The fairly substantial Delta American Express cards welcome offers have inspired some people to apply for their first Delta Amexes. Meanwhile, this is far from the first rodeo for others — who are adding yet another Delta Amex to their stables.
Is holding multiple Delta Amexes a good idea? Let’s examine five reasons to have multiple Delta Amexes — and five reasons to maybe reconsider or pursue another credit card.
Reasons to Have More Than One Delta American Express Card
Multiple Companion Certificates
Four Delta American Express products give cardholders one annual Companion Certificate starting the second year of membership.
These entitle cardholders to, essentially, a buy-one-get-one-almost-free (taxes and surcharges apply) on certain Delta roundtrips. (Here’s our deep dive into Companion Certificates.)
If you travel with a companion rather frequently, it’s pretty easy to find a qualifying trip to which you can apply your certificate. That can offset your annual fee — and then some.
So it’s possible to save money while holding one — or several — of the Delta Amexes that have the Companion Certificate benefit.
More MQM Bonuses
Those same four premium Delta Amex cards offering Companion Certificates also award bonus MQM to members who reach certain spending thresholds.
The Delta Reserve Amexes — both personal and business — allow cardholders to hit four “Status Boost” thresholds. So if you spend a lot of money on your credit cards and crave Medallion status, then it definitely may be worth your holding multiple cards.
The Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express and Platinum Delta SkyMiles Business Credit Card from American Express allow only two MQM bonuses per card. So, again, if you want score a bunch of MQM through credit card spending, getting a couple of different premium Delta Amex cards could be worth your while.
Reach the MQM Waiver in a More Timely Fashion
Spending across select Delta Amexes pools toward your MQD waiver. But keep in mind that purchases on the Delta Blue American Express Card and both flavors of the Delta Gold Amex do not count toward the MQM waiver unless you have one of the premium cards (Delta Platinum or Reserve).
But if you have, say the, Delta SkyMiles Business Reserve Amex for your business purchases and a consumer Delta SkyMiles Platinum Amex for your personal charges, those can work in tandem simultaneously to get you toward the $25,000 threshold (or $250,000 if you’re pursuing Diamond).
Different Bonus Point Categories
Like every other credit card, Delta Amexes aren’t created equal when it comes to bonus point categories.
For example, the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Credit Card awards 3X total SkyMiles on purchases made directly with hotels. The Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card offers just one SkyMile/point.
So if you want to earn a bunch of SkyMiles across an array of bonus categories, then it might do you well to have multiple Delta Amexes.
Accrue Points for a Bucket List Trip
The current welcome promotions offer between 70,000 and 90,000 bonus SkyMiles. Say you’re approved for the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Credit Card and its business version. If you meet the minimum spend requirements, you’re at least 190,000 SkyMiles richer. (90,000 bonus + 90,000 bonus + $5,000 spend + $5,000 spend). Depending on how many SkyMiles you already had, you might be able to afford a business class trip somewhere. (Keep in mind Delta has become infamous for devaluing its program — especially on partner redemptions.)
Whether or not it’s worth keeping the cards after that is up to you.
Reasons to Not Hold Multiple Delta Amex Cards
Delta Reserve MQM Bonus
Back in the olden days (read: 2019 and earlier), the Delta Reserve cards (personal and business) both topped out at 30,000 bonus MQM for $60,000 spent each calendar year. But last year, those thresholds were raised to 60,000 MQM ($120,000 in spending) for both cards.
So if you held both personal and business Reserve cards because you wanted max out your MQM bonuses, you may have discovered that one of your cards was no longer needed after the 60k/$120k adjustment. So figure out your realistic MQM goals — and how much you can reasonably afford.
With the exception of the Delta SkyMiles Blue American Express Card, all the Delta Amexes — consumer/personal and business — boast the same suite of Delta travel-related benefits:
- 20% on-board purchases
- Free first checked bag
- Main Cabin 1 boarding
- Pay With Miles eligibility
Being the primary cardholder on multiple Delta Amexes doesn’t afford you any more of those perks.
Better Points-Earning Opportunities on Other Cards
When it comes to everyday spending, you’re much better off with an American Express Membership Rewards card such as the American Express Gold Card or American Express Green Card. Those points can be transferred to your SkyMiles account at a 1:1 ratio. Or you can use them to pay for travel booked through Amex Travel — and earn SkyMiles on top of that.
The American Express Gold Card earns 4X on U.S. Supermarket purchases (up to $25,000 in spending each year) and 4X on dining at restaurants and delivery. Plus, it hauls in 3X on purchases made directly with airlines — and that’s on par with what the Delta Amexes earn.
The American Express Green Card, meanwhile, brings in 3X on dining and travel.
Again, Delta SkyMiles Blue American Express Card excepted, each of the Delta Amex cards carry annual fees ranging from $99 to $550. Those annual fees can really add up — especially if you don’t take advantage of the card benefits.
But if you use those perks, then you’ll quite likely recoup the annual fees — and then some.
They Take Up Space in Your Amex Portfolio
American Express allows members to hold up to four credit cards at a time. That’s a combination of business and personal cards.
So if you have, say, the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Credit Card, Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card, Delta SkyMiles Gold American Express Credit Card, and Delta SkyMiles Platinum Business American Express Credit Card cards, then you’ve caught your limit. You’re not eligible to get something like the Blue Cash Preferred Card or one of the Hilton or Marriott cards (just for example) — unless you cancel one of your Delta Amexes.
There are pros and cons to holding multiple Delta American Express cards. Whether or not you should pretty much comes down to welcome offers, MQM goals, and Companion Certificate usage.
If you’re a Delta fanatic, it might be worth having more than one Delta Amex. But keep in mind some other Amex cards are more effective when it comes to earning points.
Just make sure that whatever you decide works for your travel goals and your budget.
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