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You'll soon be able to redeem Delta miles for private jet flights again

March 22, 2021
3 min read
Luxury airplane for private flights
You'll soon be able to redeem Delta miles for private jet flights again
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Although Delta SkyMiles have been devalued several times over the last few months, members have a new redemption option to look forward to: the ability to redeem miles for private jet flights.

Shortly after Delta Private Jets' merger with Wheels Up was completed last year, SkyMiles members lost the ability to redeem miles for private flights. However, Delta's website noted that members should be on the lookout for updates about the airline's new partnership with Wheels Up "soon."

While details are still scarce, recent developments suggest that we're inching closer to the return of this unique redemption option.

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Wheels Up is planning to merge with the blank-check company Aspirational Consumer Lifestyle Corp. so that it can go public. As a part of the process, the company recently released a regulatory filing revealing details about its partnership with Delta. It mentioned information about existing benefits available to Delta flyers, as well as new ones, including "the ability for Delta customers to redeem miles for Wheels Up products and services."

Related: The cheapest ways to get the private jet experience

(Photo courtesy of Wheels Up)

The recent filing isn't the only hint that Wheels Up flights are becoming more accessible. In the past, you needed a Wheels Up membership (which starts at $2,995 for new members) to book flights. However, earlier this year, the company quietly opened its mobile app to non-members, allowing anyone to book charter flights, albeit at potentially higher rates. Features like Shared Flights, empty-leg Hot Flights and Shuttle Flights are still reserved exclusively for members.

Wheels Up didn’t provide further information on the program when we reached out, but assuming this comes to fruition, this will open up a unique opportunity for many American Express cardholders. Since Delta is a 1:1 transfer partner of Amex Membership Rewards, this would mean that you'll be able to redeem points earned with cards like The Platinum Card® from American Express and the American Express® Gold Card for private jet flights. However, these redemptions likely won't come cheap. When Delta Private Jets redemptions were still possible, you needed to redeem a minimum of 2.5 million miles for a $25,000 in flight credit. This translated to a value of 1 cent per mile, which is just under TPG’s valuation of 1.1 cents apiece.

Related: You don’t need to spend $250,000 to fast-track Delta Diamond status

Other benefits of the Delta-Wheels Up partnership include the opportunity to fast-track Delta Gold, Platinum or top-tier Diamond Medallion status, earn Delta award miles upon paying annual dues, get discounts on select Delta fares and more.

Featured image by Getty Images
Editorial disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, airline or hotel chain, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of these entities.

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Best Marriott card for Business Owners
TPG Editor‘s Rating
Card Rating is based on the opinion of TPG‘s editors and is not influenced by the card issuer.
3 / 5
Go to review

Rewards Rate

6X6x points at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy® program.
4X4x points for purchases made at restaurants worldwide, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.
2X2x points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Intro Offer
    Limited Time Offer: Earn 100,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy Points after spending $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer expires 11/2/22.

    Earn 100,000 points
    75,000 points
  • Annual Fee

    $125
  • Recommended Credit
    Credit ranges are a variation of FICO© Score 8, one of many types of credit scores lenders may use when considering your credit card application.

    670-850
    Excellent/Good

Why We Chose It

The Marriott Bonvoy Business Amex is a stacked card with a rewards rate that will help you earn bonus points on everyday and business-related purchases. You'll earn 15 elite night credits each calendar year, and receive automatic Gold elite status. Finally, the free night award certificate with a redemption level of 35,000 points or less can get you hundreds of dollars in potential value each year.

Pros

  • 6x points on eligible purchases at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy program
  • 4x points at restaurants worldwide, U.S. gas stations, wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and U.S. shipping
  • 2x points on all other eligible purchases
  • Earn a free-night award each card renewal month (up to 35,000 points)
  • Receive 15 elite night credits to jump-start status
  • Transfer Marriott points to 40+ airlines

Cons

  • Airline points transfer ratios are poor
  • Must spend $60,000 in a year for second free-night award
  • Limited Time Offer: Earn 100,000 Bonus Marriott Bonvoy Points after spending $4,000 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer expires 11/2/22.
  • 6x points at hotels participating in the Marriott Bonvoy® program.
  • 4x points for purchases made at restaurants worldwide, at U.S. gas stations, on wireless telephone services purchased directly from U.S. service providers and on U.S. purchases for shipping.
  • 2x points on all other eligible purchases.
  • Receive a 7% discount off standard rates for reservations of standard guest rooms at hotels that participate in the Marriott Bonvoy program when you book directly. Terms and Conditions Apply.
  • Receive 1 Free Night Award every year after your Card renewal month. Plus, earn an additional Free Night Award after you spend $60K in purchases on your Card in a calendar year. Awards can be used for one night (redemption level at or under 35,000 Marriott Bonvoy® points) at hotels participating in Marriott Bonvoy®. Certain hotels have resort fees.
  • Enjoy Complimentary Marriott Bonvoy Gold Elite Status with your Card.
  • Terms apply.
  • See Rates & Fees