If you’re a frequent traveler looking to save big on flights, I’ve got great news.
American Express is now offering its Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card, and it’s arguably the most generous travel rewards card to date.
About The AMEX Gold Delta SkyMiles Card
As the name of the card implies, the travel rewards mainly apply to Delta Airlines flights (or those of other SkyTeam Alliance partners). But it also works in tandem with your general membership to Delta’s SkyMiles Frequent Flyer program.
As a SkyMiles program member, you can earn 5 miles for every dollar you spend with Delta Airlines. You can then redeem those miles to take trips at reduced costs or entirely for free if you’ve racked up enough miles.
For example, you can book a trip with just your saved up miles, or a mixture of miles and cash payment. It's completely up to you. But the great thing is that these miles will never expire. That means you can keep them for years and use them for that special trip you always wanted.
Travelling Was Never So Rewarding
While the SkyMiles program can be a great way to rake in those flyer miles, the American Express Gold Delta SkyMiles credit card goes even further in offering even more rewards on top of your SkyMiles membership.
With your SkyMiles card, you'll earn 2 miles for every dollar spent with Delta, and 1 mile for every dollar spent on non-Delta purchases. Putting it all together, that means every dollar you spend actually gives you a minimum of 7 miles.
Now, if you’re the sort of person that books flights only a couple times a year, those miles may not mean much to you. But if you’re a frequent traveler, this translates into huge savings over the long term – possibly hundreds if not thousands of dollars.
And if that wasn't awesome enough, you’re going to love their sign-on bonus.
If you spend $1,000 or more in purchases within the first 3 months of opening an account, you'll receive 30,000 bonus miles. Those purchases can be on anything, not just Delta flights.
That's like paying just slightly more than $0.03 per mile – an amazing bargain!
Cardholder Perks and Other Rewards
As a cardholder, you’ll also have access to special perks like priority boarding that’ll get you seated on your flight faster, free check-ins for your first bag on all Delta flights, and early access to ticket presales for live performances, music tours and exclusive members-only events in your city.
In addition, Delta does not have blackout dates for using your miles. That means you can book flights whenever seating is available. However, some Delta flights offer limited awards seating. If your flight does offer it, make sure to book your seating as early as possible.
Delta has three categories of traveling days to use your miles on: saver, peak and standard. The best way to get the most bang for your buck and ensure your miles take you farther is to book flights on saver days.
You can also spend your miles on one-way trips, which not many reward programs let you do. This is convenient because now only does it give you the travelling flexibility, but can even save you money as sometimes it’s cheaper to buy two one-way tickets instead of one round trip ticket.
Nothing In Life Is Completely Free
You heard the rewards, but now let’s get into the costs.
Your first year’s annual fee is waived, but afterward you’ll be hit with its standard annual fee of $95. Considering that some credit cards on the market offer $0 in annual fees, some may feel that that’s a lot to pay just be a cardholder.
If you rarely fly, the fees simply won’t make sense. It’s only worth it if you plan on earning more in rewards, which means you need to be a fairly frequent flyer.
As for the interest rate, it’s common for rewards cards to offer an introductory rate of 0% for the first six months to a year. But this card doesn’t. You’ll be hit with a variable APR of 15.99% and 24.99% as soon you open an account.
If you already have a rewards card and wish to transfer your balance to the Gold Delta SkyMiles card, you’ll have to pay the greater of $5 or 3% of the transferred balance.
Making a late payment can also incur a penalty fee as high as $37 and can hike up your APR to a whopping 29.49% for at least six months.
In short, be sure that you’re in proper financial shape before applying for this credit card. The late fees and the high interest can undo the savings you’ll earn if you’re not careful.
Overall, the Gold Delta SkyMiles credit card is an absolute must have if you’re already a dedicated customer of Delta Airlines. Even for non-loyal flyers like myself, the rewards are enticing enough for me to give it some serious thought.
However, if you're not a frequent Delta Airlines customer, or if you happen to not like Delta for any reason, then this card is not for you.