It’s soon that time of the year again, that is, the 15th of January is tax time for many of us who pay quarterly. For many others April 15th will be the time that you have to settle up and pay what is due. But one of the neat things about paying taxes is that if you do pay too much you end up getting a refund from the government (keep in mind I am not a tax advisor nor am I giving any tax advice in this post).
While on this topic many who are chasing Delta status each year have to reach it by a combination of MQMs, that is, miles flown plus yearly net dollars spent with Delta. The Miles flown is either via BIS that is your “butt in (the) seat” miles or with Delta partners a percentage of distance and fare class. Another quick way to earn a bunch of MQMs is from spending on Delta Amex cards, that is, the personal and or business Platinum and or Reserve credit cards.
Most readers know by now a few key parts of the above and that for Silver, Gold and Platinum Medallions you can become exempt from the MQD spending levels with Delta by spending $25,000 a year across your Delta Amex Gold or Platinum or Reserve cards. But just how do you meet this spend without needless spending?
One of the great ways, that comes at minimal cost, is via paying bills you must pay anyway – taxes for example. Yes there is a fee but one I can live with for the benefit of accomplishing a goal. And you could take it to the extreme if you wanted to. For example:
- You pay $30,000 in taxes and it costs you on your Delta Reserve card $561 in fees
- You get a total of 45,000 SkyMiles (with the 15,000 miles bonus) worth at least $450
- Your net result is your cost is just $111 if you value a SkyMile at 1 cent each!
Now I did not spend that much this quarter but I think you see the point. I did pay a number of other bills (for the year) including things like prepaying some qualifying medical bills that I could then pay myself back from my HSA savings account plus as well as some creative spending (see this FlyerTalk thread for more info) to finish reaching my spend. I thus have not just the $25,000 MQD exemption done but also reached $30,000 for my 1st MQM and SkyMiles Reserve card spending bonus for the year.
Why do this so fast at the start of the year? I do hope all know that for ALL Medallion levels that holding the Delta Reserve card AND spending $25,000 ASAP means I will get more complimentary upgrades than other flyers. Considering how hard it will be this year to get upgrades I want every advantage I can to always “turn left” if you will when I board a Delta jet!
Lastly, before I get a ton of comments about the value of doing this, if you are NOT chasing status with Delta this clearly is a really dumb idea. Yes there are any number of better travel cards that you can put this kind of mega spend on per year ( note: this post is likely not for you! 😉 ).
What do you think? Are you going to pay taxes, as well as other things, to reach your Delta Amex MQD exempt goal or for bonus MQMs and SkyMiles this year? – René
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