A Wish List for the Delta Reserve Credit Card from American Express

Meg Lee
By Meg Lee 
Edited by Mary M. Flory

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The Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card is a great card to add to your wallet if you fly Delta regularly. Most Delta loyalists can earn back their annual fee with ease. Free checked bags, Delta Sky Club access, Centurion Lounge access, priority boarding, and the current welcome offer make this credit card an enticing option for current and rising Delta flyers.

Even still, the card isn’t perfect. Here are some of the features we wish came with the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card:

Lower annual fee

The $550 price mark is hard to stomach upfront, especially since you can’t “earn” back that money until you’ve flown a handful of times on Delta with baggage in tow. Terms apply.

Immediate companion certificate

After signing up for your Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card, you have to wait until your card renewal before the Companion Certificate is issued (terms apply). Since the Companion Certificate is a high-dollar perk to offset your entry costs, we wish it were issued more quickly.

Miles + MQMs, please

As of Jan. 30, 2020, the “Miles Boost” feature was replaced with “Status Boost.” That means cardholders who meet certain spending requirements each calendar year will only earn Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs):

  • 15,000 MQMs after spending $30,000 or more in eligible purchases.

  • 15,000 MQMs after you spend $60,000.

  • 15,000 MQMs after you spend $90,000.

  • 15,000 MQMs after you spend $120,000.

In years past, these spending thresholds would award both MQMs and additional Delta miles. That's no longer the case.

More category bonuses

As it stands, the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card earns 3 miles per $1 spent on Delta-related purchases, but only 1 mile per $1 spent on all other eligible purchases. Terms apply.

We’d be way more likely to grab this credit card at checkout if it included unique rewards on other types of purchases, like dining. A 2x bonus at restaurants would make us much happier spenders.

Lower status thresholds

We get it. Delta Platinum or Diamond Medallion status is reserved for frequent travelers. But wouldn’t it be great if we didn’t have to spend $120,000 on this credit card to earn the MQMs necessary for Gold status?

We’d love to see more attainable spending thresholds.

Bring back Delta Sky Priority security access

As of Jan. 30, 2020, access to Delta’s expedited security, Sky Priority, is no longer available to Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card.

This was a great perk for speeding through airport security, and we say bring it back!

On the bright side, Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card cardholders will receive fee credit toward Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fees. Terms apply.

How to maximize your rewards

You want a travel credit card that prioritizes what’s important to you. Here are our picks for the best travel credit cards of 2023, including those best for:

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