Rookie Wednesday: The new Delta AMEX card you MUST avoid – the “Blue Delta SkyMiles”!

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Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Business Credit Card from American Express

RenesPoints Rookie

Welcome to a weekly feature on the Renés Points blog. Each week this series covers in a “rookie” way either a Delta or travel related theme and attempts to break down to a basic level each topic. You can read up on all the previous posts HERE. Now on to this week’s feature.

You will feel “BLUE” 🙁 if you get this card!

Starting tomorrow Delta, and their SkyMiles team, will try to convince naive and foolish millennials to get what may be the worst ever travel card with the Delta and Amex logo on it.

Per myAJC.com we learn that this card will give you:

“the [new] Blue Delta SkyMiles card, will have no annual fee and double miles for spending at U.S. restaurants and flights booked with Delta. The Blue card will not offer a free checked bag or priority boarding” – myAJC.com

There are also rumors that you will not get a chance with this card to get the MQD exempt waiver for spending $25,000 on the new Blue UPDATE: CONFIRMED NO MQD spend credit waver for the Blue after 1JAN18 unless you ALSO hold a Delta Gold, Platinum or Reserve card as well. (note: this is NOT the same issue as the possible changes coming to the Diamond MQD waiver posted about here).

Delta and Amex are promoting this to millennials who want a card to spend for their frequent dining. Here is a #ProTip – don’t do it! The US Bank FlexPerks AMEX card will yield you 3x points (worth up to 6%) as just one simple example in a sea of cards that give you much higher returns for dining. Never EVER, if you were foolish enough to get this card, pull this new Blue Delta card out of your wallet to pay for your dining.

But there are so many more reasons for you to avoid this card. To me anyone who gets this card, and uses it, needs to seek professional psychiatric help ASAP! Let’s look at just a few reasons why I say this:

2x SkyMiles for food and flight charges. SkyMiles are one of the worst travel currencies in the world. The Delta SkyMiles team are the slimiest in the industry and constantly, year after year, make no-notice changes. They hide the award charts so you have no idea what your points are truly worth. I could fill this post why 2x is not enough incentive to put spend on this new Blue card. Plus, there are literally dozens of other no-fee choices that yield a higher value and you know what those points are really worth.

No free bag! This is one of the main perks that can, maybe even on just one round trip, more that pay you back in value for the fee for the Gold or Platinum Delta SkyMiles card. I know tons of folks who hold these cards for just this one perk alone. If you can not do simple math to see the value of this perk for a small annual fee you need to go back to 1st grade.

No priority boarding. Have you seen my post on the “real” Delta boarding zones? I guess there is one perk here as when you are boarding almost dead last that Delta will check your carry-on free (you will not have a choice in this btw) since there is no more overhead space available.

4/5 Amex card limit. This new Blue card is a credit card. Depending on who you ask, Amex limits you to a total of either 4 or 5 credit cards personal and business combined (charge cards do not count). Why in the world would you want this card taking up one of your valuable Amex card choices open to you.

OK but are there any positives reasons for getting this card? Only if you clearly understand you would get this card but never spend money on it for anything other than:

1) The new card bonus that is pathetic but at least the minimum spend is low. Again, myACJ.com says: “For new Delta SkyMiles American Express card members, the card also offers a bonus of 10,000 miles after $500 in card purchases during the first three months.”

2) To have another no-fee card where you can get more AMEX SYNC deals.

As to the first point it means Delta is basically giving you 10k SkyMiles for a pull on your credit score. I hope you understand if just about anything goes wrong on a Delta flight they will simply give you 10k SkyMiles to say they are sorry. In other words this is NOT a new card bonus to get excited about at all. Next, as already touched on, there are tons of better cards to hold to get more Amex SYNC deals and “offers to you”.

Bottom line is this is a sad and ridiculous no-fee card. I am sure Delta will get uneducated millennials to get and use this card and I truly feel very sorry for them. Maybe when I was younger and in school they simply taught us better math skills! – René

 

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8 comments

  1. For me, it sounds like the perfect card. I have been a Delta FF/SkyMiles member since the 80s, have 2MM status but my travel for work has curtailed as retirement looms in the near future (hardly a Millennial!). I have held the DL Amex Platinum card for the better part of a decade and it was the perfect card when I was doing serious travel, even though I was only able to use the companion cert one time.

    To your points:
    SkyMiles currency: I live in ATL. SkyMiles is the ONLY airline currency. Nuff said. Your point would apply to ANY DL Amex card. This one has a point advantage over the other cards in that restaurants now count for double, whereas the others don’t.

    Free bag, priority boarding: I will never drop below Gold, so I already get those perks, plus as any seasoned traveler knows, you avoid checking bags like the plague.

    MQD waiver: This is only a rumor at this point, but would be a factor for E-fare elites.

    Thanks for the heads up about the card!!

  2. @keeton – Sigh. There is a better currency in ATL. It is called cash back or UR points or MR points or TY points or anything not SkyMiles.

  3. I demure on 2 points:

    1) I hold the Delta SkyMiles World Debit MasterCard through SunTrust. I do so not for the benefits, per se, because I also have the very good travel credit cards, including Chase Sapphire Reserve and American Express Platinum, but rather because there are situations (such as depositing money into a brokerage account) which American citizens cannot do with a credit card and I want rewards. While not a debit card, this new AmEx yields copious SkyMiles by comparison.

    2) The aforementioned debit card carries an annual fee of $85.

  4. @Corbett – Back when the Suntrust paid 2x SkyMiles and is a debit card you could crush it on SkyMiles. That was an amazing value. Till they killed the value there as well. 🙁

  5. Agree with Rene on many points, but the card is attractive (love the blue color with red Delta logo). Still, I won’t get one – I’m doing fine with my two Platinum cards (one personal, one business). I had 100K spend done by April and bagged 40,000 MQMs (10,000 for each $25K spent, $50K spent on each card). Free checked bag has no value for Diamonds – we get 3 free and I rarely check bags. Tip: If you do check a bag, take a picture of it as you are checking it – this documents bag condition and makes describing your lost bag easy when the Delta reps asks “What does you bag look like?”

  6. @Scott – There is ONE argument for this card that I would 100% support that is if your DL Amex card is your oldest card for your credit score history and you want to keep that track record alive. Then yes, smart to downgrade rather than cancel outright.

  7. Does this card enable PWM? I don’t hold a DL Amex and the only benefit I miss out on is PWM for flights where an award ticket don’t make sense. This card would fill that gap for me.

  8. @Charlie – We should know tomorrow.

    Update: NO! Delta has updated the marketing wording and the BLUE does NOT allow you to do PWM ticket. Another reason NOT to get this card if status, and earning MQMs on PWM tickets, matters to you.

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