Check my math with Delta SkyMiles?

Discussion in 'Newbies' started by grizfan, Mar 24, 2014.  |  Print Topic

  1. grizfan

    grizfan New Member

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    I know basically zero about miles, points, etc... But, I do travel occasionally through work and I also have a big family vacation coming up, so I thought I would see what I could do to get the most out of things. My home airport is Boise (BOI), so I tend to fly Alaska and Delta most of the time. I'm good for about 1, maybe 2 business trips a year, and 2 or 3 on my own. For business travel, I make about 1 trip a year to our Scotland office, which is nice, and we use Hertz and Hilton, so I've also signed up for both those programs. Right now, I have about 30,000 Delta SkyMiles. So, here's what I'm thinking, please let me know if it makes sense:
    For the family trip this summer, we'll be flying either Delta or KLM (family of 6 flying to Scotland, and then home from Munich). If I get the Delta Gold AmEx card, and book my trip using that card, I'll get the 30,000 miles for the card, plus 2x miles for the Delta flights, so right there, that's around 50,000 miles. And, my wife and I should (if I understand this right) each get about 12,000 miles for the actual flight.

    Does that sound about right?

    Now hears the kicker... I have no idea what I can do with these miles... is this enough miles to book a flight for 2 somewhere, or maybe upgrade on our next trip?

    as you can tell, I have a lot to learn, so any feedback would be appreciated. Thanks!
     
    gregm likes this.
  2. NYCUA1K

    NYCUA1K Gold Member

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    One of the first things to do before one embarks on what you are planning is to try to get a good idea about how many miles it would require. A 'big family vacation' might require more than you can practically manage to derive from your various sources, in which case you would have to go to plan B -- all cash. So, you first need to go to the DL website and dummy-book your family trip using miles. You can run different scenarios, like everyone flies in economy or in business; kids in business, parents in coach; two tickets on miles, two on cash; etc... After that exercise, you should know what your target is and have a pretty good idea about whether or not you can reach it through your various sources of miles.

    Just a word of caution: if the DL website tells you that you will need 740,000 skymiles per person, do not get alarmed. It is a well known bug...;)
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2014
    gregm likes this.
  3. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

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    It's slightly tricky though since if you have any sort of status with Delta the award flight availability with change. It might be wide open if you're Diamond Medallion but not available at all if you have no status, be available but require more points if you're sliver, etc. If you're sure you're not reaching status then it doesn't matter, but sounds like if you get the Delta Amex Platinum and thus get bonus qualifying miles and you put that together with your Scotland trip then you might have a shot at Silver.

    Anyhow, enough miles for a trip for 2 somewhere -- yes. A trip for two to Asia, no. A trip for 6, even if you have lots more miles -- no.
     
    gregm likes this.
  4. grizfan

    grizfan New Member

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    thanks for the replies. Also, to clarify, the family trip this summer is already funded, so we don't need miles for that trip, it is just a means of gaining miles. I'm more interested in what to do with the miles we accumulate as a result of the trip.

    How does the "status" thing work? Again, total noob here...
     
    gregm likes this.
  5. gregm

    gregm Gold Member

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    Since your DL miles won't expire, you will have plenty of time to contemplate what to do with them. (Hopefully before they are worth less and less!)
     
    WilliamQ likes this.
  6. grizfan

    grizfan New Member

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    So I spent some time pouring over Delta's website, and I think I have a better grasp of their Medallion program. If I get the Delta Platinum AmexCard, that, combined with the MQMs from our family trip this summer should bump me up to Silver Medallion status. What advantage will that provide in booking award tickets?
     
  7. gregm

    gregm Gold Member

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    Unfortunately the pickins' are slim for Silver, but ramp up as your status does.

    http://www.delta.com/content/www/en...les/medallion-program/medallion-benefits.html
     
  8. bigx0

    bigx0 Gold Member

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    It definitely helps, but as @gregm pointed out the higher you go the easier it is. It's definitely better than nothing but the high levels are way better than silver!
     

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