The Top 5 Benefits of the Platinum Delta SkyMiles Card

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American Express has just increased welcome offers on both of its co-branded Delta Air Lines cards, and there’s no better time to apply for a new card than when the offers are hot. Although the annual fee is waived on the Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card and there’s no risk in trying it out, it isn’t waived on the Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card. You might wonder what benefits the $195 price tag gets you, so let’s take a look at the card’s top five perks.

1. Elevated Sign-Up Bonus

The card’s welcome bonus has increased from 35,000 SkyMiles to 70,000 SkyMiles—double the usual offer. To receive the bonus, you must spend $3,000 on the card. Because Amex sign-on offers are once per lifetime, you want to apply for American Express cards when the payout is the highest. I value Delta SkyMiles at 1.5 cents apiece personally, and to me 70,000 miles are worth $1,050. Even if you assign a conservative value of 1 cent each, you can get about $700 worth of value—enough to cover the fee and then some.

2. Domestic Companion Certificate

The Platinum Delta Card comes with a Domestic Companion Certificate after each card membership anniversary. The certificate allows cardholders to book a second ticket for a friend or a family member on a domestic round-trip flight for just the cost of taxes. This benefit yields a ton of value when the airfare is expensive. For example, you need to fly to a family member’s wedding on certain dates, and airfare costs $700 per person. Use your Companion Certificate and pay $350 for each ticket. Again, the perk more than makes up for the cost of the fee when you maximize the voucher.

3. Free Checked Bags

Members who hold the Platinum SkyMiles card receive one free checked bag for themselves and for up to eight travel companions who are booked on the same reservation. Delta charges $25 for each first checked bag and $35 for each second bag. If you travel with makeup or other liquids, you must check a bag, so every round-trip flight costs an additional $50 in bag fees per person. That amount goes up significantly for a large group. Paying the $195 fee gets you a free bag every time you fly. Paying the fee every year is worth it for just one round-trip for a family of four.

4. $100 Statement Credit

Although it’s not an ongoing benefit of holding the credit card, it’s still worth considering when applying for this card. Cardholders who make a Delta purchase in the first three months of account opening will receive a $100 statement credit against the charge. Your purchase may be airfare, cabin upgrades and even Delta gift cards, which do not expire. Taking advantage of the credit lowers the annual fee to $95 for the first year, and you still get all the other benefits described above.

5. Delta SkyMiles Boost

This perk benefits those flyers who value elite status and spend a lot on the card. Cardholders who meet the initial spending requirement will receive a bonus of 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) that count toward your status. Additionally, members who spend at least $25,000 on the card in a calendar year will earn another 10,000 MQMs as well as 10,000 bonus miles, and again the same number of SkyMiles and MQMs after spending $50,000.

The offer expires Nov. 8, so act quickly if you want to receive 70,000 Delta SkyMiles along with all the other benefits of the Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card from American Express.

Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • Annual Fee: $95 fee waived for the first year
  • Foreign Fees: No
  • Card Type: Bank

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  • Earn 50,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption – Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, July 2016
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions – as long as there’s a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards

Breakdown

Earn (pt.)

Spend


First 3 months

50,000

$4,000


Travel Purchases

2.00

$1


Restaurants Purchases

2.00

$1


Coffee Shops Purchases

2.00

$1


Fast Food Purchases

2.00

$1


Alcohol & Bars Purchases

2.00

$1


All Purchases

1.00

$1


Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card

  • Annual Fee: $95 fee waived for the first year
  • Foreign Fees: No
  • Card Type: Bank
FTG Review Reward Breakdown Points Breakdown
  • Earn 50,000 bonus points when you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $625 toward travel when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®
  • Named Best Credit Card for Flexible Travel Redemption – Kiplinger’s Personal Finance, July 2016
  • 2X points on travel and dining at restaurants worldwide & 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points after you add the first authorized user and make a purchase in the first 3 months from account opening
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • 1:1 point transfer to leading airline and hotel loyalty programs
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards. For example, 50,000 points are worth $625 toward travel
  • No blackout dates or travel restrictions – as long as there’s a seat on the flight, you can book it through Chase Ultimate Rewards

Breakdown

Earn (pt.)

Spend


First 3 months

50,000

$4,000


Travel Purchases

2.00

$1


Restaurants Purchases

2.00

$1


Coffee Shops Purchases

2.00

$1


Fast Food Purchases

2.00

$1


Alcohol & Bars Purchases

2.00

$1


All Purchases

1.00

$1


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