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How to Status Match With Delta Air Lines [In-Depth Guide]

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Christine Krzyszton

Christine Krzyszton

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Christine ran her own business developing and managing insurance and financial services. This stoked a passion for points and miles and she now has over 2 dozen credit cards and creates in-depth, deta...
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Frequent travelers who have elite airline status can truly appreciate the perks and benefits that come with such a loyalty position.

Whether it’s seat upgrades, change fee waivers, or VIP assistance when things go wrong — it’s nice to have an edge up when traveling.

Those benefits are getting tougher to come by, though, because airline loyalty status has gotten more difficult to achieve.

Travelers have even abandoned the chase for status and become “free agents,” buying premium tickets on whichever airline has the lowest fares.

Additionally, because it’s so difficult to achieve elite status, travelers with elite status can become reluctant to change their airline loyalty, at a risk of losing all those privileges.

But what if you’re forced to switch airlines due to a move from one hub city to another? Or what if you just want to change?

Delta is just one airline that offers customers a “status match”, along with American Airlines, Alaska, & United, among others.

Whether you need to change or want to change airlines, if you have elite airline status, there is a shortcut to getting comparable elite status with a new airline. And all the information you need to complete this shortcut is right here in one place.

In this article, we’ll guide you step by step to:

  • Understanding the Delta Air Lines status match program
  • Submitting your request and getting approved for a status match
  • Meeting the qualifications to continue your elite status

Let’s get started and see if a status match with Delta is available to you.

A status match can allow you to start enjoying the associated perks and benefits with a new airline immediately. Image Credit: Christine Krzyszton

What Is a Status Match and How Does it Work?

If you currently have elite status with an airline, you may qualify to have that elite status matched by another airline, which would be happy to have your business!

You simply submit a request to the airline you want status with. If they approve your request, the new airline will grant you their corresponding elite status for a temporary period. They hope that you will like traveling with them and continue to become a loyal customer.

Once your request is approved, you may be offered a status match valid for a specified period of time with no conditions attached, a status challenge you will need to complete in order to gain status, or a combination of the two.

Here is what you can expect in response to your status match request:

  • Status Match – The new airline grants you equal status immediately with no conditions, other than the status expiring on a certain date.
  • Status Challenge – The new airline does not grant you status immediately, but agrees to do so after you complete a certain number of flight miles or segments.
  • Combination Status Match and Challenge – The new airline grants you immediate status and requires you to complete a certain number of flight miles/segments within a specific period of time (usually 90 days), and then extends your matched elite status until a certain date (commonly the following year).

When an airline approves a request for a status match, you’ll keep your elite status with your current airline, giving you status with both airlines once the match/challenge is complete.

Delta Air Lines uses the combination of a status match and a challenge. Let’s take a look at the process.

Bottom Line: Since Delta Air Lines grants elite status immediately, you can complete your 90-day flying challenge in comfort. 

Delta does a good job of publishing the requirements for a status match challenge. Image Credit:

Delta Air Lines Status Match Program

Some airlines that offer status match programs do not publish their requirements, or even which airline statuses they’ll match.

Delta does a good job of publishing not only the requirements but a long list of airline status levels and the corresponding status match level with Delta.

Delta SkyMiles Medallion StatusSilverGoldPlatinum
Air Canada AeroplanPrestige 25K or Elite 25KElite 50KElite 75K or Super Elite 100K
Alaska Airlines Mileage PlanMVPMVP GoldMVP Gold 75K
All Nippon Airways Mileage ClubBronzePlatinumDiamond
American Airlines AAdvantageGoldPlatinumExecutive Platinum, Platinum Pro or Concierge Key
Asiana Airlines Asiana ClubGoldDiamondDiamond Plus or Platinum
British Airways Executive ClubBronzeSilverGold
Copa Airlines ConnectMilesSilverGoldPlatinum or Presidential Platinum
Japan Airlines Mileage Bank Fly OnCrystalSapphirePremier or Diamond
JetBlue TrueBlueMosaicN/AN/A
Lufthansa Miles & MoreFrequent TravelerN/ASenator or HON Circle Members
Southwest Airlines Rapid RewardsA-ListA-List PreferredN/A
United Airlines MileagePlusPremier SilverPremier GoldPremier Platinum, Platinum, 1K or Global Services

Like most airlines that offer a status match, Delta only matches to a maximum of Platinum level — not to their highest elite status, Diamond Medallion.

If you have status with an airline other than those listed, you can still submit a request, and Delta will review it for consideration.

How and When to Submit a Status Match Request

Who Is Eligible for a Delta Air Lines Status Match

Travelers eligible for a status match/challenge with Delta Air Lines should meet the following requirements:

  • You have not received in a status match with Delta Air Lines in the past 3 years.
  • You were not given complimentary Delta Medallion status in the past 3 years. (You are still eligible if you have received complimentary Medallion status as a result of reaching Million Miler status.)
  • You have elite status with an eligible airline that you earned through that airline’s published requirements.

You must be able to provide current elite documents that show your earned elite status.

Submitting a status match to Delta is a simple process. Image Credit:

How to Complete a Status Match Request

Completing the request for a status match with Delta Air Lines is not complicated, and it can be done online in a few minutes.

You will need to gather a copy of your current membership card clearly showing your elite status level and the expiration date, as well as a copy of your current frequent flyer account statement.

Then, use this information to request a Delta Medallion SkyMiles® Status Match Challenge online by completing the Status Match form.

Within 3 weeks, you’ll receive an email stating whether your request was approved or denied.

The Importance of Timing

If you have Delta flights booked, be sure to submit your status match request far enough in advance to receive approval prior to flying.

Don’t have any Delta flights booked? You might want to time your challenge to maximize the amount of time you’ll be granted elite status.

Here’s an example of how Delta currently grants matched status based on the date you earn it (keep in mind that requirements can change!):

  • If you’re approved for the status challenge and complete the requirements between July 1, 2022, and June 30, 2023, your Medallion Status will be extended through January 31, 2024.
  • If you would be approved and completed the status challenge on or after July 1, 2012, your Medallion Status would be extended through January 31, 2023 (based on current rules).

Bottom Line: To maximize the amount of time you will enjoy complimentary Medallion elite status, submit your request, receive approval, and complete your status match challenge July through September. 

Completing the Flying Requirements

Update:MQMs are used to determine Medallion Status and are different from the miles you earn towards flights. Effective 1/1/24, this benefit will no longer be available, and there will be a new way to earn toward Medallion Status with the Card. Learn more at

Once you have been approved for an elite status challenge with Delta, you will be required to complete a specific number of Medallion Qualifying Miles (MQMs) or Medallion Qualifying Segments (MQSs) in order to extend your status.

You will also be required to make flight purchases and bring revenue to the airline in the form of Medallion Qualifying Dollars (MQDs). If you spend $25,000 on a qualifying Delta co-branded American Express credit card, however, the MQD revenue requirement will be waived.

Here are the requirements for completing the challenge for each level of granted elite status.

Silver Medallion
  • 6,250 MQMs or 8 MQSs
  • Plus $750 MQDs or complete MQD waiver
Gold Medallion
  • 12,500 MQMs or 15 MQSs
  • Plus $1,500 MQDs or complete MQD waiver
Platinum Medallion
  • 18,750 MQMs or 25 MQSs
  • Plus $2,250 MQDs or complete MQD waiver

Let’s keep in mind that you will have only 90 days to complete these requirements, so you’ll want to plan carefully.

Bottom Line: The requirements you need to complete during the status challenge are far less than you’d normally need to earn status. For a complete list of qualifications for each level of elite status in a normal calendar year, visit the Medallion Elite area of

Use the Google flights explore map to find the best fares for the flights you need to complete your status match challenge. Image Credit:

Creating a Status Match Challenge Itinerary

With only 90 days to complete your status match challenge, making sure your flights are completed and credited on time is critical. If you have Delta flights planned already, that’s great — you’re on your way to meeting the requirements!

If not, we’ll share some sample itineraries that will help you meet the requirements of your challenge.

It’s worth noting that you do not have to complete the challenge using only Delta-operated flights, since partner airline flights that earn MQMs, MQSs, and MQDs do count. Use the partners chart to determine the amount you will earn.

Use Google Flights and select Delta or SkyTeam (if you plan to use partner airlines) to begin your search. The Google Flights explore map will help find the cheapest fares for longest distances.

Your challenge could easily be completed with 1 flight, but it’s important to pay close attention to the amount of MQMs and MQDs you’re earning too. Fortunately, when you book a flight on, the numbers are calculated for you.

When booking a flight on, the amount of MQMs and MQDs are calculated for you. You need to be logged in to view this information as the calculation for redeemable miles earned is based on elite status. Image Credit:

Silver Medallion Challenge Example

  • John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK) in New York to Dublin, Ireland round-trip in Economy Comfort+ on Delta in the example above would result in 7,324 MQMs and approximately $919 MQDs.

Gold Medallion Status Challenge Example

  • Chicago to Helsinki round-trip in Delta Business Class in the example below would generate 17,003 MQMs and $2,355 MQDs. Delta does not publish a detailed fare class chart, but the CWSI group has compiled a list of which classes earn extra MQMs and their descriptions.
  • In this example, F class receives a 100% MQM bonus, and Z class flights get a 50% bonus in addition to base MQMs.

Premium fare classes receive an additional MQM bonus. Image Credit:

Platinum Medallion Status Challenge Example

  • A sample itinerary from Chicago to Beijing via JFK and Guangzhou in Premium Economy on China Airlines delivers 19,816 miles flown for $1,547.

You can use a mileage calculation tool such as Milecalc to estimate your flight mileage. Image Credit:

While this itinerary more than exceeds the 18,750 MQMs you’ll need to complete your Platinum challenge, the MQDs appear to fall short of the required $2,250.

However, because partner airline flight MQDs are calculated by a percentage of distance flown and fare class, you would receive at least $3,963 in MQDs on this itinerary (20% of 19,816). For a complete breakdown on how many MQMs and MQDs you’ll earn on each partner airline flight, you can reference Delta’s partner rules.

Note: This itinerary was originally constructed using a China Southern itinerary and China Southern has since exited SkyTeam. However, China Airlines and China Eastern itineraries will work just as well using the same process.

Hot Tip: Flying with partner airlines on premium economy/business/first class fares can earn more MQMs and MQDs toward completing a status match than flying on Delta marketed/ticketed flights! Economy flights on partner airlines typically earn fewer MQMs than flying on Delta marketed/ticketed flights. 

Enhancing Your New Elite Status

Once your status match challenge is approved and you have Delta Medallion Elite status, elevating that status with benefits beyond those you’re receiving is a logical next step.

A Delta premium credit card such as the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card offers greater mileage-earning potential, complimentary Sky Club and Centurion Lounge access, an ongoing faster path to earning elite status, and an annual companion ticket (plus much more).

Because you’ll be earning 3 miles for every dollar spent on Delta, you may even want the Delta Reserve card in your pocket before you book your first Delta flight.

Cardholders receive additional unique benefits such as :

  • Additional MQMs toward elite status and redeemable miles. At $30,000 in spending annually, you’ll receive 15,000 MQMs and 15,000 in redeemable miles, up to 4 times per year.
  • The benefit of paying for your flight with miles and still earning MQMs on that same flight!
  • Priority upgrades over other same-level elite members who do not have the Delta Reserve card.

For a complete comparison of Delta-branded credit cards, including the business versions of the cards and their benefits, access our expert guide. Also, check out our ideas on the best ways to maximize your Delta SkyMiles.

Bottom Line: Having a premium Delta-branded American Express credit card enhances your Medallion Elite status to include accelerated miles earning and benefits you don’t receive with elite status alone. 

Everything Else You Need to Know

If you don’t meet the requirements of your status challenge in the 90-period provided, your temporary status will expire.

You are not eligible for a Delta Air Lines status match challenge if you have participated in one within the past 3 years.

Final Thoughts

While the process for obtaining a status match challenge with Delta Air Lines is quite simple, completing the challenge can be more complicated than with other airlines.

Where there are complications, however, opportunities and sweet spots exist too: such as premium fares on partner airlines earning additional MQDs, making it easier to meet the requirements of the status match challenge.

Additionally, utilizing Delta premium fares can give you a boost toward earning MQMs.

If you currently have elite status with another airline and want or need to switch to Delta Air Lines, you’ll find the status match process is straightforward. Though the flying challenge is, well, challenging, their Medallion Elite frequent flyer program is still very rewarding.

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

Frequently Asked Questions

If you have elite status with an airline, another airline may match that status for the purpose of getting you to try out their airline and potentially become a loyal customer.

The status match is temporary (usually 90 days), and during that time you are generally required to meet flying and possibly spending requirements to extend this status.

If you submit the request to Delta Air Lines properly, you will receive a response within 3 weeks.

You need to include a copy of your current elite membership card showing your elite status and expiration date, and a copy of your current frequent flyer statement.

If you do not meet the requirements of the 90-day status match challenge, your temporary elite status will expire.

Because you did not meet the challenge requirements, you must also wait 3 years before you will be considered for another status match.

Once you are approved for a status match challenge, you are granted temporary Medallion Elite status with Delta Air Lines. During the 90-day challenge period, you cannot qualify for any other elite status level besides the temporary status you were granted using the challenge requirements.

You can, however, meet the annual requirements for a higher elite status (versus the reduced 90-day challenge requirements) to reach a higher elite status.

About Christine Krzyszton

Christine ran her own business developing and managing insurance and financial services. This stoked a passion for points and miles and she now has over 2 dozen credit cards and creates in-depth, detailed content for UP.


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Stuart Lee

December 14, 2018

I’m wondering if my American Express PLATINUM card would work as well as the Delta-branded American Express cards?

Christine Krzyszton

December 14, 2018

Hello Stuart. I’m not sure I exactly understand your question. Although your American Express Platinum card does grant you access to the Delta Sky Club, you won’t find any further Delta status-related benefits on the card. The American Express Platinum card is, however, an excellent choice for the frequent traveler and has a lot of premium benefits. It would only make sense to have Delta-branded credit cards if you frequently fly Delta.


December 16, 2018

One thing I wasn’t sure about is when I need to buy/fly for the 90 day match challenge. If I already bought a flight before requesting a status match, but I take that flight during the 90 days is that enough? Or will I need to buy a flight and take it during that period?

Christine Krzyszton

December 16, 2018

Hi Allison. You just need to be approved for the status match prior to taking the flights. Fortunately the flight can be one that you booked previously. Thanks for your question.


May 30, 2019

Hello and thanks for the info
1- If i buy my ticket from an agent or website and fly Delta , do these flights earn miles or not?
2- I am flying on Saudia airlines round trip from Kuwait to JFK. How can I connect my Delta account to this flight so I earn miles on delta by flying on SAUDIA, a Sky Team partner.

Best regards.

1 – Yes, you’ll normally earn miles on a Delta ticket purchased from an agent or online travel agency website. However, different fare classes of tickets earn different amounts of miles and there are even fare classes that don’t earn miles. If the ticket is on a partner airline, you can determine how many miles you will earn by accessing the partner mileage earning charts on Delta.
2 – To add your Delta frequent flyer number to your Saudia flight you can use your record locator or ticket number to access your reservation on the Saudia site and add it in the passenger information section. You can also call Saudia and have them add it or have it added at the airport before you fly.
Here is the mileage earning chart for Saudia:


January 09, 2019

Hi, this post really helped me as I just submitted my application for the status match and challenge for Delta from American.

My question is on this part of the post:

“…Here’s an example of how Delta currently grants matched status based on the date you earn it (keep in mind that requirements can change!):

If you’re approved for the status challenge and complete the requirements between July 1, 2018 and June 30, 2019, your Medallion Status will be extended through January 31, 2020.
If you are approved and complete the status challenge on or after July 1, 2019, your Medallion Status will be extended through January 31, 2021.”

Is that accurate? For option 1, it is extended about 6 months and for option 2, it is extended for 1.5 years? or is the “2021” a typo?

Christine Krzyszton

January 10, 2019

Hi Katrina. Hope your status challenge request is approved with Delta! The statement is correct as written. In either option, you could complete the status challenge and have nearly 1.5 years of status. For example, if you completed the status challenge (Option 1) late in July of 2018, you would have status through Jan. 2020.

Steve Fenwick

January 23, 2019

Hi Christine!

Your post talks about extending status into 2021, but the only info I can find on Delta’s website is about extensions until January 2020. Is there some news about the match being continued so that extensions into 2021? I don’t want to wait until July to do the match, and then find it cancelled. Thanks!

Christine Krzyszton

January 24, 2019

Hi Steve! I don’t have any insight as to the future of Delta status matches/challenges. The examples in the article are to illustrate how the timing of a status match works. Unfortunately, Delta could change how they offer and manage status matches/challenges tomorrow. The timing examples in the article are representative of how Delta currently grants matched status based on the date you earn it and a reminder that requirements can change. If you complete a status challenge now, you should have status through the elite qualification year, end of January 2020. If everything continues as is and you get approved after July and complete a status challenge, you would have status through the end of January 2021.


February 14, 2019

How can I check what i have earned toward my status match challenge?

Christine Krzyszton

February 15, 2019

Hi Timothy! You can log in to your SkyMiles account and review your activity since the date your challenge was approved. It will be broken down by MQDs, MQMs, etc. There is not a separate tracker.


February 25, 2019

Hi Christine –

I am looking to do the status match with my A-List from Southwest and have a couple of questions.

1) I’ll be traveling each week for work so don’t have any doubt I’ll not meet the requirements to extend my status, and since that is the case, is it still best to wait until July to get the status through 2021? Or should I start now in that once I solidify Silver, I can then be working toward Gold?

2) If my A-List Southwest transfers only to Silver Medallion, but lets just say I hit the requirements for Gold (15 MQSs) in that 90 day time frame, would I then get Gold if completed in the 90 day time frame or am I simply just able to match to Silver?

Christine Krzyszton

February 25, 2019

Hi Tim, this is an exciting move. Let’s review the options together. Option one is that you do the status match now and receive Silver status. You’ll have Silver status while you complete your flights on Delta, and when you complete the requirements, your status will be extended through January 2020. You do not have to complete Gold requirements in the 90 days, however, as you’ll have Silver already and once you meet Gold requirements (EQMs or EQS + EQDs) this year, you’ll have that status through January 2021.

OK, so let’s consider that you wait until July to status match. You’ll receive Silver through January 2021 because you’ll meet the 90 day requirements to extend. If you’re planning to meet Gold requirements this year, however, perhaps the extended Silver status to 2021 isn’t critical. This option does not give you Delta Silver Medallion status while you’re flying those upcoming segments between now and July.

You probably have information as to how many miles/segments/frequency you’ll be flying and that will help you decide. But hope these thoughts help.


March 07, 2019

If I achieved my current status with Alaska through a status match, can I use that status for a match challenge with Delta?

Christine Krzyszton

March 07, 2019

Hi David and congrats on your match with Alaska. Unfortunately the terms and conditions of Delta’s status match state that you would not qualify. To qualify, according to Delta’s website: “You currently have elite status with a qualifying airline that was earned through that airline’s published requirements (complimentary status or status earned through a promotion does not qualify).”


March 12, 2019

Hello and thank you for the post. I currently have MVP status on Alaska and am switching to Delta. My question is what exactly are the 2 documents I need to submit to them. Delta states “Your request cannot be processed until you provide a legible copy of your current elite credential and current statement from another airline…”

What exactly are those 2 pieces of documentation? Are they things I can get through the Alaska app or do I need to request these from Alaska customer service?

Thanks again!

Christine Krzyszton

March 12, 2019

Sounds like you are on your way to Delta elite status, Randall. Delta needs to validate your status with Alaska so you need to submit a copy of your current membership card. It should clearly show your elite status level and the expiration date. You will also need a copy of your current Alaska frequent flyer account statement. You may be able to do screen shots of these from your Alaska account, perhaps take a photo of your current membership card, and submit these digitally. The information is probably available on the Alaska app but perhaps more visible on a desktop or laptop.


March 13, 2019

If I start a status match challenge, do trips that I’ve booked previously which fall within the challenge window count toward the challenge or must everything be booked after the challenge begins as well?

Example: I have a trip on Delta I’ve already planned in May. If I start my challenge in April, will that trip count or will only trips that I book after the April start date and complete before the 90 period is up count toward the challenge?

Christine Krzyszton

March 13, 2019

Thanks for your question. You just need to be approved for the status match challenge prior to flying. For example, if you are approved in April, the May flight will count. The email confirmation you receive from Delta will spell out the terms specifically.


March 21, 2019

I am in the middle of a status match from American Platinum, which got me Gold on Delta. During the status period, I will complete enough MQMs and MQDs that would have been required for a Platinum status challenge. Would I be eligible to reach platinum even though the status I matched got me Gold?

Christine Krzyszton

March 21, 2019

Hello Graham and congrats on getting the Delta Gold challenge. Unfortunately, during the 90-day challenge period, you cannot qualify for any other elite status level other than the one for which you were approved. You will need to complete the normal annual requirements to achieve Platinum status which is 75,000 MQMs and $9000 MQDs. It’s definitely a long shot and unlikely they would approve you qualifying for Platinum, but you could call Delta and ask. There’s nothing to lose by doing so.


April 03, 2019

Hi thanks for the info –

Question: I am a premier platinum on United so I would be approved for the Platinum challenge on Delta but will not be able to meet more than the Gold requirements during the 90 days.

Do you think it’s possible to request to get the Gold status challenge as opposed to only the Platinum?

Also if the 90 days overlaps with July 1, and say I complete the challenge by Mid July within the 90 days but into the next challenge period, would that mean I would have status until 2021? Or does it start based on when I am approved regardless of when completing the challenge?


Christine Krzyszton

April 05, 2019

Hi James. Delta normally matches status to status so you would get approved for a Platinum status challenge because of your United Platinum status. Based on what you’ve said, you would not be able to reach those requirements and therefore not complete the challenge. So yes, I would try and ask for a Gold status challenge. It is a possibility. Also, if you are approved before July 1, you will not receive the extended status through 2021. You would want to wait until after July 1 to submit your request, just to be sure. The confirmation email you receive will state the final terms of the challenge.


April 12, 2019

Hi Christine, great article. Some questions if you don’t mind:

1) Do flights count toward the match from the day you apply for match or from the date DL approves you? I just asked a DL CSR and he said it was from the date of the application, which I find hard to believe. But hey, worth a shot.

2) Once you sign up for the challenge, do the flights need to be on Delta metal and/or a Delta ticket. For example: can I fly Air France metal on a DL ticket and get credit towards the match? Second example: What if I buy an Air France ticketed flight but use my DL FF number rather than Flying Blue?

Thank you!

Christine Krzyszton

April 13, 2019

Hello Jon. Good for you for doing your research before you dive into the challenge. The email approval confirmation you receive from Delta will confirm all of the details of the challenge, including the starting date. Normally the start date is the date you are approved. Flights on partner airlines do count. And yes, Air France flights issued on a Delta ticket or Air France ticket will count. However, you should review the Delta earnings chart for that airline to determine how many MQM and MQD you will earn: Discounted fares issued by another airline can earn very little but premium fares can earn very well.


April 13, 2019

Thanks for the quick reply. I have a paid Z fare on AF coming up, credited to Delta FF, so that’s 150% for MQMs or nearing 12K for the specific routing. The miles accrue at 40% for AF and that gets me pretty close to the MQDs, just need one more hop in the states. Sounds like it’s time to sign up. Thanks again!

Christine Krzyszton

April 13, 2019

Wonderful. It appears you have a really good understanding of how to complete the challenge successfully. Good luck, Jon. And you’re welcome.


April 29, 2019


Great article. Quick question… I was approved for a status match, but do not see any changes to my mileage counter in the Delta app or anything saying I was granted temporary status in my SkyMiles account… is this normal? All I have is the email from Delta with the dates of my challenge. Thanks!!

Christine Krzyszton

April 30, 2019

Hi Sean. Congrats on getting approved for the challenge. Yes, once you’re approved you should be granted temporary status. Here is how the terms and conditions of the challenge state it: “Once your request is approved, you will be automatically enrolled in the challenge and matched to Platinum, Gold or Silver Medallion Status based on your current elite status with another airline. Your complimentary Status Match will last for 3 months beginning on the date your request is approved.” However, the confirmation email defines the terms of the challenge. If the temporary status is not mentioned in the email, I would contact Delta and let them know. Please let us know what happens.


April 30, 2019

Thank you for the follow up… I actually misread the email from Delta. The email said I was enrolled, but the effective date was today. App and status updated today. Thanks!!

Christine Krzyszton

April 30, 2019

Sean, that is awesome. Really appreciate you getting back to us and letting us know how this worked out.


May 03, 2019

I have been forced by United to change airlines (they have reduced my PBI route to just EWR, removing ORD and IAH). As a 1k , I know United MP is WAY better than any other elite program ( will really miss those 6 GPUs and 4 RPUs ) , even though DL Diamond is way short of United 1k, would you say Delta was the next best after United? thx

Hello Marcus. The best elite program for each traveler is related to personal preferences, and as you mentioned, how the airline services your home airport. Having been United 1K, American Executive Platinum, and Delta Diamond for many years, my preference is Delta by far. If I were located on the west coast, I might prefer Alaska Airlines program. That is the advantage of a status match program – you can try out the airline and see if it works for you. Good luck with your choice and thanks for reading.


May 04, 2019

Hi thanks for the post,it is very helpful. One thing I find unclear is once you complete the challenge how do you get to
to the next tiers. Say I switch from gold in AA to silver in Delta and complete the challenge successfully. If I want to get to Gold in Delta do I need to fly 50k miles (i.e reach silver and gold) or just the additional 25k?

It would be interesting to know this because with my current airline I would need to fly half the miles/segments to earn that status. In that case it would be better to earn the next tiers in AA and then transfer, considering that there is a good part of the calendar year left before qualifying miles reset.


Hi Alan, thank you for your question. If you matched your AA Gold to Delta Silver and completed the challenge, you would have Silver status but you would only have the number of Elite Qualifying Miles you earned in your challenge towards the next level. For example, if you earned 10,000 MQM during the challenge, you would need 40,000 more MQM to get to Gold status which requires 50,000 MQM in a calendar year. So yes, you could go on to qualify for the next level with AA and then status match to Delta. Thank you so much for reading and glad you found the information helpful.

Jeremy Todd Abraham

May 23, 2019

I was just approved for Delta platinum and have a few upcoming flights which will Allow me to meet the challenge around the end of July 2019. I thought by completing the challenge after July 1 2019 this will continue platinum status through Jan 2021. Am I wrong in that I didn’t get approved after July 1 or does that not matter?

Stephen Au

May 23, 2019


It’s worth giving Delta a phone call to confirm. Please be advised that we are not Delta Airlines, and we can’t shed any official information regarding status challenges and matches. The terms and conditions are subject to change at the discretion of Delta. Thanks for reading.

Hello Jeremy. You must be approved and complete the challenge after July 1 to have status extended to 2021.

E Soler

June 05, 2019

I would like to do a status match from United to Delta. Once I do that I should be silver. Do you know what I must do to become Delta Gold afterwards? Is it basically like starting from scratch?

Christine Krzyszton

June 05, 2019

Hello E Soler. Yes. You would receive a status match/challenge for Silver and then your Silver status would be extended once you complete the challenge. To reach Gold Medallion status you would need to complete the 50,000 miles or 60 segments, plus $6,000 MQD total (or the MQD credit card spend waiver) in a calendar year. The MQM, MQS, and MQD you earn during the challenge will count toward the annual requirement in the year they are earned.


July 04, 2019

Just one quick question, if I managed to pass the platinum challenge, but I’m not able to get 75,000 MQM before 2021 to maintain that status, will I downgrade one level to gold or just to no status even if I get more than 50,000 miles? Thanks!

Jarrod West

July 04, 2019

Hi Mike,

Delta does not provide a “soft landing” for status holders. You will need 50,000 MQMs/$6,000 MQDs for Gold status, and 75,000 MQMs/$9,000 MQDs to requalify for Platinum.


July 08, 2019

Hello, thanks for a great article!

I have companion status on Southwest Airlines which is not listed to correspond to Elite status on Delta. May I appeal this for consideration or will I only have eligibility for Gold status? Thanks again:)

Jarrod West

July 08, 2019

Hi Tracey,

Just to clarify, are you saying that you’re a companion pass holder with Southwest? Or does someone else hold the pass and you are their companion? If it is the former do you also have A-List status or A-List Preferred status with Southwest?


August 13, 2019

I have American PP. Additionally, I have Delta Silver going the normal, slow method. If I apply for the Delta Platinum challenge does my Silver status give me any sort of benefit?

Christine Krzyszton

August 14, 2019

Hello KD. I am assuming that the PP you’re referring to stands for Platinum Pro with American so you should be matched to Delta Platinum for the status challenge. Having Silver Medallion currently will have no additional benefit. Good luck with your challenge.


August 15, 2019

I’m wondering how rollover MQMs work. I hit my challenge target and have Gold status through Jan 2021. I could hit Silver this year but think it’s better to come in at 24k MQM this year because they will rollover, meaning I only need 26k MQM next year to get Gold through 2022. Am I reading that right?

Christine Krzyszton

August 15, 2019

Hi Richard. Congrats on completing the Gold challenge. Unfortunately rollover MQM happen only when you have qualified for a Medallion Elite status tier. For example, if you earned 30,000 MQM in a calendar year and met the $3,000 MQD requirement (or 25K credit card spending waiver),you would qualify for Silver and have 5,000 extra MQM rollover to the next year. If you do not qualify for any Medallion tier, MQM do not rollover.

Richard R Fields

August 16, 2019

Delta specifically says they members who meet their status match challenge get the rollover MQMs (see below). It would almost make sense to let us have rollover miles for the following year since we only keep the status for such a brief period.

*Members will only be eligible for Rollover MQMs and Choice Benefits once they have successfully met the requirements for their challenge.

Christine Krzyszton

August 17, 2019

Hi Richard. Members who meet the status match challenge do not “get” rollover miles, they are simply eligible for the Rollover Medallion Qualification Miles benefit which states that you must exceed the elite qualification levels to rollover miles. Also, you are given status for the temporary 3 month period and it is extended once you meet the challenge. For example, if you meet your challenge in September of 2019, your status will be extended through the following 2020 elite qualification year.

Richard R Fields

August 17, 2019

Respectfully I think you’re wrong. First I’m only getting status through January since my challenge began in June. And the website says you get rollover mqms when you meet the challenge, which I’ve done. I’ll contact delta myself to clarify.

Christine Krzyszton

August 17, 2019

You should absolutely call Delta for clarification, Richard. My answer is based on past experience with those I know who have completed a challenge with Delta and my interpretation of the rules based on that. Please let us know what you find out.

Garry Baker

August 19, 2019

Hi Christine,

I was just approved for a Status Match Challenge from American Platinum status. Due to some poor coordination and life events, I have a trip reserved with another airline to Europe which would have gotten me halfway there. I still have a trip to Australia from Atlanta coming up at the end of my 90 days worth ~9k MQMs. If I get a Delta Reserve card, and the welcome 10k MQMs post during my challenge window, would those MQMs count toward my challenge?

Andrew Kunesh

August 19, 2019

Hi Garry, good question! According to Delta’s website, only “MQMs, MQSs and MQDs earned through travel on Delta, Delta Connection, and SkyMiles Partner Airlines will count towards the challenge.” With this in mind, it’s safe to assume that MQMs earned with the Delta Reserve card do not count towards the status challenge. The Delta Reserve MQD waiver, however, will apply to the status challenge.


October 28, 2019

First, great article. Thanks for the info.
Question. I am currently Executive Platinum on American and Gold on Delta. By doing the status match, that should put me at Platinum on Delta. Now, if I don’t complete the challenge, will I return back to Gold on Delta? And will those MQMs during the challenge count afterwards?

Christine Krzyszton

October 29, 2019

Hello Brent and thanks for the kind words! If you do not complete the challenge with Delta, you will revert to whichever status you previously qualified for. And yes, any MQM/MQD/MQS you earn during the challenge count towards the annual elite requirements (in the year they were earned).


November 06, 2019

Thanks for this valuable info.
Living outside of USA, does Delta offer a “concession” in the required spending requirements to maintain elite status?
Thanks again.

Christine Krzyszton

November 07, 2019

Hi Charles. Yes, only U.S. based members have an annual Medallion Qualifying Dollar (MQD) requirement for earning Medallion Elite status.


November 26, 2019

Hi. If I already purchased a ticket on Delta for a later date, will that count towards my challenge?

Christine Krzyszton

November 26, 2019

Hi Solomon. Yes it can count. You must be approved for the challenge prior to flying and of course, the flight must be flown within the required time frame.


November 28, 2019

Hi Christine, I’m currently a United Mileage Gold Member but haven’t reached Gold status for 2020 yet. If I apply for the Delta Challenge would they grant me my current Gold status, or next year’s Silver status? Thanks!

Christine Krzyszton

November 29, 2019

Hi Karen. You would be matched at your current status. Thanks for reading.


December 04, 2019

Hi and thanks for all your information. I am currently Platinum Pro with American.
I just sent Delta the screenshots of homepage from website that shows my full name, Aadvatange number and status.
Then a second screenshot of the “dial” screen that shows progress to Elite status, indicating my total EQM, EQS and EQD. I hope that will satisfy them.

Here’s my challenge. I have to make a business class trip BOS – LHR, which would go a long way towards meeting the challenge. But I must travel out on Thurs Dec 12 – and would like to buy the ticket now before prices increase. Am I correct that the date of purchase does not matter as long as the actual flight is after approval? I know there are no guarantees – but what is the likelihood of getting approved by Dec 11? Thanks for any guidance/advice.

Christine Krzyszton

December 05, 2019

Hi Sam. One document that Delta requests is a copy of your elite credentials (card) with your name and expiration date on it. I think what you sent them may suffice but I would take a shot of your AAdvantage Membership Card and have it ready to send to them in case they request it.
You are correct in that the purchase date of the flight does not matter as long as you are approved before you fly. I think there is a chance you’ll be approved in time.


July 09, 2021

If my status on United was extended through 2021 due to COVID, does that still qualify me for status match on Delta in 2021 (that is – I didn’t actually fly on United during 2020).

Jarrod West

July 09, 2021

Hi RK,

Yes, you should still be eligible for the status match. Safe travels!


June 17, 2022

This post is great. Thank you!
I was a Diamond on Delta 5 years ago and moved to United, where I’m 1K.
Do you know where can I approach Delta to inquire about a Diamond status match?

Christine Krzyszton

June 17, 2022

Hi Omri. Thanks for your kind words and for reading. On Delta’s status match page, it’s showing only a match as high as Platinum. The link in the article expired so I have updated it. You can request a challenge here:

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