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Credit card companies try to introduce different products to appeal to different market segments. That’s why there have been six Delta SkyMiles credit cards up until now (Gold, Platinum, and Reserve), with annual fees ranging from $95 to $450. Even with such a varied portfolio, there are also lots of people who just want no annual fee cards, and issuers don’t want to overlook those people.
American Express is introducing the new no annual fee Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express, which will be available for applications starting tomorrow, September 7, 2017. The details are as follows:
- Earn 10,000 bonus miles after spending $500 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months.
- No Annual Fee.
- Earn 2 miles per dollar at US restaurants.
- Earn 2 miles per dollar spent on purchases made directly with Delta. Earn 1 mile on every eligible dollar spent on purchases.
- Receive a 20% savings in the form of a statement credit after you use your Card on eligible Delta in-flight purchases of food, beverages, and audio headsets.
- Terms Apply.
- See Rates & Fees
Here’s what executives from American Express and Delta have to say about the card:
“We purposefully built this Card with the new or casual traveler in mind. This Card delivers incredible value to those who want to earn miles in an accelerated way while enjoying the peace of mind that their miles won’t expire – all without paying an annual fee,” said Sandeep Dube, Delta’s Vice President – Customer Engagement and Loyalty. “With more than a third of these consumers saying dining is their top choice for spending, earning two miles per dollar spent at U.S. restaurants is an appealing way to earn more miles.”
“Over the last two decades, we’ve worked closely alongside our long-standing partner, Delta, to design cards for all types of travelers,” said Eva Reda, Executive Vice President, Consumer Partnerships and Product Development, American Express. “Today, we’re excited to unveil the newest Card in our portfolio, the Blue Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express, which helps our newest travelers fuel and fund their travel with one of their biggest passions, dining.”
I find this to be an interesting offering. Despite being a no annual fee card, it offers a welcome bonus and two miles per dollar spent at U.S. restaurants. There’s no denying that no annual fee cards nowadays are much better than they used to be. So it’s not a bad offering.
However, the way I see it, you’re always better off getting a card that earns transferable points when possible. The main benefit of holding onto an airline credit card is if you get value out of priority boarding and a free checked bag. This card doesn’t offer either of those, though it does offer 20% savings on eligible in-flight purchases.
If you want a no annual fee credit card that will earn Delta SkyMiles, I still think The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express is an all around better option. It offers 2x points at U.S. supermarkets, on up to $6,000 per year in purchases. On top of that, it offers 20% more points on all purchases when you make at least 20 purchases per billing cycle. In other words, the card earns 1.2x Membership Rewards points on everyday spend, and 2.4x points on U.S. supermarket spend, assuming you make at least 20 purchases per billing cycle. Most importantly, the points earned on this card have a lot more flexibility.
Alternatively, if you want a no annual fee card with a consistently generous return, it’s tough to beat something like the Citi® Double Cash Card, which offers unlimited 1% cash back when you buy, plus an additional 1% as you pay for those purchases. Given that SkyMiles seem to be worth about a penny each, you might as well take a return that’s consistently twice as much after paying for purchases.
While it might not be the best option for the savvy traveler, it’s nice to see an airline introducing a no annual fee credit card. People often want to have a card from a brand they like, and lots of people like Delta. So this should open up a whole new market segment for them. For a no annual fee card, theBlue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express is more generous than I was expecting.
So this is something to be aware of, though for most of you, it’s probably not a card that’s worth putting much spend on.
What do you make of Delta’s new no annual fee credit card?