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American Express Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card Review
Today I’m going to review another credit card from American Express that can benefit our readers who are frequent flyers. The Gold Delta SkyMiles card is one of American Express’ mid-range offerings; not its most popular credit card, but still worth looking into, particularly if you frequently fly with Delta Airlines.
Here we go…
New Member Bonuses
With the Gold Delta SkyMiles credit card, new cardholders have to spend $1,000 on eligible purchases within the first three months in order to claim the sign up bonus. The bonus is massive: 30,000 miles. This is credited to your account 2-4 weeks after you surpass the $1,000 mark, and you’ll soon be on your way to flying more affordably with Delta. You can also earn a $50 statement credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months.
As an added bonus, the Gold Delta SkyMiles card also has a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year.
Fees & APR
After the first year of freedom from annual fees, the Gold Delta SkyMiles card tacks on $95 per year thereafter. This is somewhat high for a rewards card of this caliber, and unless you fly Delta several times per year, the chances of saving more than the card costs are slim.
In addition to the annual fee, the Gold Delta SkyMiles credit card also charges $5 or 3% of the overall amount for cash advances and balance transfers. There is also a hefty 2.7% foreign transaction fee that international travelers should be wary of. This fee makes overseas shopping a costly venture.
Gold Delta SkyMiles interest rates range from 15.24% to 19.24%, predicated upon your creditworthiness and other factors. These are by no means the lowest interest rates you’ll find in your search for a new credit card, but considering the rewards given to cardholders, the rates are fairly reasonable.
Delta SkyMiles Program
Speaking of rewards…if you like to fly on Delta Airlines, then the Gold Delta SkyMiles card will make your life easier and travel plans cheaper. Earn miles by making everyday purchases or paying your monthly bills with this card, and Delta does not place a limit on how many miles you can rack up, which is nice.
You can accumulate double miles by using your Gold Delta SkyMiles card on Delta Airlines and Delta Vacations® purchases. These include: in-flight meals and beverages, seat upgrades, Sky Club memberships, and more.
Free Checked Baggage
Airlines are getting stingier with their baggage requirements these days, and many have phased out free baggage checks altogether. Not Delta however; at least not for its cardholders. As an added bonus to participating in the Delta SkyMiles program, your card also entitles you to one free checked bag on Delta flights. All you need to do is include your basic cardmember’s SkyMiles number when making a flight reservation.
One of the best travel benefits Delta used to offer through its Gold Delta SkyMiles card was the $99 (plus taxes) companion ticket option. Although the ticket didn’t count for miles, it allowed cardholders to bring along a companion (on flights within the continental US—excludes Alaska and Hawaii) for a relatively low fare. However, as of January 25 of this year, American Express discontinued this option for Gold Delta SkyMiles members, due to a supposedly lack of interest among cardholders. There are still some travel perks left for the Gold Delta SkyMiles card, of course:
Gold Delta SkyMiles card holders and up to nine passengers traveling with the card member are entitled to Zone 1 Priority Boarding on Delta flights.
Delta Sky Club® Admission
In addition to priority boarding, members also receive discounted admission to Delta’s Sky Clubs. For $25 per guest, you receive complimentary snacks and beverages, satellite TV viewing, wi-fi access, private restrooms, and more (full range of amenities depends on the airport).
Delta isn’t exactly known for having a top-notch miles program, and unless you travel frequently with this airline, there are likely better alternatives to the Gold Delta SkyMiles card, such as the Starwood Preferred Guest card from American Express (which allows you to redeem points for 350+ airline miles an annual fee of $65 per year). There are some favorable qualities to the Gold Delta SkyMiles card—reasonable APR, bonus miles offer for new cardholders, free checked bag—but again, the only thing that will really make this card worth your while is if you’re a frequent flyer with Delta Airlines.