What is a SkyMile worth? 1/10th cent? 3/10th? Would you PAY Delta to use them?

René’s Points for Better Travel has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. René’s Points for Better Travel and CardRatings may receive a commission from card issuers. Opinions, reviews, analyses & recommendations are the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, endorsed or approved by any of these entities. This post contains references to products from one or more of our advertisers. We may receive compensation when you click on links to those products. For an explanation of our advertising policy, visit visit this page.

best fare guarantee delta

Delta has something called a “Best rate Guarantee“. Now I have never ever found anyone who has ever successfully been able to use this as the restrictions are so tight, and the rules so many, that I think most feel proving you are right is a lost cause.

There is no such guarantee when it comes to your spending your SkyRubles. I mean, what value do you place on your SkyRubles? Delta has touted the reason to remove the award charts because their all new award calendar is so amazing. Well I did some digging. Take a look at just a few examples to consider.

str-jfk rt money

str-jfk rt points

So in this one example, if you pay for the ticket from Germany to New York it would cost you 437.42 Euros for the weekend round trip. But notice if we want to spend our SkyRubles for this same trip. It will cost us just 510.40 Euros plus 92,500 points.

No, you are not seeing things and I did not photo shop this. You will pay 72.98 Euros MORE to buy the ticket and Delta will empty 92,500 points from your account on top of that. Is this a one time thing? Let’s look at two more.

cdg to atl money rt

cdg to atl points rt

This one is so much better and a much better “value” for your SkyRubles. You see for this trip from Paris to Atlanta you could pay 496.35 Euros, or, you could pay 401.49 Euros and a modest 77,500 points. Yep, you can save a grand total of 94.86 Euros by spending 77,500 points putting a value of just 1/10th of one Euro on your SkyRubles (that is 0.001). How about one more.

bru to sfo paid

bru to sfo miles

Our last example is from Belgium to San Francisco. Here we are really stepping up the value of your points. You see you could spend 581.53 Euros, or, you could spend just 398.16 Euros and 60,000 points. So by burning that many SkyRubles you are saving 183.37 Euros and putting a value of 3/10th of a Euro on your points (that is 0.003).

buy delta skymiles on delta-com

Well if SkyRubles are so worth so little, I am sure we can buy points that cheaply at Delta.com? Humm, Delta is offering to sell us 60,000 points for $2,100 or a value of 3.5 cents each (that is 0.035).

Now this search is not an all encompassing search but I wanted to again point out how ridiculous the “all new award calendar” really is. We already know the page does not work and can over charge you by 2-3x what the price should be from the now hidden award charts.

Do you have ANY trust remaining for Delta’s frequent flyer program anymore? – Rene

What do you think of Delta's new award calendar?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...


Gold-Platinum-Reserve Delta SkyMiles®
Credit Cards from American Express®
Click HERE for more info



  1. I want to know who thinks the website works and is voting for it.

    It is messed up beyond belief.

  2. Rene,
    You’ll never get Delta to improve the value of skyrubles. so why try.
    Keep sending the mileage runs we can partially pay for with with miles at $0.01 so we can use them up.
    We all know our loyalty is worth less than a skyruble.

  3. We are 50/50 with trusting Delta’s frequent flier program. Here are our two examples:
    After religiously reading your blogs I took notice to book award tickets ASAP. Last week my husband (DM) and I booked round trip first/business class award tickets to Germany in June. When I was researching for our tickets the website showed the higher award points (160,000 each) for booking the two tickets together. We booked them separately – first ticket was 125,000 points. I figured the second one would be at the next level 142,500 points; however, when I went to book the second ticket it was 160,000 points. We reluctantly booked the second ticket at that rate. I checked it today and low and behold there was now an awards ticket for 142,500 points for our same flights. I called the Diamond Medallion desk and they actually re-issued the ticket at the lower points! I figured it didn’t hurt to call. I checked his Skymiles account and the 17,500 difference has already been posted back to his account. I was pleasantly surprised with such courteous and prompt service!

    Now on a different issue, they are giving my husband a hard time with returning a global cert that was not used globally even after he mentioned to them with each phone call that he did not want them to use it if he could not be upgraded on his NRT-ATL flight. They used it for his domestic travel portion from ATL (last leg of the trip) that he would have been upgraded regardless if the cert was used or not. I am really hoping for a good outcome with this issue.


  4. As I messaged you earlier today…the same flights are $183.20 through Google-flights click-through to Delta.com but if I start the search cold on Delta.com the flights are 76% more expensive!

    The one is from a click-through from Google Flights for the DFW-DTW-SAN-DTW-DFW route for $183.20

    However, when doing a separate search through Delta.com, starting there cold, and searching for DFW-DTW-SAN-DTW-DFW I am only given two choices:

    I noticed the flight numbers are the SAME as the Google-Click through ones! But the prices are either $291.20 or $323.20 (The $323.20 matches the same flights as the Google Flights Click-through ones!)

    Man, there is a bait & switch, although Delta is not Advertising the $184 RT airfare, but to get it a flyer has to be smarter than the Delta.com website!

    Anyone not knowing better would overpay by $140 (or 76.4 %)

  5. I’m no expert on Delta, since I can never find flights at any reasonable redemption rate, but doesn’t the value of the SkyRubles have a floor of 1.0 cents, since you can pay with miles at that rate? In other words if a flight costs $498 cash (one of your euro examples converted), can’t one simply pay 49,800 SkyRubles and get the flight that way? I have a no-fee Delta Amex card. I canceled the fee card when I realized SkyRubles are so impossible to use, but still have the stash of SkyRubles from the signup bonus and am looking for ways to use them up for something before ignoring the program completely.

  6. @DaveS – Yes if you have at least the Delta GOLD AMEX card you are correct (but not all who fly Delta have the card). The point of the post, and why this is all so dirty, is many just redeem blindly and hiding the award chart does not help people understand that is what they are doing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *