Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card Review

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Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card Review

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"An Entry Level SkyMiles Card for Frequent Delta Flyers"

The card will provide 2x miles on all Delta purchases, restaurants worldwide, and at U.S. supermarkets, along with a free bag, priority boarding, and discounted Sky Club lounge access.

Apply Now (at Amex's secure site)

You just got a new management consulting job on contract, and you’ll be required to travel frequently. Your home is near Atlanta, the largest hub for Delta Air Lines, so you will fly them frequently.

With the new gig, you see a great opportunity to make some additional miles on your flight purchases and everyday spending while getting reimbursed from your company.

The Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card is a great first choice to help you reach your goals and earn some award flights!

Update: Through 12/31/20, cardholders earn 5x miles on Delta purchases, and 4x miles on restaurant purchases (including takeout and delivery). You must register through your Amex Offers page.

Card Snapshot

The Ideal Cardholder

Management Consulting Job Requires Travel
If you’re living around Atlanta or just frequently travel on Delta Air Lines, you’ll probably find the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card a useful card!

The Delta Gold Card Bonus and Earnings Categories

You can earn the above welcome bonus when you apply for the card and spend the required amount in the allotted time.

Like most airline cards, the points you earn for flights with Delta Air Lines, restaurants worldwide, and U.S. supermarkets are 2x per dollar, and then you’ll earn 1 point per dollar for all other purchases.

Bottom Line: The Delta Gold American Express Card earns 2x points on flights and services with Delta Air Lines.

Credit Card Benefits

As a card holder, you will be granted some limited elite status perks: 1 free checked bag and a discounted Sky Club membership.

The Sky Club lounge membership discount is actually good for up to two more friends or family as well.

You also qualify for a 20% savings on inflight purchases with Delta, including meals, beverages, and entertainment. It does not work for inflight WiFi, which is provided by a third party.

When earning miles on the card, they will deposit directly into your SkyMiles account to be used for awards flights once you have earned enough.

Unfortunately, Delta isn’t the best for researching redemptions. They don’t have an award chart on their site anymore, but they do state that the minimum redemption can be made for 10,000 miles.

Bottom Line: The Delta Gold card offers 1 checked bag, priority boarding, and has 20% savings on in-flight purchases. 

Other Fringe Card Benefits

In addition to the elite status benefits above, you will receive car rental and travel accident insurance with the SkyMiles credit card. Purchase protection and extended warranty are also included.

You will get a roadside assistance and global assistance hotline to call when you need it in an emergency.

Finally, you’ll have access to the American Express Entertainment Access portal, where you can purchase tickets and other unique experience items.

Bottom Line: Get access to purchase protection, extended warranty, roadside assistance hotline, global assistance hotline, and the American Express Entertainment Access portal with the Delta Gold card.

Good Combinations With the Delta Miles Credit Card

Delta is a partner with American Express Membership Rewards, so any of the Membership Rewards cards will earn points that are eligible to transfer to Delta at a 1:1 ratio.

It may be good to get a card like The Amex EveryDay® Preferred Credit Card from American Express. The Platinum Card® from American Express would also make a good combination. This card is great for its benefits, which include complimentary access to Delta Sky Clubs.

You also now earn 5x Membership Rewards points on flights booked directly with airlines or with American Express Travel and 5x Membership Rewards points on eligible hotels booked through Amex Travel.

Bottom Line: Any of the other American Express Membership Rewards cards will combine nicely with the Delta Gold card, since Delta Air Lines is a transfer partner.

Drawbacks of Using the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card

In general, the Delta Gold card doesn’t offer very many benefits in return for its annual fee. You will not earn any qualifying points or miles, nor find elite status easier to earn (with exception of the MQD waiver).

The card is pretty basic, and is only really useful for those who fly Delta frequently.

As far as airline credit cards go, you’ll probably get more value out of the Citi® / AAdvantage® Platinum Select® World Elite™ Mastercard® if you’re looking for one in this price category.

Bottom Line: Using the Delta Gold card does not earn you any qualifying points or dollars on Delta Air Lines, but the card does carry an annual fee.

Final Thoughts and Card Summary

The card offers some good entry level benefits for Delta flyers, but there are some higher level Delta cards that may be much more beneficial.

Nonetheless, for a frequent Delta flyer, earning a bonus 2x miles for every dollar spent with Delta, restaurants worldwide, and U.S. supermarkets is nice. With the 1x everywhere else, you’ll also see your SkyMiles balance slowly increasing.

Bottom Line: The Delta Gold card is a good card for those looking for some entry level benefits on Delta Air Lines along with the ability to earn extra miles.

Great Card If

  • You’re a frequent Delta flyer
  • You need a card with some additional insurances

Don't Get If

  • You don’t fly Delta enough to make up the annual fee
  • You want more benefits out of your airline rewards card

Card Fees

  • Annual Fee
    • $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $99.
  • Foreign Transaction Fees
  • Interest Rates
    • 15.74%-24.74% Variable
  • Late fees
    • 29.24% Variable
    • Up to $40
  • Balance Transfers
    • 15.74%-24.74% Variable
    • Fee: Either $5 or 3% of the amount of each transfer, whichever is greater.
  • Cash Advance APR
    • 25.24% Variable
    • Fee: Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater.
  • Additional Info

U.P. Pro Tips

Always try to purchase Delta flights with your Delta Gold card. See whether your work has a policy on purchasing work travel with personal cards, and if not then cash in!

Also, consider the trade-off of spending money on a meal at the airport before your flight vs. the value of lounge access, which includes free food and drinks.

You may find the Sky Club lounge turns out to be cheaper!

Work Travel in a Lounge and Save Money on Food
If you travel for work a lot, you may be able to save money by using the discounted lounge access for food and drinks while getting a quiet place to take care of business!

Best Way to Maximize Points

Like all airline credit cards, the easiest way to earn miles will be to use the Delta Gold card to purchase your flights.

However, if you want extra ways to earn miles, these tips should help you with a few more ideas:

Tip #1: Purchases with the airline don’t have to just be flights. You will earn 2x miles on any purchase charged through Delta, including baggage fees, upgrades, and inflight services.

Tip #2: Now earn 2x at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets giving you some great everyday spending earning. 

Tip #3: Earning elite status with Delta will help you earn extra points. There are four tiers total, and they provide bonuses of 2x, 3x, 4x, and 6x per dollar respectively.

Tip #4: If you also hold any other American Express Membership Rewards cards, or have any existing MR points, you can transfer them to your Delta SkyMiles account at a 1:1 ratio.

This means that with the right combination of Amex cards plus the Delta Gold card, you could really maximize the categories and points you can earn.

Just be sure to calculate the value of the points versus the annual fees before diving in! Some good choices would be:

Tip #5: Earn extra rewards by using the Delta online shopping portal or the SkyMiles Dining program. These programs offer you additional miles for purchases you were already going to make!

Best Way to Redeem Points

Redeeming Delta SkyMiles can be difficult if you’re new to the process. They no longer offer an award chart, which makes comparing value that much more difficult.

You also have options outside of flights for redeeming your miles, though they are less valuable. Your most valuable option is to redeem with Delta or one of their partners, which include SkyTeam and more.

Here are some options for redeeming your miles for the highest value:

Option #1: Delta claims their awards start at 10,000 miles one-way. If you can find deals like these, you will be getting pretty good value since their past awards started at 12,500.

Option #2: In general, look for “Lowest Fare” or “Best Match” in order to find the cheapest awards. You may find fares even as low as 7,500 miles.

Option #3: Try to redeem miles in the off-season of travel to your destination; you will tend to find the cheapest fares during this time.

Option #4: South America and Europe had the cheapest first and business class award prices in the past outside of North America, Mexico, and Central America.

Option #5: Look for awards travel on partner airlines; some of them may end up being cheaper than flights on Delta, and you may find better availability.

Option #6: Once you reach Gold Medallion status, you will have the award booking fee waived. You will also get complimentary upgrades, even on award travel!

Option #7: Like most airline awards, your highest value per point will be for business or first class international.

Delta not only partners with SkyTeam, but also a number of other airlines and businesses. However, having the Gold Delta SkyMiles card doesn’t offer any additional partners.

Below are the different partners you will have through Delta SkyMiles.

Airline and Hotel Partners

AeroflotGaruda Indonesia
Aerolineas ArgentinasKenya Airways
Air EuropaKorean Air
Air FranceMiddle East Airlines
AlitaliaSaudia Airlines
Delta Air LinesTarom
China AirlinesVietnam Airlines
China EasternXiamen Airlines
Czech Airlines

Non-Alliance Partners: Virgin Atlantic, Virgin Australia, GOL, Hawaiian Airlines, WestJet, Alaska Airlines, Great Lakes Airlines

Hotel Partners: Hilton, Marriott, IHG, Carlson Rezidor, Accor Hotels, Hotel JAL City, Hyatt, Langham, Maritim, Millennium, New Otani, Nikko, Okura, Prince, Shangri-La, Taj, Worldhotels

Other Partners

Car Rental Partners: Hertz, Alamo, Enterprise, National, Europcar

Other Offers: Delta also has offers on household services and dining, as well as with cruise lines.

The Gritty Details: Everything Else You Need to Know

Check with American Express before applying for this card, as they sometimes deny your welcome bonus if you already have other Amex cards.

The 2x miles offer for Delta purchases is good for more than just flights; it also applies to services with Delta such as upgrades, inflight purchases, and Sky Club access.

This card likely has a targeted offer, so if you want to try to get more miles then you should look around!

Other Unique Features

Other benefits you will have by being a Delta Gold card member are listed here.

No blackout dates – There are no blackout dates for award travel on Delta airlines, but there may be blackout dates on partner travel rewards.

AMEX Entertainment Access/Membership Experiences – In select cities, American Express purchases tickets to events that are available exclusively to cardmembers. To qualify, you must purchase your ticket or experience with an Amex card.

First checked bag free – This is good for a standard-sized bag on domestic flights (international flights offer free checked bags). It is only available to the primary cardholder and cannot be given to an additional cardmember.

However, when the primary cardmember is traveling with a group and has purchased everything with the card, the group may check up to 9 free bags!

Inflight savings – Delta Gold SkyMiles members get a 20% discount on in-flight services provided by Delta, which includes meals, food, beverages, and entertainment. This does not include WiFi, which is provided by a third party.

Medallion Qualifying Dollar (MQD) waiver – If you spend more than $25,000 on the card in a year, you’ll be able to earn Delta status by earning enough Medallion Qualifying Miles (even if you do not make enough MQD to earn Medallion status).

Priority boarding – You will get Main Cabin 1 priority boarding on Delta flights as a cardmember. Simply provide your SkyMiles number with your reservation to earn the benefit. This is also good for up to 9 passengers.

Reduced-price Sky Club access – The cardmember can visit a Sky Club for a discount as long as they have a same-day ticket on any airline. This can be used for up to 2 additional guests.

Return protection – For any purchases that cannot be returned to the vendor, you will be protected for up to 90 days from the date of purchase for up to $300 per item (maximum of $1,000 each year).

Roadside assistance hotline – A 24-hour hotline will dispatch tow trucks or locksmiths to your aid when you need them. The hotline is free, but you’ll pay any third parties that actually provide the service.

This is not available for rental vehicles, motorcycles, cabs, tractors, and commercial trucks.

ShopRunner – This benefit gives you free shipping from a number of online stores.

Car rental insurance – You are covered up to $50,000 on any rental cars as long as you deny the waiver from the rental agency.

Extended warranty – Get an extended warranty of up to one extra year on top of the manufacturer’s warranty.

Purchase protection – You can get up to $1,000 back per item for anything that is stolen or damaged.

Travel accident insurance – In the case of an emergency on a common carrier, you can get covered for losses and damages.

For rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card, click here.

Photo Credits/Credit/Copyright Attribution:
Woman Presenting in Business Meeting: Kzenon/Shutterstock
Man Working in Lounge: Ditty_about_summer/Shutterstock
1+1=2: woaiss/Shutterstock
Different Path Dominoes: Gajus/Shutterstock

Frequently asked questions

Why get a Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card? Is it worth it?

The card is solid for those who will travel a few times a year on Delta Air Lines and who don’t have frequent flyer status with them.

You earn 2x points for all purchases with Delta, 2x points at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets, and 1x points for all other purchases. Additionally you will get a free checked bag, priority boarding, 20% off inflight purchases, and discounted lounge passes.

All miles earned go into your SkyMiles account and can be used for rewards travel, which is where the value of the card is earned.

You will find the card worth it as long as you earn more than 9,500 miles in a year and utilize the other benefits offered.

What are the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card benefits?

This credit card earns 2x miles per dollar on Delta flights, 2x at restaurants worldwide and U.S. supermarkets, and 1x miles everywhere else. The miles accrue in your SkyMiles account to be used for rewards travel.

For flights, you will get 1 free checked bag and priority boarding for up to 9 people on your reservation. You will also receive 20% off inflight purchases, and a discounted lounge pass for up to 3 people.

A variety of insurances are offered on the card, including travel accident, car rental, purchase, return, and warranty insurance. Additionally, you will get access to a roadside assistance hotline and global assist hotline.

There are even more benefits when you read your membership agreement.

Does the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card use Membership Rewards?

No, all miles earned accumulate in your Delta SkyMiles account.

Who are the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card travel partners?

The card itself offers no additional partners, but Delta is a member of the SkyTeam Alliance and also has additional airline and hotel partners.

SkyTeam partners include Aeromexico, Czech Airlines, China Airlines, Air France / KLM (Flying Blue), and more.

Non-alliance partnerships include Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Australia, Hawaiian Airlines, and Alaska Airlines. Hotels include most major brands such as Hilton and Marriott.

When do Delta SkyMiles miles expire?

Delta SkyMiles never expire as long as your account remains open and in good standing.

When do Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card miles post to your account?

Miles can take anywhere from 6-8 weeks to post to your account, although it may occur much sooner.

What is the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card annual fee?

Please see the summary table above.

Is there a foreign transaction fee on the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card?

Please see the summary table above for rates and fees.

Is the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card a 0% APR card?

No, you will have a normal APR based on your credit.

How much are Delta SkyMiles miles worth?

Miles may be worth different values based on your redemption, but you should shoot for getting a minimum value of $0.02 per mile.

How do you redeem Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card rewards?

You must log in to your Delta SkyMiles account and search for a flight using the “redeem miles” option. This will bring up a list of flights priced by their award cost, and you can select and book a flight from here.

Alternatively, you can call Delta customer service to book awards.

What is the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card login?

To see your credit card balance and manage your account, including paying off your balances, log in via If you wish to view your SkyMiles account, log in to Delta SkyMiles.

How do you get the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card companion ticket?

Unfortunately, you cannot get a companion ticket any longer since this offer was discontinued in 2013.

What credit score do you need to get the Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card?

On average you need at least a 680, but a lower score (623+) may still qualify you for the card.

Brian Graham

About Brian Graham

Brian's first ever airplane ride was in a private turbo-prop jet. He was merely an intern boy trying to make a good impression, but it turns out the plane made an impression on him. It wasn't until Brian relocated to Dallas, TX, and moved in with an American Airlines employee that he truly discovered how incredible travel could be.

Disclaimer: Any comments listed below are not from the bank advertiser, nor have they been reviewed or approved by them. No responsibility will be taken by the bank advertiser for these comments.


  1. graham rumbellow November 2, 2019

    I have an Amex Delta Gold Skymiles card.
    Can you confirm that this card, if I use it to pay for car rental in England next August(2020) for 27 days, will insure it at no charge to me as long as I decline the rental company CDW offer?


    • Hi Graham,

      That is what the terms state on the Amex Gold card. But to clarify, we do not represent American Express, so for further information about this card benefit, you should contact them directly.


  2. I had applied for Delta American Express card online and spoke with a representative after applying because I wanted to make sure I got the $200 credit for signing up. The rep. stayed on the phone with me for a while and stated the only way to get the $200 credit was to make a purchase of $1,000 or more. So, I made another flight reservation and she assured me it would show up on my statement. Only to find out I was scammed! I could not believe it. I called American Express several times and they were supposed to listen to the call but they never did. I was told they were sorry but they could not do anything. PLEASE HELP!!! DELTA I WANT TO CONTINUE TO FLY WITH YOU BUT UNFORTUNATELY IT WON’T BE WITH THE SKYMILES CARD :(.


    • Sorry for your experience, Nina. It sounds like you must have missed the deadline for making your minimum spending requirement and if that is what happened, there is usually nothing that can be done. This is a good reminder for others to note the date one is approved for a card as welcome bonuses are commonly earned by meeting the minimum spending requirement within the first 3 months after card approval. Thank you for sharing your unfortunate experience.


  3. Xinwei Wang January 12, 2020

    I applied for the gold card when I purchased my ticket because of the travel benefits. After I completed the purchase, I called Delta to confirm the number of bags. I was told by a very nice lady from Delta that as a gold credit card member, for me, the first bag was free plus two free for an international flight, total of free bags checked in free 50 lb. I had shopped a lot, purchased gifts for relatives and friends overseas, I promised them to bring what they wanted, I sent them pictures of what I bought for them. I have three bags filled up, ready to go. Just to make sure, Today, I called Delta to reconfirm what I heard and I wrote down. What shocked me was the agent on the Delta line told me I could have only two free checked bags and a very small carry on. I paid $200 for the additional bag. I don’t know what to do with the items I bought and feel awful to tell friends and relatives oversea that I cannot take what I bought with me. What a shame.


    • Hi Xinwei,

      I’m sorry to hear that the phone agent communicated incorrect information to you. It seems there may have been a mix up in communication. Just so you know for certain going forward, the Gold Delta Skymiles card offers 1 free checked bag, in addition to the 1 free checked bag you receive for an international flight.


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