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Through November 8, 2017, we’re seeing increased sign-up bonuses on Delta’s co-branded American Express cards. The basic details of these offers are as follows:
- The Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express & Gold Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American Express are each offering 50,000 SkyMiles after spending $2,000 within three months, plus 10,000 additional SkyMiles after spending an additional $1,000 within the first six months, plus a $50 statement credit after making a Delta purchase within the first three months; the cards have $95 annual fees, which are waived for the first year
- The Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express & Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American Express are each offering 70,000 SkyMiles plus 10,000 Medallion Qualifying Miles after spending $3,000 within three months, plus a $100 statement credit after making a Delta purchase within the first three months; the cards have $195 annual fees
We’ve never seen bigger sign-up bonuses on these cards, and even though I consider SkyMiles to be less valuable than they used to be, I still think these bonuses are most definitely worth taking advantage of. So in this post I wanted to crunch the numbers on how much I think these offers are worth:
How much are Delta SkyMiles worth?
Everyone is going to value mileage currencies differently. As far as SkyMiles go, Delta is certainly going in the direction of trying to make their miles as close to being a revenue based currency as possible. That’s to say that it’s getting tougher and tougher to get outsized value from SkyMiles.
That being said, at an absolute minimum you can redeem SkyMiles for a cent each towards the cost of a ticket, assuming you have one of their co-branded credit cards. So that’s basically the floor value of SkyMiles.
However, there are also plenty of opportunities to get more value out of SkyMiles than that. Delta surprisingly has pretty good award availability on their own flights nowadays, at least compared to American AAdvantage. Personally I value SkyMiles at around 1.2 cents each, given the opportunities to redeem for premium cabins on international flights. For example, being able to redeem 80,000 SkyMiles for a Delta One ticket between the US and Asia continues to be a very good deal.
Also, in many ways SkyMiles are almost becoming like a British Airways Avios style currency, where they’re especially useful for shorthaul flights. For example, being able to redeem just 6,000 SkyMiles for a one-way ticket from Los Angeles to Seattle is a solid deal. A 60,000-70,000 mile sign-up bonus can potentially get you a lot of domestic flights.
So personally I’m going to say that I think SkyMiles are worth 1.2 cents each, though everyone can apply their own numbers to this.
How much is the Gold Delta Amex sign-up bonus worth?
- You earn 60,000 SkyMiles upon completing minimum spend
- You get a $50 statement credit after making a Delta purchase within the first year
- The $95 annual fee is waived for the first year
I value the 60,000 SkyMiles at $720, and then I value the $50 statement credit roughly at face value, given that you can buy a Delta gift card for that amount, and that would trigger the credit.
I value this sign-up bonus at $770.
How much is the Platinum Delta Amex sign-up bonus worth?
- You earn 70,000 SkyMiles upon completing minimum spend
- You earn 10,000 MQMs upon completing minimum spend
- You get a $100 statement credit after making a Delta purchase within the first year
- There’s a $195 annual fee
I value the 70,000 SkyMiles at $840, and then I value the $100 statement credit roughly at face value, given that you can buy a Delta gift card for that amount, and that would trigger the credit. Then you subtract the $195 annual fee.
I value this sign-up bonus at $745. What that doesn’t account for is the value of the MQMs. For some, the MQMs will be incredibly valuable, while for others they’ll be worthless, since it all depends on whether you’re going for status with Delta or not.
These increased sign-up bonuses on Delta’s co-branded credit cards are fantastic, and even accounting for SkyMiles being less valuable than in the past, they’re still worth taking advantage of. Keep in mind that you’re eligible for the welcome bonuses on each of these cards once, so you can potentially pick up several of these cards. Personally I value the sign-up bonuses at $745-770, though even if you value SkyMiles at only a penny each, they’re worth $605-650.