19 October, 2023

Delta shares modifications, new benefits to SkyMiles loyalty program

Delta shared several updates to its SkyMiles Program Wednesday, modifying some of the changes announced in September and adding several new benefits.

“Over the past few weeks, many of you have shared feedback about the changes we announced to Delta’s SkyMiles Program,” Delta CEO Ed Bastian wrote in an email to customers. “It’s been a challenge to balance the growth of our membership with our need to deliver premium service experiences. We made some difficult program decisions to address this issue…. But your response made clear that the changes did not fully reflect the loyalty you have demonstrated to Delta. Based on your feedback, we are making program adjustments and adding new benefits to begin earning in 2024 toward your 2025 Status."

Here’s a rundown of the changes and new program features:

More Accessible Medallion Status Requirements
To make the requirements for achieving 2025 Medallion Status more accessible, Delta has reduced the number of Medallion Qualification Dollars (MQDs) for each tier:

Diamond Medallion Status: $28,000 MQDs (down from $35,000)
Platinum Medallion Status: $15,000 MQDs (down from $18,000)
Gold Medallion Status: $10,000 MQDs (down from $12,000)
Silver Medallion Status: $5,000 MQDs (down from $6,000)

Members with the Delta SkyMiles Reserve, Reserve Business, Delta SkyMiles Platinum and Platinum Business American Express Cards will also receive an MQD Headstart of $2,500 MQDs for the current Medallion Qualification Year.

Customers may earn MQDs through Delta flights, Delta Vacations packages, and purchases on the Delta SkyMiles Platinum, Platinum Business, Reserve and Reserve Business American Express Cards. Car rentals and hotel/vacation rentals booked through Delta Car Rentals and Delta Stays will not earn MQDs toward Medallion Status.1

Greater Flexibility for Delta Sky Club Access

Select Card Members will benefit from increased access to Clubs during their travel days as well as the option to purchase Club access after exhausting their allotted Club entries. Updates include:

Redefining Club visits: A Delta Sky Club visit now includes all entries within a 24-hour period after first Club entry, including your departure city, connecting airports and arrival at your destination. If you are traveling on a same-day roundtrip and use the Club on your outbound and return flight, both would be included within the same visit.
Adding Club visits: Delta SkyMiles Reserve and Reserve Business Card Members will now receive 15 visits per year (up from 10). Card Members with the Platinum Card® and the Business Platinum Card® from American Express will receive 10 visits (up from 6).
As previously announced, Members can unlock unlimited Club access after spending $75,000 on their eligible Card in a calendar year and will have unlimited club access for both the remainder of the current program year and the following program year.
Beginning Jan. 1, 2024, Delta SkyMiles Platinum and Platinum Business American Express Card Members and those customers traveling in Basic Economy, regardless of card type, will no longer be eligible for Club access.
Additional flexibility to purchase Club access: Delta will also introduce the ability for Delta SkyMiles Reserve and Reserve Business Card Members, as well as Card Members with the Platinum Card® from American Express, to purchase Club access at a per-visit rate of $50 per person after exhausting their allotted Club visits. Medallions will also have the option of purchasing an annual individual Delta Sky Club membership for $695.

 More Generous Options for High MQM Rollover Balances

Beginning in early 2024, Members will have a choice as to whether to put MQM Rollover balances toward MQDs or miles. And customers who have MQM Rollover balances over 100,000 will be given special offers to extend their earned 2024 Status—one year for each 100K Rollover MQMs. Delta will also provide an option to convert MQM Rollover balances into MQDs at a more generous ratio of 10:1 (up from 20:1). Members will also be able to convert MQMs Rollover balances to miles as a ratio of 2:1.

More Recognition and Rewards for Long-Term Loyalty

Delta is giving long-term loyalists more of the recognition they deserve. Effective January 1, 2024, the airline is moving Million Miler Status up in the hierarchy for Complimentary Upgrades. And beginning February 1, 2024, Million Milers will also receive enhanced complimentary annual Medallion Status.

6 million miles or more earns Delta 360o™ (previously Diamond Medallion)
5 million miles earns Delta 360o™ (previously Platinum Medallion)
4 million miles earns Diamond Medallion (previously Platinum Medallion)
3 million miles earns Diamond Medallion (previously Gold Medallion)
2 million miles earns Platinum Medallion (previously Gold Medallion)
1 million miles earns Gold Medallion (previously Silver Medallion)

New Choice Benefits

Delta will debut several enhanced Choice Benefits options for Diamond and Platinum Medallion Members for the 2025 Medallion Year, including: · An MQD Accelerator for the next Medallion Qualification Year: $2,000 for Diamond Medallion Members and $1,000 for Platinum Medallion Members

Re-introducing the Delta Sky Club Individual Membership for Diamond Medallion Members, in exchange for two Choice Benefit selections
Increased amount of bonus miles: 35,000 for Diamond Medallion Members and 30,000 for Platinum Medallion Members
Increasing Delta travel voucher to $350 for Diamond Medallion Members and $300 for Platinum Medallion Members

A new Wheels Up statement flight credit
Qualifying Medallion Members may select among these new Choice Benefits upon earning Diamond or Platinum Medallion Status for the 2025 Medallion Year.

“Our investment in your experience will always be at the heart of everything we do,” said Ed. “Our goal is to do our best to ensure we deliver the service and benefits your loyalty deserves.”

More information will be available on delta.com and shared directly with customers via email in the days ahead.

1 Delta will honor MQDs earned on Member car rentals and hotel/vacation rentals booked through Delta Car Rentals and Stays between September 14, 2023 and October 31, 2023, for 2024 travel.