Delta SkyMiles Platinum Amex review: Fast-track toward Medallion status and 90,000 bonus miles
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Editor’s note: This is a recurring post, regularly updated with new information.
Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card overview
The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card is a good choice for Delta loyalists who need a little help reaching their elite status goals. This card offers valuable perks, including a domestic companion certificate each year after renewing your card, the ability to purchase Sky Club access when flying Delta on a per-visit basis, and your first checked bag free on Delta flights. Card rating*: ⭐⭐⭐½
*Card rating is based on the opinion of TPG’s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
The Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card is one of the best credit cards for Delta travelers and currently offers new cardholders the chance to earn 90,000 bonus miles after spending $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first six months of account opening. Offer ends March 29.
This card has attractive perks for Delta loyalists in exchange for a $250 annual fee (see rates and fees), including an annual companion certificate and the ability to spend your way to a Medallion Qualification Dollar (MQD) waiver — among other perks.
The Delta Platinum Amex is an especially excellent fit if you’re chasing Delta Medallion elite status but will likely come up a bit short on MQMs or MQDs.
Delta Platinum Amex current welcome offer
The Delta Platinum Amex currently earns 90,000 bonus miles after you spend $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first six months of account opening. Offer ends March 29.
Based on TPG’s valuation of Delta miles at 1.41 cents each, this bonus is worth about $1,269, making this close to the best offer we’ve seen for this card. However, you likely won’t be eligible for this welcome offer if you have the Delta Amex Platinum or have had it before. Amex may also consider the number of American Express cards you’ve opened and closed and other factors when deciding whether you’re eligible to earn the welcome offer.
Luckily, Amex will notify you if you aren’t eligible for a welcome offer, displaying a message soon after submitting your application. So, don’t ignore any messages or warnings that appear after you hit submit.
Related: A complete guide to Amex one-welcome offer-per-lifetime restrictions
Earning miles on the Delta Platinum Amex
You’ll earn Delta SkyMiles when you make eligible purchases with the Delta Platinum Amex. In particular, you’ll earn Delta miles with your card as follows:
- 3 miles per dollar on purchases made directly with Delta and at hotels.
- 2 miles per dollar on purchases made at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets.
- 1 mile per dollar on other eligible purchases.
Since TPG’s valuations peg the value of value Delta miles at 1.41 cents each, you’ll get an effective return of roughly 4.7% on purchases with Delta and at hotels, 3.1% on purchases at restaurants and U.S. supermarkets, and 1.6% on other purchases. Though a loyal Delta traveler may enjoy earning bonus SkyMiles on these purchases, none of these returns are close to the best you can do in these categories.
For starters, if you have one of the best credit cards for booking flights, you’ll likely want to use it. And other cards top each of the Delta Platinum Amex’s other bonus categories: hotels, restaurants, supermarkets and everyday spending. But, you may want to put purchases on the Delta Platinum Amex even when it doesn’t provide the best return if you’re working toward a spending threshold to earn bonus MQMs or the aforementioned MQD waiver.
Related: 9 Delta SkyMiles sweet spots worth saving up for
Redeeming miles on the Delta Platinum Amex
Delta’s SkyMiles program doesn’t have the best reputation among points and miles buffs. After all, Delta has devalued its miles many times over the years. And Delta doesn’t publish an official award chart. So, award costs can skyrocket overnight. But there are still some great ways to get value out of the Delta SkyMiles program.
For example, Delta has frequent flash sales. In the past, we’ve seen deals like domestic awards from 2,000 SkyMiles one-way, awards to Alaska for as little as 5,000 SkyMiles round-trip, transcontinental awards from 10,000 SkyMiles round-trip and flights to Europe from 16,000 SkyMiles round-trip. I’ve even booked a Delta One award from New York to Bogota for 24,000 miles round-trip.
Consider snagging some of the great sweet spots when using SkyMiles to fly Delta partner airlines. This includes awards on SkyTeam partners such as Air France and Korean Air, but the program also has some non-alliance partners, including Air Tahiti Nui.
Just note that some partner awards don’t show on Delta’s website, including awards on Air Europa, Air Tahiti Nui, Czech Airlines and Kenya Airways. As a result, you’ll want to use ExpertFlyer (owned by TPG’s parent company, Red Ventures) or another SkyTeam website like Flying Blue to find availability before calling to book awards on these partners.
You can also use Delta miles to upgrade existing tickets — though the value you get here isn’t nearly as strong.
Related: How to earn and maximize 100,000 Delta SkyMiles
Delta Platinum Amex benefits
The Delta Platinum Amex offers many perks for Delta flyers. But cardholders chasing Delta elite status will benefit the most, since the card offers the potential to earn MQMs and snag an MQD waiver through spending. This section will take a closer look at all of the Delta Platinum Amex’s perks and benefits.
As a Delta Platinum Amex cardholder, you can earn an MQD waiver when you hit specific spending thresholds on your card. Earning an MQD waiver will help if you’ve accumulated the required MQMs or Medallion Qualification Segments for a particular status tier but haven’t reached the necessary MQD threshold.
To earn an MQD waiver, you’ll need to make $25,000 of eligible purchases on your card during the calendar qualification year for Silver, Gold or Platinum Medallion status. But if you’re working on getting Diamond Medallion status, you’ll need to make $250,000 of eligible purchases with your card during the calendar year to snag an MQD waiver.
Related: Why you should care about Delta’s Pay with Miles feature
Earn MQMs with the Status Boost perk
If you’re looking to earn some extra MQMs, the Delta Platinum Amex‘s Status Boost perk can help. This benefit allows you to earn 10,000 bonus MQMs after spending $25,000 in a calendar year and another 10,000 MQMs after spending $50,000 in the same year. If you acquire both of these bonuses, you’ll be just 5,000 MQMs short of Silver Medallion status.
Related: How to earn Delta Medallion elite status without flying
Annual companion certificate
The other primary benefit offered by the Delta Platinum Amex is an annual companion certificate.
You’ll receive this perk each year after your account renewal. The Delta companion certificate is valid for round-trip, main cabin domestic travel booked in fare classes L, U, T, X or V. All you’ll need to pay for the companion ticket is taxes and fees. Note that this excludes the carrier’s basic economy tickets (which book into E fare class) and most higher-priced economy classes.
Nevertheless, if you use this certificate for expensive flights, you can easily cover most (or all) of the card’s annual fee.
Related: What happens if you’ve used your companion certificate for a canceled flight?
The Delta Platinum Amex also offers several other benefits you may find helpful:
- 15% award redemption discount: Get 15% off award redemptions for Delta flights (when paying taxes and fees with this card).
- First checked bag free: Get the first checked bag free on Delta flights for you and up to eight companions traveling on the same reservation, even when flying on a Delta basic economy ticket.
- Priority boarding: Get Main Cabin 1 priority boarding for you and up to eight companions traveling on the same reservation on Delta flights, even when flying on a Delta basic economy ticket.
- Inflight savings: Get 20% back in the form of a statement credit when you use your card to pre-purchase meals or buy inflight food, alcoholic beverages or audio headsets on Delta-operated flights.
- Ability to purchase Sky Club access: Cardholders can purchase club access at a per-visit rate of $50 per person per location when flying on a same-day Delta-marketed or Delta-operated flight. Cardholders can bring up to two guests or immediate family (spouse or domestic partner and children under 21 years of age) at this rate.
- Global Entry/TSA PreCheck fee credit: Get a Global Entry application fee reimbursed every four years or a TSA PreCheck application fee reimbursed every 4 1/2 years.
- Travel protections: Enjoy a variety of coverage when you purchase travel with the card.
- Shopping protections: Enjoy access to certain protections when you buy eligible items with your card.
- No foreign transaction fees (see rates and fees).
Fortunately, Delta ties benefits such as the checked baggage allowance and priority boarding to your Delta SkyMiles account. So, you don’t need to book flights with your Delta Platinum Amex to get access to these perks.
Related: 4 reasons why the Amex Platinum might be the ideal credit card for Delta flyers
Which cards compete with the Delta Platinum Amex?
If you are interested in the Delta Platinum Amex because you fly (or plan to fly) Delta frequently, you may also be interested in these options.
- If you want Delta perks with a lower annual fee: The Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card is a good choice for getting Delta perks but with a lower annual fee of $99 ($0 intro fee the first year, see rates and fees). You’ll earn bonus points on qualifying Delta flights as well as on purchases at U.S. supermarket and restaurants. And you’ll still get Delta perks like a free checked bag and a $100 flight credit after you spend $10,000 on your card in a calendar year. For more information, check out our full review of the Delta SkyMiles Gold Amex.
- If you want Delta Sky Club access: The Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card has a higher annual fee of $550 (see rates and fees) but offers complimentary Delta Sky Club access for you and gives you two one-time guest passes each year. You’ll also get perks like an annual companion certificate, a free checked bag and upgrade priority as well as a credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck. For more information, check out our full review of the Delta Skymiles Reserve Amex.
- If you want a card with more flexible rewards: The Platinum Card® from American Express gives you excellent travel benefits and earns rewards that you can transfer to any of American Express’s travel partners. It offers comprehensive lounge access and over $1,500 in annual credits but does come with a higher annual fee of $695 (see rates and fees). For more information, check out our full review of the Amex Platinum.
For additional options, check out our full list of best airline credit cards and best American Express credit cards.
Read more: Credit card showdown: Delta Gold Amex vs. Delta Platinum Amex
Is the Delta Platinum Amex worth it?
This is a great card if you want Delta perks like an annual companion certificate and a free checked bag. It’s also good for earning bonus miles on your Delta purchases and hotel, dining and supermarket purchases. However, the $250 annual fee may be hard to justify if you don’t fly Delta often enough to maximize the value of this card’s benefits.
The Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card can be a great addition to your wallet if Delta is your carrier of choice. Its $250 annual fee may seem high compared to the lower-annual-fee Delta Gold Amex, but you get a generous welcome offer and valuable benefits in return.
The ability to fast-track Delta elite status is where the Delta Platinum Amex shines the brightest, but the annual companion certificate can also provide significant value. Just remember that to maximize your overall travel earning strategy, you’ll likely want to pair the Delta Platinum with other cards that offer higher bonus spending categories.
Apply here for the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card with a 90,000-mile bonus offer. Offer ends March 29.
For rates and fees of the Delta Platinum Amex, please click here.
For rates and fees of the Delta Gold Amex, please click here.
For rates and fees of the Delta Reserve Amex, please click here.
For rates and fees of the Amex Platinum, please click here.
Additional reporting by Emily Thompson, Ryan Wilcox, Benji Stawski, Juan Ruiz and Christina Ly.