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Help for the 14% of Delta Points readers who hold no Delta status!

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Rene’s Points For Better Travel, a division of Chatterbox Entertainment, Inc. has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Rene’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. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


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86% of all Delta Points readers, to some level, hold some status according to my poll. Now all the readers who visit each day did not vote but I think I can extrapolate that those numbers are fairly accurate when talking to readers, give or take a few percentage points for margin of error.

What do all of the 86% have in common, including the SPG Crossover Rewards elites? They all get at least one bag free at no extra charge!

I have often talked about ways around paying for bag fees, but at times it is just not practical or can be a real hassle to pull off. So, the simpler choice is just to NOT have to pay $50 round trip for your first bag and $70 more for a second bag (per person)!

For non-elite flyers the perk of a free bag from ANY of the Delta AMEX cards can really pay off over a year of even just now and then Delta flying and it is not just YOU who gets a free bag, it is free for you and up to 8 more folks with you on the same reservation. You can see how the annual fee for the card could pay for itself VERY quickly for a family who flies Delta.

Even for a Delta Silver Medallion it can be good to have ANY of the Delta AMEX cards as it jumps you from 1 free bag to two. Delta.com says:

“Silver Medallions who also hold a SkyMiles American Express Reserve, Platinum, or Gold Credit Card will be able to receive a second bag free (up to two free bags at 70 pounds or 32 kg each) for themselves and up to eight (8) others traveling in the eligible member’s reservation.” – Delta.com

Now the only strange part comes for my SPG Crossover Rewards Delta elites as adding the Delta AMEX card does NOT get you two free bags (just the one you already get). The only reason for an SPG elite to get the card for free bags would be to bump it up from the default free bags for up to THREE people on the same PRN as you to the NINE total from any of the Delta AMEX cards. Thus, if you have a big family, you too need the card.

What else? Well any elite, even a Crossover Rewards elite, is going to board before the non-status flyer. So what? Overhead space is going to be GONE! I cannot imagine the frustration of being FORCED to check a bag I had planned to carry on-board the flight, but that is just what happens time and again when ZONE 2 & 3 are called to board. Want to avoid that kind of stress? You are at least able to b0ard in ZONE 1 with ANY of the Delta AMEX cards – again worth the annual fee to me.

Heck even look at it this way, for at least the first year, the GOLD Delta AMEX card is fee free and you pick up a nice pile of SkyMiles to use with Pay with Miles or book awards and you get your bags free. I would, the following year, upgrade to one of the other two Delta cards if you are going to fly more. If not, why not the next year consider the business Delta AMEX GOLD card as it too is free for the first year! – René
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Editorial Note: This content is not provided by American Express. Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by American Express.

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Rene’s Points For Better Travel, a division of Chatterbox Entertainment, Inc. has partnered with CardRatings for our coverage of credit card products. Rene’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. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.


Responses are not provided or commissioned by the bank advertiser. Responses have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by the bank advertiser. It is not the bank advertiser's responsibility to ensure all posts and/or questions are answered.

René de Lambert is a contributing writer and the founder of RenesPoints. He is an avid Delta and SkyTeam flyer who has held Delta’s top Diamond Medallion status for many years and flown millions of miles.

4 Comments

  1. I an finding it hard to justify annual fee, I fly twice a year to Europe and I purchase Economy Comfort so I get free bag due to international flight and board Zone 1 because Economy comfort. Since these flights are on points that I transfer from Amex I don’t see reason to keep Delta Amex. And since everone is going revenue I am changing my spending more to cash earning cards.

  2. Rene, You said “upgrade to one of the other two Delta cards”. I thought I remembered you once said to never upgrade an Amex, but to cancel and get another card. Is that still your recommendation?

    • @JohnHace – It was when you could get the other two PERSONAL cards. Now 1x a lifetime for all personal as all 3 PERSONAL are viewed as SAME card when getting new. You can, however, UPGRADE personal cards and get some bonus points but not as many as a new card (but that is no longer an option).
      .
      Now with BUSINESS cards the advice is the same. Get the other cards and get the new card bonus that is BIGGER! All 3 of the BUSINESS cards are viewed as DIFFERENT products so go for each new card there.
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      Yes crazy – but that is as of today the current rules 😉

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