Delta Makes Changes to SkyMiles Program
Delta Air Lines revealed today changes to its loyalty program and specifically to the way Medallion Status status is earned.
Delta says that for the first time since 2015, Medallion Qualification Dollars (MQD) requirements to achieve 2024 Medallion Status for Diamond, Platinum and Gold Members will increase in 2023 as Delta updates select Status-earn qualifications.
The airline is also debuting expanded and enhanced Choice Benefits for Diamond and Platinum Medallion Members.
Earning Medallion Status
Before getting into the changes that were announced today, let’s take a look at how you can currently reach Delta Medallion Status.
Medallion Status is earned for U.S.-based Members through a combination of flying and spending (retail and Award Travel) with Delta and our partner airlines each year.
- Spending: Earn Medallion Qualification Dollars (MQDs) or the MQD Waiver
- Flying: Earn Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) or Medallion Qualification Segments (MQSs)
Here are the requirements for each level:
Spending and flying in one year, counts toward status for the next year. 2023 Medallion Status for example, is earned through flight and spending activity for the 2022 calendar year (January 1, 2022 to December 31, 2022). 2023 Status is then valid from the day it is earned until January 31, 2024.
Medallion Qualification Dollars (MQD) Changes
Beginning January 1, 2023—the earn year to qualify for 2024 Medallion Status—Delta SkyMiles will increase MQD thresholds for Diamond, Platinum and Gold Medallion Members. There are no changes to Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) or Medallion Qualification Segments (MQSs).
MQD increases are as follows:
|Medallion Tier||Current Threshold for 2023 Status||Qualification Threshold for 2024 Status|
|Silver Medallion||$3,000||No Change|
More Choice Benefits
Diamond Medallion and Platinum Medallion Members who qualify for 2024 Medallion Status will be able to select from an expanded slate of premium Choice Benefits beginning February 1, 2023. These new offerings are in addition to Choice Benefits like the ability to gift Medallion Status to a friend or loved one and the use of Global and Regional Upgrade Certificates. The new Choice Benefits not only provide innovative experiences but also help members continue to qualify for Status. New benefits include:
- Diamond and Platinum Medallion Members with the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card, Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card or Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card can choose a statement credit for their Card: $500 for Diamond; $200 for Platinum. Terms and conditions apply and will be provided when the American Express Statement Credit becomes available.
- Expanding the ability to gift status to a friend or loved one: Diamond will receive two Gold Medallion Gift Statuses per selection; Platinum will receive two Silver Medallion Gift Statuses per selection
- A Delta Vacations Experience (flight and hotel): $500 for Diamond; $400 for Platinum
- An MQD “head start” for the next Medallion year: $1,000 MQD boost for Diamond; $500 MQD boost for Platinum
- Increasing the Delta Travel Credit Voucher to $250
- A $250 sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) contribution to help in our collective goal toward decarbonizing aviation
Early next year, Medallion Members with Global and Regional Upgrade Certificates will be able to request upgrades with their certificates themselves during check-out on Delta.com—a highly anticipated enhancement to upgrade certificate usability coming in 2023. Delta continues to invest in the SkyMiles Program, listening to member suggestions and evolving the experience to exceed member expectations and enable more seamless travel.
Delta SkyMiles revealed today that earning elite status will be more difficult. These changes kick in for 2023 activities and 2024 Medallion Status qualification.
MQD requirements for Diamond, Platinum and Gold Medallion Members will increase, with everything else remaining the same. While that’s a negative change, and it increases the opportunity cost to earning status, it is not a huge increase. Plus you can still get MQD Waivers.
Delta is also improving Choice Benefits with additional options, which enhances status for Diamond Medallion and Platinum Medallion members.