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Delta Platinum Membership Card

From Delta Silver to Platinum in 60 days…via the Amex Skymiles Reserve Card – Part One

The title says it all: my plan is to take myself from Silver Medallion to Platinum Medallion in 60 days, via credit card purchases and the purchase of 10,000 MQMs.

How it all got started:

I’ve been a Delta guy for years now, but I gave that up last year in favor of United’s Global Services, which is probably the best domestic status tier out there — yes, I am usually willing to put up with spotty wifi and dated interiors for some of the amazing perks that UA GS brings.

Back in the day the combination of Delta and FlyingBlue on American Express Membership Rewards meant solid domestic and US-EU award availability. I used to be DL PM, and lately I’ve been missing the flexibility I had with award bookings, and given their recent push to open more Asia routes out of Seattle, I find myself wanting that status back. I still ended up on enough DL flights to get 46,004 MQMs last year, which equates to 21,004 rollover MQMS — a great start.

Enter the Amex SkyMiles Reserve Card:

I generally prefer not to use airline-specific credit cards because you’re really locked into using your hard-earned points on that single airline. However, I think that the Skymiles Reserve card is great and worthy of $60k of my spend for three reasons:

  1. 10k bonus miles and 10k MQMs on signup (as of this posting). The United Explorer card gets you 30k miles, but zero EQMs.
  2. Every $30k in spend gets you 15k MQMs. Spend $60 and you get a total of 30k MQMs, which is automatic Silver Medallion Status (Medallion Qualification Dollars requirement is waived after $25k of spend).
  3. Skyclub access. Sure, Delta just watered down their membership levels, but also announced upgraded services, so this is a nice perk if you don’t already have Amex Platinum/Centurion, or Priority Pass.

All in all, not bad — sort of like a Delta-only American Express Platinum Card.

Onward to Platinum Status…

So with the card alone, it is possible to earn 40k MQMs without flying a single mile (10k signup bonus, 15k at $30k spend, and another 15k at $60k of total spend). Buy 10k MQMs for $2,000 and I’m at Gold Medallion status (getting there!). Add in my rollovers and I’m at 71,004 MQMs — just 4k MQMs from Platinum Medallion. And then all that’s left is a quick domestic trip or two.

So there it is. Platinum Medallion in about 60 days. Thus far the American Express spend has been credited to my Skymiles account within a few days. Also, I am totally digging the crossover rewards with my SPG account, given my love of (some) St Regis properties and my plan to hit Platinum 100 this year (tick tock!).

Are you a Delta Platinum Member?

What do you think about it? Should I go for Diamond since I’m getting Platinum so early in the year? Let me know in your comment below!

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