The American Express Blue Delta SkyMiles Card is a decent card for Delta fans who don’t want to pay an annual fee. Because it doesn’t have the benefits of the Delta Gold or Platinum Cards, the Blue Card is a nice downgrade option.

Keep reading to see why I would avoid applying for this card outright.

 

Earning

Surprisingly, the Delta Blue card is the best earner of the four Delta cards. It earns 2x SkyMiles at Restaurants and on all purchases made directly with Delta. Such purchases include airfare, Sky Club membership, and vacation packages. All other purchases earn one SkyMile.

The Delta Blue card has a small sign-up of 10,000 SkyMiles. But you only need to spend $500 in the first 3 months to get the miles. This card has the lowest minimum spend threshold of any American Express card, making it a great option for beginners.

 

Burning

The Delta Blue Card gives you a few ways to redeem your SkyMiles:

The most obvious way to redeem Delta SkyMiles is for airfare. Miles can go a long way for airfare, but you need to do some research to get maximum value. This is because Delta does not have a rewards chart posted online.

Miles + Cash is a great option if you don’t have many miles or if you’re short a few miles for a certain redemption. Many co-branded cards have this option and its nice to see Delta have it too.

Delta also offers vacation packages that can be purchases with miles. This is nice for those who don’t want to do much research and planning for their next vacation. It’s also great for last-minute trips.

You can also use SkyMiles to upgrade your seat or even get membership to the Delta SkyLounge. Gift cards and donations to charity are two other options for redemption.

 

Benefit: 20% Discount on In-Flight Purchases

The Delta Blue Card simply doesn’t have the perks of its more expensive counterparts. However, you will save 20% on in-flight purchases just for having the card. This is nice for in-flight meals, entertainment, or other incidentals.

 

Rules & Regulations

This card is subject to Amex’s Once Per Lifetime Rule, which states that you can only receive a sign-up bonus on any card once ever. Therefore, you should apply for this card when the sign-up bonus is as high as possible.

 

Similar Cards

Because of the bare-bones nature of the Blue Card, Delta loyalists would be better off with any of these cards. This is because of enhanced perks. With proper use, such perks should be able to justify either card’s annual fee.

American Express Gold Delta SkyMiles Card

The Delta Gold Card is a big step up from the Delta Blue Card. It has a $95 annual fee (waived the first year) and offers more in the way of benefits. This card’s value lies in its Free Checked Bags for up to nine people per flight reservation. At $50 per bag, this perk alone can provide up to $450 in value! Other perks include discounted Delta SkyLounge rates and priority boarding.

This card has a two-part sign-up bonus. You can receive a $50 statement credit after making one Delta purchase in the first 3 months. I suggest buying a Delta gift card up to $50 and pocketing the rest. You will also receive 30,000 SkyMiles after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months.

For earning, the Gold Card earns 2x SkyMiles on all purchases made directly with Delta. Such purchases include airfare, Sky Club membership, and vacation packages. All other purchases (including restaurants) earn one single SkyMile.

American Express Platinum Delta SkyMiles Card

The Delta Platinum Card is another step up from the Blue and Gold Cards. The Delta Platinum card has the same earning structure as the Delta Gold Card. However, the Platinum has more perks and a $195 annual fee (NOT waived the first year).

This card gives you one Annual Companion Certificate each year. The certificate lets another person fly for free in any domestic flight. You will receive another certificate each time you pay the card’s annual fee.

The Delta Platinum Card also has a built in spend incentive. You will receive a bonus of 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) and 10,000 SkyMiles each time you spend a total of $25,000 on the card.

Like its little sibling, this card has a two-part sign-up bonus. You will receive a $100 statement credit after making one Delta purchase in the first 3 months. You will also receive 35,000 SkyMiles and 5,000 MQMs after spending $1,000 in the first 3 months.

I recommend the Delta Platinum Card if you want the best balance between annual fee, sign-up bonus, and perks.

 

Final Draw

The American Express Blue Delta SkyMiles Card is a great downgrade option for those who want to maintain their account history. However, there are better cards out there for Delta loyalists in every category.

There is only non-Delta bonus category in restaurants with the Blue Card. But that doesn’t move the needle for many consumers as restaurants is a common category. Its sign-up bonus and perks are also meager, leaving much to be desired for Delta loyalists.

This card is a pass unless you want to easily earn a quick 10,000 SkyMiles.