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New Limited Time Offers! If you have big summer or fall travel plans, this may be the opportunity you’ve been waiting for. Delta has recently upped their bonus offer with the opportunity to earn up to 80,000 bonus miles with their Delta consumer and business credit cards. The consumer cards with higher offers include:

Meanwhile, the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American Express. the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American Express, and the Delta Reserve® for Business Credit Card from American Express each have the ability to earn more miles, along with other irresistible perks.

These offers expire July 2, 2019, so you’ll want to act quickly. You can learn more about what each card has to offer in the detailed post found below. 

Are you using the best Delta credit card for Delta Air Lines purchases? By using the following rewards credit cards, you can earn the most rewards points possible and additional travel perks like free checked bags and Delta SkyClub access. Depending on what Delta rewards you want to earn, there are several options to choose from.

In addition to these everyday purchases rewards that can be redeemed for Delta award flights, you will also enjoy additional benefits with each of these best Delta credit cards:

Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card

The Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express comes with a built-in free checked bag benefit. And you can use your free checked bag perk for up to 8 people if they are traveling on the same itinerary. So a family of four can potentially save $240 per roundtrip!

You will also earn a welcome bonus of 60,000 bonus miles after you spend $2,000 in purchases within your first 3 months of card membership. Plus, if you make a Delta purchase within the first 3 months of account opening, you’ll receive a $50 statement credit.

Additionally, you will earn 2x miles per $1 spent on eligible purchases made directly with Delta. You can also earn 1x mile for every eligible dollar spent on purchases. The Gold Delta Air Lines SkyMiles card also has very good perks when you fly on Delta metal. For starters, with Priority Boarding, you can get that coveted overhead bin space and into your seat before the rest of the passengers.

Learn more: Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

No Annual Fee: Blue Delta SkyMiles Credit Card

The Blue Delta SkyMiles is a no annual fee Delta credit card (See Rates & Fees), so it’s a great option for budget conscious travelers and frequent flyers who want a secondary rewards card. To maximize the benefits, cardholders should also fly Delta at least once a year. Besides the 2x SkyMiles bonus on purchases made directly with Delta, you will also earn 2x SkyMiles at U.S. restaurants.

But because the Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express is a fee-free card, you won’t enjoy any of the additional card benefits that come from the other co-brand Delta credit cards.

Learn more: Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

Chase Sapphire Preferred

Casual Delta customers might find more value in a flexible travel rewards card like the Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card. You will earn 2x Chase Ultimate Rewards points on travel and dining purchases and 1x point for everything else. You can redeem your rewards points for 1.25 cents each through the Chase Ultimate Rewards travel portal; most travel credit cards have a maximum redemption value of 1 cent each for award flights.

Your points are automatically worth 25% more because of the travel redemption bonus. What makes the Sapphire Preferred even more valuable is the ability to transfer your Ultimate Rewards points directly to a frequent flyer program on a 1:1 basis. While Delta isn’t a Chase travel partner, you can transfer your point to Air France Flying Blue or Korean Air to book a partner flight on Delta.

New cardmembers can earn 60,000 points after spending $4,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening. This bonus is worth $600 or $750 worth of travel thanks to the travel redemption bonus.

Chase Sapphire Reserve

The Chase Sapphire Reserve® is the premium version of the Sapphire Preferred. You will 3x points on dining purchases, transfer your points to a Chase travel partner, or redeem them through the Chase travel portal for 1.5 cents each (even Delta flights!). As a premium travel card, you will also enjoy the following benefits:

  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • Complimentary Priority Pass Select lounge access
  • Global Entry/TSA Precheck application fee reimbursement

You can also earn 3x points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. The $300 annual travel credit can be used for airfare, checked baggage fees, and in-flight purchases. Basically, if the expenses can earn 3x bonus points, it’s eligible for the credit. The Chase Sapphire Reserve® also comes with a nice 50,000 point sign-up bonus after spending $4,000 in 3 months.

Platinum Card from American Express

Because of the Amex-Delta relationship, the Amex Platinum also has several Delta-friendly travel benefits including 1:1 point transfers and complimentary Delta SkyClub access. For starters, you will earn 5x Amex Membership Rewards on all airfare booked directly through the carrier or AmexTravel.com. You can then transfer your points on a 1:1 basis directly to Delta and the other Amex air travel partners.

Unless you want free checked bags or the annual Delta companion ticket, the Platinum Card® from American Express can easily be the best non-Delta credit cards when your primary focus is earning points instead of travel benefits. Besides the 5x point bonus and the direct 1:1 Delta points transfer option, you will enjoy the following travel benefits:

  • $200 air travel credit
  • $200 Uber credits
  • Global Entry/TSA Precheck Application Fee Reimbursement

You’ll also get free lounge access to Delta SkyClub, Priority Pass, The Centurion, and International American Express. Additionally, cardholders can get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on their Platinum Card®, which is equal to $50 in statement credits semi-annually. However, you must be enrolled for this benefit to apply.

Delta Business Credit Cards:

Gold Delta SkyMiles Business Credit Card

With the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American Express, you will enjoy benefits including free checked bags and Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding.

You can also earn 70,000 Bonus Miles after you make $4,000 in purchases on your card within the first 3 months of account opening. You’ll also earn a $50 statement credit when you make a Delta purchase on your new card within the first 3 months.

This card can also earn 2x miles per $1 spent on eligible purchases made directly with Delta. Other eligible purchases earn 1x mile per $1 spent.

Platinum Delta SkyMiles Business Credit Card

The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American Express is a great option for frequent flyers. You can earn 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) and 80,000 bonus miles after you spend $6,000 in purchases within your first 3 months of account opening. You can also earn a $100 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase within your first 3 months.

You also earn 2x miles per $1 spent on purchases made directly with Delta. You will earn 1x mile per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases.

One of the factors you won’t have to worry about is your miles expiring – they don’t. Additionally, you’ll be able to check your first bag for free and get to your seat sooner thanks to Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding. You’ll also get 20% savings on eligible in-flight purchases in the form of a statement credit.

Delta Reserve for Business Credit Card

Premium travelers will enjoy the Delta Reserve for Business Credit Card because of the card benefits. New cardholders can earn 80,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after spending $6,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening.

Cardholders can also earn an additional 15,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) and 15,000 bonus miles after spending $30,000 on eligible purchases in a calendar year. 

The Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding allows cardholders to get settled in their seats sooner. 

But that’s not all. You can also earn 2x miles per dollar spent on eligible purchases made directly with Delta. You also have the opportunity to earn 1x mile per $1 spent on eligible purchases. Cardholders also don’t have to worry about foreign transaction fees (See Rates & Fees) when they spend abroad.

Summary of the Best Delta Credit Cards

American Express and Chase will be your two most Delta-friendly travel credit card issuers. For convenience and Delta travel benefits, the co-brand cards will be your best option. If you aren’t set on earning Delta SkyMiles with every purchase, there are some of the best travel rewards credit cards 2019 to choose from as well.

Avoid Paying Baggage Fees on Delta Air Lines Flights

Bag fees are about as annoying as stubbing your toe in the middle of the night, which unfortunately happened to me last night. Airlines don’t find bag fees annoying though, and just a couple of years ago, Delta put $833 million in bags fees into their pockets. Cha-ching.

Delta is actually hoping to get to a billion! I’m all for airlines making money, just not on baggage fees from me. I’m tied to flying Delta, and I don’t like paying fees, so I carry the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express. The Gold Delta SkyMiles card from Amex comes with a built-in free checked bag benefit. And you can use your free checked bag perk for up to 8 people if they are traveling on the same itinerary.

Checked bags are usually $30 apiece, so that’s a potential savings of $240 roundtrip! Of course, if your baggage exceeds the weight limit, you will be required to pay the fee. The free checked bag perk on the Delta Gold card is great for those Delta flyers who don’t hold elite status with Delta Air Lines but fly with them on a frequent or infrequent basis.

To receive your free checked bag benefit, you just need to have your Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express in good standing. Just make sure that you put your Delta SkyMiles membership number on your reservation. Easy.

Conclusion on Avoid Delta Baggage Fees

Let’s keep Delta from lining their pockets by saving money on Delta flights with the Delta Gold SkyMiles card. It’s easy and the free checked bag benefit is good for multiple passengers on a ticket! That’s the best in the industry.

Learn more: Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

Photo credit: Delta Air Lines

Delta Adds the No-Fee Blue Delta SkyMiles Credit Card to Its Lineup

American Express has another co-branded Delta credit card! The Blue Delta SkyMiles Credit Card is now available with a bonus of 10,000 miles after spending $500 in purchases in the first 3 months of account opening. Now, even the most cost-conscious flyer can earn SkyMiles on every purchase to earn rewards flights sooner.

Learn more: Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

Earn Bonus SkyMiles on Flights and Dining

The Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express earns SkyMiles on every purchase. You will earn two SkyMiles on every direct Delta purchase and on U.S. restaurant purchases per dollar spent. All remaining purchases earn one mile per dollar spent. In addition to earning bonus SkyMiles, you will also be awarded a 20% statement credit for Delta in-flight purchases for food, beverages, and headsets.

The statement credit will be awarded on the same billing statement. There are no annual earning limits and your SkyMiles will never expire provided your Delta credit card account remains active. Your Delta SkyMiles can be redeemed for award flights starting at 5,000 miles per flight.

Enjoy 10,000 Bonus SkyMiles 

New Blue Delta SkyMiles cardmembers can earn 10,000 bonus SkyMiles as a welcome offer. You will need to only spend $500 within the first three months of account opening to receive the bonus miles. This is a very reasonable spending requirement.

No Annual Fee

In recent years, airlines have placed more emphasis on the “race to the top” to attract and retain the most loyal customers. Now, they have realized young professionals are becoming a larger travel demographic as their careers flourish and they have a disposable income to spend on air travel. The only catch is that these same travelers (and cost-conscious Gen-Xers) want to earn bonus airline miles without paying an annual credit card fee (See Rates & Fees).

Major U.S. carriers have recently begun introducing no-fee rewards cards to meet the needs of budget-savvy and periodic travelers. You will never pay an annual fee with the Blue Delta SkyMiles Credit Card.

What the Blue Delta SkyMiles Credit Card Doesn’t Offer

If you currently own a Delta rewards card and are considering downgrading to the Blue Delta Amex, you might want to think twice. The Amex Blue Delta is ideal for earning miles without paying an annual fee. It earns the same amount of SkyMiles as the flagship Delta Reserve of 2x SkyMiles on Delta flights. And, you earn bonus miles on dining which no other Delta credit card offers.

But since you won’t pay an annual fee with the Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express, you won’t enjoy the following benefits:

  • Free checked bags
  • Priority boarding
  • Discounted Delta SkyClub access
  • Medallion Qualification Miles

If you fly Delta frequently, you might want to go for a Delta card with an annual fee that comes with more benefits.

Should You Get the Blue Delta SkyMiles Credit Card?

The no-fee Amex Blue Delta is intended for occasional Delta passengers that currently use a no-fee cash back rewards card as their primary credit card. With a 2% rewards rate on all direct Delta purchases and U.S. dining, these same casual travelers can earn rewards flights sooner. And, it can get their feet wet as they enter the travel rewards arena.

Learn more: Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

Earn Miles With Amex Delta Credit Cards Offers

You can earn up to 75,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after spending $3,000 in purchases on your card in the first 3 months of account opening with the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express.

You can also earn 60,000 on the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express when you spend $2,000 in the first 3 months of account opening. 

Personal Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card

You will earn 60,000 Bonus Miles after you spend $2,000 in purchases on your new Gold Delta credit card within your first 3 months of card membership. You can also earn a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase on your card within the first 3 months of account opening.

Additionally, you will earn 2x miles on eligible purchases made directly with Delta. You can also earn 1x mile for every eligible dollar spent on purchases. The Gold Delta SkyMiles card also has very good perks when you fly on Delta metal. For starters, with Priority Boarding, you can get that coveted overhead bin space and into your seat before the rest of the passengers. Additionally, you can check your first bag for free on every Delta flight.

Learn more: Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card 

The personal Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express Delta airline card from Amex has the ability to earn 75,000 Bonus Miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles after you make $3,000 in purchases on your new card within your first 3 months of account opening. You’ll also earn a $100 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your card within your first 3 months.

Other perks of the personal American Express Platinum and Gold Delta cards include free checked bags, priority boarding, 2x miles on purchases directly from Delta, 1x mile for every eligible dollar spent on purchases, and no foreign transaction fees. 

Redeeming Delta Skymiles

A good perk of the Delta SkyMiles cards is that they are a transfer partner of American Express Membership Rewards points. That can be handy if you need to add to your Delta SkyMiles account for an upcoming trip. Delta SkyMiles can be painful to deal with since they often make changes overnight and don’t publish an award chart, but you can still use them to fly domestically and internationally on their metal or a SkyTeam partner.

Other benefits of the Delta SkyMiles program are the ability to book one-way flights starting at 5,000 miles, and no close-in booking fees, which has helped me save money in a crunch.

Conclusion on the Amex Gold & Platinum Delta Airline Credit Card Offers

If you haven’t had one of these cards before, they are worth thinking about, especially if you fly Delta with some regularity.

Examples of Redeeming Delta SkyMiles for Flights

Delta’s SkyMiles program is one of the most popular rewards programs for frequent flyers even though using their miles can be hit or miss, especially since they don’t publicly publish an award chart. But you can still use Delta SkyMiles to fly the world. 

Whether you’re traveling with a family of four or just a party of one on business, there’s nothing to the process of making a reservation. Check out these good and bad examples of Delta award bookings.

Domestic Delta SkyMiles Options

Travel to any domestic destinations in Alaska and the Continental US begins at 5,000 miles on one-way tickets, but you’re most likely going to find Delta domestic awards in the range of 7,500 Skymiles – 12,500 Skymiles one-way. The domestic Delta hubs and key markets are Atlanta, Boston, Detroit, Los Angeles, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York-JFK, New York-LaGuardia. I prefer and recommend trying to keep domestic economy awards under 25,000 miles round-trip.

But Delta won’t always have the deals you’re looking to book. For example, if you and one companion are traveling from New York to Albuquerque in July of this year, totals can range from 32,500 miles to 60,000 miles one-way.

Tip: The site always lists the lowest fare or fares in red! They may include more connections, but the value often outweighs any inconveniences.

Once you select a fare, the site will list your fastest option as well as the lowest fare. Connecting airports and selected upgrades are also featured on the page. As with any rewards program, a number of miles to book the Delta One/First cabin is significantly higher than other levels.

Travelers who are cautious about using their miles or flyers without the necessary number for their trip can also pick the miles and cash feature. This will give you the chance to pay for part of the flight and reduce miles necessary to complete the ticket.

Using Delta SkyMiles for Award Flights to Hawaii

Award flights to Hawaii can exceed 100,000 miles. Delta One/First Cabin totals have been known to reach over 200,000 miles. Ouch.

Tip: You can knock down miles spent to domestic numbers if you’re willing to use the miles and cash option. Be prepared to pay more than you planned, but substantially less than you would pay on an average ticket for the same flight. I would prefer to fly to Hawaii in economy for only 22,500 miles each way.

Whether you’ve chosen domestic travel in the continental US, Alaska or Hawaii, your last screen before the confirmation will be the same. Take note that your departure and return flights match the quoted rates. It’s also important to note how many stops you’ll encounter along the way.

International Flights

Redeeming Delta SkyMiles for international flights can often seem tricky compared to their domestic counterparts. It can be bad, but not always. For example, seats on a standard non-stop one-way flight from Los Angeles to London in July can be found for 35,000 miles and $5.60 on their partner, Virgin Atlantic.

Another example is to fly for 30,000 miles one way to Europe like from Atlanta to Paris:

Tip: Try booking one leg of the journey at a time. You may save on the trip and find a better flight that will meet the time and day you wanted to travel. Picking flexible dates helps the system find flights that limit the number of miles needed for round trip journeys.

Delta Partner Airlines

Partner airlines are an important part of the Delta SkyMiles program. Delta is a part of the SkyTeam alliance so you can use Delta SkyMiles to fly any airline in the same alliance. For example, Virgin Australia flights can be booked with Delta SkyMiles.

Conclusion on Redeeming Delta Skymiles

Who doesn’t love award travel? People all over the world are looking towards rewards programs to help them make the most out of every excursion. With so many frequent flyer programs out there, it’s hard to keep up with how to maximize bookings. Delta’s SkyMiles program offers a range of options for frequent flyers, but does have some limitations, and can be frustrating.

I still accumulate Delta SkyMiles, so I have flexibility. It’s also worth mentioning that you can transfer in American Express Membership Rewards to Delta SkyMiles and that there are no close-in booking fees for Delta awards. That’s nice!

The stunning shades of blue only seen from above by plane
The stunning shades of blue only seen from above by plane

5 Tips to Help You Redeem Your Delta SkyMiles

When trying to redeem miles earned with Delta, there are lots of things you should keep in mind before throwing your hands up in the air. Yes, surely, you will throw your hands up in the air at some point. Delta.com is notoriously bad when it comes to searching for partners, and despite a recent revamp to the search engine adding new partners like Aerolineas Argentinas, China Southern, Gol, and Virgin Atlantic, there are still loads of problems.

Many airlines’ flights still do not appear, and when they do, the itineraries may not ticket properly leading to loads of errors. This is all in addition to the deletion of award charts and a pricing engine that can sometimes lead to itineraries as high as 750,000 miles per person for one award. Yes, Delta is intent on not letting you have international awards easily.

The airline was a total dud at a Freddie Awards event, which was hosted in Delta’s own heritage museum in Atlanta. Frequent travelers vote on their favorite programs, which in turn win Freddies based upon their popularity. Despite the event being in hometown Atlanta, Delta won an embarrassing zero awards.

According to those who attended the events, Delta staff involved with SkyMiles were not expecting to win anything.

It’s not all bad…

SkyMiles can be extremely valuable, but only if your plans are flexible. With the most recent mileage program adjustments, Delta seems to have tightened up the award space for most travelers (despite touting the opposite). Most of the cheapest awards are only available 21 days in advance these days (you won’t find that restriction in any of their promotional materials).

Want to fly 25,000 miles roundtrip (as advertised by annoying inflight announcements and constant in-terminal irritations)? Good luck; they are very difficult to find. On the opposite end of the spectrum, Delta has recently touted one-way flights as low as 5,000 or 10,000 miles, but they are extremely restrictive to certain routes like intra-California, for example. They are there, but it takes a magician to find them sometimes.

Sadly, Delta has made it really rough for loyal flyers to use their miles, and delta.com is a questionable source for information. Count on many instances where you get all the way through the ticketing process to find an error message at the end. Classic delta.com. Here are five tips to help you get around Delta.com’s quirky website and redeem your SkyMiles:

1. No matter what the airline, begin your search by looking for space segment by segment.

You would be surprised how much more availability you will discover if searching this way. The only caveat is that Delta imposes a restriction known as journey control. This means that if you find space from Boston to Atlanta and Atlanta to Lima independently, it may not be there if you search for it as a Boston to Lima award.

Delta employs this limitation (as it does for revenue tickets) on many routes, and it can sometimes cause a snafu for your travel plans. Still, the best way to begin searching for award space is to look segment by segment.

2. Despite saying that delta.com shows availability for partners online, it still is not always there.

Delta.com is very selective as to what it shows you. For example, search for Houston to Amsterdam and the website will show you connections through Atlanta and Detroit, but ignore the nonstop on KLM. Beware. Verify availability by calling Delta.

The website likes to show off more expensive itineraries, so keep scrolling down for cheaper options. If you don’t find the partner you are looking for, call Delta to check on availability.

3. Delta has a unique partnership with Virgin Atlantic; it is supposed to be a joint venture, but good luck.

Tickets don’t issue properly; delta.com cannot issue tickets easily with this partner. With that said, Virgin Atlantic availability is surprisingly better than Delta’s and it often appears on delta.com. Search for a Virgin flight from one of their gateways (LAX, SFO, JFK, EWR, ATL, MCO, MIA among others) to Heathrow or Gatwick.

For some reason, delta.com does not always allow you to successfully ticket itineraries from North America to Europe using SkyTeam partners efficiently. Your best bet? Find the long-haul segment first, and then call Delta to ask about connections on either end.

4. Still looking for award space? Call Delta to ask them specifically for your airline of choice and mention segment by segment your itinerary.

So if you are traveling Madrid to Saigon; don’t leave agents to do their own search. They will say: we have nothing. You need to guide them that Air Europa and Air France fly to the Vietnam Airlines gateways out of Frankfurt or Paris to connect onward. It seems we are all geography students schooling the agents these days.

5. Mixing partners is best via phone.

If you want to make a simple, one-airline booking, then delta.com may work. If you are trying to mix award partners, it is best to call Delta directly. If you cannot book it easily online, Delta most often waives the phone booking fee for these types of complicated partner awards.

For those not familiar, Delta has some great partners that allow for exotic itineraries including Aeroflot, Alitalia, Gol (Brazil), Kenya Airways, Virgin Atlantic, and Virgin Australia among many others.

Use Your Blue Delta SkyMiles American Express Credit Card With Lyft

Editor’s note: This offer has expired. However, cardholders can still earn 1x mile per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases, including ridesharing services.

Earn bonus miles by air and by land thanks to the Lyft’s partnership with Delta and American Express. Beginning April 19, 2018, until October 18, 2018, new members who are approved for the Blue Delta SkyMiles American Express Credit Card will earn 2 miles for every dollar they spend on Lyft rides. They are also eligible for up to an additional $50 in statement credits on Lyft purchases. This limited time offer is good for the initial 6 months of receiving the card (as long as it’s within the designated time frame).

Additional Perks of the Blue Delta SkyMiles American Express Credit Card

There are additional incentives for being a Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express cardholder. For starters, their welcome offer includes earning up to 10,000 miles when cardholders spend $500 within the first 3 months of membership. Cardholders also earn 2 miles for purchases at restaurants in the United States. You may also acquire two miles per dollar on purchases made directly with Delta.

Furthermore, if you make an in-flight purchase, you can earn 20% savings on your statement credit. If you prefer to use your card for shopping, know that you’ll extended warranties and purchase protection on certain items. Additionally, you may qualify for exclusive entertainment events and pre-sale purchase opportunities.

You may use your Blue Delta SkyMiles American Express Credit Card for insurance on your car rental (certain limitations apply). Being a cardmember also gets you access to roadside assistance. Another bonus? You’ll have access to the Global Assist Hotline should you have an emergency while you are away.

Should You Apply For the Blue Delta SkyMiles American Express Card?

This card is great for people who want to explore the world and take advantage of using a credit card to get them places. This card is also good for people who use services like Lyft. If you use Lyft to run errands, to avoid stressful traffic situations, or even after a night out, you can easily earn miles for it.

Even if you don’t use Lyft, earning miles for everyday purchases can help you build miles for a getaway. You can use miles for upgrades and travel on Delta Air Lines and Delta’s 15 airline partners.   You also don’t have to worry about a cap on how much you earn. The sky is the limit for the Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express.       

4 Best Delta Air Lines Credit Cards For 2019

Using Delta Air Lines credit cards is one of the easiest ways to maximize your SkyMiles membership. Not only can you earn SkyMiles on your purchases, but you also earn additional travel benefits, depending on your card. If you fly on Delta on a consistent basis, using a Delta-friendly credit card can help you book a free flight more often. Read on to learn more.

Co-Brand Delta Air Lines Credit Cards

American Express currently offers four different personal Delta Air Lines credit cards that fit every travel style. The annual fee for these four cards ranges from $0 to $450. Each card offers incrementally more benefits. Note that Delta credit cards have some of the most generous checked baggage benefits among airline credit cards.

We’ll list these four Delta credit cards in order of increasing annual fee.

Blue Delta SkyMiles Credit Card

Ideal for Travelers That Don’t Check Baggage

The main reason to get the Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express is to skip the annual fee (See Rates & Fees). You might use this credit card to build a credit history or as a secondary credit card to maximize your Delta Air Lines purchases. A third benefit is that your Delta SkyMiles never expire if you own this card.

Since this card doesn’t charge an annual fee, you’re not going to receive the additional card benefits like free checked bags. But if you never check a bag, this card can save you $95 a year and still earn SkyMiles on eligible purchases.

But, its purchase rewards are just as valuable (arguably more valuable) as the other Delta credit cards:

  • Earn 2x SkyMiles on eligible purchases made directly with Delta and U.S. restaurants
  • All remaining purchases earn 1 mile per $1 spent
  • Get a 20% statement credit on select Delta in-flight purchases

The other co-brand Delta credit cards only offer double miles on Delta purchases. If you don’t check bags or visit the Delta SkyClub, the Blue Delta Amex is the best option.

This is the only co-brand Delta credit card that charges a foreign transaction fee (See Rates & Fees). You’ll want to consider upgrading to the Gold Delta SkyMiles if you travel abroad on a regular basis.

Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express

Ideal for Travelers that Regularly Check Bags

For most casual Delta flyers, the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express will be your best option. The reason why is that the first checked bag flies free for you and up to 8 passengers.

American Express also offers these benefits:

  • 2x miles on eligible purchases made directly with Delta
  • Up to 9 free checked bags
  • Pay with miles allows you to redeem miles for part or all of your tickets on Delta.com.
  • Priority Boarding

If you don’t check enough baggage or fly often, you should apply for the no-fee Blue Delta SkyMiles. However, if you can use the free checked baggage and want the convenience of priority boarding, apply for this card.

Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card

Ideal For Travelers Wanting One Free Companion Certificate

With the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express, you can enjoy several annual SkyMiles boosts and an annual travel companion certificate. Plus, you have the opportunity to earn 20,000 bonus SkyMiles and Medallion Qualification Miles every year too.

The most valuable card benefit is the annual companion certificate you receive each card anniversary. With this certificate, you receive a domestic main cabin round-trip ticket for your travel companion. You will have to pay up to $75 in fees and taxes for the round-trip fare.

You should also consider the Platinum Delta if you plan on making more than $25,000 in annual card purchases. After spending $25,000 on eligible purchases annually, you will earn 10,000 bonus SkyMiles and 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles.

In addition to these two card perks, you also enjoy these Delta benefits:

  • 2x miles on eligible Delta purchases
  • 20% in-flight purchase statement credit
  • Up to 9 free checked bags
  • Priority Boarding
  • Discounted SkyClub Access

Delta Reserve Credit Card

Ideal for First Class Passengers and Free SkyClub Access

If you want full access to the SkyMiles and Sky Club program, look no further than the Delta Reserve® Credit Card from American Express. The Delta Reserve definitely caters to the finer things in life.

Each card anniversary, you receive the Delta Reserve Companion Certificate for one domestic round-trip ticket in the First Class, Comfort+, or Main Cabin class. You will need to pay up to $75 in fees and taxes, but think of the savings if you redeem it for a first class ticket!

Big spenders also have the opportunity to earn 15,000 bonus SkyMiles and 15,000 Medallion Qualification Miles, when you spend $30,000 in annual card purchases. Plus, you can earn an additional 15,000 MQMs and an additional 15,000 bonus miles after you spend $60,000 on purchases in a calendar year.

As the primary cardholder, you get free Delta SkyClub access. You will need to pay the discounted rate of $29 for two other guests to access the SkyClub with you.

Besides these additional benefits, you will enjoy the same purchase rewards, waived checked baggage fees, and priority boarding as the Gold and Platinum SkyMiles credit cards.

Other Travel Rewards Cards to Consider

If you don’t need the bonus SkyMiles opportunities or free checked bags, you might also consider getting a flexible travel rewards card instead of a Delta Air Lines credit card. Choose one that lets you transfer points on a 1:1 basis to Delta when possible.

Platinum Card from American Express

Ideal for 1:1 point transfers and Delta SkyClub lounge access

The best flexible rewards card for Delta Air Lines is The Platinum Card® from American Express. You can enjoy these benefits:

  • Earn 5x points on airlines purchases
  • 1:1 point transfers to Delta (and other frequent flyer programs)
  • $200 air travel statement credit (in-flight purchases and checked baggage fees)
  • Free Delta Sky Club access

If Delta isn’t your primary airline, or you want to earn 5x points instead of 2x points on Delta ticket purchases, the Amex Platinum is the best option to quickly rack up frequent flyer miles. When you’re ready to book a Delta award flight, you can transfer your points on a 1:1 basis.

Summary of the Best Delta Credit Cards

If you want airline-specific benefits like free checked bags or can qualify for the annual SkyMile and MQM spending bonuses, the co-brand Delta credit cards are a better option. If Delta Air Lines is your secondary airline, using a flexible travel rewards card with 1:1 point transfers can earn you more points.

7 Tips for Making Airport Travel Easier

Delta Air Lines Raised Their Baggage Fees, But Here’s How You Can Avoid Them

Delta Air Lines baggage fees on select flights were raised in 2018. If you haven’t booked your next transatlantic flight, you might consider these alternatives to avoid the higher fees. Even if Delta Air Lines is your only option, there are ways to still dodge the baggage fee.

Common Delta Baggage Fees in Spring 2019

For any Basic Economy transatlantic Delta flight, you will pay a checked baggage fee on your first and second bags. The baggage fees apply to all U.S. and Canadian flights that go to or from Europe, Tahiti, and North Africa. You will now have to pay $60 for your first bag and $100 for the second bag. This rate hike applies to Basic Economy fares at this time.

For flights between the U.S. and Canada, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Central America, Caribbean, Guyana, & Bermuda, Mexico, El Salvador, Ecuador, Panama, Colombia, the continental United States, and Puerto Rico, basic economy travelers will have to pay $30 for their first checked bag and $60 for their second.

You can find the most up to date information on the Delta Air Lines baggage policy here.

How to Avoid the Delta Baggage Fees (And Still Fly Delta)

How do you avoid paying $60 so your bag can fly from across the Atlantic? Luckily, you have a few different options. The first four options will help you avoid the baggage fee if Delta is still your best flight option.

Upgrade to a Better Cabin Class

These fee increases only apply to Basic Economy fares. You can simply avoid the fee by buying a more expensive ticket with one of the following cabin classes:

  • Main Cabin
  • Delta Comfort+
  • First Class
  • Delta Premium Select
  • Delta One

In addition to avoiding the baggage fees, you can also have a more enjoyable flight experience and earn potentially more SkyMiles and Medallion Qualification Miles that can benefit you in the long run.

Pay With a Delta Credit Card

With the three personal Delta credit cards or their business versions, the first checked bag for you and 8 passengers fly for free. That’s a potential $1,080 savings round-trip if all nine bags are checked. You’ll need to use one of the co-brand Delta credit cards that charge an annual fee. You can choose between the:

In addition to the waived baggage fees, you will also earn 2x SkyMiles on every purchase made directly with Delta.

Pay With the Platinum Card from American Express

For a flexible travel rewards card, your best option can be The Platinum Card® from American Express. The $200 air travel credit covers you checked baggage fees. Once you land, you will also be able to skip the long security lines to pass through customs with complimentary Global Entry.

Another reason to fly with the Amex Platinum is the complimentary Delta SkyClub access when flying Delta, or you can also relax at a Priority Pass Select or a Centurion Lounge too.

Use the Chase Sapphire Reserve

A second premium travel credit card with a travel credit that pays your checked baggage fees is the Chase Sapphire Reserve. While the Sapphire Reserve isn’t a 1:1 Delta travel partner and doesn’t offer Delta SkyClub access, you will enjoy these three travel benefits:

  • $300 Annual Travel Credit as reimbursement for travel purchases charged to your card each account anniversary year
  • Global Entry application fee reimbursement
  • 3x points on dining purchases

You can also earn 3X points on travel immediately after earning your $300 travel credit. If you are traveling through an airport with a Priority Pass lounge location, you and two travel companions can enter for free.

Fly a Discount Airline to Avoid the Delta Baggage Fees

Delta is already one of the more expensive airlines to fly whether you pay cash or SkyMiles for your ticket. Thankfully, you have a few other options to fly for less.

United Airlines

United also serves many European and North African destinations and your first checked bag flies free. Your second checked bag costs $100 for an economy seat and $0 for a first class or business class seat. If you pay with MileagePlus rewards points, you can expect to pay the following amount each way:

  • Europe: 30,000 miles economy and 60,000 miles first class
  • North Africa: 40,000 miles economy and 70,000 miles first class.

You can book an award flight with a co-brand United credit card or either the Chase Sapphire Preferred or Sapphire Reserve as a 1:1 Ultimate Rewards travel partner. One advantage of flying United instead of certain international airlines is that you won’t pay a fuel surcharge.

American Airlines

Your first bag flies for $60 in basic economy with American Airlines on all transatlantic flights to 15 European destinations. American Airlines award flights cost the following amount one-way:

  • Economy: 22,500 off-peak and 30,000 peak season
  • Business: 57,500
  • First Class: 85,000

If you own a Chase Sapphire or Platinum Card from AMEX, you can transfer your points to British Airways and book a partner flight. You will also avoid the hefty fuel surcharges that British Airways and Iberia can charge for long-haul flights too!

Norwegian Airlines

Norwegian Airlines is a discount carrier that flies to Europe and North Africa. Their baggage fees for international flights range from 50 euros to 100 euros ($62-$124) per bag; LowFare+ and other ticket classes let you get one or two checked bags for free. Unless Norwegian’s flight is cheap enough to offset the baggage fees, it can still be cheaper to fly Delta after accounting for the baggage fees.

Summary on Delta Raising its Baggage Fee

Raising the Delta baggage fees on the transatlantic European and North African routes will make it more expensive to fly. Thankfully, you have many options to avoid paying the fees.

For most people, your decision comes down to if you prefer benefits or points.

For rates and fees of the Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Delta Reserve for Business Credit Card, please click here.

Check out these articles for more in-depth reviews of travel credit cards:

Johnny Jet Editorial

The comments on this page are not provided, reviewed, or otherwise approved by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

Editorial Note: The editorial content on this page is not provided by any bank, credit card issuer, airlines or hotel chain, and has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

Best Delta Credit Cards: Everything You Need to Know
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1 Comment On "Best Delta Credit Cards: Everything You Need to Know"
  1. Dustin Kaemmerer|

    Very good blog, thank you so much for your effort in writing this post.

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