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Keep or cancel your Delta SkyMiles credit card? How to think about it after recent changes

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This article was last updated Nov 19, 2016. Terms and conditions may have changed. For the most accurate information, please consult the issuer website.

Delta credit card

Delta has changed the way you earn miles from flights, and it means a lot of us will earn a lot fewer miles from flying.

That’s prompting a lot of flyers to reassess whether it’s worth sticking with a Delta SkyMiles® credit card* and paying the annual fee.

Before you cancel your Delta SkyMiles® credit card* outright (which you can do quickly by calling the number on the back of your card), consider this no annual fee alternative that lets you earn points you can turn into real Delta SkyMiles®, or use them to book travel on most other airlines, so you have flexibility if Delta doesn’t have award seats at the price you want.

It’s called The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express*

The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express launched in 2014, and earns American Express Membership Rewards® points that you can transfer into real airline miles with several programs, including Delta SkyMiles®, any time you’d like.

It earns a 20% point bonus each billing period you make 20 or more purchases on the card, and you earn 2x points at US supermarkets, on up to $6,000 per year in purchases (then 1x), 1x points on other purchases. This card might earn miles faster than your existing Delta SkyMiles® credit card*.

You can also use the points to pay for flights on just about any airline via the American Express website.

So if you’re on the fence about the SkyMiles® card you have, this is a good fallback that won’t cost you anything and still let you use your card spending to add to your SkyMiles® balance.

The information related to The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express has been collected by CompareCards and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication.

Can you downgrade your Delta SkyMiles® credit card* to The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express?

You can’t downgrade your Delta SkyMiles® credit card* to The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express – it’s considered a different product family, and you’ll need to apply for The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express on its own.

Unfortunately there isn’t an option to downgrade your Delta SkyMiles® credit card* to a no annual fee version so you’ll have to decide whether to cancel it altogether when you get The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express if you don’t want to pay any annual fees.

There’s also a $95 annual fee version called the Blue Cash Preferred® Card from American Express that earns points even faster thanks to bonuses on spending.

 

So why carry a SkyMiles® credit card at all?

With the advent of these new AmEx EveryDay credit cards, the only big reasons to hold a Delta SkyMiles® credit card with the Delta logo on it are:

  • Using the free first checked bag and priority boarding benefits
  • Wanting to earn Medallion Qualification Miles via Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card*, and Delta Reserve® Credit Card from American Express*
  • Getting access to the Delta SkyClub with the Delta Reserve® Credit Card from American Express*
  • You do a lot of foreign purchases and want to take advantage of no foreign transaction fees on all Delta SkyMiles® branded credit cards
  • You like paying annual fees of $95 or more

That’s about it, so if you don’t value the above benefit options to the tune of $95 or more per year, there is little reason to stick with a Delta SkyMiles® credit card.

Just carry The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express with a $0 annual fee and you’ll earn miles that you can convert to SkyMiles® at any time with no annual fees much faster than with the most popular Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Expresswhich has a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.

You can see how The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express compares to other Delta SkyMiles® cards based on your spending habits.

What happens to your Delta SkyMiles® if you cancel your Delta SkyMiles® credit card*?

Delta SkyMiles® never expire, so if you cancel your Delta SkyMiles® credit card*, you won’t lose any of your miles. There’s no requirement to hold a credit card to keep your miles alive.

If you’re thinking of leaving Delta altogether The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express can be a bridge

You probably have some SkyMiles® sitting in your account and might be within shooting distance of an award, so you can still earn miles to top off your miles before that last reward trip you take with Delta.

Then you don’t have to decide anything since the card has no annual fee; you can keep using it or apply for something different to better complement the airline you’ll be flying more often.

amex membership rewards transfer partners

The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express card earns Membership Rewards® points, which means you can  transfer the points you earn to other airlines besides Delta, including Air Canada Aeroplan, British Airways, JetBlue, Air France / KLM, Virgin Atlantic, and more, so you can really hedge your bets. You also have the option of using your points to pay for all or part of tickets like cash, with 5,000 miles worth $50. That’s not an outstanding deal but it’s worth considering.

Or, easily bridge to American Airlines with Starwood Preferred Guest®

Another bridge card option is the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express*. This one does have a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95. But, it has an additional angle: the points it earns can be transferred to both Delta and American Airlines mile accounts, as well as over 20 other airlines. So if you’re not yet sure you want to leave Delta SkyMiles® altogether you have the option to earn miles in a neutral currency and will have miles to bring to the table if you want to make the move to  American Airlines.

Frequent flyer experts think American has the best mileage program on the market today, and American is happy to take disenchanted Delta SkyMiles® members, matching elite status and currently offering great intro bonuses on their credit cards of 50,000 or more miles.

But if you end up deciding you want to stay with Delta, the points you earn on the Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express card can be sent there as well.

It’s also a good place to store points because Starpoints® are very useful for free hotel nights, charging fewer points for free nights than most other programs. For example you can get many Starwood hotels that go for $250 a night in big cities for around 10,000 points a night, versus 20,000 or more with Marriott and others. Starwood hotels include Sheraton, Westin, W, Aloft, Le Meridien, St. Regis and more.

To conclude

The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express helps you have a new way to earn Delta SkyMiles® without the commitment of the annual fee based Delta SkyMiles® credit card*. It’s a no risk way to earn miles and easy to try while you decide whether you want to keep or cancel your existing Delta SkyMiles® credit card*. Just note American Express lets you hold a maximum of four of its credit cards at any one time.

  • Earn 10,000 bonus miles after spending $500 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership.

  • Earn 2 miles per dollar at US restaurants. Earn 2 Miles per dollar spent on purchases made directly with Delta. Earn 1 mile on every eligible dollar spent on other purchases.

  • Earn 2 miles per dollar spent on purchases made directly with Delta. Earn 1 mile on every eligible dollar spent on purchases.

Highlights
  • Earn 10,000 Bonus Miles after spending $500 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • No Annual Fee.
  • Earn 2 miles per dollar at US restaurants.
  • Earn 2 Miles per dollar spent on purchases made directly with Delta. Earn 1 mile on every eligible dollar spent on other purchases.
  • Receive a 20% savings in the form of a statement credit after you use your Card on eligible Delta in-flight purchases of food, beverages, and audio headsets.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

More Info

  • Earn 30,000 bonus miles after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases within your first 3 months and a $50 Statement Credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months.

  • 2X Miles on Delta Purchases*

  • Check your 1st bag free on every Delta flight*

Highlights
  • Earn 30,000 bonus miles after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in purchases within your first 3 months and a $50 Statement Credit after you make a Delta purchase with your new Card within your first 3 months.
  • Earn 2 miles on every eligible dollar spent on purchases made directly with Delta.
  • Earn 1 mile for every eligible dollar spent on purchases.
  • Check your first bag free on Delta flights – that’s a savings of up to $240 for a family of 4 roundtrip.
  • Receive Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding on Delta flights, stow your carry-on bag and settle in sooner.
  • Enjoy a $0 introductory annual fee for the first year, then $95.
  • Terms Apply.
  • See Rates & Fees

See additional details for Gold Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express

More Info

*The information related to The Amex EveryDay® Credit Card from American Express, the Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card, Delta Reserve® Credit Card from American Express,  and Starwood Preferred Guest® Credit Card from American Express has been collected by CompareCards and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card prior to publication. These offers and/or promotions may have since changed, expired, or are no longer available.

Terms apply to American Express credit card offers. See americanexpress.com for more information.


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