Airlines Credit Cards

What are they thinking? Delta credit cards are now harder to get with new “family rule”

a teddy bear on a table in an airplane

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What on earth is going on? First, Delta drops a bomb on their SkyMiles loyalty program by telling customers they don’t care how much you fly Delta, but rather how much money you spend on Delta via flying, hotels, car rentals, and their gift horse: their credit card agreement with American Express. Ok, it doesn’t taste very good, but it is what it is.

  • The new program de facto eliminates some of the most valued perks of those Amex credit cards like MQM boosts and MQD waivers because they no longer exist in the program. That is a big enough of a devaluation that some may cancel cards and pivot to better cards like the Capital One Venture X. But then they went even further and will limit lounge access on the most expensive Delta card to just 10x per year ( unless you spend $75k ).

I’ve had a ton of angry emails, comments, DMs saying they don’t know why they’d keep a Delta card, unless they came up with better perks.

So of course, they sweetened those cards right in order to retain existing customers or attract new ones?

NO!

This is just hilarious. They’ve made it harder to get a personal Delta card with new exclusionary “family rules. ”

a room with many chairs and tables

As an FYI…this is what you’d need for Delta Status in 2025

  • Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card
    • 1 MQD per $20 spent
      • This means Silver status would require a whopping $120k spent on the card
  • Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card
    • 1 MQD per $10 spent
      • Lounge access limited to 10x per year starting 2/1/25 unless you spend $75k in a calendar year
      • Silver status would be $60k a year on the card.
Silver Medallion 6,000 MQD
Gold Medallion 12,000 MQD
Platinum Medallion 18,000 MQD
Diamond Medallion 35,000MQD

 

The new family rules for Delta Personal Cards issued by Amex

  • Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card
  • Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card
  • Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card
  • Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card

The Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card

  • You may not be eligible to receive a welcome offer if you have or have had this Card, the Delta SkyMiles® Options Credit Card, the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card, the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card or previous versions of these Cards. 

Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card

 

  • You may not be eligible to receive a welcome offer if you have or have had this Card the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card or previous versions of these Cards

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card

 

  • You may not be eligible to receive a welcome offer if you have or have had this Card, the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card or previous versions of these Cards.

Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card

 

  • You may not be eligible to receive a welcome offer if you have or have had this Card or previous versions of this Card.

What does all this mean? Basically, if you’ve had any of the premium Delta cards, you’re ineligible for a bonus going forward on a card that is lower down the totem pole, or has a cheaper annual fee. Wild.

Have you had a Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, canceled it, and you’d like to have a Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card, you can get it, just without a welcome offer. However, if you had the inverse, you would be eligible. You can climb the totem pole of welcome offers, just not slide down it.

Delta American Express Credit Card Chart of eligibility

  • Vertical: Card you Have/Have had
  • Horizontal: Card you want
Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card
Delta SkyMiles® Blue   American Express Card no yes yes yes
Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card no no yes yes
Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card no no no yes
Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card no no no no

Overall

I’m not a Delta loyalist by any means, and their SkyMiles have been watered down so much that I hardly even value them at a penny a piece ( the worst valuation of any airline I can think of ) and these moves certainly aren’t making me entertain getting one of their cobranded card from American Express or strategizing elite status.

Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities.

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9 Comments

  • Twylia November 21, 2023

    This is so disappointing. I wanted to keep going with Delta – but it’s obvious that if we don’t fall into that higher spend, we are nothing to them. I have to figure out what I’m going to do with my discretionary spend, 200k miles and platinum status.

  • David October 7, 2023

    Interested in the Amex Delta cards or Business Delta cards? See all the details with my link by clicking on the “View all Cards with a Referral Offer” button and scrolling down to the card you want.
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  • […] Miles put together a handy-dandy chart on this post that may help […]

  • Marc September 21, 2023

    I live in GrandRapids MI so I can’t fly direct anywhere but I have been loyal to Delta usually hitting DTW or ATL first. I’m Platinum Medallion with a Delta Amex Reserve and a Platinum non branded Amex Ive had FOREVER. I won’t hit silver likely going forward. Should I switch loyalties to United or American and fly out of Chicago instead of DTW or ATL on Delta? Is this the end?

  • Irene koutros September 20, 2023

    I just applied for capital one venture X business and got it!
    150,000 miles after 3 months is a sweet deal! Thank you for letting us know it’s not the end of the world with Delta changes.

  • Miles September 20, 2023

    But no such restrictions on business spend?

    It’s obvious, their new target market is small business owners they hope will spend a ton of money on Delta business cards.

  • Victoria September 19, 2023

    Capital One Venture X: Earn 75k miles after spending $4000 in the first 3 months.

    https://i.capitalone.com/Jn7D0pRQ9

    Good Luck! Thank You So Much!

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