Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card review
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Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card Overview
The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card is a smart card to have if you fly frequently with Delta Air Lines. This Delta credit card has a $250 annual fee, but the bonus miles you can rack up by using the card may make it worth it, especially if you travel often and Delta’s your airline of choice..
What are the pros and cons?
- The $250 annual fee may not be worth it if you don’t care as much about obtaining elite status with Delta
- You may be able to get better travel perks, plus have more flexibility, with a general travel credit card
A deeper look into the current card offer
- Rewards: Earn 3X miles on Delta flights and Delta Vacations® purchases, plus on transactions made directly with hotels; 2x miles at U.S. supermarkets and restaurants, including delivery and takeout; 1X miles on all other eligible purchases.
- Welcome offer: 50,000 bonus miles, a $100 statement credit for eligible U.S. restaurant purchases and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after spending $2,000 in purchases within the first three months
- Annual fee: $250
- Purchase intro APR: N/A
- Balance transfer intro APR: N/A
- Regular APR: 15.74 percent to 24.74 percent variable
Current welcome offer
You can earn 50,000 bonus miles, a $100 statement credit for eligible U.S. restaurant purchases along with 5,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) toward elite status after spending just $2,000 in purchases within your first three months with the card. Based on The Points Guy’s 1.1 cent mile valuation, this bonus is worth up to $650 if you factor in the statement credit.
That’s a great value, but it isn’t the absolute best intro bonus you’ll find on a travel rewards card at this price tag—meaning that kickstarting your MQM collection makes up a good portion of the value you’re getting. That seems to be the case since the highest tier Delta card, the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card, offers the same bonus mile and statement credit value but bumps up the MQMs to 10,000 (after spending $3,000 on purchases within the first three months). So if your idea of an appealing welcome offer leans into instant travel more than loyalty perks down the road, then the SkyMiles Platinum has the best intro bonus of any consumer Delta card.
However, it’s hard not to mention that this return to the standard offer from the recent 90,000-miles plus 10,000-MQM limited-time offer is a bit underwhelming. Still, you’re getting an easily accessible payday with plenty of upfront miles through the current offer. It’s nothing to sneeze at, but it’s worth keeping your head on a swivel for a higher offer in the future if you aren’t in a hurry to apply.
You’ll earn Delta SkyMiles with every purchase, and you can redeem them for flights and more.
Earn rewards by using your Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card on any purchase. Earn 3X miles on Delta Vacation purchases, Delta flights and hotel bookings (made directly with the hotel). Plus, you can earn 2X miles at U.S. supermarkets and at restaurants, including delivery and takeout. All other eligible purchases will net you 1X miles.
There are numerous options for redeeming your Delta SkyMiles. First and foremost, of course, is booking flights with Delta or its travel partners. Simply select “Shop With Miles” when searching for flights on delta.com. You can also redeem SkyMiles toward Delta Sky Club memberships and purchases (including drinks within each lounge), seat upgrades, Delta Vacations packages, gifts, donations to charity, magazine subscriptions, special event SkyMiles Experiences and SkyMiles Marketplace purchases.
If you happened to own a Delta SkyMiles Platinum card as of Jan. 1, 2021, you might also be eligible for a few limited-time offers. Qualifying cardholders would be able to earn up to 5x miles on eligible Delta purchases (through Dec. 31, 2021) and could get up to $165 in dining statement credits (or $15 per month, up to 11 times; enrollment required). If you’re eligible, enroll in Amex Offers to access your additional rewards and credits.
How much are points worth?
Delta doesn’t maintain a fixed award chart, meaning that the amount of miles it charges for a given ticket varies depending on the flight’s time of year, distance and airline(s) involved. Although your mileage varies from case to case, The Points Guy’s latest valuation estimates that each Delta SkyMile is worth 1.1 cents on average.
Key cardholder perks
In addition to helping you save on flights, there are other Delta Platinum Amex benefits for travelers.
- Get your first checked bag free when you fly Delta flights
- Receive Main Cabin 1 priority boarding on Delta flights
- Get a domestic Main Cabin round-trip companion ticket every year, not valid for flights outside the continental United States
- Get a $100 statement credit for Global Entry or an $85 statement credit for TSA PreCheck
- Get access to the Delta Sky Club for $39 per person when traveling on a Delta flight
- Earn up to 20,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) with Status Boost® per year. After you spend $25,000 in purchases on your Card in a calendar year, you can earn 10,000 MQMs 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.
- Get 20 percent back on in-flight purchases of beverages, food and headsets
The card also provides trip delay insurance, car rental damage and loss insurance, baggage insurance and a 24/7 Delta Platinum global assist phone hotline.
Get purchase protection on covered purchases for up to 90 days from the purchase date as well as an extended warranty for warranties of five years or less on covered purchases.
Get access to exclusive ticket presales and cardmember-only events like concerts, sporting events and Broadway shows through American Express Experiences.
Rates and fees
The Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card has a 15.74 percent to 24.74 percent variable APR so be wary if you think you may carry a balance. The annual membership fee is $250 for this card, which means you’ll need to spend at least $632 in your 3X categories every month to break even—or $947 per month in your 2X categories—before rewards start going into your pocket.
There is no foreign transaction fee or over-limit fee. Penalty fees for late and returned payments are up to $40.
How the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card compares to other travel cards
Depending on where your airline loyalty lies, you may be better served with other airline-specific cards. The Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard®, for example, provides benefits to American Airlines frequent flyers. These include 50,000 bonus miles after making $2,500 in purchases within the first three months of account opening and 2X miles on eligible American Airlines purchases and transactions made at restaurants and gas stations. Plus, there’s no annual fee for the first 12 months. After that, it’s only $99.
If you want travel benefits but don’t want to be tied to one airline, the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card credit is for you. The card has an annual fee of $95, but the 60,000 bonus points after making $4,000 in transactions within the first three months are worth up to $750 when redeemed for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards portal. You also get 5X points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards, 3X points on dining and 2X points on all other travel purchases and earn 25 percent more value on travel purchases through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
Best cards to pair with the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card
If you’re a Delta loyalist, this very well may be a great addition to your wallet, since you can rack up points on flights and hotel purchases. But if you’re not particularly loyal to Delta, it could make sense to hold another airline credit card, or a travel rewards card that earns transferable points for more flexibility.
To maximize all your purchases, and especially ones that don’t fall into the travel, grocery stores and restaurants category, you might look into getting a cash-back credit card with no annual fee like the Discover it® Cash Back. It awards you with 5 percent cash back on rotating categories each quarter you activate (on up to $1,500 in combined spending and then 1 percent), plus a Cashback Match bonus which automatically matches all the cash back you’ve earned at the end of your first year.
Bankrate’s take: Is the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card worth it?
If you fly with Delta at least a couple of times a year, the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card may be worth the annual fee. The $39 Delta Platinum Amex lounge access and priority boarding alone could make your flights go more smoothly, plus the waived checked bag fee for the first bag on each flight is another nice perk.
But depending on the airlines you like to fly with, you may be better off getting a more versatile travel rewards credit card. If your spending habits are more focused on non-travel categories, a cash-back credit card with no annual fee may be a better fit.
The information about the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite Mastercard® has been collected independently by Bankrate.com. The card details have not been reviewed or approved by the card issuer.
For rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles Platinum, please click here.