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Airline fee $250/$200/$100 reimbursement reports: DL only (2020-21)

Old Jan 6, 2020, 1:19 pm
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Last edit by: rrgg
Please read: This is a community-maintained wiki post containing the most important information from this thread. You may edit the Wiki once you have been on FT for 90 days and have made 90 posts.

Reminder: you must enroll and select your airline BEFORE making a reimbursable purchase. http://www.americanexpress.com/airlinechoice -or- "Call the number on the back of your Card to select a qualifying airline."

Credit posting delays range from several business days (typical) to several weeks (seen in Oct 2015). The T&Cs state that it could take up to four weeks, so wait at least that long before worrying, and certainly don't contact Amex prematurely

Caution: effective from 22 June 2019, gift card purchases from Delta do not get reimbursed.

Read this primer first
  • In the Amex Membership Rewards family, both the Consumer and Business versions of the Platinum and Centurion cards qualify for a $200 airline credit. The Premier Rewards Gold (PRG) card is eligible for a $100 airline credit (the Gold credit is going away in 2022). Hilton Aspire AMEX is eligible for a $250 airline credit.
  • You must click here to select Delta as your enrolled airline before you make a reimbursable purchase, else the benefit won't apply. The feature is activated immediately upon airline designation.
  • If you've selected DL in the past and don't wish to change airlines, there's no need to select again; current selection rolls into future years until modified.
  • The T&Cs state the eligible charges, but YMMV, so don't call and ask especially about the fuzzier cases below because that will probably hasten closing of any loopholes.
  • The credit is per account, not per card. If the main account has authorized users with additional cards, eligible charges may still be made on those cards, but they'll count jointly towards the same account limit.
  • Credits are capped per calendar year, meaning you could tap the full amount on Dec 31st and again on Jan 1st in the extreme. Transaction date, not posting date, determines the year. Note: This is not my experience. I purchased Dec 31, 2016, posted Jan 1, 2017 and went against my 2017 credit. (TheMadBrewer)
  • You will get a partial credit to bring your total annual reimbursements to the limit exactly if a qualifying charge takes you past the limit.
  • After four weeks, if you've read this Wiki carefully and posted here seeking assistance but the credit still has not arrived, consider chatting with Amex online. Politely mention the "Delta extras" you thought would be reimbursed within four weeks and they'll handle it.

Additional Collections/Split Tender -- THIS IS A LOOPHOLE. BE DISCREET

Quote:
TL;DR: Anything coded as an additional collection (a.k.a. add/collect or a/c), including difference in fare when changing flights, and accepting an FCM offer, also triggers the credit and will be reimbursed, provided that the amount charged to your card is $250 or less (regardless of card type, e.g. there have been reports of full $100 credit for Gold card on a/c over $100 and full $200 credit for Plat on a/c over $200, but always $250 or less)
How to do it: With waived fee for cancellation/changes on non-refundable tickets (due to COVID-19) you get an eCredit when cancelling it, so you can:
  1. Buy a non-refundable ticket with any combination of gift card/eCredit plus your AMEX, again provided that the residual amount charged to your card is $250 or less
  2. After credit has posted, and at least 48 hours after buying it, cancel it (ensure there's no fee for cancelling it) so you get an updated eCredit for the full ticket amount.
    • alternatively, if you buy a ticket far enough in the future, there is no particular need to cancel the ticket, just change it once you have some new dates or itinerary in mind (you can change origin, destination or both)
    • however, note that the waiver of change fees on Basic Economy tickets is ending: https://www.delta.com/us/en/travel-p...sbeforeapril30
    • thus you should use main cabin tickets for this purpose (assuming DL does not extend the BE policy due to omicron etc.)
  3. You can even use the result of (2) as an eCredit to repeat step 1 with a different AMEX card if you have multiples. Note that in this context, changing an unflown future ticket is exactly equivalent to an eCredit in the amount of the ticket's value.
More details:
  • Relevantly, split tender where you partially pay with a gift card, existing credit, VDB voucher etc. and partly charged to your card, are processed by DL as an add/collect and trigger the credit per above.
  • Thus if you anticipate actually buying, say, a $200 DL ticket, you could buy a single $50 gift card, then buy the ticket using $50 GC and $150 on your card (the $150 will be reimbursed). This is just an example; as per the previous bullet there is no reason it needs to be specifically $50, or even a gift card. The "additional collection" is what leads to the credit, the reason why it is "additional" is unimportant.
    • In general, only additional collections less than ~$250 are automatically reimbursed. If you use a $50 gift card to buy a $500 ticket, a $450 additional collection will be generated but it will not be auto-reimbursed by Amex.
    • If you already have gift cards or ecredits in particular denominations that don't line up well with the price of the ticket you want to buy (additional collection will end up being too much to get auto-reimbursed or too little to efficiently use up the fee credit), consider whether you may be able to reach a better outcome by splitting up the purchase -- buying a round trip as two one ways or buying multiple passengers separately. But, note that buying 2 one-ways instead of a round trip can sometimes cost more, making it not worthwhile, and note the caveats about multiple passenger purchases below, as well as considering the risk that buying 2 passengers separately can have negative implications for Medallion upgrades (if applicable) as well as creating the risk that you are separated from your travel companions if there is a flight cancellation.
  • The "additional collection" transaction notation shows up after the transaction posts, on the website only (both desktop and mobile) if you click into a transaction to view the details (it does not appear in the app, or while the purchase is pending)
  • Note that special care is needed when booking tickets for 2 or more people in a single transaction.
    • When booking multiple people in a single transaction on Delta.com, each person's ticket charges to the credit card in a separate transaction, and gift cards are used starting with the first ticket until they are exhausted. So for example if you were booking 2x $210 tickets, for a total transaction of $420, if you used a $200 gift card the charges would post to Amex as a $10 additional collection on the first person and a $210 regular ticket charge for the second person, resulting in only a $10 reimbursement. For the same two tickets if you used a $220 gift card, the first person would be covered entirely by the gift card and the second person's ticket would charge as a $190 additional collection, resulting in a $190 reimbursement.
    • This would work differently if ecredits are used instead of gift cards since ecredits are not transferrable -- ecredits can only be applied to a ticket for a person whose name is on the ecredit; if other people are booked in the same transaction, any leftover ecredit balance will *not* be applied to those other people.
  • Canceling a ticket within the 24-hour[1] risk-free period generally results in funds being returned to where they came from (GC back to GC and CC back to CC) even if the ticket is non-refundable; also, Delta interprets the 24-hour risk free cancellation period generously -- you actually have until midnight of the day following the day of booking (in which time zone is oft-speculated but unclear). Thus, this can work out to nearly 48 hours if the timing is exactly right. Hence the suggestion above to cancel only after 48 hours, or avoid canceling altogether.
  • Caution when buying multiple tickets in a single transaction: for example if you buy two $125 tickets in one transaction (total $250) and use one $100 GC or even two $50 GCs, they will all be applied to the same ticket and you would see one additional collection for $25 on that ticket and a separate "normal" charge for $125 for the second ticket. In this scenario only $25 will be reimbursed (instead of the $150 you might be expecting). In this situation you would need to book the two tickets separately to get the credit on each one.
  • FCM offers may require accepting for the entire trip (vs just one segment) or calling in to up-fare the whole trip (please post data points either way)

Paying for a ticket partially with SkyMiles

NOTE that DL has two different programs for partially paying with SkyMiles, that seem superficially similar, but are quite different
  • Pay With Miles is a feature available to DL-branded AMEX cardholders that lets you pay for part of your ticket using SkyMiles in increments of 5,000 miles = $50. If you use PWM then the remaining amount charged to your card posts as additional collection and will qualify for the fee credit (multiple data points)
  • Miles + Cash is like buying an award ticket but using cash to substitute for some of the miles. As an example, you might be offered a ticket for 40,000 miles + $5.60, or 30,000 miles + $205.60 (these numbers are made up). If you choose the latter option what you are really doing is buying 10,000 miles for $200, then using those 10,000 miles plus 30,000 that you already had to buy the 40,000 ticket + $5.60 in taxes. This will post as two separate transactions, $200 for the miles purchase, and $5.60 for the taxes on the award ticket. The $5.60 will be reimbursed (just like any other award ticket). The $200 seems like it does not get automatically reimbursed, although it may post as "Frequent Flyer Fee/Purchase" in which case you have a pretty good case for getting it credited manually by contacting AMEX.
  • Note: Miles + Cash is usually a terrible value (even for SkyMiles)
  • See the list of FAQs at the bottom of the "Pay With Miles" page for more info (search in particular for "What is the difference between Pay with Miles and Miles + Cash?")


other non Gift Card options
  • baggage and other service fees (same day change/standby, change fees, etc.)
  • taxes on award flights (including the $5.60 September 11 security fee)
  • in-flight purchases (EXCEPT wifi) -- although currently nothing available due to COVID?
  • SkyClub access/guest fees (but NOT gift cards purchased at a SC, which are actually activated at a 3rd party web site)
  • mileage boosts (post 2499) trip extras have been discontinued
  • The $59 for Delta Skymiles Select is reimbursed (posts 2180, 2182) SkyMiles Select is no longer available for purchase

these may not credit automatically, but people have had success getting them processed manually after the fact
  • seat purchase fees (if you buy an upgrade and it does not credit automatically and you call in, do not call it an upgrade, call it a seat purchase/assignment fee)
  • premium beverages purchased in the Sky Club (post 462)

(DEAD) eGift Card (eCert) details For other airlines:

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Airline fee $250/$200/$100 reimbursement reports: DL only (2020-21)

Old Dec 29, 2021, 6:34 pm
  #1786  
 
Join Date: Dec 2019
Posts: 11
Originally Posted by Zorak
On the web site: use the red Modify Flight button in the upper right corner of a trip on the web site, after which you should see a panel (or possibly a tab if you are viewing the website on a mobile device) offering a cancel option.

In the smartphone app: there is a Cancel Flight link at the bottom of each reservation (buried along with a bunch of other option in a small font size)

If for some reason you are unable to cancel through the system automatically* and need to call/contact to get an agent to process the cancellation for you, "my plans have changed and I would like to cancel this flight for an eCredit" is completely valid.

*this can fail in at least two ways; you may get an error that the trip can't be cancelled through the website; you may also get redirected to submit a refund request form. The latter *probably* eventually leads to an eCredit, for trips that aren't actually eligible for a refund, but I have low confidence of this happening quickly or correctly so when this happens personally I treat it as "can't cancel online" and call in.



Was the first ticket for multiple passengers? What were the exact dollar amounts? Is it possible you've already used up all your airline fee credit for the year (what does the tracker in your account say)

To reiterate, the more specific and complete info you give, the more accurately people will be able to speculate what's going on with your situation.
It was for two passengers. The flights were $73.40 per passenger. I received a credit of $23.40. I definitely haven't used all of my airline credit.

The second pair of flights were two passengers too. I booked them two days ago were $83.40 x2. These for some reason didn't go through as two transactions like the flight above.

Last edited by lourod87; Dec 29, 2021 at 6:40 pm
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Old Dec 29, 2021, 6:45 pm
  #1787  
mia
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Originally Posted by lourod87
The second pair of flights were two passengers too. I booked them two days ago were $83.40 x2. These for some reason didn't go through as two transactions like the flight above.
1) It sounds as if these transactions are still pending, but anything could happen once. If the transaction details do not show Additional Collection there is no reason to expect it to be reimbursed.

2) How many dollars does the meter show remaining in the Airline Fee Reimbursement benefit?
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Old Dec 29, 2021, 6:47 pm
  #1788  
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Originally Posted by lourod87
It was for two passengers. The flights were $73.40 per passenger. I received a credit of $23.40. I definitely haven't used all of my travel credit.
This data point with 2 passengers is 100% consistent with what we know about the credit -- if you book multiple pax, gift cards (or eCredits) are applied wholly to one ticket as much as possible and only to a 2nd ticket if there is any leftover. So when you booked 2 pax at $73.40, and assuming you used a $50 GC, it would indeed post as 2 transactions, one for $50 GC + $23.40 additional collection, and a 2nd for $73.40. Only the $23.40 additional collection is expected to get the airline fee credit, the $73.40 just looks like a regular purchase.

If you book a single passenger using $50 GC + $xx additional collection (where $xx < $250) then it is normal to have a single transaction post to your CC, that will get the credit. In your previous post you mention you booked this only 2 days ago -- it is not uncommon for the fee credit to post 2-4 days after the transaction posts (not the date you made the purchase) so I would expect it to show up in the next 2-4 days.

EDIT to reflect your edit: "The second pair of flights were two passengers too. I booked them two days ago were $83.40 x2. These for some reason didn't go through as two transactions like the flight above." -- what was the gift card amount in this case? Was it more than $83.40?
mia and chris30269 like this.
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Old Dec 29, 2021, 7:41 pm
  #1789  
 
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Posts: 4,889
Originally Posted by 4szns
Which method did you use?
Please clarify what you mean
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Old Dec 29, 2021, 7:44 pm
  #1790  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: ATL, BHM, DUB, County Wexford
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Originally Posted by mia
Purchase a Delta giftcard at Best Buy, rather than directly from Delta. See post 1766.
None of the Best Buys ever have anything less than $250 around here. But Kroger and Publix have load any amount $50 - $500
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Old Dec 30, 2021, 3:04 am
  #1791  
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Originally Posted by GUWonder
For those with a $100 back on $300 of Delta purchase offer on their card, would it be possible to use a $50 gift card on a $200 ticket to use up $150 of the Amex $200 credit and then buy a separate ticket for $150 in order to trigger the $100 back (from $300) Amex offer?



That's the kind of thing I would suggest too. Some of the bigger chain-affiliated/supplied grocery stores -- even those far away from Best Buy -- also have DL gift cards available for sale.
The Amex offer email about the $100 off $300 purchase was received. Will update this post when the incidental counter moves too to use up $150 of the remaining $200 Amex airline credit.
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Old Dec 30, 2021, 7:33 am
  #1792  
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: New York, NY
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So I totally forgot I had extra Amex flight fee credit ($250 on my Aspire) left so I'm scrambling to book something with it now. I have the delta gift cards ready to use - but no travel plans as of 2022 just yet. So if I have a $50 GC, should I be looking for a next year flight that costs $300 (a little less to ensure I trigger it cause of the $250 limit) and then if I cancel, say like a week later, or next year or something - I'll get the full value to my delta account and not as a refund? I know this is semi-related but I just want to be able to use my flight fee and sorta bank it for next year
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Old Dec 30, 2021, 9:14 am
  #1793  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,139
Originally Posted by DriKz
So I totally forgot I had extra Amex flight fee credit ($250 on my Aspire) left so I'm scrambling to book something with it now. I have the delta gift cards ready to use - but no travel plans as of 2022 just yet. So if I have a $50 GC, should I be looking for a next year flight that costs $300 (a little less to ensure I trigger it cause of the $250 limit) and then if I cancel, say like a week later, or next year or something - I'll get the full value to my delta account and not as a refund? I know this is semi-related but I just want to be able to use my flight fee and sorta bank it for next year
When when I in a similar situation, January of last year, (I normally try to burn these credits early in case Amex or Delta change what triggers the credit) I did what you are suggesting, accept I made sure to book REFUNDABLE tickets. With Delta's current NO CHANGE FEES POLICY, this may not be necessary, but a REFUNDABLE ticket will always provide the most flexibility.

If you book a non-refundable ticket and then cancel it, I think the credit may need to be used in 1 year (or at the end of 2022, not sure). However, if you book a REFUNDABLE ticket for something in late 2022 and then need to change plans later, you may be able to have those travel funds extended into 2023.

I just did some searching and found this:

OutboundflightLAXto SFO



As an example, you could book a refundable MAIN CABIN for $213.00 and use your $50 gift card and charge $163.00 to your HILTON ASPIRE. Then, later today, or tomorrow, change the ticket to COMFORT+ MAIN CABIN FOR $313.00

Delta will use the value of the first ticket ($213.00) and you can charge another $100.00 to your Aspire to use up the remaining ($250-$163.00) $87 of your $250 travel credit.

Good Luck and I'm sure others may also weigh in...I am by no means an expert.

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Old Dec 30, 2021, 9:19 am
  #1794  
 
Join Date: Dec 2021
Posts: 4
any chance i can use the ecredit for someone else? i wont be traveling anytime soon and my brother needs to fly somewhere i guess is houlda booked the first ticket in his name?

i saw some people said i need to be a passenger. what if i book with myself on iteniary can a cancel myself from going on the fllight? or just dont go?
k1ngkev1n1 is offline  
Old Dec 30, 2021, 9:37 am
  #1795  
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Posts: 21
I'll throw a couple DP in just to reinforce known methods.

Just booked a 2-person, 278/ticket trip with a $100 GC. 178 + 278 as two separate charges, 178 fully reimbursed.

Earlier in the year multiple companion bookings, every time the companion tax/fee were fully reimbursed.
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Old Dec 30, 2021, 9:41 am
  #1796  
 
Join Date: Jan 2016
Location: New York, NY
Posts: 71
Originally Posted by diesteldorf
When when I in a similar situation, January of last year, (I normally try to burn these credits early in case Amex or Delta change what triggers the credit) I did what you are suggesting, accept I made sure to book REFUNDABLE tickets. With Delta's current NO CHANGE FEES POLICY, this may not be necessary, but a REFUNDABLE ticket will always provide the most flexibility.

If you book a non-refundable ticket and then cancel it, I think the credit may need to be used in 1 year (or at the end of 2022, not sure). However, if you book a REFUNDABLE ticket for something in late 2022 and then need to change plans later, you may be able to have those travel funds extended into 2023.

I just did some searching and found this:

OutboundflightLAXto SFO



As an example, you could book a refundable MAIN CABIN for $213.00 and use your $50 gift card and charge $163.00 to your HILTON ASPIRE. Then, later today, or tomorrow, change the ticket to COMFORT+ MAIN CABIN FOR $313.00

Delta will use the value of the first ticket ($213.00) and you can charge another $100.00 to your Aspire to use up the remaining ($250-$163.00) $87 of your $250 travel credit.

Good Luck and I'm sure others may also weigh in...I am by no means an expert.

OOOH - did you just do a flight change or did you do a cancellation? my idea was to do a cancellation so i just get the value to my account - cause of the waived fees due to covid. But it seems the flight change (with a way far out date) seems pretty good too.
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Old Dec 30, 2021, 10:22 am
  #1797  
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
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I wonder if a gold AU gets this benefit reimbursement as well. In the past I have seen that it didn't, but here lately many of the benefits of the account are available on the AU as well. Any recent data points one way or the other?
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Old Dec 30, 2021, 10:23 am
  #1798  
 
Join Date: Oct 2020
Posts: 1
Airline Incidental Credit Data Points - AP and Aspire 12/30/21

Redemption of AP 200 and Aspire 250

Day 1 (Dec 25th) Buy Two Separate $50 Delta GCs*
Day 2 (Dec 26th) No Action
Day 3 (Dec 27th) Flight Purchases** (Detailed Below)
​​​​Day 4 (Dec 28th) No Action (Charge Status "Pending")
Day 5 (Dec 29th) No Action (Charge Status Updated To Additional Collection)
Day 6 (Dec 30th) Airline Credit Fee Reimbursement Rec'd

*Purchased from online @ Delta
**AP Ticket Original Flight Cost under 250, application of GC reduced charged amount charged to AP to appx 199
**Aspire Ticket Original Flight Cost under 300, application of GC reduced charged amount charged to AP to appx 249
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Old Dec 30, 2021, 10:23 am
  #1799  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 1,139
Originally Posted by DriKz
OOOH - did you just do a flight change or did you do a cancellation? my idea was to do a cancellation so i just get the value to my account - cause of the waived fees due to covid. But it seems the flight change (with a way far out date) seems pretty good too.
I just did a flight change. I've got the Platinum, Aspire, and Gold card, so I have lots of credits with Delta. I may not even have a chance to use all of my credit in 2022, and have been booking refundable fares with far out dates to try to provide more flexibility so I don't end up losing the funds.

Hopefully, I'll be able to go back to International travel next year and begin using my accumulated credits.

If you only have around $300 in Delta credits to worry about, doing a cancellation should also be OK, since you'll most likely be able to utilize the entire credit sometime next year.
Good Luck.
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Old Dec 30, 2021, 11:13 am
  #1800  
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: RMS
Programs: DL Plat, UA Gold, Bonvoy Titanium, Hilton Credit Card Diamond
Posts: 8,886
Originally Posted by k1ngkev1n1
any chance i can use the ecredit for someone else? i wont be traveling anytime soon and my brother needs to fly somewhere i guess is houlda booked the first ticket in his name?

i saw some people said i need to be a passenger. what if i book with myself on iteniary can a cancel myself from going on the fllight? or just dont go?
If you already have an ecredit in your name, you need to be a passenger. If you just have a gift card, you can book a flight using the gift card and your credit card in your brotherís name. When you cancel, the ecredit will be in his name.
mattp1987 is offline  

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