With travel opening up again and many countries lessening restrictions for visitors, now could be the perfect time to start planning your next getaway. And thanks to welcome bonus offers from Delta Air Lines, that much-needed vacation is even more feasible with up to 60,000 bonus SkyMiles available to earn.
With the current Delta offers, you’re not just limited to redemptions with the Atlanta-based airline. Delta is part of the SkyTeam alliance, meaning you can use your Delta SkyMiles earned from these credit card offers with many partner airlines such as Aeromexico, Air France, China Eastern, KLM, Korean Air, LATAM, Virgin Atlantic and WestJet. These partnerships allow you to visit almost any destination imaginable.
There are seven different Delta credit cards — four personal cards and three business cards — where you can now earn between 10,000 and 60,000 bonus SkyMiles depending on the card you apply for. Before we dive into how to use the SkyMiles earned to jet-start your travel adventures, here’s a quick recap of the Delta credit card offers.
Delta personal credit card offers
- Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card: Earn 10,000 bonus SkyMiles after you spend $1,000 within the first six months of opening the account.
- Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card: Earn 40,000 bonus SkyMiles after you spend $2,000 within the first six months of opening the account.
- Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card: Earn 50,000 bonus SkyMiles and 5,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 within the first six months of opening the account.
- Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card: Earn 50,000 bonus SkyMiles and 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $5,000 within the first six months of opening the account.
Delta business credit card offers
- Delta SkyMiles® Gold Business American Express Card: Earn 50,000 bonus SkyMiles after you spend $2,000 within the first three months of opening the account.
- Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card: Earn 60,000 bonus and 5,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $3,000 within the first three months of opening the account.
- Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card: Earn 60,000 bonus SkyMiles and 10,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) after you spend $4,000 within the first three months of opening the account.
With the SkyMiles that are on offer in mind, here are seven of our top ways to redeem your SkyMiles with Delta and its partner airlines. Ultimately, now could be the best time to start planning for your next trip and put your hard-earned SkyMiles to use.
Short-haul flights throughout the United States
First, it’s worth noting that Delta no longer has a fixed award chart, meaning the cost of a flight using SkyMiles varies. That being said, you can often book flights throughout the United States — especially on shorter flights — for as low as 4,500 SkyMiles to 5,000 SkyMiles one way plus taxes and fees.
For example, on many dates in the upcoming months, you can book a flight from Atlanta (ATL) to Washington, DC (DCA) for 5,000 SkyMiles one way or 10,000 SkyMiles round trip plus taxes and fees. With up to 60,000 SkyMiles in your account, you could fly this route six times there and back — a perfect opportunity if you make these trips often or if you’re traveling with a family.
You’ll also want to keep an eye on Delta’s flight deals page, as there are many routes where you can book for even fewer SkyMiles if you’re flexible on your destination and dates.
With the offers available as of the time of publication, we were able to find flights from Boston (BOS) all the way to Fort Lauderdale (FLL) during many dates for just 4,500 SkyMiles plus taxes and fees one way.
However, keep in mind that these low ticket fares are in basic economy, which means you can’t pick your seats ahead of time — instead they are assigned during the check-in process. If you want to guarantee that you and your travel partner or family are seated together, you might want to consider booking in the main cabin. On these incredibly discounted flights, a bump to the main cabin typically only cost 1,000 to 2,000 additional SkyMiles each way.
Head to the Caribbean
With about a dozen destinations in the Caribbean, such as Aruba, Grand Cayman, Montego Bay, Nassau, San Juan and St. Thomas, among others, using your Delta SkyMiles to enjoy some sun and relaxation is incredibly easy.
The number of SkyMiles required to redeem for a free flight varies based on your destination and the time of the year. But, as an example, I was able to find many flights from New York (JFK) to Aruba (AUA) for just 10,000 SkyMiles one way or 20,000 SkyMiles round trip plus taxes and fees. And since Aruba is outside of the hurricane belt, the fall is a great time to avoid crowds but also still guarantee warmth.
If you’ve been cooped up for the past two years, heading to the beach — all on SkyMiles — might be just what the doctor ordered. And with 60,000 SkyMiles, it’s easy to fly you and a friend or a significant other round trip to the Caribbean for a much-needed vacation in the sun.
Cross the border to Canada
Flying to Canada is incredibly easy. You have two options when looking to use your SkyMiles: fly directly on a Delta plane or book through its partner airline WestJet. Flights start for as few as 4,500 SkyMiles one way, so the bonus SkyMiles earned from the Delta credit cards will go a long way.
If you’re looking to fly to Montreal (YUL) or Toronto (YYZ) from the East Coast, there’s plenty of availability for just 4,500 SkyMiles plus taxes and fees in basic economy — or spend an extra 500 SkyMiles for a main cabin fare and pick your seat in advance.
If you’re based out of a city farther away from the Canadian border, you can often find flights operated by partner airline WestJet for just 12,500 SkyMiles one way. We were able to find many flights from Atlanta, Los Angeles and San Francisco, among others, to Vancouver for 12,500 SkyMiles plus taxes and fees one way. With 50,000 SkyMiles, you can fly this route twice — roundtrip — for just the cost of the taxes and fees.
Fly to South America
A few years ago, the South American airline LATAM formed a partnership with Delta Air Lines. Thanks to the partnership, you can use your Delta SkyMiles to visit many destinations throughout the continent. Although availability can be limited, if you plan in advance, you can book a ticket for as few as 25,000 SkyMiles plus taxes and fees one way.
For example, you can fly nonstop from New York (JFK) to São Paulo, Brazil (GRU) for 25,000 SkyMiles one way plus taxes and fees with LATAM. In the example below, you’ll notice that Delta also operates its own nonstop flight between the two destinations, but the number of SkyMiles required for the seat is typically significantly more.
You and your spouse could fly round trip on this nine-hour journey with a couple of welcome bonus offers in hand. And best of all, the taxes are just $36 round trip, and you can travel internationally without incurring a huge time difference.
Business class to London
Want to travel across the pond in luxury? If so, you can use your Delta SkyMiles to book an Upper Class seat with Virgin Atlantic from both New York (JFK) and Los Angeles (LAX) to London (LHR). Upper Class is Virgin Atlantic’s business class option where your seat converts into a fully lie-flat bed, and the airline’s new Upper Class Suite is one of the best ways to fly to Europe.
While flying in comfort won’t come cheap — 120,000 SkyMiles one way plus taxes and fees to be exact — the SkyMiles earned from the welcome bonus offers on these cards will give you a great base to get there.
Of course, this will only get you a one-way ticket, which you’ll want to avoid in most cases. One round-trip itinerary between the US and UK versus two one-way flights allows you to largely avoid hefty surcharges that are imposed on one-way flights from London to the United States.
Alternatively, if you aren’t looking for a splurge, you could book a ticket in the economy cabin for 35,000 SkyMiles one way or 70,000 SkyMiles round trip plus taxes and fees.
Explore more of Europe
If you’re looking to visit another part of Europe, you can instead fly with Delta partners KLM or Air France. Flights with these partners to Europe cost the same 35,000 SkyMiles one way plus taxes and fees in economy. That’s a great opportunity to fly from the US to Europe for fewer SkyMiles, especially to some of the smaller cities that typically have a high cash price tag.
For example, almost every day of the week you can visit Prague (PRG) from New York (JFK) for just 35,000 SkyMiles one way or 70,000 SkyMiles round trip — plus taxes and fees. These flights are operated by partner airlines. In this case, Air France, which requires you to make a stop in Paris (CDG), before continuing on to Prague (PRG). Business-class seats on these flights are also available for 120,000 SkyMiles one way, but they’re usually hard to come by.
For flights to Europe, partner airline bookings like this are typically better options, as Delta-operated flights are usually significantly more expensive when using SkyMiles.
Visit French Polynesia
Daydreaming of staying in an overwater bungalow? Getting there can be quite expensive. But with Delta’s Air France partnership, you can fly nonstop from Los Angeles (LAX) to Tahiti (PPT) for 45,000 SkyMiles one way or 90,000 SkyMiles round trip plus taxes and fees in economy.
Ultimately, Delta SkyMiles can be tricky to use. But, if you look in the right places — and at the right routes — you can find true value in redeeming your SkyMiles for nearly free flights.
Learn more about the Delta Blue Amex Card.
Learn more about the Delta Gold Amex Card.
Learn more about the Delta Platinum Amex Card.
Learn more about the Delta Reserve Amex Card.
Learn more about the Delta Gold Business Amex Card.
Learn more about the Delta Platinum Business Amex Card.
Learn more about the Delta Reserve Business Amex Card.
Check out CNN Underscored’s guide to the best travel credit cards of 2022.