Twice a year I put up just about the exact same post and today is one of those two days (the other being 1JAN each year how to be MQD exempt). You see, on Delta.com they tell us that, TODAY 1JULY, is the absolute best time to start your match:
“If you’re a top-tier flyer with another airline, you can request to participate in our SkyMiles Medallion Status Match Challenge and qualify for comparable status with the Medallion Program.
As a Medallion Member, you’ll enjoy exclusive privileges such as Unlimited Complimentary Upgrades, access to Preferred Seats, and waived baggage fees.
If you meet the criteria to participate, you will receive Platinum, Gold or Silver Medallion Status for 3 months, based on your current elite level with another airline. The 3 month period will start when a Member’s request has been processed.
If you registered for the offer between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017 and you complete the flight requirements, your Medallion Status will be maintained until January 31, 2018.
If you register for the offer on or after July 1, 2017 and you complete the flight requirements, your Medallion Status will be maintained until January 31, 2019.
In order to extend your Medallion Status after the 3 months, you’ll need to earn a specific number of Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) or Medallion Qualification Segments (MQSs) within 3 months of enrolling. The number of MQMs or MQSs required is based on your matched Medallion level.” – Bold MINE
Do you happen to notice the part I bolded above? If you complete the challenge (it is not really a status “match” but everyone calls it that) inside the 3 months they give you then you will have your Medallion status:
- All of this year 2017
- All of next year 2018
- It ends 1FEB 2019
19 Months of Delta elite Medallion status for greatly reduced flying requirements is not all bad. Well what are those numbers and who gets to play. Delta.com further says:
Are the above the “only” airlines that qualify? Officially you have it in print but in practice if you have status with ANY airline it is worth reaching out to Delta and asking if whatever airline qualifies. The key part is that you can provide proof of your status. Next, since you only have 3 months, notice the “flight” requirements:
- Silver – 6,250 MQMs or 8 MQSs
- Gold – 12,500 MQMs or 15 MQSs
- Platinum – 18,750 MQMs or 25 MQSs
The one thing that is missing that you will have to keep in mind after your status match year is MQDs or “Medallion Qualify Dollars” that is, the part of your ticket that Delta gets as income each time you fly. There is no MQD requirement for your match at least just MQM or Medallion Qualifying Miles i.e. how far you have to fly not based on price or MQSs or segments (EQSs with other airlines).
While you can read for yourself the T&C some of the pesky bits that if you are new to Delta you should know about. Delta does not really like all it’s Skyteam (and other) partners that much. Some of them yield much lower (or zero) points if you book on the partner website. If you book a Delta code-share on Delta.com you will earn full points (but can cost more). You will come to learn this and always check this as a Delta Medallion.
The last bits to consider are do you qualify (beyond having another airline status that is). If you tried this or in some other way got a status match in the last 3 years it’s a no (but you can always ask as this does not hurt you in any way). Also, if you have any kind of Delta status now you must drop to nothing i.e. a SkyMiles member before you can request this and that likely means waiting till 1FEB and so you are then, ideally, waiting until 1JULY next year to try this.
Lastly, during your match / challenge period, you are slightly restricted as far as all the Skyteam perks until you finish the challenge. Also, and I think this is just flat out impressive, you WILL get a Platinum Choice Benefits again not until you complete the challenge. With upgrades harder and harder to come by, having Regional Upgrade certs are to me a very valuable choice that I tend to pick each year (as a Diamond I get BOTH Platinum and Diamond choices each year).
Bottom line TODAY is the day to reach out to Delta and request your status match from another airline that is, well, clearly not as good as Delta! Welcome onboard – René