Note: The offer mentioned in this post has now expired.
For just a few weeks, American Express has just raised the sign-up bonuses on its Delta SkyMiles credit cards to 50,000 miles after spending $1000 within the first 3 months. It also comes with a $50 statement credit after your first Delta purchase made within 3 months. The $95 annual fee is waived the first year. This offer is going to last until September 8, 2014 and after that I expect it will drop back to 30,000-35,000 miles where it usually is.
Redeeming Delta SkyMiles
50,000 miles plus a $50 statement credit for just $1000 minimum spending is a decent deal for those who can use the miles. And offering free checked bags and Priority boarding brings in some added benefits for Delta flyers.
Unlike other airlines, Delta does not charge a close-in or last minute award booking fee (usually $75 for many other airlines for booking awards within 21 days of departure dates). So if you happen to find some awards that open up close to departure with Delta SkyMiles, then Delta can be very good miles to use.
Delta SkyMiles can be redeemed on SkyTeam partners for international travel as well as domestic partner Alaska Airlines. All awards are priced as round-trip. That is, you can book a one-way award, but you will be charged the round-trip price. They will begin allowing booking of one-way awards in January.
Travelers on the West Coast actually have a distinct advantage using Delta miles as they can combine Alaska Airlines award seats with award seats on other partners. As an example, my friend Tatyana flew to Cancun for 35,000 Delta miles round-trip by finding award space on Alaska Airlines to Mexico City and then connecting to Cancun via Aeromexico. Given Aeromexico frequently has excellent award space, this can be a viable option for flying to lots of destinations within South America.
You can find a full set of Delta SkyMiles award travel charts here.
Full offer details:
- Limited Time Offer: Earn 50,000 bonus miles after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases within your first 3 months.
- Earn a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months.
- Earn As You Spend: Get 2X miles on Delta purchases and 1X miles for all other eligible dollars spent.
- Check your first bag free on every Delta flight – that’s a savings of up to $200 per round trip for a family of four.
- Settle in sooner with Priority Boarding.
- $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
- Terms and Restrictions Apply.