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In addition to my seminar on the best credit card deals, I gave a second talk at Frequent Traveler University this past weekend on why Delta is still an airline program of value entitled, “Making the Most of Delta – Status, Upgrades and Awards.”
The whole point is that there are still plenty of ways to pull some great values from your Delta miles and elite status despite some very big, recent, negative changes to the program.
The mood in the room was somber because of recent changes such as the new revenue-based Medallion qualification rules that require flyers either to spend $25,000 per calendar year on a co-branded Delta Amex credit card or spend a certain amount (between $2,500-$12,500) on the airline in order to qualify for elite status at the various tiers; and the airline’s new and more restrictive policy on Same Day Confirmed Changes and Same Day Standby.
In my opinion, there are probably still a lot more changes to come and I suspect the majority of them will be negative. However, as I mentioned in last week’s post debating the merits of going for Delta versus American elite status, there are still plenty of good reasons to remain loyal to Delta SkyMiles including the ability to rollover miles and lucrative Medallion bonuses. In the end, a lot of us are still on Delta’s loyalty hamster wheel, so we might as well maximize our status and the benefits.
My presentation was just a high-level overview of the SkyMiles program including the Medallion program and its new requirements and benefits; the best Delta credit card deals out there right now; Choice Benefits for elites who go above their tier qualification requirements; the basics of using Systemwide Upgrades and miles to upgrade; and what opportunities there still are to get some great redemption values as I just did for my upcoming trip to Spain and Italy.
Here’s my presentation slideshow:
Let me know your thoughts and comments, and feel free to ask anything below that you’d like me to cover in the future.
The American Express Platinum card has some of the best perks out there: cardholders enjoy the best domestic lounge access (Delta SkyClubs, Centurion Lounges, and Priority Pass), a $200 annual airline fee credit as well as up to $200 in Uber credits, and mid-tier elite status at SPG, Marriott, and Hilton. Combined with the 60,000 point welcome offer -- worth $1,140 based on TPG's valuations -- this card is a no-brainer for frequent travelers. Here are 5 reasons you should consider this card, as well as how you can figure out if the $550 annual fee makes sense for you.
- Earn 60,000 Membership Rewards® points after you use your new Card to make $5,000 in purchases in your first 3 months.
- Enjoy Uber VIP status and free rides in the U.S. up to $15 each month, plus a bonus $20 in December. That can be up to $200 in annual Uber savings.
- 5X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel.
- 5X Membership Rewards points on prepaid hotels booked on amextravel.com.
- Enjoy access to the Global Lounge Collection, the only credit card airport lounge access program that includes proprietary lounge locations around the world.
- Receive complimentary benefits with an average total value of $550 with Fine Hotels & Resorts. Learn More.
- $200 Airline Fee Credit, up to $200 per calendar year in baggage fees and more at one qualifying airline.
- Get up to $100 in statement credits annually for purchases at Saks Fifth Avenue on your Platinum Card®. Enrollment required.
- $550 annual fee.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees