The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express combines the benefits of a travel rewards credit card with flying perks that may make you feel like a jetsetter.
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.
The card gives cardholders two miles for every $1 on purchases made directly with Delta and one mile for every $1 on all other purchases. The card also includes a limited time welcome offer of 5,000 MQMs and 75,000 bonus miles when you spend $3,000 with your card in the first three months; plus, you can earn a $100 statement credit after you make your first Delta purchase in the first three months.
But that's not all. The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express gives you 10,000 MQMs and 10,000 bonus miles when you spend $25,000 in eligible purchases on the card within a calendar year and you can get another 10,000 MQMs and 10,000 bonus miles when you reach $50,000 on eligible purchases within a calendar year. With earning potential like that, you could be enjoying Medallion status in no time.
The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express 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 annually when you renew your card; that alone could offset the $195 annual fee (Terms apply. 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, as is the first checked bag for up to eight companions traveling under the same reservation.
You additionally get discounted Delta Sky Club access. For a discounted fee of $29 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 onboard your flight, you still benefit from your card. Passengers with the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express get a 20 percent 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 up to $1,250 coverage for lost, damaged or stolen carry-on baggage and up to $500 for checked 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.
One drawback is the card's annual fee. The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express charges a $195 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 fly Delta.
Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express vs. Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express
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 Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express has a much cheaper annual membership fee ($0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95). Terms apply. See Rates and Fees.
The Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express has the same miles earned for your purchases (two miles for every Delta purchase; one mile for all others). However, it doesn't give you the annual MQM bonus opportunity like the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express offers.
The Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express' welcome offer isn't quite as generous either, though it's still a nice chunk of miles. New users can earn 30,000 bonus miles when making $1,000 in purchases in the first three months and can earn a $50 statement credit once making a Delta purchase on the new card in the same time frame.
The Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express also offers priority boarding, discounted Delta Sky Club access and you can check your first bag for free. However, it doesn't give you the 20 percent in-flight savings or baggage insurance.
So, the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express could be a more economical option to see whether you will benefit from the rewards and perks. But the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express would be a better option if you want more from your card.
Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express vs. Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card
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 percent 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 Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express.
Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express vs. Citi Premier℠ Card
The first major difference between the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express and the Citi Premier℠ Card is that the Citi Premier℠ Card has a smaller annual fee. It's $95, waived for first 12 months versus the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express' $195. Note that the Citi Premier℠ Card's annual fee is waived for the first 12 months.
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 percent more if you redeem them for air travel, cruises, hotels and car rentals through the ThankYou® Travel Center, Citi's online booking tool. That means a $500 purchase becomes 625 points. 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 Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express 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.
The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express 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 Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express will make travel that much easier.
To see rates and fees of American Express cards mentioned in this post, please see the following links: Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express (See Rates and Fees); Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express (See Rates and Fees)