Please don’t EVER click or call for a Delta AMEX card upgrade. I lost out on 10,000 MQMs! A guest post by reader “BOB”

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 Credit Cards

will you get MQMs from upgrades

I have warned readers many times about the huge risks of upgrading your Delta AMEX card and expecting either your spend on the previous card to carry over or to get the MQMs, or Medallion Qualifying Miles, promised either by a phone rep or a supervisor. Well, many times things go very wrong as you will see from Bob this week. Take it away Bob!

Hi René. Thanks for letting me tell my story as I am so frustrated I want to explode. I called last night & spoke to a rep and escalated to a supervisor. The supervisor indicated that she opened a case for me, as I had told them that their own recording of my phone call with the upgrade rep on Dec. [date removed for safety] & promised both (1) that I qualified for the 10K bonus MQMs, and (2) that I would receive it within 2 weeks of first purchase (which would have been Dec 2015 [date removed for safety]). I emphasized (and made the rep write into notes) that a Dec [date removed for safety] deadline for case resolution was critical.

Fast forward and now I called at noon and eventually got escalated to a level above a supervisor who gave me a direct contact number & extension – very helpful, since we required several conversations over the last several hours. He listened to Amex’s phone recording of my Dec [date removed for safety] call, and acknowledged the 10K MQM and bonus miles I was promised to receive.

At the end, he indicated that because the 10K MQMs are awarded by Delta, there was no way for him to goodwill-award them to me. However, he said that if I gave him 72 hours, he would be able to work with several other levels of higher managers and make sure that I received what I was promised by AMEX. I got the feeling that he was sincere, and dedicated to keeping a valued customer happy.

It is now January 2016 and I spent half an hour on the phone yesterday (before being somehow disconnected while on hold) with one of Amex’s support people. It was our third conversation in 10 days. I had to call him back after waiting over a week to be “contacted back within 3 business days”. His opening confession was:

“I’m sorry – this is certainly American Express’s error, and not yours, but we are not authorized by Delta to award MQMs. As a result, we have issued you a goodwill credit of 20,000 Skymiles.”

After clarifying (again) how ANY amount of Skymiles is not even close to the same value as 10K MQMs. I then offered that Delta had sent me an email offering the purchase of 10,000 MQMs for $1395.00!!! I explained that Amex had an easy way to get around the fact that they “cannot” award MQMs – just allow me to purchase the MQMs on my Amex, and then just credit me the $1395. He then stammered and stuttered, indicating “we can do *some* things, but not that”, and then put me on hold to speak to someone on the team of the phone rep who initially promised me the bonus.

It was at that time that I was disconnected. I’ve tried to call the rep back a number of time (I have his direct extension now), but just keep getting busy signals when I call. Sad to say I don’t think I will ever see my promised MQMs! Be warned if you are ever thinking about upgrading your Delta AMEX cards!!! – Bob

Folks, I know readers will comment below that “I upgraded and I got what was promised”. Good for you. I get 10x as many nightmare stories like Bob’s for each successful “running through traffic with eyes closed” stories. Why in the world would you EVER risk this when it can mean so much pain for you. Also keep in mind, if things do go wrong, with the personal AMEX card rules currently in place once you have EVER held the card, even via an upgrade attempt, you will NEVER EVER get the new card bonus again!

When you take screenshots, and start with my links on the blog you are all but guaranteed to see the expected points (as long as you are eligible and complete the terms, of course). That is winning. Upgrading Delta AMEX cards, while some may claim success, for the most part really not so much! – René


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.

☟ ☟ Amazing 2019 offers ☟ ☟

Best Credit Cards


  1. I have never had a good experience upgrading a card from AmEx. (Which is really a shame, because I love my relationship with them otherwise.) :/ I’m sorry for your frustration, Bob!

  2. Hi Bob, I had this same situation in December for my boss. I called everyday speaking with someone different after the case# was opened. I hit the jackpot one day speaking with Heather McFeely in the Cincinnati Center. She worked with Chris who is the Delta coordinator for Amex and had the situation resolved in 24 hours. So the 10,000 MQM was posted before the end of the year. Good luck!

  3. I also learned that the reason this goes wrong so often is because the phone rep who is entering the data puts it through as a “product change” and not an “upgrade.” If you get an inexperienced phone rep to enter your data it can go wrong quickly.

  4. Rene you have posted about these situations far to often for anyone to be surprised by these stories. You have also posted many times the best way to avoid them — DO NOT wait until December to solidify your status.

  5. I used Rene’s links back in September, following all the instructions perfectly, and very quickly and all too easily got my Reserve upgrade – and then spent three months of off and on calling attempting to get my missing 10,000 MQM’s. Early on in the complaint process I was “gifted” 20,000 of the regular miles though cannot tell you how many times I described their relative uselessness to various AMEX employees. In December I talked with a rep who I had hope would do the right thing, but nothing happened, though he certainly appeared to understand my beef. I decided to give up because it just was both incredibly annoying and time consuming. So – just know that if you already have the Platinum Amex and a good credit rating, the process going quickly with an “Upgrade” is simply no guarantee for you to get those 10,000 MQM’s. Reps just kept telling me that particular offer was “over”, even though I referred them to “Rene’s Miles “multiple times. I have been happy to have AMEX cards for over 30 years, but am disgusted by this behavior. ( No, I did not take screen shots, as I did not know that was necessary)

  6. I suggest as last last last resort. File a complaint with the Consumer Financial Protectiong Bureau CFPB state they you have contacted them with them having even the recording. Show that it has a good will gesture showing them also acknowledge the error. Then next page it will show the resolution.

    Award 10k MQM or cost to obtain it? I hope this may help you it sometimes works better if really you’re at a dead corner

Leave a Reply

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