Reviewed: Platinum Delta SkyMiles by American Express
The Platinum Delta Skymiles American Express card might just be the travel card for you. If you love travel perks, this card has plenty to offer to make it worth your while. This review breaks down every detail so you can make an informed decision.
Frequent travelers benefit most from cards that yield miles, and few cards are quite as useful as the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card.
The card comes with a host of different benefits.
Despite being an American Express card, which often gets a bad rap for less representation, the Delta SkyMiles card can be used to net huge amounts of miles for relatively little effort.
If you travel for business a lot or if you just want to make the most of your card via travel hacking, the SkyMiles is a great card to look into.
What is the Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card?
There are travel reward cards, and then there is the Platinum Delta SkyMiles Card.
This card is a high-yield travel rewards card aimed specifically at Delta flyers. Not only does it help them attain higher loyalty rewards more easily, but it makes it easy to maintain their current loyalty status for the year to come.
Despite being a travel rewards card, the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card is well balanced and serves all the functionality of a standard credit card—no funky spending habits required.
This card is clearly made for those that fly Delta a lot, whether for business or pleasure.
That said, it likely benefits business travelers a bit more than leisure travelers simply because of the nature of the card.
The high yearly cost can make it difficult to recoup your investments unless you spend quite a bit on travel, something that most leisure travelers attempt to avoid.
People that fly Delta for rewards programs (or even those that live in Atlanta, Delta's home hub) will get much more out of this card than someone that prefers a different airline.
It's kind of in the name—why get this card if you aren't a fan of Delta?
The Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card is issued through American Express Bank.
Rates and Fees
Understanding the rates and fees of a credit card is one of the most important aspects of determining whether the card is right for you.
High fees mean you'll need to spend more to make your rewards worthwhile.
Here is a breakdown of all the rates and fees you may encounter with the SkyMiles credit card.
The purchase APR ranges from 16.74% to 25.74% based on your creditworthiness, but this rate can also vary based on the Prime Rate. The balance transfer APR is the same as the purchase APR and subject to the same Prime Rate variance.
If you take out a cash advance, the interest rate is 26.24%, but also subject to the Prime Rate. If you miss a payment and become subject to a penalty APR, you'll see a rate of 29.99% on any unpaid amounts.
The main sticking point for this card is the annual fee. At $195 per year, it's quite high and it requires regular use to make the most out of the card without actually losing money.
Foreign Transaction Fees
As with any great travel rewards card, there are no foreign transaction fees when using the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card.
The remaining fees fall well within the market average. When you initiate a balance transfer, you'll pay either $5 or 3% of the amount transferred, whichever is greater.
The same amount applies to cash advances. If you make a late payment, the fee can be as much as $38, and there is also a $38 fee for a returned payment.
The bright side is that there are no fees for going over your limit.
The credit limit on this card varies from person to person and is based on your income, credit score, and a host of other factors.
Some cardholders report being approved and granted a limit as high as $12,000. Others received much lower credit scores.
The amount you receive will be based on your individual situation.
How to Increase Your Limit
If you have had the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card for a while and have made regular, on-time payments but have not received a credit limit upgrade, call the customer service number on the back of the card and request one.
If you are denied, ask the customer service representative what you can do to increase your limit.
Most credit card companies are willing to work with you to give you a higher limit if you aren't a financial risk to the company.
Now onto the part where the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card truly excels—its rewards program.
This card yields high value rewards to cardholders, as well as a number of secondary benefits that, in our opinion, make it well worth the high annual cost. Check these out.
- Earn 1 mile per dollar on everything from groceries to gas
- Earn 2 miles per dollar spent on Delta purchases
- Get your first bag checked for free on Delta flights
- No foreign transaction fees, no matter where you go
- One free Domestic Main Cabin round-trip ticket for your companion (Coach ticket)
- Earn 10,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles after you spend $25,000 on eligible purchases within a calendar year
- Earn 35,000 bonus miles if you spend $1,000 or more within the first three months of opening your card
- Earn a $100 statement credit if you make a Delta purchase within the first three months
That's a lot of rewards—plus, there's no limit to how much you can earn. You can redeem your miles towards travel with Delta and more than 15 other partners.
If you're a frequent traveler, the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card offers benefits that make up for the yearly cost on their own.
If you want to join Delta Sky Club, you'll receive a discounted rate.
You and two friends can enjoy complimentary snacks, beverages, Wi-Fi access, television, and more for just $29 per person if you charge the fee to your Delta SkyMiles card.
If you make any purchases in-flight, such as food, beverages, or audio headsets, you can receive 20% savings via a statement credit.
Just make sure the purchase is eligible; not all in-flight purchases qualify for these savings.
Like many other travel rewards cards, the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card gives you car rental insurance that protects against loss and damage.
Just make sure to use your card to reserve and pay for the vehicle rental, but decline the collision damage waiver.
There are exceptions to this, so make sure to read the fine print, especially if you are outside the United States.
Frequent travelers are familiar with misplaced luggage - it's one of the worst things that can happen while traveling and can put a major dampener on your trip.
The Baggage Insurance Plan covers you for any eligible lost, damaged, or stolen baggage if you purchase the entire fare on your card.
Coverage maxes out at $1,250 for carry-on baggage and $500 for checked baggage.
You'll also receive access to the Global Assist Hotline.
When you're more than 100 miles from home, you'll have 24/7 access to medical, legal, and other emergency coordination and assistance services.
However, you are responsible for paying the fees of any third-party services you use.
Shopping and Entertainment
No matter your personal shopping habits, these should make your ears perk up.
One big benefit of the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card is the Extended Warranty. This warranty matches your purchases for up to one additional year when you use your American Express card to make the purchase.
Another benefit is the Return Protection feature:
If you want to return an item within 90 days of purchase but the seller won't accept it, you may be eligible for a refund. This is limited to $300 per item and up to $1,000 per calendar year.
Theft and accidental damage are also covered under Purchase Protection. This is limited to within 90 days of the purchase of the item and $1,000 per occurrence, up to $50,000 per calendar year.
On a more members-only level, you'll receive access to ticket presales and Card Member-only events near you.
You're protected against fraudulent charges. If you find a charge on your report that you don't remember making or that you suspect is wrong, call customer service.
Pros and Cons
No matter how great a card may seem, there are always certain areas where it can be improved—and certain areas where it excels over the competition.
Check out the pros and cons for the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card.
- There are no foreign transaction fees.
- You have payment flexibility if you carry your balance from one month to another.
- This card is great for frequent Delta flyers.
- You'll receive 20% off on all in-flight purchases.
- There is an annual membership fee of $195.
- You need an excellent credit score in order to be approved.
Take a look at what other customers have to say about the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card.
"I have had this card for several years and have liked it. Since I do a fair amount of flying, the frequent flyer miles are a huge bonus for me. I use this card for every purchase I make. At the end of the month I pay it off in full and reap the miles! For the downsides, I don't like the high annual fee. Some places still don't accept American Express so that can make certain purchases difficult. This might not be the best card for young people but if you can swing the annual fee and would use it enough to make the miles worthwhile, I highly recommend getting this card."
- Andrew Freeman
"Don't sign up for Platinum Delta AMEX. I signed up for the Companion Ticket benefit only to find out there are loopholes. You have to be a member for over a year to use it and then you paying $200 to be a member, then it is still difficult to use. Card isn't worth the cost of the membership when you take away the companion fare, sounds good in theory but not practically."
- William Sizemore
Most Common Complaints
By far the most common complaint was the "Companion Ticket" benefit.
Many users found it difficult to use, and many said the restrictions placed on its eligibility all but made the benefit useless.
With such a high annual fee, users felt the companion ticket should be easier to obtain without jumping through hoops.
Applying and Managing Your Account
American Express makes it easy to apply for the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card. You can apply online via American Express or Delta. It asks for the following information:
- First name
- Last name
- Email address
- Social security number
- Date of birth
- Phone number
- Home address
- Total annual income
- Non-taxable annual income
- Income source
- SkyMiles enrollment status
- Delta SkyMiles number
Once you click "continue," you may be asked for more information beyond this.
After you complete the application, you can receive a decision in as little as 30 seconds—although you should be prepared for it to possibly take longer.
A card with high-yield rewards usually has stringent eligibility requirements. The first is that a cardholder must be 18 years of age or older.
The second is that you must have an excellent credit rating in order to qualify, as is the norm for most rewards cards.
Although specific requirements beyond this are not listed, it is safe to assume you'll need to have a decent income and the ability to pay your credit card bill in full each month in order to qualify.
Managing Your Online Account
Managing your account online grants a number of different features.
Not only are you able to see all the points you've earned, pay your bill, and update your personal information, but you also gain access to the benefits that come with the card.
You'll be able to see what shopping and entertainment benefits are available to you, reach out to customer service to dispute credit card charges, check out a year-end summary, and much more.
Once you have been approved for your Platinum Delta SkyMiles card, you can expect to receive it within five to seven business days.
If you do not receive an instant decision, you will be provided with a link. This link will allow you to check the status of your credit card application.
Not sure about how to pay your credit card bill? Here's how.
There is no set minimum payment—the amount you owe will be based on your current balance.
If you have missed a payment in the past, you will also own any outstanding payments, additional interest fees, and other charges you may have accrued.
Late Payment Repercussions
If you make a late payment, you'll be charged a late fee of up to $38 and the penalty APR will be applied to your account for up to six months.
The penalty APR is 29.99%, and will continue until you have made six months of on-time payments.
Where and How to Make Payments
You can make payments online via your account, through the mobile app, or by check or money order. If you choose to pay via check or money order, mail your payment to this address with the account number on the front of your payment:
First Class Mail
P.O. Box 650448
Dallas, TX 75265-0448
Attn: Express Mail Remittance Processing
1200 W 7th St, L2-200
Los Angeles, CA 90017
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I cancel my card?
The easiest way to cancel your American Express card is to access the "Cancel Card Enrollment" page from your online account. Once here, you can choose to shut down your card with ease.
What can I use my credit card for?
You can use your Platinum Delta SkyMiles card for everything from grocery shopping to paying for travel expenses—in short, everything you might use a credit card for. The difference is that you receive rewards and miles as a result.
Where and what stores can I use my credit card?
You can use your Platinum Delta SkyMiles card anywhere American Express is accepted.
How long does it take American Express to refund my credit card?
It takes up to seven days for a merchant refund to be processed.
Which other airlines can I use my SkyMiles with?
Delta partners with a number of other airlines through which you can redeem your SkyMiles, including:
- Air France
- China Eastern
- Jet Airways
- Virgin Atlantic
- Virgin Australia
- Air Europa
- Kenya Airways
- Middle East Airlines
- Aerolineas Argentinas
- China Airlines
- China Southern
- Garuda Indonesia
- Vietnam Airlines
- Xiamen Airlines
- Great Lakes Airlines
- Korean Air
What are Medallion Qualifications Miles and how can I benefit from it?
SkyMiles differ from Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs). While SkyMiles can be redeemed for points and discounts on airline tickets, they will not help you reach loyalty status with Delta. MQMs will. MQMs are usually thought of as "butt in seat" miles—in other words, miles you actually flew. When you receive MQM rewards, you don't have to fly as much to qualify for loyalty status.
What is the annual miles boost?
If you spend $25,000 or more on eligible purchases within a single calendar year, you'll receive 10,000 bonus miles as well as 10,000 MQMs. If you spend another $25,000 (for a total of $50,000 within a calendar year), you'll receive an additional 10,000 miles and 10,000 MQMs.
How do I reach the silver, gold, platinum, or diamond medallion?
Delta's Medallion Program is broken into four levels: Silver, Gold, Platinum, and Diamond.
To reach Silver status, you'll need to earn 25,000 MQMs or 30 MQS (Medallion Qualification Segments.) You'll also need to spend $3,000 on flights (called MQDs, or Medallion Qualification Dollars) or qualify for the Medallion Qualification Waiver.
To reach Gold status, you'll need to earn 50,000 MQMs or 60 MQSs and spend $6,000 on flights.
To reach Platinum status, you'll need to earn 75,000 MQMs or 100 MQSs and spend $9,000 on flights.
To reach Diamond status, you'll need to earn 125,000 MQMs or 140 MQSs and spend $15,000 on flights.
Can I check my first bag for free in every flight with Delta or is it just a one-time thing?
As part of owning the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card, your first checked bag is free on every flight.
Can I get priority boarding with this card?
Cardholders earn Zone 1 priority boarding on Delta flights. Up to nine passengers per reservation can use this benefit.
Can I get free access to the Delta Sky Club lounge with this card?
While you won't receive free access, you and up to two guests can receive discounted access to the Delta Sky Club. The rate is $29 per person.
What is the complimentary travel insurance that comes with this card?
The Delta Platinum SkyMiles card provides complimentary travel insurance that protects you against lost, stolen, or damaged baggage, as well as trip cancellations and injuries incurred during your trip.
How long do I have to use the companion's ticket once I have it?
Once you have the companion ticket, you will see an expiration date written on the ticket. You must use it by then or it will expire and no longer be usable.
Can I redeem my sky miles before I get the credit card?
Yes. If you are a member of the SkyMiles program (separate from this credit card) you can redeem your miles for reduced fares before you own the card.
Are there any shopping benefits attached to this card?
Aside from potential discounts at certain retailers, Platinum Delta SkyMiles cardholders will receive extended warranties, a 90-day return period through Return Protection, and Purchase Protection. You will also gain access to card member-only events and exclusive early access to ticket sales.
How can I check my credit card balance?
You can check your credit card balance by logging into your online account, via the mobile app, or by calling the number on the back of the card.
Can I withdraw money from my credit card?
You can withdraw money from your credit card by visiting an ATM or by visiting a bank. However, be prepared to pay the fees and high interest rates associated with cash withdrawals.
Can I get cash advance and are there any related fees?
Yes. The fee is $5 or 3% of the amount withdrawn, as well as a higher than normal interest rate on the amount.
Can I pay my credit card payment with a gift card, a different credit card, or PayPal?
No. You must use your bank account to pay off your credit card balance.
Can I use my American Express credit card without the card?
If you have your card number memorized, you can enter the relevant information online to shop without having your card present. However, you will need your card with you to make purchases in-person.
How to add an authorized user to American Express credit card?
Log into your online account and then select "Add User" from the menu.
Are there any upgrades on American Express credit card?
There is one card above this other in the Delta hierarchy: the Delta Reserve Credit Card. It carries a higher fee, but many cardholders consider it worth it.
How soon can I use my credit card once I receive it?
Once you receive the card and activate it, you can begin using it immediately.
How to contact American Express credit card services?
You can contact card services by calling 1-800-954-0559.
How to report stolen American Express credit card?
If your card is lost or stolen, contact card services immediately and give them the estimated date and time you believe you lost your card. They can cancel it and will begin looking for any fraudulent charges that might have been made.
What credit score do I need to get approval for the card?
While no score is specified, you will need an Excellent score or higher to qualify. This means a credit score of 700 or above.
What credit score do I have to maintain so my account is not closed?
There is no minimum credit score you need to maintain. You do, however, need to continue to make payments each month and avoid defaulting on your loans.
Will my credit score drop if my account gets closed?
Closing an account will not necessarily affect your credit score. However, closing too many accounts at once might, especially if you have a higher credit limit. Closing an account might drastically increase your utilization ratio.
Which credit bureaus does American Express report to?
American Express pulls from Experian.
Can I build my credit with the American Express credit card?
Yes. Regular, on-time payments and maintaining a low utilization ratio can help improve your credit score.
Is there an expiration date on the card?
Yes. The expiration date is based on when you receive the card and will be visible from the front of the card.
Is there a credit insurance program and how will it cover me if I lose my job?
No. If you lose your job, you are still on the hook for any payments you owe.
Can I have two credit cards from American Express at the same time?
Yes. Historically, American Express has put a limit of four cards per person.
Can I transfer money from my American Express credit card to another?
Yes. You can transfer balances between cards, but you will face a balance transfer fee for doing so.
Is it hard to get an American Express credit card?
Some cards are more difficult to get than others based on credit score requirements.
How long does it take to receive the card once I have been approved for it?
Once you've been approved for the card, you should receive it within five to seven business days.
How do I get more reward points?
You earn one mile per dollar spent for all purchases, and two miles per dollar spent on Delta purchases. You can also take advantage of spending thresholds to earn even greater rewards throughout the course of the year, as well as within three months of opening your account.
Does this American Express card cover rental car insurance?
Yes. The Platinum Delta SkyMiles card provides coverage on damage or theft to most rental vehicles if you use the card to pay for the entirety of the rental.
If you are a frequent flyer, the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card is absolutely worth it.
The discounted access to airport lounges is well worth it, as is the companion ticket you earn each year.
The other benefits that come with card ownership—discounts, travel insurance, etc.—more than make up for the $195 annual cost.
On the other hand, if your credit score isn't great or you don't travel often, other cards might be better options.
The requirements to qualify for the Platinum Delta SkyMiles card, and the people that benefit most from this card are those that fly with Delta often.
If you prefer another company, or there simply aren't many Delta flights near you, it will not benefit you as much.