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- The Delta SkyMiles program will receive a significant revamp beginning in January 2024.
- Primary changes to the program include a simplification of the Medallion elite status system.
- Several Amex Delta SkyMiles cards are getting updates to benefits as part of these changes.
- Affected cards will have substantial changes to or removal of their Sky Club Lounge access in addition to changes in earning Medallion Qualification Dollars.
American Express announced sizable changes are coming to its Delta SkyMiles® credit card lineup. With the revamp of the Delta SkyMiles® program beginning in January 2024, cardholders will want to reassess whether a SkyMiles credit card should remain a key part of their SkyMiles Medallion status strategy as well as whether access to the Delta Sky Club® airport lounge is vital to their continued use of their card.
Delta card changes in 2024
Beginning Jan. 1, 2024, these Delta SkyMiles cards will receive the following adjustments.
Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card
American Express’ mid-tier Delta card will undergo the following changes to its card perks:
- The Delta SkyMiles Platinum will no longer offer access to the Delta Sky Club. Previously, cardholders and up to two guests could access the lounge for $50 per person when traveling on a Delta flight.
- The card will earn 1 Medallion Qualifying Dollar (MQD) for every $20 spent on the card.
Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card
This luxury Delta card will have similar changes, though more fitting of its more expensive annual fee, compared to the Platinum card.
- The Delta SkyMiles Reserve will no longer offer complimentary Delta Sky Club access when booking a flight on a basic economy ticket.
- The card will earn 1 MQD for every $10 spent on the card.
The Reserve will receive additional changes beginning Feb. 1, 2025:
- Cardholders will receive 15 complimentary visits to the Delta Sky Club per year. Cardholders can also invite up to two guests at a rate of $50 per person per visit.
- After spending $75,000 on the card, cardholders will earn unlimited Delta Sky Club visits for the following year.
Why the changes?
These changes follow Delta’s recent announcement of fundamental changes coming to the Delta SkyMiles program in January. Previously, and through Jan. 1, 2024, members could advance their SkyMiles Medallion Status through a combination of Medallion Qualification Dollars that they earn through spending and Medallion Qualification Miles and Medallion Qualification Segments that they earn through distance flown and number of flights they book, respectively.
Delta is eliminating Medallion Qualification Miles and Medallion Qualification Segments with the program revamp, leaving just Medallion Qualification Dollars as the sole method of achieving Medallion status.
According to Delta’s website, simplification is the primary driver behind these changes, with no changes in how customers can earn or redeem standard reward miles.
What are the new Medallion status requirements?
Delta kept the old Medallion levels and updated requirements for 2025 based on the new MQD system. You can reach each tier by obtaining the following MQDs:
|Medallion tier||MQD requirement|
With the upcoming changes to the Delta SkyMiles credit cards, SkyMiles members can earn MQDs in the following ways after the new program rolls out:
|Earning method||MQDs earned|
|Delta and partner flights||1 MQD per $1 spent on ticket price|
|Delta Amex cards||1 MQD per $20 spent on the Platinum card; 1 MQD per $10 spent on the Reserve or Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card|
|Delta Car Rentals||1 MQD per $1 spent|
|Delta Stays||1 MQD per $1 spent|
|Delta Vacations®||1 MQD per $1 spent|
Are the revamped Delta SkyMiles cards still worth it?
The changes to the cards’ Sky Club access are a considerable blow to each card’s upfront value. Where you could once rely on Sky Club access to help offset each card’s annual fee, cardholders will now have to lean heavily on the card’s other perks, like the annual companion pass and first checked bag free.
On top of losing this baseline value, other card features that previously helped cardholders gain status, like Status Boost® and MQD Waivers, are also disappearing from the cards with the revamp. While the cards can earn MQDs through pure spending, their earning rates aren’t changing, leaving them weaker than several competitor rewards cards regarding spending value.
Consumers on the Delta Subreddit are generally dissatisfied with the changes. Several cardholders feel the card would no longer help them maintain Medallion status, as the card’s poor earning rates make using it for earning MQDs unattractive. As one Reddit user commented, “It’s a massive devaluation for me.”
Another user said Delta’s changes give them “reasons to check out the competition.”
Whether the new changes affect your decision to stick with the Delta SkyMiles cards or move on to different travel credit cards depends on how much you can realistically spend with the brand and how much status means to you. If you’re content with the new Sky Club access changes or can still reach status for future years, Delta SkyMiles cards can still be worth it. If these changes leave you disappointed and block your path to status, consider other travel rewards cards with high earning rates or luxury perks.
The bottom line
Whether the Delta SkyMiles cards remain worthy of a spot in your wallet depends on your spending and travel needs — and whether these card changes move forward as planned. As it stands, the changes to Medallion Status requirements and lounge access will leave the Delta SkyMiles Platinum and Delta SkyMiles Reserve in a much weaker position against the sizable competition, especially as a travel rewards card.