How do I know if the American Express Delta Reserve credit card is right for me?

the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card is a high fee, high income credit card that can increase your SkyMiles earnings if you are a frequent traveler to Delta. However, the high annual fee means you’ll have to think carefully about whether the benefits of this card outweigh the costs.

You don’t mind the high annual fees

However, the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card offers a wide range of benefits that can justify its high price for the right cardholder. Conditions apply.

Looking for a big welcome bonus

the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card offers a decent welcome bonus: Earn 50,000 bonus miles and 10,000 Medallion® Qualifying Miles (MQM) after spending $ 3,000 on purchases on your new card in your first 3 months. Plus, earn up to $ 100 in statement credits for qualifying U.S. restaurant purchases with your card during the first 3 months of membership. Conditions apply.

Since the welcome bonus is one of the most valuable perks of this card, if you cannot enjoy it without getting into serious debt then this card is not for you. You may want to consider cards with lower spending requirements, such as the Blue American Express Delta SkyMiles® Card or the American Express® Green Card. The welcome bonuses on these cards are lower, as are the minimum required expenses. Conditions apply.

You are a big Delta spender

the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card earn 3 Delta SkyMiles per dollar spent on Delta flights and Delta vacations. All other expenses are worth 1 SkyMile for every $ 1 spent. Conditions apply.

If you travel regularly with Delta at paid fares, the 3X bonus can help you accumulate many miles.

You can use the journeyman certificate

One of the most important advantages of Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card is the Journeyman certificate which is awarded on each anniversary of the card. Conditions apply.

When you book a ticket on Delta, you can exchange your Companion Certificate for a ticket of equivalent value for a Travel Companion. The companion certificate is valid on domestic flights in economy class, Delta Comfort + or first class. All you have to pay is the taxes and fees.

Since your Companion Certificate can be redeemed for a First Class ticket, this unique perk could potentially be worth much more than the annual card fee.

You can use a status boost

Spend on your Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card will help you earn Medallion Qualifying Miles (MQM) towards elite status.

Cardholders who spend $ 30,000 on the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card will earn 15,000 MQM. This can be repeated up to four times a year. This means that you could potentially earn up to 60,000 MQM by spending on your card each year. Conditions apply.

Cardholders who spend at least $ 25,000 per year also receive a Medallion Qualification Dollar (MQD) waiver. Normally, Delta Platinum, Gold, and Silver Medallion status requires spending of $ 3,000 to $ 9,000 with Delta Air Lines. By billing $ 25,000 in expenses to the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card, these requirements are lifted. Conditions apply.

You want travel benefits

the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card also comes with smaller perks that most frequent travelers would find very valuable. For example, cardholders receive free Sky Club access when traveling in Delta, as well as two unique Sky Club passes that they can use for their guests. Conditions apply.

In particular, the card now offers free access to the American Express Centurion lounges when traveling at the Delta fare booked with the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card. Conditions apply.

Other travel benefits include waived first checked baggage fees, boarding in Main Cabin 1, and a $ 100 Global Entry or TSA Precheck credit every 4.5 years. Conditions apply.

The bottom line

When applying for a high fee travel rewards card, it is important to ensure that the benefits you will accumulate will be worth more than the costs of keeping the card open.

Because the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card does not have broad categories of bonus or benefit spending other than purchases made through the airline, you must be a frequent traveler to Delta to justify the expense of adding this card to your collection.

So if you love Delta but only travel a few times a year, then this card is not for you. But if you’re the type of frequent Delta traveler who knows the names of your flight attendants and pilots, then this could be exactly the card to boost your SkyMile and MQM earnings.

All information on the American Express® Green Card was independently collected by NerdWallet. the American Express® Green Card is no longer available through NerdWallet.

How to Maximize Your Rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our choices for the best travel credit cards of 2021, including those that are best suited:


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