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Elite Status: Delta SkyMiles Medallion Program

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skymiles medallion program

Delta Air Lines completely reshuffled its program in 2014, turning its earning component into a revenue game. If you are chasing elite status, being in that seat is not going to be enough — you also have to pay more for the ticket. A lot more in fact.

Changes in redemptions have mostly been positive though. The strength of the new Delta SkyMiles program is in its flexibility and availability. Nowadays, finding awards on the Delta website is often easier than on American or United, even for popular international routes and even in business class. Delta miles became much more valuable.

With that in mind, one of the main reasons why Delta customers may want to achieve and hold on to the elite status is that the elites can earn more miles than general members who only get 5 miles per dollar.

As a Medallion member, your loyalty is rewarded with exclusive perks.
As a Medallion member, your loyalty is rewarded with exclusive perks.

While the Delta elite benefits and perks are generally comparable with other airlines, Delta is unique among others in that it offers several credit cards, which can take care of the new MQD component. That means that being an elite can make a huge difference in your miles balance.


There were three elements in the Delta Airline SkyMiles program you needed to be familiar with. Medallion Qualification Miles (MQM) were based on the distance flown. Medallion Qualification Dollars (MQD) were based on how much you have paid for traveling on Delta and its partner airlines. Medallion Qualification Segments (MQS) could be used for qualifying instead of MQMs.

However, MQMs departed at the end of 2023, and now you will be able to choose how you would like to convert your MQMs. You will have until December 31, 2024 to decide how you would like your MQMs converted. You can choose to convert them to MQDs, miles or a combination of both. Members with MQM balances over 100,000 can also choose to extend their 2024 Medallion Status for 1 year.

To earn SkyMiles status, you will now need to track MQDs only. There is no change how miles are earned or redeemed.

Earning the Status

  • For Silver Medallion you need to earn $5,000 MQDs.
  • For Gold Medallion: $10,000 MQDs.
  • For Platinum Medallion: $15,000 MQDs.
  • For Diamond Medallion: $28,000 MQDs.


  • All elites get unlimited Delta One® upgrades on the day of departure.
  • All elites get unlimited First Class upgrades on all paid (except E fares), award, miles + cash, and pay with miles tickets.
  • All elites unlimited get Delta Comfort+ upgrades on all paid (except E fares), award, miles + cash, and pay with miles tickets.
  • Unlimited Delta One, First Class and Delta Comfort+ upgrades for a companion.
  • All elites get unlimited Clase Premier upgrades on select Aeromexico-operated flights.
Each of the four Medallion levels delivers an added level of service, exclusivity and rewards.
Each of the four Medallion levels delivers an added level of service, exclusivity and rewards.

Mileage Bonus

  • Silver and up: waived baggage fees.
  • Gold elites earn 8 miles.
  • Platinum—9 miles.
  • Diamond—11 miles.

Fee Waivers

  • Silver and up: waived baggage fees.
  • Gold and up: waived same-day confirmed fees.

Airport Services

  • Silver and up: Priority Check In and Priority Boarding
  • Silver and up: preferred seats
  • Silver and up: priority wait list status
  • Gold and up: Priority Security Line and Expedited Baggage Service
  • Diamond: free CLEAR® Plus membership

    Choice Benefits

    Choice benefits is a suite of unique perks designed for Medallion status members: Platinum and Diamond. They include global and regional upgrade certificates, Delta vouchers, Sky Club passes, extra bonus miles, statement credits, etc. Members with Platinum Medallion status can choose one of the available Choice Benefits, and Diamond status members can select three of the available Choice Benefits at the time they earn status.

    SkyTeam Status

    • Silver — Elite
    • Gold, Platinum, and Diamond — Elite Plus

      Status Match/Status Challenge:

      If you are an elite with another program, Delta has their SkyMiles Medallion Status Match Challenge. You’ll receive status for 90 days. Plus, during this time you’ll have the opportunity to extend your complimentary status past ninety days, if you successfully complete the challenge. To extend your status, you need to earn a certain number of MQDs during the 90-day complimentary period: $1,250 MQDs for Silver, $2,500 MQDs for Gold, $3,750 MQDs for Platinum.

      To see what Medallion status you will get with your current elite status and to learn more about requirements, visit the Status Match Challenge page.

      Earning Miles on Partner Airlines

      You can earn SkyMiles by flying on Delta partner airlines, as well. With the introduction of the new, revenue-based model, there are two distinct mile-earning options. If your flight is ticketed by Delta, you’ll earn miles based on the ticket price, and if your flight is ticketed by a partner airline, you’ll earn miles based on the distance. For more information, check this page.

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