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Alaska – Delta Battle For Seattle Continues – Targeted Delta Gold Amex Offer 50,000 Miles and $200 Statement Credit

by on March 31, 2014 · 15 comments

in Alaska, American Express, Delta

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And the battle for Seattle continues between Alaska – the city’s stalwart – and new entrant on the scene, behemoth Delta, who is muscling in on the smaller airline’s longtime hub. Not only have the airlines launched a bevy of competing promos, most of which means savvy consumers can score some pretty great bonuses over the course of next few months depending on their travel plans, but Delta continues to fire salvo after salvo in its attempt to dethrone Alaska in its home region.

However, these more recent volleys have been a mixed bag for flyers. Earlier this week, Delta announced that starting May 1, it would begin restricting Alaska MVP elite benefits while flying Delta including no more free checked bags and no more SkyPriority access. On the more consumer-friendly side, however, Delta has been sending out Seattle-area SkyMiles members targeted Delta co-branded American Express offers like the one below:

Delta Seattle AmexNot only is the offer for 50,000 miles when you spend $1,000 in 3 months 20,000 more miles than the current public offer, but recipients also get a $200 statement credit when they make a Delta purchase with their new card in the first three months, and the $95 annual fee is waived the first year. You must apply by May 11, 2014.

This is as high a bonus as we’ve seen on this card in a while – the other high was through the Card Match Tool and was for 45,000 miles…and you had to spend $5,000 in 6 months in order to get it, so this is a much better offer in my opinion, and if you’ve been considering this card and got the offer, I would apply for it. That’s because not only is the bonus pretty high for this card, but also because Amex has announced that starting May 2, 2014, you will only be able to get the sign-up bonus on each of its consumer cards once – no matter if you had it and closed your account for years then apply for it again. So if you’ve had this card in the past but not at the moment and were targeted for this offer, this is your last chance to score a bonus on it at all, let alone one of this size.

Amex's Delta cards will no longer levy foreign transaction fees starting May 1.

Though Delta’s other Amex cards like the Platinum SkyMiles Amex and the Delta Reserve can be a better value for folks looking for their added benefits like the ability to spend your way to earning Medallion Qualifying Miles, and the Reserve’s (recently restricted) SkyClub access, you might still apply for this offer now and then get one of those cards later when their bonuses go up higher. These cards have also recently become better options for international travelers thanks to the fact that they will be available with EMV Smart Chips and will begin waiving foreign transaction fees starting May 1. For more information, see my post on Choosing the Right Delta American Express Card For You.

Though I personally plan to dump Delta thanks to all the recent negative changes to the SkyMiles program – including award chart devaluations, elite revenue requirements and a new fare-based mileage-earning structure being put in place in 2015 – I know many flyers are sticking with the airline, whether out of misplaced loyalty or a lack of options. So in that case, having a co-branded Delta Amex is more significant since if you’re not an elite, it gets you perks like free checked bags and priority boarding, while if you’re already a Medallion elite, you can bypass those new Medallion Qualifying Dollar requirements of spending $2,500-$12,500 on tickets by putting $25,000 of spending on your co-branded Delta Amex card instead.

While I’m sure we’re in store for some more negative news thanks to Delta’s push to make Seattle a new hub, at least there are some positive elements of the move for consumers to take advantage of, including this increased sign-up bonus – and hopefully some more both on the other Delta Amex cards and for flyers based in other regions!

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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  • Annalise Kaylor

    Another nicely-timed post. I think this is also a great offer for those of us who are banking to Alaska, but will lose the free bag option and the priority boarding when the new perks kick in. It’s the only reason I’m keeping my Delta-branded Amex for the time being.

  • JRodg

    Delta (and the LGA hub) is my back up airline to United (I live closer to EWR), so I’ll keep my Amex Delta Gold card as well, at least for 1 more year. The free bags and priority booking are worth the low annual fee, and I also like the 20% in-flight discount, which appears as a statement credit after you pay full price.

  • AA

    The double miles and MQMs for Seattle based Delta travellers has really got me in a tough position. I have decided (and already taking some flights) to switch to United because of Delta’s changes coming in 2015. The double miles offer is too good to ignore, especially to rack up miles for an award ticket. If I split my travels between United (for non Seattle routes in 2014 and for all routes in 2015) and Delta (for Seattle routes in 2014 and then bid them goodbye in 2015) i’ll maximize the miles I earn on both airlines, which is great, but I won’t make medallion status on either, which is unfortunate because I love the upgrade benefits. Plus, since I’m saying goodbye to Delta in 2015, what am I supposed to do with my Delta Skymiles Gold Credit Card?

  • Darth Chocolate

    @TPG:

    One thing you neglect is that with the Delta/Starwood Crossover Rewards Program, you do have a real incentive to stay with Delta. For example, this year I expect 7-8 long haul international Business Elite trips costing $6K-$8K each. That is one boatload of Starwood points!

  • AEG

    Got targeted for 50k about 1.5 months ago and took it. Nowhere near Seattle. Has anybody had luck asking Amex to match offers?

  • thepointsguy

    In your case that seems true, but you are one of the high-revenue flyers Delta’s new program is geared toward and a lot of people are not in that same category. Good to note, though.

  • Joey Mc Joe Jo

    Just checked, and I am qualified for a 35K offer, which is better than the 30K I have seen, but don’t really see the value in this card unless I could get a 50K deal on it.

  • Joey Mc Joe Jo

    I live in Salt Lake City, and was excited to see Alaska recently offer a $50.00 coupon AND double miles out of SLC. Here is hoping it works enough (I am going to use the offer!) and makes Delta do some sort of promotion in SLC to remind us to fly Delta.

  • MikeS

    I recently took a targeted Platinum Delta Amex offer for 45,000 bonus miles, 15,000 MQMs, and $100 credit with $1k spending within 3 months.

  • MikeS

    Just make sure you book your flight/hotel separately on their sites. Getting completely screwed over by Starwood for booking through Delta along with my flight. Week-long hotel stay, getting jack back for points.

  • Toddie

    Does anyone know if there’s a BUSINESS version of this offer with the same sign-up bonus?

    I have the personal Delta Gold Amex, and I need to pick up a slug of new pesos.

  • Darth Chocolate

    I have to deal with a corporate travel office, so that is not a problem.

  • Tony

    “I know many flyers are sticking with the airline, whether out of misplaced loyalty or a lack of options” ….. Misplaced loyalty? Seriously? Are points the only reason for loyalty? Or is there is a small matter of an airline assuring people a nice and comfy journey. And of course if u didn’t realize, delta definitely does this better than most

    ..fortunately people are not dumb to make decisions based on a blog!!

    Hopefully u can recover and start writing meaningful stuff again…

  • Noah

    But this is “the point guy” writing from a point perspective… I guess what he’s saying is with point devaluation delta’s services may become more expensive than it should be.

  • Christine

    What’s the link to apply to this offer? I’m in Seattle but didn’t get the email.

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