So, I've got ~350K MR points. I understand that there's places I can put these where I can end up in luxury TransPac/TransAsia FC travel, but a part of me is beginning to wonder if all I'll really ever do with these is free or upgraded domestic travel. (I've been sitting on ~165K UA miles for a decade, for instance.)
I guess my question is, what are the downsides of putting all/most of my MR points into DL right now? (Oh, I just made FO a week ago, but I think I'm done traveling for a while.)
I'm finally done commuting to work!
Programs: Delta DM, SPG Plat, Hyatt Diamond, MTA Rust, Hertz Five Star something or other
I'm FO with Delta and have a bunch of Amex too..however I always earn and burn my points.. no sense in sitting on them as they continue to get devalued!
The risk with DL is that their award structure is very expensive. You need to be pretty flexible in order to get 120k biz class Asia tickets. The downside of parking your miles at DL is that you lose the flexibility of Amex MR. For ex. if you want to hop to Europe for a weekend, you can't just put 80k in AC and book a biz award ticket.. you'd be stuck with Delta whose cheapest award to Europe is 100k and most often you can only find 200k tickets. It's very hit or miss, but DL miles are generally the most devalued in the industry. Then again, they are the easiest to earn (for ex. 30% amex bonus, 5k Skymiles for a 2 day Avis rental, etc etc).
I'd only move them to DL if you see tickets you want. They run 20%/30% promos a lot, so don't think this is a one-time only special offer.
Also- Amex MR are very valuable to trade on CC and often times you can get almost 2 DL miles for every Amex MR (100% bonus ).
I am not disagreeing with the above poster on the inadequacies of Delta Skymiles. But I will provide these positive comments.
Amex MR transferability - Easy way to add to your DL SM balance with a low tranfer cost. BTW, I just did an online transfer from AX MR to DL SM, and the transfer was instant!
Amex DL SM Card bonuses - The opening bonus points offers are very generous and the first year is free.
Non-Flyer Bonus Miles Offers - Lots of opportunities to obtain massive bonus miles at no or little cost.
Access to Skyteam Partners for award redemption
Availability of Low mileage (saver) economy award tickets - YES, I know all the problems getting low mile award tix, they are all true. BUT, for the past three years I have been regularly obtaining 60,000 mile economy tix to Southeast Asia (But do not get me started on their 60,000 mile southern South America price!). They are hard to find, but they are available, IF your schedule is somewhat flexible.
If you want all my complaints about DL SM, I can give them too!
Unless you have hard plans to ticket an award flight on DL, I'd leave them in MR for the reasons outlined above. A transfer from MR to DL takes seconds, so if you want to book the DL award, you can immediately. You may find the need in the future to use the points for Continental, Virgin, Hilton or another MR partner.