on board and settled before the rush of other passengers (and the rush on overhead bin space). Cardholders' first checked bag is also free on Delta flights.
You additionally get discounted Delta Sky Club access. For a discounted fee of $39 per person, you and up to two traveling companions can relax before your flight in the Delta Sky Club. In the club, you can enjoy complimentary snacks, beverages, WiFi access, satellite TV, newspapers and magazines. Not a bad way to spend a lengthy layover, right?
Once you're aboard your flight, you still benefit from your card. Passengers with the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card get a 20% savings that comes in the form of a statement credit when you use your card for eligible Delta in-flight purchases of food, beverages and audio headsets.
This card also gives you peace of mind when traveling with baggage insurance. When you purchase the entire fare for a common carrier ticket on your card, the card provides coverage for lost, damaged or stolen carry-on baggage.
If you're an international flyer, you'll also appreciate the card does not charge foreign transaction fees. So, enjoy shopping in Paris without the worry of added fees you'll have to pay when you get back home. See Rates and Fees.
Potential Downsides of the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card
One drawback is the card's annual fee. The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card charges a $250 annual fee. Unlike some cards, this one doesn't waive the first year's fee so you'll have to decide whether the card's generous rewards program and perks offset that higher-than-typical (but still not exorbitant) annual fee. This card is also specifically for Delta flyers, so a different travel rewards card might be better for you if you don't often fly Delta.
How the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card Compares to Other Rewards Credit Cards
Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card vs. Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card
(This card is not currently available on CardRatings)
If you fly Delta and want a Delta-affiliated card, but the Platinum card's annual fee is a little too much for your budget, there is another option.
The Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card earns a bit less on purchases, but in similar categories: earn 2X miles on Delta purchases, at restaurants worldwide and at U.S. supermarkets; and 1X mile on all other eligible purchases.
The welcome offers are different as well. With the SkyMiles® Gold card new cardholders can earn 35,000 bonus miles after you spend $1,000 in purchases on your new card in your first three months. Plus, spend $10,000 in purchases on your card in a calendar year and receive a $100 Delta flight credit.
The Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card also offers priority boarding, discounted Delta Sky Club access and you can check your first bag for free.
Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card vs. Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (This card is not currently available on CardRatings)
You may find that a travel rewards credit card that's not limited to one airline is a better choice for you. In that case, you might want to check out Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card.
Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card, which has a $95 annual fee, gives you two points on travel and dining and one point for all other purchases.
The card also rewards you with 60,000 bonus Ultimate Rewards® points when you spend $4,000 with the card in the first three months.
One benefit that sets Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card apart from other travel rewards cards is that the points are worth 25% more when you redeem points through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. So, the 60,000-point welcome bonus is worth $750 for travel purchases through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
The card also allows you a 1:1 point transfer to participating airline and hotel loyalty programs. An important note: Delta is not one of the partner loyalty programs for which you can transfer Chase Ultimate Rewards® points, so if Delta is exclusively your airline, you might be better off with the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card.
The information related to the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card has been collected by CardRatings and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of the card.
Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card vs. Citi Premier℠ Card (This card is not currently available on CardRatings)
The first major difference between the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card and the Citi Premier℠ Card is that the Citi Premier℠ Card has a smaller annual fee. It's $95 versus the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card's $250.
The Citi Premier℠ Card has a generous rewards program, offering three points per $1 spent on travel, including at gas stations. You'll get two points per $1 for dining out and entertainment and one point per $1 on all other purchases.
Another thing to like – your points are worth 25% more if you redeem them for air travel through the ThankYou® Travel Center, Citi's online booking tool. That means the 60,000 points new cardholders earn after spending $4,000 in the first three months could be worth $750 in airfare (or $600 in gift cards when redeemed through the ThankYou® portal). Not too shabby. There are also no foreign transaction fees, and you'll probably enjoy Citi's 24/7 personal concierge service.
In fact, there's a lot to like about Citi Premier℠ Card. But since it's not connected to an airline like Delta, you don't get flight-related perks that the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card offers. There's no priority boarding, waived fees or discounted access to an airline club at the airport with this card. There are airlines you can transfer your points to, but mostly, they're international airlines, like Turkish Airlines and Thai Airways. But if you travel internationally a lot, and you're not wedded to a certain airline like Delta, you may still feel like you're flying high with the Citi Premier℠ Card.
Who Should Get This Card?
The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card was made for the regular Delta customer. The card offers miles that you can use to board Delta flights, but what really makes this card stand out is the opportunity to earn some bonus status miles, MQMs in Delta-speak. Any frequent flyer knows that status miles are as good as gold.
If you regularly fly Delta and long for priority boarding and access to the Delta Sky Club, you may find having the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card will make travel that much easier.
To see rates and fees of American Express cards mentioned in this post, please see the following links: Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card (See Rates and Fees); Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card (See Rates and Fees)