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Delta Gold SkyMiles Review: Tons of Benefits, and a Super Easy Way to Redeem Miles

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Delta Gold SkyMiles Review: Tons of Benefits, and a Super Easy Way to Redeem Miles

Andrew WanDelta Gold SkyMiles Review: Tons of Benefits, and a Super Easy Way to Redeem MilesMillion Mile Secrets Team

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INSIDER SECRET: This card (and other Amex Delta cards) unlocks the ability to redeem using Delta Pay With Miles at a rate of 1 cent per mile.

If you frequently fly Delta, you should consider applying for the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express. The card comes packed with perks that can save you time and money, like free checked bags and priority boarding.

You can apply for the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express here. Here’s our Gold Delta SkyMiles credit card review.

The Gold Delta SkyMiles credit card limited-time welcome bonus will help you get that next dream trip in the bucket. (Photo by Tananyaa Pithi/Shutterstock)

I’ll go through the card’s perks in greater detail so you can see if it is the right card for you!

Delta Gold SkyMiles Bonus

Apply Here: Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express

The Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express, is currently offering 30,000 Delta miles after spending $1,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening. Plus, you’ll earn a $50 statement credit for making a Delta purchase within the same time frame.

And because the card’s $95 annual fee is waived for the first year (See Rates & Fees), you can try out the card to see if it fits your travel and spending habits.

With the card’s Pay With Miles perk, the welcome bonus is easily worth $300 because each mile is worth 1 cent when you use them this way. But depending on how you redeem your Delta miles, you could get much more value.

For example, I was able to find the following award flights on the Delta website:

  • 4,000 Delta miles + ~$6 fees for a one-way short-haul flight from Los Angeles to San Francisco
  • 7,500 Delta miles + ~$6 fees for a one-way medium-haul flight from Los Angeles to Dallas
  • 11,000 Delta miles + ~$6 fees for a one-way long-haul flight from Los Angeles to New York

After meeting the minimum spending requirement to earn the intro bonus, you’ll have at least 31,000 Delta miles. And Delta has regular award sales. In the past these deals have included 30,000 miles round-trip to Hong Kong, 50,000 miles round-trip to Australia and 30,000 miles round-trip to Europe.

If you want to learn more about Delta’s award sales, then subscribe to our newsletter.

Benefits and Perks of the Delta Gold SkyMiles Credit Card

Free Checked Bag

With the Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express, the primary cardholder and up to eight others traveling on the same reservation will enjoy one free checked bag each. With baggage fees starting at $30 per bag, this could add up to some serious savings.

For instance, a round-trip flight for yourself and eight others on the same itinerary could mean a total of $540 in baggage fees. But with the free checked bag perk on the Amex Gold Delta SkyMiles card, those fees will be waived.

Amex Gold Delta SkyMiles card members get a free checked bag for themselves and eight additional people who are flying with them on the same itinerary. (Photo by Romeo Pj/Shutterstock)

20% Discount on Inflight Purchases

If you use your card on certain inflight purchases, you’ll receive a credit of 20% off the original purchase price on your Amex statement within six to eight weeks after the transaction is posted to your account.

Not all inflight purchases will qualify for this discount, but eligible items typically include inflight purchases of food, beverages, movies, video games and audio headsets.

The purchase must be made entirely with the card to receive this benefit.

Priority Boarding

If you want more time to settle in to your seat without feeling rushed, you’ll be happy to hear Amex Gold Delta SkyMiles cardholders receive complimentary priority boarding for the card member and up to eight additional people flying on the same itinerary.

So you’ll be able to board ahead of the crowds. Just make sure to include your Delta frequent flyer number on your reservation!

Discount on Delta SkyClub Access

Late last year, Delta stopped selling single visit passes for their Sky Club lounges. But Amex Delta Gold cardholders still have the option to purchase lounge passes for themselves and two guests or their spouse and children under 21 years old.

If you spend a lot of time at the airport or happen to have a long layover, having airport lounge access can be very helpful as you’ll have a quiet place to relax. And in many cases, you’ll be able to enjoy food and drinks until the time of your flight!

The day passes cost $29 per person, but if you’ve got a long layover it could be well worth it. In order to be eligible for day passes you’ll need to be traveling on a Delta flight that same day.

Ability to Pay With Miles for Flights

The Amex Delta Gold card unlocks the ability to use the Pay with Miles feature. This allows you to purchase Delta flights with Delta miles at a rate of 1 cent per mile. So the 30,000-mile bonus you can earn with this card is worth no less than $300 in Delta flights.

While you can generally get more value out of your points if you use them to book award flights, this is a nice option to have. With it, you won’t have to worry about finding the cheapest Delta low-level awards on the dates you want to fly. And if you can find a good fare sale you might be able to use fewer miles with Pay with Miles than if you booked an award ticket.

Just note, this perk only applies to Delta flights, not flights with partner airlines.

Read our full guide on the Delta Pay with Miles feature here.

Earn Delta Elite Status More Easily

To earn Delta elite status you need to earn a certain amount of:

  • Medallion® Qualification Dollars (MQDs), and;
  • Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) or Medallion® Qualification Segments (MQSs)

Here is what you’ll need to earn to qualify for each tier of Delta elite status:

With the Amex Delta Gold card, you can earn an MQD waiver for Silver, Gold or Platinum status if you spend $25,000 in eligible purchases on the card in the qualification year.

You can even earn an MQD waiver for Diamond status, but you’ll need to spend a whopping $250,000 in eligible purchases in the qualification year.

So if the MQD requirement is the only thing standing between you and Delta elite status, this card can help you get there.

Extended Warranty

When you make an eligible purchase with the card, Amex will extend the original manufacturer’s warranty up to two additional years on eligible warranties of five years or less.  That’s a nice savings if you’d otherwise pay for an extended warranty.

Return Protection

We all make mistakes sometimes in purchasing the wrong item.  Fortunately, Amex Gold Delta SkyMiles card members are protected with return protection on certain eligible purchases.

If you try to return an eligible item within 90 days of the date of purchase and the merchant will not take it back, you may be refunded the full purchase price, up to $300 per item and a maximum of $1,000 per year.

ShopRunner Membership

With ShopRunner membership, you’ll get free, unlimited two-day shipping at a wide selection of stores. Membership normally costs $79 per year, but you’ll receive this membership at no additional cost as an Amex Gold Delta SkyMiles card member.

Amex Offers

Amex Offers are targeted deals offering statement credits or bonus points for everyday purchases. Some examples of deals might be $10 off a $50 purchase at a certain store, or receive 5,000 bonus Amex Membership Rewards points for purchasing something from a website.

Team member Jasmin loves using Amex Offers to stock up on household products and snacks for her kids, especially whenever the offers for Boxed.com appear.

Team member Meghan has also been able to take advantage of some of these discounts, even turning some of them into a profit.

Is the Delta Gold SkyMiles Card Worth the Annual Fee?

For an annual fee of $95 (which is waived for the first year), it’s easy to come out ahead of the annual fee on this card even if you only fly Delta a handful of times each year. The welcome bonus, for instance, is easily worth at least $600. And you can get a significant amount of added value from perks such as free checked bags, priority boarding, discounted Delta SkyClub lounge access and more.

Delta charges $30 per checked bag each direction for flights in the US and Canada. That’s $60 round-trip per person. If you’ve got a family of four those fees can really add up.

But the AMEX Delta Gold card will get the primary cardholder and up to eight companions traveling on the same reservation their first standard checked bag free. With this perk, you could make up for the annual fee after just a single trip.

Other Delta cards, like the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express ($195 annual fee) (see rates & fees) and Delta Reserve® Credit Card from American Express ($450 annual fee) (see rates & fees) also come with this free baggage perk. But they have much higher annual fees.

Delta no longer has an award chart. So it’s trickier to tell how much your next award flight will cost. This can be a big problem if you don’t have a flexible schedule that allows you to pick and choose the best deals.

But if you have an eligible Amex Delta credit card you can pay for Delta flights with miles through their Pay with Miles feature. With this tool, your Delta miles are worth 1 cent each toward Delta flights. That’s likely less than what they would be worth if you booked an award flight outright, but when using Pay with Miles you can book any available seat.

And if you don’t have enough miles to cover the flight that’s not a problem. You can pay for just part of a flight as long as you’re using at least 5,000 Delta miles. With award flights, it’s all or nothing. This is helpful if you’ve got a few extra miles sitting unused in your Delta account. The one drawback to Pay with Miles is that you have to pay in 5,000-mile increments.

Based on reports online, you should have a good chance of being approved for this card even with fair credit. For instance, I was able to find a few reports of people being approved with a credit score as low as 630.

Amex has a once per lifetime rule when it comes to earning the welcome bonus on a card. This means that no matter how long ago you previously earned the welcome bonus on the Amex Gold Delta SkyMiles card, you won’t be eligible to receive an intro bonus a second time.

How to Earn Miles with the Delta Gold SkyMiles Credit Card

With the Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express, you’ll earn:

  • 2 miles per dollar spent with Delta
  • 1 mile per dollar spent on everything else
  • Terms apply

You can easily redeem Delta miles at a value of 1 cent each thanks to Pay With Miles. But because Delta miles can be worth much more depending on how you use them, it’s not unheard of to get more than double that in value by booking award flights directly through the Delta website.

Easily book paid flights with Delta Pay With Miles, where your miles are worth 1 cent each. (Photo by Nieuwland Photography/Shutterstock)

Redeeming Your Delta Miles

The easiest way to redeem your miles is with Pay With Miles. But to get even more value out of your miles, you’ll want to book award flights directly with Delta.

Delta no longer publishes an award chart, but it is still possible to find amazing deals on award flights. To look up the cost of an award flight, you’ll have to look up a specific route and date. But you can find some great deals like the ones mentioned above.

You can also book award flights on partner airlines, like Air France and KLM.

Read our full guide on How to use Delta Miles here.

Does the Delta Gold SkyMiles Card Have a Foreign Transaction Fee?

No. (See Rates & Fees)

Customer Support for the Delta Gold SkyMiles Card

If you ever run into issues with your account, you can contact Amex either by phone, or through their online chat function.

Personally, I have always been blown away by the level of service I have received from Amex. When I had a fraudulent charge on my account a few years ago, it took all but just a few minutes to have the issue resolved. It was quick and painless! I was not required to pay the disputed charge, and I was off the phone in a matter of minutes.

And when I needed to file an extended warranty claim for a malfunctioning keyboard on my laptop, the process could not have been easier. I submitted a copy of the repair invoice to Amex, and received reimbursement within a matter of weeks.

Credit Cards Similar to the Delta Gold SkyMiles Card

If the Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express isn’t quite right for you, there are a few other Delta credit cards that you could consider:

Both cards offer perks for those who fly on Delta.

The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express comes with a higher annual fee of $195 (See Rates & Fees), but offers a few perks not found on the Amex Gold Delta SkyMiles card. You’ll receive a domestic main cabin round-trip companion certificate each year upon renewal of your card, and with Delta SkyMiles Miles Boost, you can earn 10,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $25,000 or more in eligible purchases on the Card in a calendar year.

And you can earn an additional 10,000 bonus miles and 10,000 MQMs after you spend $50,000 in eligible purchases on the Card in a calendar year.

If you’re looking for the most elite card member experience, the Delta Reserve® Credit Card from American Express is another option. With an annual fee of $450 (See Rates & Fees), you’ll enjoy perks like complimentary Delta SkyClub access, upgrade priority, a domestic first-class or main-cabin round-trip companion certificate upon renewal of your card and more.

Bottom Line

With an annual fee of $95 that’s waived for the first year, and a welcome bonus potentially worth hundreds of dollars, the Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express is definitely worth considering, even if you fly Delta a handful of times throughout the year.

You’ll earn a welcome bonus of 30,000 Delta miles after spending $1,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening, and a $50 statement credit for making a Delta purchase within the same time frame.

As a card member, you’ll receive access to benefits that will save you time and money at the airport. These benefits include priority boarding, free checked bags, discounted Delta SkyClub lounge access, discounts on certain in-flight purchases, ShopRunner membership, Amex Offers and more.

And many people should have a good chance of approval with this card, as I was able to find reports online of people being approved with a credit score as low as 630.

You can apply for the Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express here.

For rates and fees of the Gold Delta SkyMiles Card please click here.
For rates and fees of the Platinum Delta SkyMiles Card, please click here.
For rates and fees of the Delta Reserve Card, please click here.

Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

  • Earn 30,000 Bonus Miles after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases within your first 3 months and a $50 Statement Credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months.
  • Earn 2 miles for every dollar spent on eligible purchases made directly with Delta. Earn one mile for every eligible dollar you spend on other purchases.
  • Check your first bag free on Delta flights – that’s a savings of up to $240 per round trip for a family of four.
  • Settle into your seat sooner with Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding.
  • Enjoy a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees
Terms Apply | Rates & Fees

More Info

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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