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2021 Review: Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card – A Delta Card for the Casual Traveler

Updated May 27, 2021 | Published Mar 05, 20219 min read

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Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card

Min Credit Level Good
Annual Fee $0
Regular APR 15.74% - 24.74% Variable
At a glance

The Delta SkyMiles Blue is a simple and inexpensive card, designed for those who don’t fly too often. It has basic rewards (2X miles for Delta) and just a few benefits, like a 20% in-flight discount and some shopping protections.

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Our Rating: 3 Out of 5 Stars

The Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card is a pretty average no annual fee travel card. It doesn’t offer any game-changing travel benefits, but it’s an inexpensive option for the occasional traveler who’d like to earn some rewards with Delta.

Why We Like It

  • 2X miles per dollar with Delta
  • 20% back for in-flight Delta purchases
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • No annual fee

Why It Could Be Better

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Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card
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  • Min. credit levelGood
  • Annual Fee$0
  • Regular APR15.74% - 24.74% Variable

Rates & Fees

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For people who don’t fly often, and fly with Delta when they do, this Delta SkyMiles card could serve well. It won’t cost you anything annually but it also doesn’t come with very many perks aside from the basics, like an in-flight discount and a couple of shopping and travel protections.

If you do fly with Delta more than a handful of times per year, you might want to consider a more advanced travel card. Delta offers quite a few cards at varying levels and most offer better perks like free checked bags or Delta Sky Club access.

Insider Advice: Getting the Most Out of Your Card

  • Fly with Delta: 2X miles per dollar may not sound like much, but it’s par for the course when it comes to airline cards. And hey, it’s more than you’d get as a normal member without a card (you’ll still earn miles from your member status). If you want more miles per dollar (3X) you’ll have to broaden your horizons a bit with the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card (Review) or Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card (Review).
  • Get an easy bonus: The Delta Blue card usually has a welcome bonus that’s fairly easy to get, so don’t miss out.
  • Grab a bite and a drink: You’ll get a 20% discount on eligible in-flight Delta purchases, like food and headsets. This is a valid excuse to relax with a drink and a movie instead of working, if anyone asks, since the discount doesn’t apply to WiFi.
  • Don’t have FOMO: If you wish the Delta Blue had more to offer, or if you’re just airport-lounge curious, check out the bigger and better Delta credit cards. Or see a broader selection of travel rewards credit cards.

The Rewards

If your Delta miles are worth about 1–1.5 cents, that means you’d get a cash back equivalent of 7%–10.5% for your Delta flights. You earn 2X miles from the card, and at least 5X miles from your SkyMiles membership.

Earning

Spending Rewards
  • 2X SkyMiles per eligible dollar spent for:
    • Purchases made directly with Delta Air Lines
    • Restaurants
  • 1X SkyMile per eligible dollar spent for every other purchase
Introductory Bonus
  • 10,000 bonus miles for spending $500 in the first 3 months after account opening

Redeeming

If you’ve got a trip in mind, it must be time to redeem the rewards you’ve earned. Here are your options:

  • Flights
  • Flight upgrades
  • Delta gift cards
  • Vacation packages
  • SkyMiles Experiences
  • Magazine subscriptions

You can also buy, gift, transfer, or donate your miles. But because this is an airline credit card, redeeming for flights will hold the most value for your miles.

How Do I Redeem for Delta Flights?

You can redeem your miles for flights by selecting the Shop with Miles box beneath the flight selection at the top of the Delta website.

We’ve run through some example one-way flights so you can get an idea of what your miles could be worth:

Flight Mile Cost Dollar Cost Mile Value
JFK to LAX 16,500 + $6 $192.40 1.17 cents
ROC to CHI 23,000 + $6 $323.20 1.41 cents
DEN to JFK 18,500 + $6 $215.40 1.16 cents
SEA to PHL 28,000 + $6 $343.20 1.23 cents
BWI to HOU 10,000 + $6 $137.20 1.37 cents

Overall, the per-mile value is pretty decent. At the high end, from Rochester to Chicago, you’re looking at a cash back equivalent of 9.82% (when earning at the 7X rate). That’s a good deal for a credit card that doesn’t require an annual fee. And from the examples above, the lowest equivalent you might see is 8.15%, for Denver to JFK, which is still pretty good.

Obviously, these numbers will change depending on where and when you fly, but this should give you an idea of the kind of value you might get for your money.

The Benefits

  • 20% in-flight discount on Delta flights: Get 20% off (in the form of a statement credit) a host of in-flight purchases — food, drinks, and headsets, but not WiFi or anything else.
  • Entertainment Access: Search for exclusive access to tickets and cardmember-only events in your area.
  • Global Assist Hotline: When traveling more than 100 miles from home, you can call 1-800-333-2639 for 24/7 emergency assistance with medical, legal, and passport referrals, lost luggage assistance, and more.
  • Car Rental Loss and Damage Insurance: Pay for the entire rental vehicle with your card to get secondary theft and damage insurance. You must decline the rental company’s own insurance.
  • Purchase Protection: Eligible purchases are covered for accidental damage and theft for 90 days.
  • Extended Warranty: Get up to one extra year added to eligible manufacturer’s warranties of five years or less.

Enrollment required for select benefits; terms and limitations apply.

The Terms & Fees

Purchase APR Balance Transfer APR Cash Advance APR
15.74% - 24.74% Variable None 29.99% Variable
Annual Fee Foreign Transaction Fee
$0 None
Balance Transfer Fee Cash Advance Fee
None Either $10 or 5% of the amount of each cash advance, whichever is greater
Penalty APR Late Fee Returned Payment Fee
29.99% Variable Up to $40 Up to $40

Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card (Rates & Fees)

The Bottom Line

The Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card is best suited for travelers who prefer Delta but don’t travel too often. It’s an inexpensive option for people who want to earn some rewards for their Delta flights without committing too much.

The benefits aren’t much, but they’re on par with other no annual fee travel cards. If you travel more frequently, consider a higher-caliber travel card. Some of them provide much more useful benefits that save you money and can expedite your airport experience. Delta offers a few to choose from.

Read more Best Airline Credit Cards

How Do I Apply for the Delta SkyMiles Blue American Express Card?

Click the “Apply Now” button below to be taken to the American Express website.

In most cases you’ll receive an instant decision from the credit card issuer — approved or denied. In some cases you may need to wait, or Amex will ask for more information.

What Credit Scores Do You Need to Get the Delta SkyMiles Blue Card?

The SkyMiles Blue card has cardholders with good credit in mind.

Good credit typically refers to credit scores of at least 670 for FICO, or 700 for VantageScore.

But, remember that credit scores are only one piece of puzzle when it comes to credit card approval. Other factors, like income, also play a role. So you could be approved with lower scores, or denied with higher scores.

Qualifications and Requirements

  • Must be 18 to apply
  • Personal information: Name, date of birth, Social Security number
  • Address and contact information: Home address, phone number, email address
  • Financial information: Total annual income, income source
  • Delta SkyMiles number (optional; you’ll be provided with one upon approval)
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Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card
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  • Min. credit levelGood
  • Annual Fee$0
  • Regular APR15.74% - 24.74% Variable

Rates & Fees

American Express is a Credit Card Insider advertiser.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Delta SkyMiles Blue American Express card worth it?

If you don’t travel too often, and fly with Delta when you do, there’s really no reason not to get this card. It doesn’t cost anything annually, and it could provide a decent return on your spending when you do fly. It’ll also save you some money thanks to its in-flight discount.

Check out the card rewards, the benefits, and our bottom line.

What are Delta SkyMiles Blue American Express card rewards worth?

On average, we found that your SkyMiles will be worth about 1–1.5 cents each. Between the miles you earn from the card (2X) and the miles from your SkyMiles membership (5X or more) you’d see a cash back equivalent of at least 7%–10.5%.

Take a look at what you can use your rewards for, and a few example flights to see what your miles could be worth.

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Alternatives to the Delta SkyMiles Blue American Express Card

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  • Min. credit levelGood
  • Annual Fee$450
  • Regular APR15.99% - 24.99% (Variable)
  • Earn 50,000 American Airlines AAdvantage®bonus miles after spending $5,000 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • Admirals Club® membership for you and access for up to two guests or immediate family members traveling with you
  • Earn 10,000 AAdvantage® Elite Qualifying Miles (EQMs) after you spend $40,000 in purchases within the year
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees on purchases
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases and 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases
  • First checked bag is free on domestic American Airlines itineraries for you and up to 8 companions traveling with you on the same reservation
  • The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 15.99% – 24.99%, based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi’s discretion.
Why We Picked It

The Citi® / AAdvantage® Executive World Elite Mastercard® (Review) is another co-branded airline credit card, this time with American Airlines.

This card is just as rewarding as the Delta SkyMiles card, maybe even more so. It provides a cash back equivalent of 7%–14% for AA flights, compared to the Delta card’s 7%–10.5%. The annual fee is way higher, but the benefits are also much better. If you’re a frequent flyer with AA, it could be worth it.

The Citi / AAdvantage card comes with Admirals Club airport lounge access, which is a substantial edge over the Delta card. You’ll also get your first checked bag for free, an expedited airport experience, a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee credit, and a larger in-flight purchase discount.

Rewards
Spending Rewards
  • 2X AAdvantage miles per dollar spent on eligible American Airlines purchases
  • 1X AAdvantage mile per dollar spent on all other purchases
Introductory Bonus
  • 50,000 AAdvantage bonus miles for spending $5,000 in the first 3 months of account opening

You’ll earn 2X miles from the card and at least 5X miles from your American Airlines membership. If your miles are worth 1–2 cents, that equates to a cash back equivalent of 7%–14% for AA flights.

Key Features
  • Admirals Club membership: Access to 50 lounge locations around the world for you and two others
  • Global Entry/TSA PreCheck credit: Every five years you can be reimbursed for either a Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application fee, up to $100.
  • Enhanced Airport Experience: Receive priority boarding, priority check-in where available, and priority airport screening to save you some time while you travel.
  • First checked bag free: For you and up to eight of your traveling companions, your first checked bag will be free of charge.
  • 25% in-flight discount: The food and beverages you buy during your flight will cost you 25% less.
  • Reduced mileage award: You’ll get a discount when redeeming your miles for flights. If your flight is 500 or more miles, you’ll get a 7,500 mile discount. For flights under 500 miles, you’ll get a 2,000 mile discount.
  • Bonus Elite Qualifying Miles: Get 10,000 EQMs when you spend $40,000 in a calendar year. These help advance you into American Airlines elite status.
  • Shopping protections: Purchase protection and extended warranty
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Annual fee: $450

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  • Min. credit levelGood
  • Annual Fee$149
  • Regular APR15.99% - 22.99% Variable
  • Earn 40,000 points after you spend $1,000 on purchases in the first 3 months. Plus, earn 3X points on dining, including takeout and eligible delivery services, for the first year.
  • 7,500 bonus points after your Cardmember anniversary each year.
  • $75 Southwest® travel credit each year.
  • 4 Upgraded Boardings per year when available.
  • 20% back on inflight drinks and WiFi.
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent on Southwest® purchases.
  • Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
Why We Picked It

The Southwest Rapid Rewards® Priority Credit Card (Review) is better suited to people who travel a little more often and prefer to fly with Southwest when they do.

There is an annual fee, but it also comes with an annual $75 travel credit that effectively drops it by that much, making it pretty inexpensive for a travel card. The cash back equivalent from the card is about 1%–4%, but that’ll increase depending on the type of fare you fly. If you’re flying the basic “Wanna Get Away” fare, you could see a cash back equivalent of 12%–16%, which is higher than the Delta card’s. And it has a much better selection of benefits.

Along with the yearly travel credit, there are more travel protections, a 7,500-point anniversary gift, and four upgraded boardings every anniversary year. It’s a little more expensive, but you get much more for your money.

Rewards
Spending Rewards
  • 2X points per dollar spent on eligible purchases from:
  • 1X point per dollar spent on all other purchases
Introductory Bonus
  • 40,000 bonus points for spending $1,000 in the first 3 months; 3X points on dining, including takeout and eligible delivery services, for the first year
Key Features
  • $75 annual Southwest travel credit: Receive a $75 annual travel credit to book your flights, Rapid Rewards hotel stays, or car rentals each year.
  • 7,500 anniversary points: Every year you’ll receive 7,500 bonus points.
  • Four upgraded boardings: Snag an A1–A15 seat, without the hassle. Each anniversary year, you’ll be reimbursed for up to four Upgraded Boardings for A1 through A15 seats. The price of an Upgraded Boarding varies depending on your flight, but usually costs between $30 and $50.
  • 20% back on in-flight purchases: You’ll receive 20% back on in-flight Southwest purchases like drinks, meals, entertainment, and WiFi.
  • Travel protections: Rental car insurance, roadside dispatch, lost luggage reimbursement, baggage delay insurance, travel accident insurance, and travel and emergency assistance
  • Shopping protections: Purchase protection and extended warranty
  • Purchase and Balance Transfer APR: 15.99% - 22.99% Variable
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Annual fee: $149
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  • Min. credit levelGood
  • Annual Fee$99
  • Regular APR18.24%, 22.24%, or 27.24% Variable
  • Earn 40,000 bonus points after you spend $1,000 on purchases within the first 90 days.
  • Earn 6X points per $1 on JetBlue purchases, 2X points per $1 at restaurants and grocery stores, and 1X point per $1 on all other purchases.
  • Earn 5,000 bonus points every year automatically after your account anniversary.
  • Get 10% of your points back every time you redeem.
  • No blackout dates on JetBlue-operated flights & redeem for any seat, any time on JetBlue-operated flights.
  • Free first checked bag for you and up to three traveling companions.
  • 50% savings on eligible inflight purchases like cocktails and food.
  • Enjoy TrueBlue Mosaic benefits after you spend $50,000 or more on purchases each calendar year with your card.
  • Enjoy a $100 statement credit after purchasing a JetBlue Vacations package of $100 or more with your JetBlue Plus Card.
  • No foreign transaction fees.
  • $99 annual fee.
Why We Picked It

The JetBlue Plus Card is the higher-end JetBlue card (see all the JetBlue cards here), and it’s not a bad offer at all.

Your points are worth around 1–1.5 cents, so the cash back equivalent you’d see with this card would be 6%–9%. That’s pretty on par with the Delta Blue, but this card requires an annual fee.

In most cases, an annual fee means better benefits, but that’s only mostly true here. In addition to a much larger in-flight discount, this credit card offers 10% of your points back when you redeem for JetBlue flights, your first checked bag will be free, and you can earn a $100 credit every year you purchase a JetBlue vacation package worth $100 or more. That’s better than the Delta card’s benefits, but doesn’t really stack up so well with other airline cards in its price range.

Rewards
Spending Rewards
  • 6X points per dollar on JetBlue purchases
  • 2X points per dollar at:
    • Restaurants
    • Grocery stores
  • 1X point per dollar on all other purchases
Introductory Bonus
  • 60,000 bonus points for paying the annual fee and spending $1,000 in the first 90 days
Key Features
  • Anniversary points: Get 5,000 points on the anniversary of your account opening.
  • 50% savings on in-flight food and drink: As long as your account is in good standing, you’ll save 50% on your in-flight drinks and snacks.
  • 10% point refund for award flights: You’ll get 10% of your points back if you redeem them for a JetBlue award flight.
  • Free first checked bag: You and up to three companions will get your first checked bags free of charge.
  • $100 statement credit: Every calendar year you purchase a JetBlue vacation package worth $100 or more, you’ll receive a $100 statement credit.
  • Balance Transfer APR: 0% for 12 months (for balance transfers made within 45 days of account opening), then 18.24%, 22.24%, or 27.24% Variable
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Annual fee: $99
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  • Min. credit levelGood
  • Annual Fee$95
  • Regular APR15.99% - 22.99% Variable
  • Our best offer ever! Earn 100,000 bonus points after you spend $4,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening. That’s $1,250 when you redeem through Chase Ultimate Rewards®.
  • Earn 2X points on dining including eligible delivery services, takeout and dining out and travel. Plus, earn 1 point per dollar spent on all other purchases.
  • Get 25% more value when you redeem for airfare, hotels, car rentals and cruises through Chase Ultimate Rewards®. For example, 100,000 points are worth $1,250 toward travel.
  • With Pay Yourself Back℠, your points are worth 25% more during the current offer when you redeem them for statement credits against existing purchases in select, rotating categories
  • Get unlimited deliveries with a $0 delivery fee and reduced service fees on eligible orders over $12 for a minimum of one year with DashPass, DoorDash’s subscription service. Activate by 12/31/21.
  • Count on Trip Cancellation/Interruption Insurance, Auto Rental Collision Damage Waiver, Lost Luggage Insurance and more.
  • Get up to $60 back on an eligible Peloton Digital or All-Access Membership through 12/31/2021, and get full access to their workout library through the Peloton app, including cardio, running, strength, yoga, and more. Take classes using a phone, tablet, or TV. No fitness equipment is required.
Why We Picked It

The Chase Sapphire Preferred® Card (Review) isn’t partnered with any specific airline. Instead, it’s a general travel card with strong point transfer and redemption options.

With the Sapphire Preferred, you’re able to transfer your points to any of Chase’s travel partners at a 1:1 rate. With point transfers you could find a higher per-point value, and thus increase your cash back equivalent. However, Delta is not one of Chase’s travel partners. If you were considering the Delta SkyMiles because you prefer Delta, you won’t be able to transfer points to Delta with this card.

If you’re not interested in point transfers, you can redeem for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards to get a 25% point bonus. And unlike the other cards here, you’ll earn decent rewards for travel no matter who you fly with.

The benefits include a vast selection of travel protections, the Shop through Chase shopping portal, and a DoorDash membership, to name a few. While these can be very useful, the card’s main draw is what you can do with your points after you earn them.

Rewards
Spending Rewards
  • 5X Ultimate Rewards points per dollar on Lyft rides (through March 2022)
  • 2X Ultimate Rewards points per dollar for:
    • Travel
    • Restaurants
  • 1X Ultimate Rewards point per dollar on all other purchases
Introductory Bonus
  • 100,000 bonus points for spending $4,000 in the first 3 months from account opening

If you’re able to find a point value of at least 2 cents when you transfer to Chase’s travel partners, this card’s 5X, 2X, and 1X categories would give you cash back equivalents of at least 10%, 4%, and 2% respectively.

Key Features
  • 1:1 point transfer: 1:1 point transfer to leading frequent travel programs at full value – that means 1,000 Ultimate Rewards points equal 1,000 partner miles/points. The airline and hotel partners include Southwest Airlines, JetBlue, United, World of Hyatt, Marriott Bonvoy, and IHG Rewards Club.
  • 25% redemption bonus: Get a 25% bonus when you redeem your rewards for travel through Chase Ultimate Rewards.
  • DoorDash membership: You’ll get a free DoorDash membership for at least a year, known as a DashPass. That’ll get you free delivery and reduced service fees for orders over $12.
  • Luxury Hotel & Resort Collection: The Luxury Hotel & Resort Collection is provided by Chase, and includes benefits at over 1,000 locations around the world.
  • Shop through Chase: Cardholders can get more points at select retailers with the Shop through Chase marketplace.
  • Chase Offers: Receive exclusive offers from a variety of different merchants through Chase.
  • Visa Signature Concierge: You can call 1-800-953-7392 to speak with your Visa Signature Concierge, 24/7.
  • Travel protections: Trip delay reimbursement, trip cancellation/trip interruption insurance, baggage delay insurance, lost luggage reimbursement, travel and emergency assistance, travel accident insurance, auto rental collision damage waiver, and roadside dispatch
  • Shopping protections: Purchase protection and extended warranty protection
  • No foreign transaction fee
  • Annual fee: $95
Apply Now

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Delta SkyMiles® Blue American Express Card
Apply Now

securely on the issuer's website

  • Min. credit levelGood
  • Annual Fee$0
  • Regular APR15.74% - 24.74% Variable

Rates & Fees

American Express is a Credit Card Insider advertiser.

Do you refuse to fly without your Delta SkyMiles Blue American Express card? Have you found it rewarding? Let us know how you like it in the comments below!

If you fly with another airline, check out the best airline credit cards to find the one for you. Best Airline Credit Cards

For rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card, please click here.

For rates and fees of the Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card, please click here.

Written by

Evan Zimmer

Evan graduated from SUNY Oswego with a degree in journalism and creative writing. In his professional writing career, he strives for precision and comprehension in his work. He’s written news articles, blog posts, and copy, working across a slew of different mediums. With in-depth research and great care for accuracy and detail, he now works to bring you the most up-to-date credit information.

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