Delta, like other airlines, has a business-earning program as well as their personal frequent flyer program. It allows small businesses and up to earn awards based on the value of the tickets purchased while the flyer still earns their regular award and elite miles. It is a nice way to double-dip a bit and get more rewards out of your flying.
Clearing Out My Delta SkyBonus Account
Delta’s program – Skybonus – has been gutted this year like their frequent flyer awards program. They used to give points away like crazy through promotions and promotional routes. This was in addition to their awarding of points based on the money spent.
Now, they have tightened this up and they are giving much less in terms of earning on cheaper tickets. Combine that with their requirement of at least 5 employees and a minimum of $5,000 in spending per year and that is causing many small businesses to lose out on their hard-earned points with the Delta Skybonus program.
Not Qualifying – Time To Spend!
Since I did not hit those requirements, I need to cash out my Delta Skybonus account to avoid losing all of my points at the end of this year. The program has been pretty good to me – I have redeemed for several awards including free tickets to South Pacific/Australia from the US.
But, my point total leaves me between award options. I currently have 147,000 points. That is 28,000 points shy of getting a transatlantic flight (which would be good for me) and 73,000 points away from what I would really want – the systemwide award that would let me fly anywhere Delta flies.
While there are many awards that are within my points budget, I am not going to redeem my points for full-fare upgrade options. I never buy full-fare to begin with and I could always use miles or buy cheap business/first would be cheaper than full-fare many times anyway. So it really gives me three options:
- Delta Skyclub Individual Membership (1 Year) – 125,000 points (they just hiked this without any warning – like last week)
- Delta Silver Medallion Status (12 Months) – 100,000 points
- SkyBonus Certificate – Travel US/Canada – 85,000 points
Any travel certificates have to be used within 1 year of issue. While spending 85,000 points for a free ticket within the US (minus Hawaii)/Canada is not what I really want to spend my points on, in this case, it appears it may be the best option for me. I never fly Delta anymore so the club membership would not be of value to me (I will be getting another Amex Platinum card at some point which would give me access anyway) and Silver status, while better than nothing, certainly would not be worth it to me. So, it looks like the SkyBonus certificate!
Plus, that leaves me 62,000 extra points. I’m not totally sure what I will do with those quite yet but may grab the 5 Skyclub passes. Even though those can be purchased by anyone with an American Express Delta card for only $29, they would still have some value and at least place the value of those remaining points at $145. Not too bad for leftovers!
Since I am about to lose my place in the Delta SkyBonus program for not requalifying, it is time to spend the 147,000 points I have! I think I have 3 main options, but of course, I am definitely open to hearing what you think about it and if I might have missed some other beneficial way to use those points before they expire tomorrow! If you have Delta Skybonus points, what are you planning to do with them?