Editorial Review

Delta SkyMiles Platinum Business AmEx: Delivers for the Delta Devotee

The card's annual companion certificate can offer major value, and its rewards and other perks make flying Delta more pleasant for business travelers.

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  • Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business

  • Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card

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Our Take

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line: If you travel often for business and fly Delta, the rewards and perks on this card could easily make up for the annual fee. And it gives you a leg up for achieving elite status. But if you're not tied to Delta, this might not be a match for you.

American Express Platinum Delta SkyMiles Business Credit Card

on American Express's website, or call (866) 512-6673

Rates & Fees
Annual Fee

$250

Regular APR

15.74% - 24.74% Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score

Quick FactsView rates and fees

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • High rewards rate

  • No foreign transaction fee

Cons

  • Has annual fee

Alternate Pick: More luxury

The Business Platinum Card® from American Express

Lofty benefits, if you can stomach the fee

The Business Platinum Card® from American Express offers 5 points per dollar spent on certain travel purchases, and it features luxury perks like airport lounge access and valuable credits for travel costs. It offers big value, but there's also a big annual fee: $595. Terms apply.

Read our review

Full Review

For small-business owners looking for a credit card with Delta Air Lines benefits, the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card may glide to the top of the list.

In the family of Delta AmEx business cards, it's the middle option, offering valuable — and in some cases, hard-to-find — travel benefits for an annual fee of $250. And you don’t need to have a hardcore business with a storefront or employees to qualify. A side hustle might qualify you.

The card is not as flexible for earning and redeeming points as a general travel card. But if you’re tied to Delta for business-trip flights, the card’s companion certificate and raft of rewards and perks can defray travel costs and hassles, all while giving you signficant boosts toward elite frequent-flyer status.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card: Basics and benefits

To view rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card, please visit this page.

Card type: Small business and airline.

Annual fee: $250

Welcome bonus: Earn 45,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in the first 3 months. Plus, earn a $100 Statement Credit after your first Delta purchase on your new Card in the first 3 months. Terms Apply.

Rewards:

  • 3 miles per dollar spent on purchases made directly with Delta.

  • 3 miles per dollar spent on hotels.

  • 1.5 miles per dollar spent on eligible purchases of $5,000 or more, up to 50,000 additional miles per year.

  • 1 mile per eligible dollar spent on all other purchases.

  • Terms apply.

NerdWallet values Delta miles at 1.1 cents each. This is a baseline value, drawn from real-world data on hundreds of economy routes, not a maximized value. In other words, you should aim for award redemptions that offer 1.1 cents or more in value from your Delta miles.

Foreign transaction fee: None.

APR: The ongoing APR is 15.74% - 24.74% Variable APR.

Other benefits:

  • Companion certificate: Covers a traveling partner. Terms apply.

  • Boosts toward elite status. The card helps you achieve the flying and spending requirements for elite status.

  • The first checked bag free for you and up to eight others on your reservation.

  • Priority boarding, which allows you to get on the plane early.

  • Credit for the application fee for TSA Precheck or Global Entry. You're eligible for the credit once every four years for the application fee for Global Entry (currently $100) or every 4.5 years for TSA Precheck ($85) when you charge the fee to this card.

  • Delta Sky Club access for $39 per person.

  • Terms apply.

Highlights of the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card

Companion certificate

The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card is one of the few airline cards to feature an annual companion certificate, which covers a travel partner's airfare. This valuable feature alone can make up for the card's annual fee.

Say you were buying round-trip tickets for you and a colleague at $800 apiece, plus taxes and fees. If you redeemed this benefit, you wouldn't have to drop more than $1,600 on that getaway; aside from paying the taxes and fees on the ticket (which are capped at $75), you'd essentially get your trip for half the price.

You can redeem the companion benefit for a round-trip ticket in the main cabin departing and arriving in the 48 contiguous United States. (There are exceptions to this rule for cardholders who live in Hawaii, Alaska, Puerto Rico or the U.S. Virgin Islands.) You would need to book flights with your companion that have the same times and dates, and make the purchase using the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card. You'll get this benefit annually when your card is renewed. Terms apply.

Path to elite status

Not all airline cards give you a way to reach elite status faster, but the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card allows you to earn Medallion Qualifying Miles, or MQMs, with your credit card spending. You get elite status on Delta by spending money with the airline (called Medallion Qualifying Dollars or MQDs) and by flying. MQMs essentially count toward the "flying" part of the equation. You can qualify for the lowest tier of elite status, Silver, with 25,000 MQMs.

The card comes with an annual benefit called Status Boost. With this perk, you'll get:

  • 10,000 MQMs in any calendar year you make $25,000 or more in eligible purchases.

  • Another 10,000 MQMs after making a total of $50,000 in eligible purchases in the same calendar year.

  • Terms apply.

Keep in mind that these MQMs are not redeemable for award flights like regular SkyMiles; they count only toward status.

You can also get a waiver to reach elite status even if you didn't spend enough on Delta flights. You can instead spend $25,000 on the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card. That can satisfy the MQD requirement for Platinum, Gold and Silver Medallion status. For Diamond status, you must spend $250,000 on the card to get the MQD waiver.

Free checked bags

The checked-bag benefit is especially generous. You’ll get a first checked bag free for you and up to eight others on your reservation. Terms apply. You might rarely have that many traveling companions, but fully used, that’s a savings of up to $540 on a round-trip flight ($30 per person each way). You would break even on the annual fee with just a few traveling partners, assuming you would have otherwise paid to check bags.

Priority boarding

If you don’t typically check bags, then it’s nice to have the priority boarding that comes with the card. It will get you on the plane earlier — in this case, Main Cabin 1 Priority Boarding. Terms apply. That means you’re more likely to find overhead bin space for your roll-aboard. Some flyers like to board earlier to get settled in their seat before the cabin fills. Either way, priority boarding can be a welcome perk.

Welcome bonus

New-cardholder bonuses can change periodically, but the card typically gives you enough miles to snag a domestic award flight, assuming you can meet the required spending. The current bonus: Earn 45,000 bonus miles and 5,000 Medallion® Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 in purchases on your new Card in the first 3 months. Plus, earn a $100 Statement Credit after your first Delta purchase on your new Card in the first 3 months. Terms Apply.

Note that if you've had this American Express credit card in the past, you’re unlikely to qualify for the bonus. And you might be rejected for the bonus because of other account history with American Express.

Other perks

  • In-flight discount. Get 20% savings in the form of a statement credit on purchases such as food, beverages and audio headsets onboard. Note that inflight wireless internet access does not qualify for a discount.

  • $39 lounge passes. That's $39 for a single-visit pass, which includes immediate family members or two guests. You must use the credit card to pay for the pass. That price is a discount off the now-discontinued $59 for a single-visit pass that used to be available for all Delta passengers to purchase.

  • No foreign transaction fees. Good travel cards generally don’t charge this fee — 3% is common — for making purchases abroad. This Delta card doesn’t, either. However, this card operates on the American Express network, which isn’t as widely accepted abroad as Visa and Mastercard.

  • Terms apply.

Business-friendly features

Like all of AmEx’s business credit cards, the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card features a suite of benefits designed for business owners, including:

  • The American Express Business App. This feature allows you to add receipts and notes to your transactions on desktop or mobile.

  • Employee cards. There’s no fee for adding employee cards to your account. You can set individual spending limits on these cards and set up various alerts to monitor spending.

  • Year-end summary. This report, typically available in January, will show purchases made on your account during the previous calendar year.

  • Terms apply.

These features make it easy to track your company’s spending and can come in handy at tax time.

How it compares with other Delta business credit cards

Delta and American Express offer three credit card options for business owners, each at a very different annual fee. Examining card features side by side helps when choosing.

» MORE: Want a consumer card instead? Read NerdWallet's comparison of consumer Delta credit cards.

Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card: Drawbacks and alternatives

Annual fee

The annual fee of $250 is middling for this type of business airline card — not a fee associated with a basic card, but also not the huge $500-plus fee you see on luxury credit cards or ones with airport lounge access. Terms apply. Be sure you can extract more value from the card than you’re paying to hold it.

An example of a travel credit card with a lower annual fee is the Ink Business Preferred® Credit Card. It earns 3 points per dollar on the first $150,000 spent on travel and select business categories each year, and 1 point per dollar on everything else. Points are worth 1.25 cents apiece when redeemed for travel through the Chase Ultimate Rewards® portal. It has a jumbo welcome bonus: New Offer! Earn 100k bonus points after you spend $15,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That's $1,250 toward travel when redeemed through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. The annual fee is a more palatable $95.

Reward redemptions

Typically, the best redemption options for Delta SkyMiles are award flights and seat upgrades on Delta and its SkyTeam partners. That’s limiting compared with general travel business credit cards, which allow you to apply rewards to a wide range of travel-related expenses.

If you mix your flying with airlines other than Delta, a general travel card might be a better fit.

A good choice for small businesses is the Capital One® Spark® Miles for Business. It earns an unlimited 2 miles per dollar on all purchases. Miles can be redeemed for statement credit against any travel purchase. Book however you want, then use miles to pay for it, with no blackout dates or restrictions. The annual fee is $0 intro for the first year, then $95.

No lounge MEMBERSHIP

This card offers discounted access to Delta Sky Club airport lounges at $39 per person. But that's not a full membership like is offered by its big brother card, the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card, with an annual fee of $550. (Day passes to the lounge are no longer openly available to all Delta flyers but used to cost $59.)

You can also get into Delta Sky Clubs with a great general travel card for business, The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, with an annual fee of $595. Terms apply.

Is the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card right for you?

The Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card offers a lot of value for avid Delta flyers, especially if you're chasing elite status on the airline. But you have to extract enough value from the card to make up for the annual fee. If you fly several airlines, consider a general travel card for business.

To view rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card, please visit this page.

To view rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card, please visit this page.

To view rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Gold Business American Express Card, please visit this page.

To view rates and fees of The Business Platinum Card® from American Express, please visit this page.

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