How Much Are Delta SkyMiles Worth?

Updated: March 21, 2024

Updated: March 21, 2024

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How much Delta miles are worth depends on how and when you redeem them. For flight tickets, you can, on average, expect to get 1.4 cents to 1.5 cents per mile, although you may do better or worse in some cases. Once you join the Delta frequent flyer program, you earn SkyMiles on all eligible flight tickets booked with Delta and its partner airlines. You can also earn miles through the program’s partner merchants and by using co-branded Delta SkyMiles credit cards. If needed, you may even buy Delta miles.

When it comes to how to use Delta SkyMiles, you may redeem them for flight tickets with Delta and its partner airlines, Delta Vacation packages, seat upgrades, Delta Sky Club membership, gift cards or SkyMiles Experiences. Gifting or transferring your miles to other Delta SkyMiles members is an option, as is donating them to charity.

MoneyGeek’s Takeaways

One Delta mile's value typically varies from 1.4 cents to 1.5 cents for award tickets.

You may earn SkyMiles faster by using co-branded Delta Air Lines credit cards.

You may earn miles through the program’s hotel, car rental and other partners.

How Much Are Delta SkyMiles Worth?

If you use your Delta SkyMiles to book flight tickets, you can often get a value of 1.3 cents to 1.5 cents per mile. However, this will vary. You may find you can get better value in some cases and worse value in others. Generally — though not always — redeeming your miles for Basic and Main fares offers better value than Comfort+ and First Class fares. With most other redemption methods, you can usually expect a value of around 1 cent per mile.

If you don’t fly with Delta often or prefer using multiple airlines, you may want to consider looking at the difference between earning airline miles and reward points to determine which might work better for you.

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To compute the value of Delta SkyMiles, you'll want to compare the number of miles required for a flight to the price you'd pay for that same flight if you were using cash. For instance, if you're eyeing a round-trip flight that would cost you $300, but you can book it using 15,000 SkyMiles instead, you can determine the value of each SkyMile. You'd divide the cash price by the number of miles required, so in this case, $300 divided by 15,000 SkyMiles equals $0.02. Thus, each Delta SkyMile is worth 2 cents in this particular scenario. It's a simple yet effective way to measure the value you're getting from your miles for any given flight.

Ticket Cost / Equivalent Points = Miles Value

There is no official Delta SkyMiles redemption chart that you can use to determine how much your miles are worth. Instead, a ticket’s cash price directly affects the points you need for redemption. However, Delta’s use of dynamic pricing for its award flights may result in good deals for tickets with low cash fares.

How Delta Miles Compare to Other Airlines

The value you stand to receive for your Delta SkyMiles is on par with what you can expect through frequent flyer programs run by other popular airlines.

Delta vs. Other Frequent Flyer Programs
Value per Mile

Delta Air Lines SkyMiles

1.4 cents to 1.5 cents per mile

American Airlines AAdvantage

1.5 cents to 1.7 cents per mile

JetBlue TrueBlue

1.3 cents to 1.6 cents per point

United Airlines MileagePlus

1.2 cents to 1.6 cents per mile

Southwest Airlines Rapid Rewards

1.3 cents to 1.5 cents per point

Alaska Airlines Mileage Plan

1.2 cents to 1.8 cents per mile

Air Canada Aeroplan

1.5 cents to 1.9 cents per mile

Air France / KLM Flying Blue

1.2 cents to 1.4 cents per mile

British Airways Avios

0.8 cents to 1.5 cents per point

Emirates Skywards

1 cent to 1.4 cents per mile

Frontier Miles

0.9 cents to 1.1 cents per mile

Hawaiian Airlines HawaiianMiles

0.9 cents to 1 cent per mile

Singapore Airlines KrisFlyer

1.1 cents to 1.3 cents per mile

Virgin Atlantic Flying Club

1.1 cents to 1.5 cents per point

How to Earn and Maximize Miles From Delta

Most frequent flyer programs offer several ways to earn airline miles, and the Delta SkyMiles program is no different. For starters, you earn miles on every eligible ticket you book through Delta or its partner airlines. Vacation packages booked through Delta Vacations earn miles. Using co-branded Delta Air Lines credit cards is another way to earn SkyMiles. You may also earn miles when you shop with the program's partner merchants.

Earning Miles Using Travel and Delta Co-Branded Credit Cards

Getting a travel credit card might be worth it if you know you'll earn enough rewards or use the card's benefits adequately to offset its annual fee. American Express offers four co-branded Delta SkyMiles cards for individuals and three for businesses. Of these, the Delta SkyMiles Platinum American Express Card gives you the ability to earn SkyMiles the fastest.

Buying Airline Tickets From Delta and Affiliates

When booking Delta tickets, especially exception fares or through partner airlines, the miles earned vary based on the flight's distance and fare class. Partner airline bookings also consider fare class, potentially offering class bonuses and the opportunity to earn Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) and Dollars (MQDs). Generally, miles earned from partner airlines are primarily determined by the flight distance. SkyMiles can be accrued through various Delta airline partners.

  • AeroMexico (based on flight distance)
  • Air France (based on flight distance)
  • China Eastern (based on flight distance)
  • KLM (based on flight distance)
  • Korean Air (based on flight distance)
  • LATAM Airlines (based on flight distance)
  • Virgin Atlantic (based on flight distance)
  • Aerolíneas Argentina (based on flight distance)
  • Air Europa (based on flight distance)
  • Cape Air (only on select flights, based on the cost of a ticket)
  • China Airlines (based on flight distance)
  • China Southern (only on select flights, based on flight distance)
  • Czech Airlines (based on flight distance)
  • Garuda Indonesia (based on flight distance)
  • Hawaiian Airlines (based on flight distance)
  • ITA (only on Delta-marketed flights, based on the cost of a ticket)
  • Kenya Airways (based on flight distance)
  • Middle East Airlines (based on flight distance)
  • Saudia (based on flight distance)
  • TAROM (based on flight distance)
  • Vietnam Airlines (based on flight distance)
  • WestJet (based on flight distance)
  • XiamenAir (based on flight distance)

Earn Points Through Delta Partner Merchants

The Delta frequent flyer program allows members to earn miles through partner merchants spread across multiple categories such as hotels, shopping and car rentals.

  • Airbnb and Hotel Accommodations. Delta SkyMiles members have a variety of options for earning miles through stays with partner merchants in the hotel and accommodation sector. By booking through Delta's dedicated hotel portal, members can earn additional miles. The partner merchants include popular names such as Airbnb, Marriott, AccorHotels, Hyatt, Langham, Shangri-La, WorldHotels and others. Each partner offers a different method for earning miles, such as miles per dollar spent, miles per stay or miles per night. Additionally, hotel loyalty points from IHG and Radisson can be converted into SkyMiles, providing another avenue for members to increase their miles balance.

  • SkyMiles Shopping and Dining. Delta SkyMiles members can earn miles through a variety of daily activities with partner merchants. Opportunities include earning miles for every purchase made through SkyMiles Shopping and Dining programs. Additionally, members can earn miles on purchases from Instacart, FTD, Vinesse Wine and Ticketmaster.

  • Car Rentals. Delta SkyMiles members have the opportunity to earn miles through car rentals with various partner merchants. Participating car rental companies include well-known brands like Hertz, Dollar, Thrifty, Alamo, Enterprise, National and Sixt, each offering a set number of miles per qualifying rental. Additionally, ridesharing services like Lyft provide miles per dollar spent in the U.S., while peer-to-peer car rental service Turo offers miles for each trip, with a bonus for the first trip. Europcar also allows earning miles per day on eligible rentals. For limousine and car service, Carmel offers a tiered mile-earning structure based on the amount spent. These partnerships provide SkyMiles members with a variety of options for earning miles while renting vehicles, catering to different travel needs and preferences.

  • Others. Even routine activities like paying monthly natural gas bills and buying coffee at participating Starbucks outlets offer chances to accumulate miles, seamlessly integrating mile-earning into everyday life.

Booking Vacation Packages From Delta Vacations and SkyMiles Cruise

Delta SkyMiles members can earn additional miles by booking through Delta Vacations and SkyMiles Cruises. Booking a vacation package with Delta Vacations allows members to earn bonus miles on top of flight miles. Similarly, each booking with SkyMiles Cruises guarantees a set number of miles, potentially earning more based on the accommodation type. These programs offer rewarding ways for members to accumulate miles while planning vacations and cruises.

Convert Points From Partner Merchants

Delta SkyMiles members have the flexibility to convert points from various loyalty programs into SkyMiles, enhancing their ability to earn miles for flights and other rewards. This includes converting points from:

  • American Express Membership Rewards
  • Diners Club Rewards
  • Programs like Dolares Premios from Banco de Chile and Oki Doki Points from JCB
  • Le Club Accorhotels
  • Radisson Rewards
  • Marriott Bonvoy, with an additional bonus for converting a specific amount of points
  • Hilton Honors
  • IHG Rewards Club
  • Hertz Gold Plus Rewards
  •, which collaborates with various loyalty programs
  • Flyertea, specific to the China region

These partnerships allow SkyMiles members to leverage their existing points from various loyalty programs, including credit card rewards, hotel loyalty programs, car rental points and more, effectively increasing their SkyMiles balance and unlocking more travel opportunities.

Purchasing Miles From Delta

You may buy Delta SkyMiles in increments of 2,000 miles, and the maximum you may purchase through a single transaction is 60,000 miles. You need to pay 3.5 cents per point. Given that this is two to three times the value you may receive when redeeming your miles, buying them might not be in your best interest. Even if you’re falling short of miles to get an award ticket, you might be better off using the Miles + Cash redemption option if available.

How to Redeem Delta SkyMiles

You may redeem the miles you earn through the Delta rewards program in several ways. These include booking flight tickets through Delta and its partner airlines, getting seat upgrades, paying for your Delta Sky Club membership, getting gift cards, booking vacations and more. To redeem your miles, you simply need to log in to your Delta SkyMiles account and choose your desired redemption method.

Since there is no official Delta reward chart to turn to, you need to determine the value you receive across different redemption methods on your own. For example, when redeemed for a flight ticket, the value of your miles depends on the route, the date you wish to fly and the desired fare type. With some flights, you might be able to use the Miles + Cash option if you don't have enough SkyMiles. Not having to worry about blackout dates with Delta is a definite plus.

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    Book flights with partner airlines

    Using your SkyMiles with Delta airline partners gives you the ability to fly to different locations the world over. You may use your SkyMiles to book award travel through Aeromexico, Aerolineas Argentinas, Air France, Cape Air, China Eastern, China Airlines, China Southern, Hawaiian Airlines, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, Korean Air, LATAM, Mandarin Airlines, Middle East Airlines, Saudia Airlines, Shanghai Airlines, TAROM, Vietnam Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, WestJet and Xiamen Airlines. Using this redemption method may get you a value of anywhere from 0.9 cents per mile to upward of 3 cents per mile.

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    Book with Delta Vacations

    You may use your miles to book destination, family, group and all-inclusive Delta vacation packages. Some of the top hotel partners that are part of this program include Palladium, Best Western, Hilton, Marriott, Hyatt, IHG and Caesars. In this case, you'll typically get a value of 1 cent per mile.

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    Flight upgrades

    You may use your SkyMiles to upgrade while booking your Delta ticket or after the booking is complete. Using your miles to upgrade tickets with carriers such as Aeromexico, KLM, Air France and Virgin Atlantic is possible, although these upgrades are subject to fare class and route restrictions. You may also use your miles for premium drinks at Delta Sky Club as well as to cover the cost of preferred seating, ticket change fees, same-day confirmed fees and external ticket charges. In all such scenarios, you may expect to get a value of 0.9 cents to slightly over 1 cent per mile.

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    Shop With Miles

    The Shop With Miles option lets you redeem your miles for gift cards and magazine subscriptions as well as through the Delta SkyMiles shopping platform (SkyMiles Marketplace). Some members who live in Japan may use up to 30,000 miles each calendar year to cover costs for the JTB Japan Package Tour Voucher program. In most such cases, you stand to receive a value of less than 1 cent per mile. Purchases through the SkyMiles Marketplace can come with values as low as 0.1 cents per mile.

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    Gift or transfer miles

    The Delta SkyMiles program lets you gift or transfer your miles to up to four other members at the same time. The per-mile rate stands at 1 cent, and you need to pay a processing fee of $30.00 per transaction. You also need to account for applicable taxes.

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    Donate to SkyWish

    You may donate your miles to various charities the world over through SkyWish. These donations are not tax deductible for you or Delta.

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    Another way to redeem your miles is for SkyMiles Experiences. This requires that you bid on any available experience by using your points. The redemption of miles goes through only if you have the winning bid.

When It’s Best to Redeem Delta Miles

The best time to use your miles is when you find a suitable option through SkyMiles Deals because these deals tend to offer rather good value. If you cannot find your desired flight through this method, make use of Delta’s online booking platform and select the “My dates are flexible” option. This helps to give you an idea of whether you could get a better deal by shifting your travel dates slightly.

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Delta SkyMiles are some of the most valuable airline loyalty points available. Delta regularly ranks as one of the best U.S. airlines to fly, and the SkyTeam airline alliance gives SkyMiles even better value as well. However, when you’re looking for flights, it’s important to see that you’re earning a fair value for your points. Keep in mind that having cash in your pocket is better than having more airline points — but do your best to get a fair value when you redeem. Brett Holzhauer, contributing expert for MoneyGeek

What Is the Delta Medallion Status?

The Delta SkyMiles rewards program comes with different membership levels, which it refers to as Medallion Status. Each tier comes with different benefits, one of which is the ability to earn miles faster. Moving from one Medallion Status to the next involves a combination of spending and flying with Delta and its airline partners every calendar year.

  • Medallion Qualification Dollars (MQDs): You earn MQDs based on how much money you spend on flights with Delta and its partner airlines. With award flights, the amount of MQDs you earn depends on the miles you need for redemption. You qualify for an MQD waiver if you meet the annual spending requirement of your co-branded Amex Delta SkyMiles credit card.
  • Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs): Members earn MQMs based on the class fare and the distance their flights cover. However, you don’t earn MQMs on Basic Economy fares. All membership levels allow unlimited rollover of MQMs.
  • Medallion Qualification Segments (MQSs): You earn MQSs depending on how many flights you take. Basic Economy fares don’t earn MQSs.

Note that Delta will update its rewards program starting in 2024 as follows:

  • Delta SkyMiles members can earn Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) for their 2024 Medallion Status throughout 2023.
  • The MQM Rollover feature will end after 2023.
  • From early 2024, members with significant Rollover MQM balances can opt for a one-time conversion of these MQMs or extend their Medallion Status.
  • Conversion options include Medallion Qualification Dollars (MQDs), miles or both, available until December 31, 2024.
  • Members with over 100,000 Rollover MQMs can extend their 2024 Medallion Status by a year for every 100,000 Rollover MQMs.
  • As of February 2024, Delta SkyMiles® Platinum, Platinum Business, Reserve and Reserve Business American Express Card Members will receive a $2,500 MQD Headstart per card for the Medallion Qualification Year.
  • Starting January 1, 2024, these cardholders can earn MQDs on everyday purchases with the new MQD Boost feature.
  • The introduction of MQD Headstart and MQD Boost will lead to the discontinuation of Status Boost® and MQD Waiver benefits from January 1, 2024.

Additionally, the MQD thresholds for achieving different Medallion Status levels have been adjusted for greater accessibility​.

Delta Medallion Levels

Silver Medallion

Until December 2023: 30 MQSs or 25,000 MQMs and 3,000 MQDs or an MQD waiver

Starting January 1, 2024: $5,000 MQDs in a calendar year

Benefits: You earn 7X SkyMiles per dollar as a Silver member. Additional benefits include unlimited upgrades on eligible paid tickets, complimentary preferred seats, priority wait list status, priority check-in, priority boarding, waived baggage fees, savings on Delta Vacations, a free Instacart trial, preferred pricing for Clear membership and Elite SkyTeam status.

Gold Medallion

Until December 2023: 60 MQSs or 50,000 MQMs and 6,000 MQDs or an MQD waiver in a calendar year.

Starting January 1, 2024: $10,000 MQDs in a calendar year

Benefits: At this level, you earn 8X miles per dollar. The benefits you get in addition to the ones offered to Silver members include same-day confirmed fee waiver, Sky Priority boarding, priority baggage handling, access to SkyTeam Lounge, Elite Plus SkyTeam status, Five Star status in the Hertz Gold Plus Rewards program and four onboard drink vouchers.

Platinum Medallion

Until December 2023: 100 MQSs or 75,000 MQMs and 9,000 MQDs or an MQD waiver in a calendar year.

Starting January 1, 2024: $15,000 MQDs in a calendar year

Benefits: Platinum members earn 9X miles per dollar. You get all the benefits from the previous tiers as well as President's Circle status in the Hertz Gold Plus Rewards program. As part of Choice Benefits, you may choose any one option from four regional upgrade certificates, 20,000 bonus miles, a gift card or the ability to gift Silver status to someone else.

Diamond Medallion

Until December 2023: 140 MQSs or 125,000 MQMs and 15,000 MQDs or an MQD waiver in a calendar year.

Starting January 1, 2024: $28,000 MQDs in a calendar year

Benefits: Additional benefits for Diamond members include highest priority boarding and complimentary Clear membership. You also can choose from any four Choice Benefits that include Delta Sky Club individual membership, Delta Sky Club executive membership (accounts for two choices if you don't have individual membership), guest pass for Delta Sky Club, upgrade certificates (four global, eight regional, or a combination of two global and four regional), 25,000 bonus miles, a gift card or the ability to gift Gold status to someone else.

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MoneyGeek experts have taken a close look at how the value of Delta SkyMiles changes based on different redemption methods. They have also carried out in-depth market research to determine the worth of your miles.

Other Questions You May Have About Delta SkyMiles

Checking answers to other commonly asked questions about the value of SkyMiles for Delta award travel and other redemption methods might help you select a suitable option.

Can I transfer my Delta SkyMiles to another person?
What can I buy with Delta SkyMiles?
Can I convert my Delta miles to dollars?
How much are 10,000 SkyMiles worth?
How much are 30,000 SkyMiles worth?
How much are 50,000 SkyMiles worth?
How much are 100,000 SkyMiles worth?
Do Delta SkyMiles expire?
Which airlines are affiliated with Delta?
How do I check my Delta SkyMiles?

About Rajiv Baniwal

Rajiv Baniwal headshot

Rajiv Baniwal is a former finance writer at MoneyGeek, with more than 15 years of experience covering financial topics. His expertise includes mortgages, loans, credit cards, insurance and international money transfers.

Baniwal has a bachelor’s degree in art studies from Delhi University.

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