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Regular Contributor
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Registered: ‎08-09-2012
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Tempted by Amex Delta Skymiles Gold

[ Edited ]

I have 3 cards right now and consider that 1 too many for spending purposes.  Everything goes on my PRG except for the categories on my Forward.  I only have my Dividend card for those times when I need a Mastercard (admittedly very few and far between) or when I can use it's rotating categories (again, few and far between).

 

But the Amex Skymiles card is calling me.  My first summer job was at Delta (on the ramps), so I fly Delta whenever I travel.  A normal year includes just one or two trips (often, all but one is business related and reimbursed).  However, between my friend's wedding, bachelor party, and upcoming business travel, I'm guaranteed three trips this year.  Next year I'm guaranteed at least two.  Of these five, three are personal.

 

Here's the dilemma:

1. The card would save me $420 on a flight this summer through the signup bonus, and would save about $150 in baggage fees.  That's $570 return in year 1.  Since I'm shopping for an engagement ring right now, this would be helpful.

2. It has an annual fee after year one, which I might not use fully in future years since a lot of my flights are business-related.

3. I have no need to put spending on the card, as I can simply transfer MR points to miles.  This will be just another card that I have to keep track of and make sure I place charges on to keep it open.

4. I wouldn't want to open the card then drop it when the AF hits, for concern of hurting my credit score and damaging my relationship with Amex.  At the same time, PCing to another card would result in no rewards and just another card to keep track of.  For my spending categories, the PRG and Forward are a perfect combination.

 

If it was you, would the pro's outweigh the cons?  Any alternatives I'm not seeing?




What's in my wallet:



Left to right:
NPSL ($10k approved)
$5k (EMV - Chip & PIN)
$7k (Visa Sig + EMV)
$7.5k (WEMC)

Transunion FICO: 709 (8/13/12) -> 740 (9/24/12)
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Credit Sesame: 755 (11/5/13)
Valued Contributor
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Registered: ‎08-19-2012
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Re: Tempted by Amex Delta Skymiles Gold

Question, is all your travel going to be alone?  Reason I ask is i opted up to the platinum sky miles card, AF is 150 but you get a free companion ticket each year.  All of my personal travel is with my fiance so It saves me at least one ticket a year and more than pays for the AF

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Regular Contributor
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Registered: ‎06-20-2012
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Re: Tempted by Amex Delta Skymiles Gold


ryanbush wrote:

Question, is all your travel going to be alone?  Reason I ask is i opted up to the platinum sky miles card, AF is 150 but you get a free companion ticket each year.  All of my personal travel is with my fiance so It saves me at least one ticket a year and more than pays for the AF


I wonder if the underwriting criteria is any different for the platinum version?

American Express Green - NPSL, Sams Club Discover - 4000, Paypal Smart Connect - 4000, Capital One - 3500, Barclaycard Visa - 2500, Walmart - 1500, Discover IT - 1000, Ashley Furniture Home Store - 1000, Care Credit - 1000.
Regular Contributor
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Re: Tempted by Amex Delta Skymiles Gold


ryanbush wrote:

Question, is all your travel going to be alone?  Reason I ask is i opted up to the platinum sky miles card, AF is 150 but you get a free companion ticket each year.  All of my personal travel is with my fiance so It saves me at least one ticket a year and more than pays for the AF


One this summer will be with my girlfriend (hopefully fiance by then).  If I get the card, I'll have enough skymiles to fly us both to my friend's wedding.  We'll most likely get married next summer, which will mean an expensive flight for a honeymoon.

 

How easy is the companion ticket to redeem?  What kind of value do you typically get out of it?




What's in my wallet:



Left to right:
NPSL ($10k approved)
$5k (EMV - Chip & PIN)
$7k (Visa Sig + EMV)
$7.5k (WEMC)

Transunion FICO: 709 (8/13/12) -> 740 (9/24/12)
Credit Karma: 772 (11/24/13)
Credit Sesame: 755 (11/5/13)
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Re: Tempted by Amex Delta Skymiles Gold

I believe the underwriting is the same...

 

and I haven't used mine this year as this is my first year with the platinum, I need to start looking for a reason to use it as our Honeymoon this year is international and i'm also using skymiles... maybe NYE in NYC

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Re: Tempted by Amex Delta Skymiles Gold


ryanbush wrote:

I believe the underwriting is the same...

 

and I haven't used mine this year as this is my first year with the platinum, I need to start looking for a reason to use it as our Honeymoon this year is international and i'm also using skymiles... maybe NYE in NYC


Off-topic but that raises an interesting question I think:

 

Are there any cards which have an non-AF / AF version (BCE/BCP, CS/CSP) or even a AF / higher AF version (Delta Gold / Platinum Skymiles) that have any difference in underwriting criteria?  I'm struggling to think of any that we know anecdotally but admittedly there are some lenders vis a vis Citi that I don't know at all.

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Regular Contributor
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Re: Tempted by Amex Delta Skymiles Gold


Revelate wrote:

ryanbush wrote:

I believe the underwriting is the same...

 

and I haven't used mine this year as this is my first year with the platinum, I need to start looking for a reason to use it as our Honeymoon this year is international and i'm also using skymiles... maybe NYE in NYC


Off-topic but that raises an interesting question I think:

 

Are there any cards which have an non-AF / AF version (BCE/BCP, CS/CSP) or even a AF / higher AF version (Delta Gold / Platinum Skymiles) that have any difference in underwriting criteria?  I'm struggling to think of any that we know anecdotally but admittedly there are some lenders vis a vis Citi that I don't know at all.


It doesn't seem like there are.

 

Platinum vs. Gold aside, I just realized that if I went through with the Gold, the savings in the first year would pay the AF for 6 years (or 7 if you include the first year with no AF).  But at the cost of an additional tradeline to manage with benefits realized just a couple times a year.  Then again, my total CL is under 20% of my income.  Would be nice to have a higher available CL overall.




What's in my wallet:



Left to right:
NPSL ($10k approved)
$5k (EMV - Chip & PIN)
$7k (Visa Sig + EMV)
$7.5k (WEMC)

Transunion FICO: 709 (8/13/12) -> 740 (9/24/12)
Credit Karma: 772 (11/24/13)
Credit Sesame: 755 (11/5/13)
Senior Contributor
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Re: Tempted by Amex Delta Skymiles Gold

Might as well go for it!!!
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Registered: ‎01-22-2012
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Re: Tempted by Amex Delta Skymiles Gold


Revelate wrote:

ryanbush wrote:

I believe the underwriting is the same...

 

and I haven't used mine this year as this is my first year with the platinum, I need to start looking for a reason to use it as our Honeymoon this year is international and i'm also using skymiles... maybe NYE in NYC


Off-topic but that raises an interesting question I think:

 

Are there any cards which have an non-AF / AF version (BCE/BCP, CS/CSP) or even a AF / higher AF version (Delta Gold / Platinum Skymiles) that have any difference in underwriting criteria?  I'm struggling to think of any that we know anecdotally but admittedly there are some lenders vis a vis Citi that I don't know at all.


Citi Hilton and Hilton Reserve? I could be wrong about this, but they just seem so different. Anyone have any ideas on this?

 

Also Citi AA Advantage Select vs. AA Exec WEMC? United Explorer vs. Club?

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Re: Tempted by Amex Delta Skymiles Gold


ryanbush wrote:

Question, is all your travel going to be alone?  Reason I ask is i opted up to the platinum sky miles card, AF is 150 but you get a free companion ticket each year.  All of my personal travel is with my fiance so It saves me at least one ticket a year and more than pays for the AF


Be aware (make sure you check before applying - the Gold Skymiles did away with the annual companion ticket for $99 that used to be offered. I think it ended in October. If you got the card before then, you still get to use the certificate, but new approvals after the date will no longer get the discounted companion ticket. I believe it continues to be a benefit for the Platinum, however. I am not sure of the exact date they stopped it, so if this is something making you want the Gold card, it is something to consider.


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