Year end Delta Air Lines Q&A for 2013 (& a review of 2012 Q&A)

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Last year, I popped up a good review of the common Q&A that seem to hit each year. I get dozens of e-mails all with the same questions so do take time to review last year’s as the info is still relevant. With the changes to Delta Skymiles 2014 there is time for some new ones that should be looked at. Let’s dive in!

Q1) I got an e-mail from Delta about my Choice Benefits. Do I need to redeem them before 01MARCH2014 or can I wait until after that to get the new Regional or Global certs?
A1) Delta does make it tricky to know just what you have and what you have earned. I will try to make this simple (as simple as I can). If, in 2012 you flew 75,000 miles, you earned your Platinum Medallion status for 2013 NOT for 2012. Yes, you got the perks for the rest of 2012, but you EARNED 2013 status. You have enjoyed that this year. That 2013 status ENDS as of 01MARCH2014. So, to answer your question, if you are talking about your 2013 Choice Benefit it MUST MUST MUST be redeemed BEFORE 01MARCH2014 or it is just GONE! Now, if in 2013 you flew 75,000 miles you earned your Platinum Medallion status for 2014 NOT for 2013. So for the latter case you CAN wait until after 01MARCH2014 to pick the new Regional certs or in the case of a Diamond Medallion the Global certs. Is this clear enough?

Q2) I just realized from one of your posts that if I use my Delta AMEX and “Pay with Miles” that I will earn MQMs. What about MQDs next year?
A2) The roll out that we can earn MQMs and RDMs (i.e. medallion qualifying miles and Skymiles) when we book in 1st class on Delta is a great perk and just one more that sets Skymiles apart from the others. Yes, as of 2014, when MQDs (medallion qualifying dollars) start for real, you will earn, for the base price of the ticket, MQD credit. Just like a paid for ticket, taxes and other fees do NOT count toward your year MQD goals.

Q3) If I buy a ticket for my wife with my Delta AMEX card will I get MQD credit? What if she has a secondary card on my primary account. Will I get MQD credit that way if she buys a ticket?
A3) No for both. MQD is for you and you alone. Now, for the $25,000 spend exemption – that is a different story. Here, with your personal and business Delta AMEX cards, all the “qualified” spending counts (we will see just what that means soon enough no matter what the T&C say now). Even if you have secondary cards on your cards that spend also counts toward YOUR total exempt spending for 2014.

Q4) I have the personal Delta AMEX Gold card. AMEX says I cannot get another card for 90 days so I guess that means I cannot get the business Gold/Platinum/Reserve card, right?
A4) Wrong. The Delta business cards, and vice versa, are different products from the personal cards and one has nothing to do with the other. You could, if you wanted to, apply for both the same day. Also important to always remember, no matter what offers AMEX sends you, you must wait 365+ days after you cancel to get the new card bonus again and AMEX views all 3 personal Delta cards as the same card and all 3 Delta business cards as the same card! BTW, your time is just about up if you want the 10,000 MQMs from a Delta AMEX Reserve card this year!

Q5) I am nervous about meeting my spend for my 25/30k Delta Platium/Reserve card MQM bonus. AMEX shows I have spent 25/30k but I have not got my points yet. What gives?
A5) Keep in mind the annual fee of $150/$450 does NOT count but shows up as spend. So, you had better make sure you spend enough to be over the 25/30k level. I always shoot for $500-$1000 over per card to be safe. Also, with the Platinum, you will see the points hit almost as soon as you hit the spend – sometimes even mid month. With the Reserve it is a few days after your statement closes. As you can see from last year’s Q&A, the MQMs count in the year you spent no matter when the statement closes.

Q6) I hear mileage running is over now from many bloggers. Are you done mileage running in 2014?
A6) I have my first mileage run for 2014 booked for 8-10JAN2014 so I guess that answers your question. 🙂 In fact, I think, as far as Delta goes, the bloggers are just flat out wrong. Now that Delta is really rewarding Diamond Medallions I think you are going to see MORE Delta mileage running in 2014 not less. I will, with rollover, be Diamond Medallion by 01MARCH2014 at the latest (i.e. MQMs + AMEX spending exemption). Plus, now that Hawaii offers free west coast upgrade shots I think I will be looking for more tropical runs with stopovers (guess that kinda kills the purest MR but who cares – it’s Hawaii)!

Q7) Next year, after 01MARCH, as a Diamond Medallion, I get two DM Choice Benefits picks. Can I pick 8 of the Global upgrade certs (i.e. 2×4)?
A7) No. Like with all the DM Choice Benefits you cannot make the same selection twice. That said, if you want to pick 8 Regional as your DM choice and 4 as your PM choice you could end up with 12 of the Regional certs this way and still have one more DM choice remaining but still you cannot then pick 4 Global certs as the DM choice is either Global or Regional. Clear?

Q8) I clicked on your Delta Gold/Platinum/Reserve card link on the blog before but now when I go back it seems broken as it does not show me the 3 Delta cards. Can you fix this?
A8) Sigh. I cannot fix this as it is at AMEX’s end and is a cookie issue. First, thanks SO much for supporting the blog. Next, what I would ask you to do is use this great tool I use all the time to clean up my cookies from general web surfing called CCLEANER. It is free, simple and fast and cleans up old junk on your PC from web surfing. Here is the link: After you run this, shut down, restart your PC and you should be good to go and the links should work just fine. Oh, and you may notice your PC is much faster too!

Q9) I have a NON-Delta i.e. Membership Rewards personal (or business) Platinum AMEX card. I have not got any credit yet but I paid for things on Delta. What did I do wrong? I was supposed to get $200 credit.
A9) You must pick Delta as your airline you want credit for. It is good to look NOW as this is PER YEAR not per credit card sign-up year. So, you could, register Delta as your choice, and by all reports from readers, buy 4 – $50 Delta e-Gift cards and you should see 4x$50 statement credits in short order. Reports are the HIGHER ones are NOT resulting in credits. You can combine several of the Delta e-Gift cards on one ticket when spending them.

Q10) – open to you so ask away (just be sure to check last year’s Q&A first please)! – René

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  1. I have been reading that our Delta is going to D/C standard rewards (e.g. 125K for a BE trip to Europe) and replace them with “Pay With Miles” for all reward tickets. Have you heard this? The answer to Q2 above sure seems like they are going in this direction.

  2. Ok, one more time. I have the platinum personal delta Amex card (that I’ve had forever and never earned a bonus). I got the reserve business delta Amex card about this time last year and got thr 10000 bonus mqms. Can’t I get the reserve personal delta Amex card and earn the 10000 MQMs? I tried the other day and the link appeared to only let me upgrade the platinum card to reserve. I don’t want to upgrade. I would think delta would be thrilled to collect my $150 fee for personal platinum and 2 $450 fees for reserve.

  3. @Christine. No. You must cancel the “platinum personal delta Amex card (that I’ve had forever and never earned a bonus)” and wait for 365+ days before you can get the Reserve card new card bonus. Why? The GOLD and PLATINUM and RESERVE Delta cards are all the same card as far as AMEX is concerned.

  4. Ok, I understand that part now. So, if you (personally) have the two reserve cards then you don’t earn any more bonuses, you just meet the spends and earn the bonuses that way. What I don’t get is why delta would walk away from the $25000-$50000 I put on the platinum card that will have to put on another card for those 365+ days. Any chance delta would offer me/anyone a “stay” bonus?

  5. @Christine – Delta offers no what is called “soft landings” EVER no. AMEX may offer you points to upgrade but as others readers have seen you may or may not get promised points – ever! – Rene

  6. @Christine I got my platinum Delta mid year and completed the 50k spending for platinum mile boost(20k mqms) by Sep. Then I decided to upgrade to Reserve and Amex offered 10k mqms to upgrade. Let’s see if the extra spending beyond 50k (I have 95k on the card right now) will earn me Reserve mile boost! The online chat rep told me it will post after the statement closes.

  7. Hi Rene!

    I have a delta amex reserve and have been very happy with it. I’m looking for another credit card (need another account to push my credit score a little higher, even though I’ve never carried a balance, my utilization is high). Ideally, I’d like it to be a mastercard or visa, I’ll only use it when my they won’t take the Amex, and to earn some kind of points I can convert into skymiles. Any suggestions? I’m not sure such a card exists….

    Also, I know there’s the suntrust bank card, but I’m happy with my bank and don’t want to have to make a change.

    Thanks! Love the blog!

  8. @Andy – only AMEX MR and SPG can send direct with value to Delta. Alaska can NOT be sent but can be spent so one to look at as they have a 50k card now.

  9. Q5) I am nervous about meeting my spend for my 25/30k Delta Platium/Reserve card MQM bonus. AMEX shows I have spent 25/30k but I have not got my points yet. What gives?

    If you want the MQM bonus almost immediately and don’t want to wait until your statement closes, check your AmEx year-to-date spending summary at the bottom of the page. Look specifically at your year-to-date payments. Twice I have made payments so this number is over the $50/$60,000 spend and I received my MQM bonus the NEXT day.

  10. Have always seen the MQM boost post with the statement for Plat Personal Amex (twice last year and once this year for me) – though haven’t tried what MargoB just said. Just did that for my wife’s so we will see if it works. Just hit the spend days after the last statement closed last weekend.

  11. Data point – I crossed the 25K spend threshold with my DL AMEX Platinum card weeks ago, and didnt get the bonus MQMs and regular SMs credited until today. My statement closed 2 days ago.

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