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A favorite benefit of the Delta SkyMiles® Gold Credit Card from American Express is an annual certificate letting you purchase a companion ticket for $99 for travel within the 48 contiguous United States.
Basically, if a relatively cheap fare was available (the Delta ‘L’, ‘U’, and ‘T’ fare codes) you could purchase one ticket at the going price (say $250) and then another for a companion on the same flights for $99 plus taxes.
Delta sent these certificates to card holders every year upon payment of the annual fee for the card.
But starting January 25, 2013, this benefit will disappear according to blogger DeltaPoints.
Basically, if you hold or apply for the card before January 25, you will get one more certificate when you pay your next annual fee. In years after that, the certificates will no longer be sent.
It is a loss…probably done because the major competitors United and American don’t offer a companion voucher on their cards. They focus on priority boarding and a free checked bag like Delta does.
But if you still want an annual companion ticket, you can pay a higher annual fee for the $150 Platinum Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express or the $450 Delta Reserve Credit Card. With each of those you get an annual ticket with no $99 charge – it’s $0 fare plus taxes. And with the Reserve you can use the companion benefit for first class tickets.
So for an extra $55 annual fee per year, the Platinum version gives you the companion benefit you used to have with the Gold, but without paying $99 for the ticket, so in theory you’re saving $44 if you use the certificate each year.
Also don’t forget there are other American Express cards that let you earn Delta SkyMiles®, sometimes more quickly than with the Delta branded cards.
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