17 Valuable Benefits of the Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

Delta airplane boeing 747

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The Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express is the entry-level option among their co-branded Delta cards.

American Express also offers the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card and the Delta Reserve® Credit Card, both of which come with a few increased benefits and significantly higher annual fees.

If Delta is your primary airline, the benefits of having a free checked bag and priority boarding alone make carrying at least 1 of the American Express Delta cards worth it. Unless you need the extra help to qualify for elite status with Delta, the Gold Delta Card is likely your best option, so for now, that’s the card we will concentrate on.

Let’s take a detailed look at the benefits that come along with the Gold Delta Card. That way, you can decide if it’s the right card for you.

Key Card Benefits

Not surprisingly, the main benefits of this card are centered around Delta Air Lines, though other standard credit card benefits are there too.

Earn Delta SkyMiles

Majorca Island Spain
Use the Delta SkyMiles you earn to fly to Europe, then make your way to the Mediterranean for a beautiful view like this, on the Spanish island of Majorca.


This card earns miles in the Delta SkyMiles Program. SkyMiles can be redeemed for flights on Delta or more than 15 of their airline partners around the world. Delta is a member of the SkyTeam Alliance and partners with all other member airlines.

You will earn 2 miles per dollar spent when using your card on purchases made directly with Delta. This includes flights and vacation packages booked at delta.com, Sky Club memberships and passes, seat upgrades, and any inflight purchases of headsets, drinks, or food.

For all other purchases with your card, you will earn 1 mile per dollar. There is no limit to how many miles you can earn.

Medallion Qualification Dollar Waiver

If a cardmember fails to meet the Medallion Qualification Dollars (MQDs) threshold for a Qualification Year, they can still qualify for Medallion status if they’ve earned the required Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) or Medallion Qualification Segments (MQSs) — and made at least $25,000 in eligible purchases on the card within that qualification year.

On January 1, 2018, the Medallion Qualification Dollar (MQD) Waiver for earning Diamond Medallion Status changed. The required eligible spend is now $250,000 for Diamond Medallion Status only. The required eligible spend for Platinum, Gold, or Silver Medallion Status remains set at $25,000.

Fraud Protection

You will never be held responsible for fraudulent charges on your card. If you notice a charge that you didn’t make or authorize, call the number on the back of the card and they will take care of it for you. American Express will remove the charge, and there will never be any deductible for you.

Year-End Summary

At the end of the year, you can log in to your account to get a year-end summary. This summary includes all of your charges throughout the year organized by type of expense. This allows you to analyze your spending, which helps with budgeting and organization of your finances.

Travel Benefits

The Gold Delta Card has a variety of benefits that will make your travel easier, more comfortable, and more pleasant overall. From checking bags to renting cars, this card makes sure your trip will go smoothly from start to finish.

Free Checked Bag

Your first checked bag is free when traveling on Delta-marketed and Delta-operated flights, as long as your SkyMiles number is on both the reservation and your credit card. To qualify, the bag must not be oversized or overweight, and you must check in with Delta.

Assuming you would normally have to pay to check a bag, this benefit will save you $30 on every qualifying flight while you are a cardmember.

Hot Tip: The first checked bag free benefit applies to up to 9 people flying on the same reservation, as long as the reservation is booked by the primary cardholder. That means you can save up to $540 per round-trip when you travel with a large group!

Priority Boarding

boarding gate line airport
Skip the long lines at the boarding gate with priority boarding. Be one of the first passengers on the plane and make sure there is space for your carry-on bags.

Cardmembers will receive Zone 1 priority boarding on flights operated by Delta and Delta Connection. To receive this benefit, the reservation must include the primary cardmember’s SkyMiles number. Priority boarding is not available on Delta Shuttle flights.

Like the checked baggage waiver, this benefit applies to up to 9 people on the same reservation as the cardholder. This means that as long as you’re booked on the same reservation, your whole party should be able to board together.

Priority boarding can be an important benefit if you’re traveling with bags that need to fit in the overhead compartments. With passengers trying to avoid paying to check bags, the overhead compartments often get full before everyone has boarded. Boarding first means there will definitely be space for your bag.

Discounted Delta Sky Club Access

Gold cardmembers and up to 2 guests can enter a Delta Sky Club for a discounted rate of $29 per person. This benefit is now only available to cardmembers who have a same-day ticketed flight Delta or one of its partners. Payment for entry has to be done in person with the Gold Delta Card.

The Delta Sky Club can be a great place to relax before a flight or on a long layover. Seating is more comfortable, there are complimentary snacks, and you have a place to freshen up before flying. Depending on the location and size of the Club, it may be well worth the $29 entry fee to avoid sitting in the uncomfortable rows of chairs in the gate areas.

Inflight Savings

By using your card for inflight purchases, you can save 20%. Savings come in the form of a statement credit on your card, and they will appear 6-8 weeks after you make the purchase.

The 20% savings applies to pre-purchased meals and inflight purchases of food, drinks, and audio headsets. Savings only apply on Delta-operated flights and do not apply for any other inflight purchases than those listed. Wireless internet and charitable donations are specifically excluded.

Car Rental Coverage

When you rent an eligible car and pay for the entire rental with your card, you will have insurance coverage if the vehicle is lost or stolen. For this benefit to apply, you must decline the collision damage waiver at the counter when picking up the rental. Insurance coverage is secondary to your primary auto insurance.

Certain high-end vehicles, off-road vehicles, limousines, and antique cars are not covered by this insurance. Coverage also does not apply to auto rentals in Australia, Italy, and New Zealand.

Hot Tip: This insurance coverage is secondary coverage. That means if you have a loss, your primary personal insurance will pay out first. Insurance from the card will only payout for the portion of the loss not covered by your primary insurance. If you are looking for primary insurance coverage, there are other cards you should use for your car rental charges instead.

Global Assist Hotline

If you are traveling more than 100 miles from your home, the cardholder will have 24/7 access to global emergency coordination and assistance services. These can include medical or legal referrals, cash wire assistance, passport replacement, missing luggage, and more.

This hotline will help you set up any of the services listed above, but it is important to note that the cardholder will be responsible for any third party costs charged by the actual service providers. Setting up the services is covered for free; actually using the services is not.

Shopping and Entertainment Benefits

Electronics Extended Warranty Return Protection
Benefits like extended warranty and return protection lessen the stress of buying expensive electronics. Even if you have a problem shortly after the original warranty runs out, you will be protected. And if the store won’t let you return your purchase? Within 90 days, you’re protected for that too.

Aside from travel, shopping and entertainment are among the largest categories of spending for most credit cards. When making a purchase, it is important to know what consumer protections your credit card will offer in case you have a problem down the line.

When it comes to entertainment access, American Express is one of the best credit card issuers. Each card has its own set of benefits, but if you want to get those hard-to-find tickets, the Gold Delta Card might the right card for you.

Free ShopRunner Membership

By signing up with your eligible American Express card, cardholders can receive a free ShopRunner membership. This membership is available at no cost as long as you keep the associated American Express card open.

ShopRunner provides free 2-day shipping on millions of products from hundreds of online stores. This benefit only applies to select items at certain stores; it does not necessarily apply to every item a store sells. To activate the free shipping, you must sign in to ShopRunner during checkout.

In addition, ShopRunner provides free return shipping for orders from several online stores. For eligible items, you will be provided with a paid return shipping label.

Extended Warranty

When using your card to make a purchase, the warranty of the item purchased will be automatically matched and extended by up to 1 year. To be eligible for this extended warranty, the product must have come with an original United States manufacturer’s warranty of 5 years or less.

The coverage has a limit of $10,000 per item and $50,000 per calendar year, and it is limited to the purchase price put on your card.

Hot Tip: When making a major purchase, especially of appliances or electronics, it is in your best interest to choose a credit card that will offer an extended warranty. That way, if you have a problem with the product just after the warranty runs out, you will still be covered by your credit card.

Return Protection

For smaller purchases made in the United States and U.S. Territories, return protection can provide a refund if the store will not take the item back as a return. To qualify, the item must have been purchased with your card, and you must be trying to return it within 90 days of purchase. This benefit has a limit of $300 per item and $1,000 per calendar year.

Purchase Protection

In the case of accidental damage or theft, purchase protection can refund eligible purchases charged to your card. The benefit has a limit of $1,000 per occurrence and $50,000 per calendar year.

Lost items, consumable/perishable items, vehicles (and their part and accessories), and normal wear and tear are specifically excluded from this coverage. It is also important to note that this coverage is secondary. If you have renters or homeowners insurance that will cover your loss, that policy would pay out before this coverage takes effect.

Entertainment Access

Whether your interest is sporting events, concerts, or Broadway shows, American Express can help you get the tickets you want.

In select cities, American Express cardmembers have access to exclusive presales for a wide variety of events. With many concerts and shows selling out within minutes, access to the presale might make the difference between enjoying the event in-person and sitting at home on your couch wishing you were there.

During the presales, tickets must be purchased with your card, not all seats will be available, and there will be some blackout dates. Similar to purchasing through a general public sale, tickets sales will be final, with no refunds or exchanges being offered.

Final Thoughts

Delta Airlines Planes Row
The Delta SkyMiles program can be quite frustrating to deal with due to their history of devaluations without notice and lack of a published award chart. However, Delta’s market share at certain airports and their fairly generous domestic award availability make SkyMiles a program that is still a favorite for many people.

American Express is the only bank that issues Delta co-branded credit cards, and the benefits of free checked bags, priority boarding, and a 20% inflight discount make holding one of their cards worth it (even if you only fly with Delta a few times a year).

The Gold Delta Card is a great option if you want added perks when flying with Delta but don’t need extra help qualifying for elite status. This could either be because you will not qualify even with help from a credit card, or you will easily qualify even without help from a credit card.

In either of these cases, the Gold Delta Card is likely the most favorable of the 3 American Express Delta cards for you.


Is the Gold Delta Card worth it?

Yes, as long as you regularly travel on and spend money with Delta Airlines. If not, other cards provide similar benefits to the non-Delta specific benefits of the Gold Delta Card.

Is there an annual fee for the Gold Delta Card?

Yes; see the card review page for details.

What credit score do I need to get the Gold Delta Card?

Although every situation is different, approvals have been seen with credit scores as low as 625. Scores of 675 or higher would have a better chance of approval.

What's the difference between the Gold Delta Card and the Platinum Delta Card?

The higher annual fee on the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express gives you the opportunity to earn Delta Medallion Qualification Miles (MQM) with the typical welcome bonus and with certain levels of yearly spending. If elite status is important to you and you regularly fly Delta on paid tickets, the Platinum Delta Card may be the better option for you. If you do not fly enough to reach elite status levels, but you still want some perks when flying with Delta, the Gold Delta Card is probably the better choice.

Is there a limit to how many miles I can earn on my Gold Delta Card?

No, there is no limit to the number of Delta SkyMiles that can be earned on the Gold Delta Card.

Jeff Brownson

About Jeff Brownson

Since discovering miles and points in 2010, Jeff has traveled to over 35 countries, flying in first class, business class, and sometimes even in coach. Whether he’s staying in a hostel dorm, or in a luxury suite at a 5 star hotel, Jeff is constantly looking for the best deal to make travel as close to free as possible.


American Express® Gold Card

  • Earn 35,000 Membership Rewards® points after you spend $4,000 on eligible purchases with your new Card within the first 3 months.
  • Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points when you dine at restaurants worldwide. Earn 4X Membership Rewards® points at U.S. supermarkets (on up to $25,000 per year in purchases, then 1X). Earn 3X Membership Rewards® points on flights booked directly with airlines or on amextravel.com.
  • Earn up to a total of $10 in statement credits monthly when you pay with the Gold Card at Grubhub, Seamless, The Cheesecake Factory, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Boxed, and participating Shake Shack locations. This can be an annual savings of up to $120. Enrollment required.
  • $100 Airline Fee Credit: up to $100 in statement credits per calendar year for incidental fees at one selected qualifying airline.
  • Choose to carry a balance with interest on eligible charges of $100 or more.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Annual Fee is $250.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

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. tburgs · August 1, 2018 · Reply

    no complaints on the delta gold card. The bonus posted right after I hit the minimum spend. Didn’t even have to wait for the statement to close. Some card companies wait 3-6 months before posting…not Amex! If you link it to your delta dining account, you will earn even more miles.

  2. J Sheldon · March 9, 2019 · Reply

    You failed to mention the Delta Platinum AX card comes with an annual companion ticket good for anywhere in the contiguous 48 states.

    • Christine Krzyszton · March 10, 2019 · Reply

      Hi J Sheldon. To be clear, the annual companion ticket is not a benefit of the Gold Delta SkyMiles Credit Card but is a benefit on the Platinum Delta SkyMiles Credit Card. This is definitely one of the differences between the two cards so thank you for pointing that out.

  3. We recently traveled to India and everyone had to cancel the return trip after reaching there due to mishap. People who had booked air ticket with Citibank Costco or Chase Hyatt cards automatically had travel protection and were able to claim. I booked on Amex Delta Gold which has no such protection so lost all the money.

  4. Panduranga Rao Pamidimukkala · August 3, 2019 · Reply

    I am a citizen of India and live in Bangalore. I have been traveling to USA for quite some time. If I apply for Delta American Express card, it is asking for SSN as I have given my daughter’s address USA for correspondence. Will I get an American express card if I change my address to India?

    • Hi Panduranga,

      You cannot use your daughter’s social security number and address in order to apply for a U.S. credit card.
      You must apply with your own social security number and U.S. address. If you are not eligible to receive a social security number, you may apply for an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) by the IRS, which can be used to apply for credit cards.

  5. CONNIE · August 5, 2019 · Reply

    my mother has the gold card but I am an additional card holder. She got it so I can use it for travel, why can’t I get the same benefits as she does, she never travels, and I love flying that was the purpose in getting this card. Then I read it doesn’t cover secondary card holder. I don’t think this is fair really. I pay all the bills on it.

    • Katie Seemann · August 5, 2019 · Reply

      Hi Connie,
      If you have been an authorized user on your mother’s card for a while and have been paying off the bills each month, you might have enough credit to get a your own card. That way to can take advantage of all of the card’s benefits. Thanks for reading.

  6. Can you tell me if there are any perks with the Delta Gold Skymiles Amex card for international travel, specifically baggage? I know everyone gets one free bag for travel between US and Europe, however, would a cardholder receive their 2nd bag for free?

    • Hi Diane,

      Only your first checked bag would be free. However, you also receive benefits like priority boarding, discounted Delta SkyClub access, and 20% off pre-purchased meals and inflight purchases of food, drinks, and audio headsets.

      Thanks for reading!

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