My Rollover Delta Medallion Qualifying Miles Posted for 2014

by on January 15, 2014 · 60 comments

in Delta, Elite Status

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We’re well into January and I’m starting to put serious thought into my airline and hotel elite status strategy. As part of my decision-making process, I logged into my account and saw that my rollover MQMs from 2013 have posted. Delta is unique in that it allows its Medallion elites to rollover any miles above and beyond their status threshold qualification into their elite status qualification tally for the following year. In my opinion, the airline’s rollover perk is great since it allows customers to keep flying the airline after they reach an elite level for the year because you know those miles will go towards the next year’s qualification. In most programs, your elite miles reset to zero on January 1 of every year, so it’s nice to start your year with rollover padding, even if it’s just a little.

My MQM Rollover Haul

My MQM Rollover Haul

I requalified for Delta Platinum Medallion (75,000 MQM’s) and am starting this year off at 23,997 MQMs – just 1,003 miles short of Silver without stepping on a Delta plane in 2014 so far!

Due to some recent changes in the Delta SkyMiles program – including new spending requirements for Medallion status, and two upcoming award chart devaluations, I’m actually considering unwinding my Delta elite status in favor of Alaska Airlines. Consider, to achieve Silver status at this point, I’d need to fly just 1,003 miles, but spend $2,500 on Delta fares or $25,000 on my Platinum SkyMiles Amex. That seems slightly ridiculous to me, so I’ll be exploring my other options.

Rollover Miles Background

Just as background on rollover miles in case you are a Delta flyer yourself – as I mentioned, you can rollover miles above and beyond your current elite status threshold qualification. Whether you roll over 500 miles or 200,000, there’s no limit.

That means if you are a Silver or Gold Medallion the maximum you can rollover is 24,999 miles, since anything more would bump you to the next level; Platinum Medallions may rollover up to 49,999 MQMs; Diamond Medallions have no limit to how many MQMs they can rollover. Something important to point out is if you do not qualify for Silver Medallion status, you wouldn’t be able to rollover any MQMs, so you must achieve elite status at some level in order to rollover miles.

Members who receive complimentary or gifted Medallion status are ineligible for rollover MQMs unless they earn more MQMs than the gifted status requirement. For example, if a member is gifted Silver Medallion status in 2012 and also earns 30,000 MQMs in 2013, he will be able to roll over 5,000 MQMs since the Silver Medallion requirement is 25,000 MQMs – so essentially it’s the same conditions as earning elite status normally. Gifted status doesn’t gift you any MQMs- just temporarily elevates your status, so if you get gifted silver and accrue 28,000 MQMs, you are still a Silver with 28,000 MQMs- not a Gold (50,000 MQMs).

Delta Gold Medallion

If you go above and beyond 50,000 MQM’s, you’ll get Gold Medallion and rollover the additional miles.

As I discussed in this post, sometimes it makes more sense to rollover miles than to gun for the next elite level – especially if you think you’ll be flying more the following year and can use the head start to qualify for an elite level you haven’t historically been able to hit. For me it means that, while exploring the elite benefits of American and United this year, I at least have a foothold toward earning Delta elite status at the levels I have been used to like Diamond and Platinum without having to necessarily fly all those miles this year.

Maximizing MQMs from Credit Cards
If you didn’t get as many rollover miles as you need/want you can always accrue more by applying for Delta’s premium American Express credit cards. The Reserve card ($450 annual fee) gives 10,000 MQMs with the first purchase and an additional 15,000 MQMs at $30,000 in spend and another 15,000 at $60,000 in spend. The Delta Platinum card ($150 annual fee) gives 5,000 MQMs with first purchase and then 10,000 MQMs at $25,000 in spend and an additional 10,000 at $50,000 in spend. You have all calendar year to achieve those spend thresholds, so it is better to plan and start now if that is an angle you want to take to maintain/achieve Medallion status.

How many MQM’s did you rollover and will Delta’s 2014 changes impact your status for 2015?

Disclaimer: The responses below are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

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  • Dieuwer

    Will you be doing a status match to Alaska?

  • Scott Lerner

    I have been waiting all month for my MQM roll-over. Just logged in and still NO roll-over.. Hopefully by end of day today. In the meantime I’ll sit back and “watch the water boil” as they say..

  • thepointsguy

    Depends how much AA flying I have this year.. Always a struggle to maintain exec plat and burn miles for ultra longhaul trips… And maintain a somewhat sane personal life!

  • Dieuwer

    I will be able to make DL Silver Medaliion again this year, but I am kinda tired of how difficult it is to redeem Skymiles. Since I now have 125,000 Skymiles in my account, I thought to just redeem them and switch to AS this year.
    On the other hand, I could just fly Delta one more year as a Silver, increase my Skymiles to 150,000 and switch to AS next year.

  • Guest

    I love Delta rollover – mine just posted – 106,254 miles!

  • Dan Nainan

    I love Delta rollover – mine just posted, 106254 miles!

  • Amy

    I rolled over a paltry 194 miles but at least I made Gold for this year. That was in danger when Delta seriously screwed up a flight sequence from Seattle to Detroit. I took a points-push trip in December to get Gold and only needed the last leg from Detroit to home to make it (only 500 MQMs would do it). Long story short, the flight left without us and our choices were to either drive home or wait 48 hours until another flight was available. Despite some seriously incompetent gate agents, Delta made it right a few days later and gave me credit for the last leg. Now I’m gunning for Platinum but not sure quite how that will happen. Do I need to fly a full 75,000 MQMs this year or just the amount needed to go from Gold to Platinum–25,000?

  • Noel

    I’m rolling over 35K MQMs, as of today i’m at 44K, i’ll make Gold by early Feb. and will try to make PM by June. I love the fact that you can roll over miles although once i reach PM again i’m trying to determine if i have enough work ravel left in Q3 and Q4 to earn a high level status on either United or American. All my travel is domestic so achieving status on another airline without Intl. will be a little tough. I may follow DeltaPoints advice and start looking for MR in each quarter to start earning miles sooner w/o scrambling at EOY.

  • Scott in Nashville

    You’ll have to accumulate an additional 74,806 MQMs in 2014 for Platinum plus there are new Delta spending requirements. There are numerous posts on here about those new requirements and one of those is linked in this post above.

  • thepointsguy

    Hopefully a lot is from spend- otherwise that’s nuts!

  • thepointsguy

    Alaska miles are much, much more valuable and easy to use

  • Amy

    Damnit, well ok. I knew of the spending requirements, given all of the build up to it. Probably won’t make the spending limit for Platinum. So it sounds like I would be better off working to keep Gold.

  • bradsteven

    I rolled over 24,508 MQMs, but they haven’t posted yet… Look forward to gunning for Gold status this year!

  • Dieuwer

    You won’t make Gold by early Feb.unless you spend $5,000.

  • Steve

    Not if you live in Minnesota. :)

  • DBest

    Can you use your DL Medallion status to book the DL ticket and get the benefits (free bags, free exit row, upgrade chance) and then switch the FF credit to Alaska in order to earn AS status miles on that flight?

  • Urbanist

    FYI – The bonus mileage listed under the cards is inaccurate. Reserve is currently only offering 5,000 miles + 5,000 MQM (unless you’re upgrading), and the Platinum doesn’t offer any mileage rewards right now.

  • Paul in Italy

    I had exactly the same question! I’m looking to unwind my loyalty to Delta (for the myriad of reasons observed by TPG), but I don’t want to sacrifice the hard earned PM benefits that I earned last year by having to make log each reservation with my Alaska FF#. What’s the best way to preserve the PM benefits but ensure that the miles “earned” go to Alaska?

  • Garrett

    I don’t have any experience with Alaska, but I did something like that with my KLM/AF Flying Blue account. When I didn’t have status w/ Delta, I used my Flying Blue account to get an extra free bag on KLM. The miles posted to KLM instead. I complained via Twitter (because the gate agent told me otherwise) and I actually ended up getting miles for both.

  • thepointsguy

    I’m not sure what you mean, but the sign-up and spending bonuses are correct.

  • jkramer

    mine have rolled over — 33,109. Unfortunately living in MKE does not give me much choice for airlines unless i flew out of chicago all the time and i would rather not. so i should make at least gold this year but hope to keep my PM status i’ve had for 3 years. however, i’m getting done with DL with all the downgrades and the new sky club fiasco and wish i could transfer loyalty. QUESTION: do MQDs post only after the trip is taken? I booked two trips in January but actually paid for them in December. I was told the MQDs would count for 2014. but they have not show up. I have not flown yet. Just wondering what you know.

  • jkramer

    i recently upgraded from the Delta platinum to the Reserve and only got 5K MQMs.

  • Ben

    Yes TPG, please share how this works, a few of us would really like to know. One idea that I had was to keep the delta FF# on file when I book the reservation and select my seats, then at the airport, after I have checked in, go to the counter and have them put in my Alaskan number. I was thinking they would likely not boot me out of my preferred seat, but I could be wrong… Would like to hear any accounts of people who have tried this.

  • David Rae

    My rollover hasn’t posted yet…grrr

  • SYEW

    I have a question: I have the Biz Amex Delta Platinum card and completed the 25k spend late Dec 2013. When will my bonus MQM post? Will the MQMs be counted for 2013 qualification or 2014?

  • russr

    I’m 17,000 miles short of 2 million miles on DL at which point I will be eternally Gold. I was Diamond for 3 years and now Platinum for 2013 and 2014. I have a Platinum DL AMEX card and supposedly had Sky Club membership until Feb 2016 (which will be meaningfully eviscerated in early 2015 with their recent announcement). Rather than pursue Platinum again on DL on their devalued scheme, it seems to me that I should follow TPG’s lead and move over to Alaska.
    Would appreciate thoughts and reactions. Most of my miles will be from spend. I used to fly 250-300K air miles per year (average of 15 international flights per year, also million miler/ex-Exec Platinum on American), but I’m at 10% of that level these days.

  • Gdcouey

    Mine haven’t posted yet… but I rolled over 23,740 miles. Was just over 1,000 mqms needed and DL wouldn’t rollover… didn’t seem worth it to spend $495 (somehow my price as Silver was $495 instead of $475) to buy 2,500 MQMs so I just rolled over to start the year as Silver again. Fingers crossed it happens today! Do you think it happens at different times for different people?

  • Marlene

    I was gold all year and rolled over 17,000 miles. The difference between gold and silver is night and day, so I’m working to get back to gold. You should consider.

  • Gdcouey

    Hi Marlene – I was gold in 2012, and yes, there are many differences – but not as many that affect me, when it comes down to it ( I have a DL Plat AMEX and a regular Plat AMEX)- I couldn’t fit in another MR before the end of the year, and I did some calculations and discovered that for $500 (cost of becoming gold), it would be better for me to be silver this year AND next by rolling over, and the bonus on miles (100% vs 25%) would only – for my travel in 2014 – equate to one free ticket, which I could also buy with $500. Obviously, everyone’s situation is different, but with my home airport (MSN), I’m able to get as many upgrades as Silver.

  • mkm

    So I have a question, because I fly primarily on delta for work. Let’s say that that this year I fly a total of 55,000 mqms, but only make the spending threshold to get silver status for 2015. Does that mean in January 2015 my rollover mqm’s are going to be posted at 30,000 or 5000?

  • Bopcat

    Is the rollover automatic or do I need to request it?? I have 48,000 MQM in 2013 and was Silver.

  • thepointsguy


  • thepointsguy

    Patience is a virtue :-)

  • thepointsguy

    Yea you get less when you upgrade than if you apply without being an sxidting Delta Amex cardholder

  • Phil E

    Question: Not sure I understand the rules you describe around rollover miles with gifted status. I was gifted Gold in late 2012 so that was my status for 2013. I earned about 30,000 miles so I will now be Silver, but I thought I would still get 5,000 rollover MQMs. Is that not the case?

  • RDMWorldTravel

    Rolled over 128K from last year, so one more year Diamond, sadly I don’t see myself on Delta anytime soon. and maybe, just maybe once in 2014. The lack of value from miles is a big turn off. I’ve achieved more with Flying Blue than Medallion on using miles. United and AA are my new friends :)

  • Norzan

    Does this rollover happen on the same day? I have not seen any changes to my account…

  • Dan Nainan

    I apologise but I don’t know what you mean by spend, but it’s all from flying. I think I got something like 300,000 MQM in 2012 so it’s all re-rolling over.

  • ttxtri

    7061 rolled over, I have gold for all of 2014 with a trip to Asia, Hawaii and Europe planned for this year. I hope to hit gold on miles again and do the Amex 25K spend to make it happen.

  • kindaichijason

    They also do fly into Minneapolis all year long. Albeit the number of flights to and from are quite limited.

  • thepointsguy

    Yes- switch to Alaska at the airport once all of your fees have been waived after check-in

  • thepointsguy

    It is a continuous process, so keep checking over the next day or so

  • thepointsguy

    Yes.. you’ll roll over miles above the threshold that you earned (gifted status has no bearing towards Rollover- only counts towards earned status)

  • thepointsguy

    Should be counted for 2013.. they’ll post when your statement closes and should retroactively count towards when they were earned. That is my understanding, but maybe someone else can chime in with a similar experience

  • thepointsguy
  • thepointsguy
  • thepointsguy

    The issue with proactive MRs is that if you get a large amount of regularly planned travel and you will hit your elite status regardless, they could be a big waste of money- especially since super cheap MR fares have been pretty rare lately

  • thepointsguy

    The full amount.. each year the clock starts at 0+rollover (194 miles) for you, so you’ve got a way to spend and earn to get Platinum!

  • Darth Chocolate

    Some of us actually fly for the MQM, and I rolled over 46K + MQM. And we have our employers pay for it. I expect my MQD will be around $15K by early March. The magic of long haul Business Class with someone else paying.

    And then there’s the double dip through my SkyBonus account. My upcoming trip to France will net me somewhere north of 200K SkyBonus points. And I will have at least 5 of those events coming up by June.

  • Todd

    Somebody had stated before that if the flight was booked in 2013 but flown in 2014 then the MQDs won’t be counted towards 2014. This is FALSE. MQDs post just like MQMs (I know because I just flew roundtrip to Asia with a ticket purchased in 2013). I think this point needs to be made clear.

  • Amy

    Thank for the reply PG! Enjoy your site very much. Great to connect with frequent travelers and all the travails they endure!

  • Autolycus

    I finished the $25k on December 30. The bonus MQM posted sometime earlier this week with a date of December 31. They are supposed to count in the year in which the spend threshold was met.

  • ATLConsultant

    I was gold for 2013. I only had 61K MQMs and 72 segments last year, so was (sadly) only expecting Gold medallion again for 2014 (Gold being almost useless flying out of Atlanta every week).

    However, on “My Skymiles Summary” I show current status as Gold, but my 2014 (Mar 01 2014 to Feb 28 2015) status shows as Platinum.

    While I don’t want to argue with Delta, i was wondering if you’ve ever seen this before? My only conclusion would be that it was given to me since I had an incredibly high spend last year despite lower mileage/segments. I was booking last minute flights on popular routes every week at VERY high prices.


  • Steve

    Mine just rolled over too. This was a nice medallion benefit. But… I don’t know if the program is going to be worth keeping because Detla will no longer be upgrading medallions on JFK/LAX anymore. I fly JFK/LAX mostly, and as a diamond member, I was upgraded most of the time. For me, upgrading on JFK/LAX was the most important medallion benefit. I don’t fly enough for diamond status, but with two Reserve Amex cards, one for personal and one for business, I was able to spend enough to get 60K MQMs, which is half way to diamond. Now I need to find a new program that will allow me to build to a status elite enough that I will be consistantly upgraded on the JFK/LAX route. Keeping in mind I can change credit cards, which programs do you suggest? Using 4 global upgrades for 2 round trips is just not enough.

  • Mark

    I’m in a similar situation. What to do? Help Pointsguy!

  • Delta_DM

    Copied from Delta’s Website:
    Members who receive complimentary or gifted Medallion status are ineligible for rollover MQMs unless they earn more MQMs than the gifted status requirement. For example, if a member is gifted Silver Medallion status in 2013 and also earns 30,000 MQMs in 2013, s/he will be able to roll over 5,000 MQMs since the Silver Medallion requirement is 25,000 MQMs.

    If you were gifted gold, the only way you can rollover miles is if you earn over 50,000 miles.

  • Delta_DM

    This is not correct according to Delta’s policy on gifted status. Please see my reply to Phil E above.

  • Delta_DM

    Your rollover would be 30,000 because it is the number of miles exceeding the status you achieve (Silver in your example). Good luck!!

  • MWC

    Probably a stupid questions but if you are within ~500 miles of Diamond even after buying the MQMs does Delta offer challenges or “round up”? Has this happened to anyone? I seemed to recall long ago with NWA doing it for me when I was within 5k of gold.

  • Kerri

    Keep in mind that the only thing that rolls over is miles. If you make your status on segments they don’t rollover. I fly mostly regionally and so have lots of segments, but not as many miles. So I am very disappointed with the rollover program.

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