At this time of year, emails like this one start to pile up in the TravelSkills inbox:
Dear Chris: Any word this year if Delta is going to let FF’s buy some MQM’s at year end ? I need a couple of thousand and would rather not have to take a last minute trip during the holidays. Thanks! Love the blog — L.H.
If you are short of Delta Medallion Qualifying Miles (MQMs) for the year, the carrier is repeating its annual year-end opportunity to buy access to elite status… at ridiculously high prices.
The deal was a lot better in leaner times! Back in 2011, you could buy 5,000 MQMs for about $500, or 10,000 for about $900. Remember this? When times were really tough back in 2009, Delta offered up to 15,000 MQMs for those who donated to charities like AID Atlanta or Grady Hospital? Those were the days!, right?
This year, Delta is selling those cherished MQMs for three times as much– almost $3,000 for 10,000 miles.
Anyway… for flyers who are still missing MQMs, buying them is rarely the answer unless time is of the essence. Delta knows that many customers will come up short at the end of the year and has traditionally cashed in on those that need that slight nudge to the next level– albeit at painfully high prices. Better idea? Get a Delta Reserve card for $450, and get 10,000 MQMs for your first purchase, and then spend $30K in a year and get 15,000 more. Delta’s Amex Platinum offers 5,000 MQMs after spending just $1,000.
Qualification and rates vary depending upon your mileage balance (must be within 10K miles of the next level) and Medallion status, so hold your nose and at least go check this link. See if you qualify, and in the comments below, let us know your status and how much Delta wants to sell you MQMs for this year. Will you bite?
NOTE: Be sure to click here to see all recent TravelSkills posts about: 5 ways to save using Uber/Lyft + New overseas plan from Verizon + Trans-Pac fare war?