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Which Delta SkyMiles American Express Card is Best?

Last updated: October 04,2022
Originally Published: October 03,2022
by Jestan Mendame

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Delta Skymiles American Express cards can make life so much easier for Delta frequent flyers. From big miles bonuses, priority boarding, lounge access, free checked bags, to in-flight discounts, you’ll get a plethora of travel benefits that will give you an upgraded travel experience.

But with multiple options to choose from it can be confusing which one to pick. Each Delta card is different so we’ll break down what each card offers to help you make informed decisions on what the best Delta card is for your needs.


Read More: Premium Service & Lay Flat Seats? Here’s What The Delta One Experience Is Like!


At A Glance: Delta SkyMiles Credit Cards

As of this writing, Delta and American Express offers four personal delta-cobranded credit cards and three business co-branded credit cards. Whether you’re an occasional traveler, a business traveler, or a jet setter, there’s a card that would suit your needs.

There are four personal Delta SkyMiles American Express cards: Blue, Gold, Platinum, and Reserve. Each card comes with benefits that were specifically made for different types of travelers.
There are four personal Delta SkyMiles American Express cards: Blue, Gold, Platinum, and Reserve. Each card comes with benefits that were specifically made for different types of travelers (Image courtesy of Canva Pro from Milkos/Getty Images).

Delta Personal Cards

The four American Express Delta Skymiles cards offer a wide range of benefits for various types of travelers. We’ll discuss them one by one below.

Delta SkyMiles Blue Amex Card: Best Entry Level Delta Credit Card

Card Highlights:

 The Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card is a great entry-level card for people who want to earn Delta SkyMiles without having to pay an annual fee. New cardholders will earn 10,000 miles after spending $500 in the first 3 months of having the card.

Plus, you don’t even have to fly with Delta to continuously earn SkyMiles because the card lets you earn:

  • 2X SkyMiles per dollar spent on Delta purchases
  • 2X SkyMiles per dollar at restaurants worldwide, plus takeout and delivery in the U.S.
  • 1x SkyMiles on all other purchases

Not to mention, the card doesn’t incur foreign transaction fees for purchases made abroad. Normally, foreign fees can cost up to 3% per transaction.

Who Is The Ideal Cardholder For The Delta Blue?

The Amex Delta SkyMiles Blue card is best suited for people who just want to earn SkyMiles and don’t need those extra travel benefits.

And since the card doesn’t have annual fees, it’s also great for frequent flyers who aren’t loyal to Delta or any airline. The thing with co-branded airline cards is you’re usually forced to fly with the issuing airline so you can maximize the cards’ benefits.

If you’re someone who just wants to earn Delta SkyMiles but isn’t quite ready to take your business to Delta Airlines, the Blue card is for you!


Delta SkyMiles Gold Amex Card: Best Delta Card For Occasional Delta Flyers

Card Highlights:

The Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card is a step up from the Delta Blue card. New cardholders will earn 65,000 Bonus Miles after they spend $2,000 in purchases within the first 6 months. Offer ends on 11/9/22.

As for rewards, cardholders will earn miles at the rate of:

  • 2X Miles on Delta purchases (Delta purchases including flights booked on Delta.com, Sky Club membership or passes, Delta Vacations packages, upgrades, and inflight purchases)
  • Earn 2X Miles at restaurants worldwide, including takeout and delivery in the U.S., and at U.S. supermarkets
  • Earn 1X Mile on all other eligible purchases

The Amex Delta SkyMiles Gold card is still an entry-level card at best but it comes with more travel benefits like free checked bags, priority boarding, Delta flight credits, and a 20% discount on in-flight purchases. You also get a $100 credit after spending $10,000 within a calendar year.

Cardholders need to pay a $99 annual fee, but it’s quite reasonable for the benefits you’ll get in return.

Who Is The Ideal Cardholder For The Delta Gold?

The Delta Gold card is perfect for occasional travelers who love to earn SkyMiles but also want a few extra perks to make their travel experience a little bit better. And if you can maximize the card’s benefits to cover the card’s $99 annual fee, then this card is for you.

For example, Delta checked bag fees typically cost $30 per bag, and priority boarding costs $15 per flight, and flying 3 times a year would total $135 per year will already justify the $99 annual fee.

Try to look at your spending and flying habits first so you can decide if the Gold card is for you.


Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card: Best Delta Card Frequent Travelers

Card Highlights:

If you’re a frequent flyer who spends most of his/her time at airports, you’d want a card that allows you to bring a travel companion with you for free. Well, the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card might be the card for you because it offers an annual companion certificate that lets primary cardholders bring someone for free when flying on a domestic economy round-trip flight.

New cardholders will earn 80,000 Bonus Miles after they spend $4,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of card membership. Offer ends on 11/9/22.

On top of that, the card also comes with premium benefits like free checked bags, priority boarding, 20% statement credits on in-flight purchases, a TSA PreCheck or Global Entry application fee credit, and discounted access to Delta Sky Club lounge access.

The rewards are also higher, and cardholders can earn:

  • 3X miles on Delta purchases and direct hotel bookings
  • 2X miles on U.S. supermarket and restaurant purchases
  • 1X miles on everything else

If you can spend $25,000 on your card per year, you’ll earn 10,000 Medalion Qualification Miles, which can help you fast-track your way to Delta Medalion status (up to 2x per year, a total of 20,000 MQMs). In exchange for all of the premium benefits mentioned above, the Delta Platinum card comes charges an annual fee of $250.

Who Is The Ideal Cardholder For The Delta Platinum Card?

The Amex Delta SkyMiles Platinum card is designed for frequent flyers who want to travel comfortably at a very reasonable price. You’d want this card if you like having priority services at the airport and exclusive lounge access.

Getting your money’s worth isn’t that hard to do either. The companion certificate alone is more than enough to cover the $250 annual fee, which means that you’re getting the other benefits for free.


Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card: Best Delta Card To Get Delta Status

Card Highlights:

The Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card is a premium travel credit card for people who want the best travel perks available. New cardholders will earn 95,000 Bonus Miles after they spend $6,000 in purchases within the first 6 months of card membership. Offer ends on 11/9/22.

The card also offers free checked bags, priority boarding, 20% inflight credit, and a TSA PreCheck or Global Entry statement credit. However, it offers more premium benefits, access to complimentary upgrades, free access to Delta Sky Club lounges, free access to Amex Centurion Lounges, and an annual companion certificate.

Take note that the Delta Reserve card offers more premium benefits. This time, lounge access is completely free, and the annual companion certificate now applies to domestic First Class, Delta Comfort Plus, or domestic Main Cabin round-trip flights.

Cardholders will even have an easier way of reaching Medallion status. The card lets you earn 15,000 Medallion Qualification Miles after spending $30,000 in a calendar year (up to 4x per year, a total of 60,000 MQMs). And if you spend at least $25,000 on your card in a calendar year, Delta will give you a Medallion Qualification Dollar Waiver towards reaching Platinum, Gold, or Silver Medallion status.

The rewards are a bit underwhelming since it’s lesser than the Platinum card. Cardholders will only earn:

  • 3x Delta miles per dollar spent on Delta
  • 1 Delta mile per dollar spent on other eligible purchases

They took away the 3x miles earned on hotels and the 2x miles earned on supermarkets and restaurants, which is quite disappointing given the Delta Reserve card’s $550 annual fee.

However, the free SkyClub and Centurion lounge access make up for the card’s weak rewards rates. SkyClub membership fees cost $545 per year, while Centurion lounges are only exclusive to a few eligible cardholders.

Who Is The Ideal Cardholder For The Delta Reserve Card?

The Amex Delta Skymiles Reserve card is for the jet-setters who want nothing but the best and premium travel experience. You’re someone who flies at least 10x per year to different locations and frequently stays at airport lounges.

The Reserve card is also perfect for those who are chasing a Platinum Medallion status. Having a Platinum status doesn’t only give you Delta-specific perks, but it also gives you SkyTeam Elite Plus perks which you can use on all SkyTeam partner airlines.


Read More: Delta Clear Membership: Discounted Rates For SkyMiles Members


There are three types of Delta business credit cards: Delta Gold, Delta Platinum, and Delta Reserve business credit cards.
(Image courtesy of Canva Pro from zoranm/Getty Images Signature)

Delta Business Credit Cards

Unfortunately, Delta doesn’t offer a business version of the no-annual-fee Delta Blue card. There are only three types of Delta business credit cards you can choose from Delta Gold Business, Delta Platinum Business, and Delta Reserve Business.

Delta Gold Business Amex: Best For Small-Medium Business Owners Who Fly Delta

Card Highlights:

The Delta SkyMiles® Gold Business American Express Card is for business owners who occasionally fly with Delta. The card comes with a welcome bonus of 70,000 bonus miles after spending $3,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer ends on 11/9/22.

As for rewards, cardholders will SkyMiles at the rate of:

  • 2 miles per dollar on Delta purchases
  • 2 miles per dollar at restaurants
  • 2 miles per dollar on eligible U.S. purchases for shipping and advertising in select media
  • 1 mile per dollar on all other eligible purchases

Additionally, the Delta Gold business card also offers multiple travel benefits such as free checked bags, priority boarding, zero foreign transaction fees, in-flight discounts, priority boarding, and a $100 Delta flight credit after spending $10,000 in a year. The card does have a $99 annual fee, but it’s waived for the first year.

Who Is The Ideal Cardholder For The Delta Gold Business Card?

The Delta Gold Business card is for business owners who spend a lot of money on advertising, shipping, business dinners, and occasionally on Delta flights. Basically, business owners who want to earn SkyMiles but don’t want to be loyal to Delta.

Freelancers who don’t have registered businesses can also apply for the card as long they’re using it for business purposes.


Delta Platinum Business Amex: Best For Business Travelers Who Fly Delta

The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card is for business owners who have business trips multiple times a year.

New cardholders will earn 85,000 bonus miles after spending $4,000 within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer ends on 11/9/22. As for the rewards, cardholders will earn:

  • 3 miles per dollar spent on hotel and Delta purchases
  • 1.5 miles per dollar for purchases over $5,000 (up to 50,000 additional miles per calendar year)
  • 1 mile per dollar on all other purchases

For a $250 annual fee, the card comes with a plethora of travel benefits like free checked bags, zero foreign transaction fees, priority boarding, statement credit for Global Entry or TSA PreCheck, in-flight savings, Delta SkyClub access, and an annual companion certificate.

Cardholders will also earn 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after spending $25,000 in a calendar year (up to 2x per year, a total of 20,000 MQMs per year).

Who Is The Ideal Cardholder For The Delta Platinum Business Card?

The Platinum Business card doesn’t have flexible earning categories so your spending should be focused on Delta flights if you want to stack up on SkyMiles and redeem those miles for award travel on the Delta SkyMiles program.

Basically, the card is for business owners who spend most of their time traveling on business trips, conferences, or vacations. Flying at least six trips per year can justify the annual fee. Remember, Delta checked bags cost $30 per bag and priority boarding cost $15 per trip so multiplying that by 6 trips would be $270, which is more than enough to cover the $250 annual fee.


Delta Reserve Business Amex: Best for Delta Road Warriors

The Delta SkyMiles Reserve® Business American Express Card is for business owners or corporate representatives who make flying with Delta a regular part of their work routine.

The card offers a welcome bonus of 100,000 bonus miles after spending $6,000 within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Offer ends on 11/9/22.

Cardholders will also earn:

  • 3x miles per dollar on Delta purchases
  • 1 mile per dollar on non-Delta purchases (Will increase to 1.5 miles per dollar for the rest of the year after spending $150,000)

The card has a $545 annual fee so expect premium benefits like complimentary seat upgrades, priority boarding, free checked bags, and a $100 fee credit every for TSA PreCheck or Global Entry.

But the card’s main selling points are access to the Delta SkyClub and Amex Centurion Lounge and the annual companion certificate for domestic First, Comfort Plus, and Main Cabin roundtrip flights.

If you’re aiming for Medallion status, the card’s status boost can help you by letting you earn 15,000 MQMs after you spend $30,000 in purchases on the card in a year (up to four times each year).

Who Is The Ideal Cardholder For The Delta Reserve Business?

If you plan on getting the Delta Reserve Business card, you should be a business owner or a corporate representative who eats, sleeps, and breathes flying. You fly to different destinations every week and you spend most of your time sleeping at airport lounges. The card is basically for the ultimate Delta road warrior.

Bottomline

With 7 co-branded Delta cards to choose from, you’ll definitely find one that fits your needs. The key is to know how much you travel per year, what things you frequently spend on, and what travel benefits you typically use on a regular basis.

  • Earn 60,000 Bonus Points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
  • $50 Annual Ultimate Rewards hotel credit
  • 5x points on travel purchased through Chase Ultimate Rewards
  • 3x points on dining, online grocery purchases, and select streaming services
  • 2x points on other travel purchases

 

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