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Platinum and Diamond Medallion Choice Benefits (The Definitive Thread)

Platinum and Diamond Medallion Choice Benefits (The Definitive Thread)

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Old Jul 24, 22, 12:37 pm   -   Wikipost
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NOTE: see Delta changes/devaluation to GUC Program -2022 (Only 1 Class of Service Upgrade) for important information on changes to Upgrade Certificates (mainly Globals but Regionals are affected as well)

For the 2020 Medallion Year (status earned in 2019), you receive one Platinum Choice Benefit (CB) upon reaching Platinum Medallion, and in addition three Diamond CBs upon reaching Diamond Medallion. You may choose these benefits individually at any time during the Medallion Year, so you might choose one Diamond benefit (such as Sky Club membership) immediately and wait to choose your Platinum benefit and other Diamond benefits until you need them.

All benefits must be selected by the end of the Medallion Year (Jan 31, 2021 for the 2020 Medallion Year)


Platinum Choice Benefits
  • 4 Regional Upgrade Certificates (RUCs)
  • 20,000 bonus redeemable miles (RDMs)
  • $200 travel voucher
  • $200 Tiffany gift card
  • gift Silver Medallion status to another person

Diamond Choice Benefits
  • 4 Global Upgrade Certificates (GUCs) *OR* 8 RUCs *OR* 2 GUCs + 4 RUCs (upgrade certificates may only be chosen once)
  • Sky Club individual membership
  • Sky Club executive membership (allows 2 guests in addition to the member) as an upgrade from individual membership (this can be combined with an individual membership selection by using 2 Diamond CBs)
  • Sky Club guest pass (allows 2 guests in addition to the cardholder if you have access via Delta Reserve or non-Skymiles Amex Platinum credit cards)
  • 25,000 RDMs
  • $200 Delta travel voucher
  • $200 Tiffany gift card
  • gift Gold Medallion status to another person

Expiration Dates, Other Considerations, and Related FlyerTalk Threads

Roughly speaking, there are three classes of Choice Benefit:

Choose as early as possible:
These will end at the same time no matter when you choose them, so you're best off choosing them immediately (or for gifted status, Feb 1 if the recipient had that status or higher for the preceding Medallion Year).
  • gifted status
  • Sky Club membership
  • Sky Club guest passes
  • Global/Regional Upgrade Certificates starting with the 2022 Medallion year
Choose as late as possible: upgrade certificates (GUCs and/or RUCs), Delta vouchers. These expire 1 year after selection, so if you choose them in June they will expire much earlier than if you choose them in December (or the January ending that Medallion Year).

Choose whenever (keeping in mind the Jan 31 deadline for choices): redeemable miles, Tiffany gift cards. These do not expire (AFAICT in the case of the Tiffany cards).


Regional and Global Upgrade Certificates
  • Expire one year after selection, so ideally you should wait until you want to apply one before you make this selection (but note the overriding deadline for selecting all CBs as noted above)
  • Starting with the 2022 Medallion Year, Upgrade Certificates expire at the end of the associated Medallion year. The example from DL's web site is:
    For example, if you reach Diamond Medallion Status on August 1, 2022, then you will be eligible to select Choice Benefits for your 2023 Status and any Upgrade Certificates selected for your 2023 Status will be valid until January 31, 2024, regardless of the date they were selected.
  • Usually appear in your account within a few hours after selection. Agents may not be able to see them right away, but as long as you can see them in "My Wallet" you can give an agent the 006 certificate number and the redemption code via phone/Twitter.
Related threads:
Using Regional Upgrades
The Official - GLOBAL UPGRADE CERT success thread - Yay! I got it!

Sky Club Options (Diamond only)
  • Sky Club options expire at the end of the Medallion Year (Jan 31, 2021 for the 2020 Medallion Year) no matter when the selection is made
  • if you have Choice Benefit selections pending from multiple Medallion Years, be careful which year you are selecting from as this will affect the expiration date. The DL web site will list the expiration date of the benefit before you finalize your selection, so pay close attention. If you have multiple years in play, select from the latest year for the longest validity period.
  • there is a minor technical distinction in guests permitted between an Exec Membership (two guests, or spouse and children under 21 without any limiting language) and the Guest Pass (two guests) but in practice SC agents seem to permit spouse+children (even if more than two guests) for the Guest Pass as well.
Related threads:
Diamond Choice Benefit - Sky Club Guest Pass (Consolidated Thread)

20k or 25k SkyMiles (RDMs)
  • Do not expire
  • certain Delta-branded American Express cards allow "Pay With Miles" at 1c/RDM; tickets bought that way will earn full MQMs, but earn MQDs based only on the dollar amount paid (if any). Since RDMs do not expire, this may be preferable to the voucher.

Travel Vouchers
  • Expire one year from issue, so ideally you should wait until you want to apply one before you make this selection (but note the overriding deadline for selecting all CBs as noted above)
  • travel vouchers used on future tickets will earn Medallion Qualification Dollars
  • certain Delta-branded American Express cards allow "Pay With Miles" at 1c/RDM; tickets bought that way will earn full MQMs, but earn MQDs based only on the dollar amount paid (if any). Since RDMs do not expire, this may be preferable to the voucher.

Gifting Status
  • gifted status expires at the end of the Medallion Year (Jan 31, 2021 for the 2020 Medallion Year) no matter when the selection is made. If you know this will be one of your selections, then select it immediately so it is effective as long as possible.
  • if you have Choice Benefit selections pending from multiple Medallion Years, be careful which year you are selecting from as this will affect the expiration date. The DL web site will list the expiration date of the benefit before you finalize your selection, so pay close attention. If you have multiple years in play, select from the latest year for the longest validity period.
  • status cannot be gifted if the recipient currently has that level or higher status

Tiffany Gift Cards
  • Tiffany gift card has no expiration date listed in the terms
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Old Jan 27, 22, 8:38 am
  #196  
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Join Date: Aug 2005
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Originally Posted by kobyjones21 View Post
After 2/1, if there is a first class seat on Domestic route and you apply a GUC you are guaranteed the seat?
Yes but on domestic F only, not on domestic D1.
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Old Jan 27, 22, 10:22 am
  #197  
 
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Originally Posted by bgriff View Post
Yes but on domestic F only, not on domestic D1.
Even to HI?
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Old Jan 27, 22, 11:05 am
  #198  
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Originally Posted by JBJ2435 View Post
Even to HI?
We don't yet know for sure how it will work in practice or have the full detailed T&Cs, but that appears to be the intention, excluding the D1 flights ATL-HNL and MSP-HNL.

There are more details here under "2022 Upgrade Certificate Policy Changes." Presumably this page will be fully updated soon to reflect the new rules as they will be the only ones available.
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Old Jan 27, 22, 11:21 am
  #199  
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
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The region chart doesn't even show HI, just US 50, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean, Bermuda. Unless HI is considered TPAC? Seems weird that it is not even addressed now.
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Old Jan 27, 22, 11:23 am
  #200  
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Originally Posted by JBJ2435 View Post
The region chart doesn't even show HI, just US 50, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean, Bermuda. Unless HI is considered TPAC? Seems weird that it is not even addressed now.
I think the answer is in your question...
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Old Jan 27, 22, 11:49 am
  #201  
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by bgriff View Post
I think the answer is in your question...
Yes, I agree. but they used to at least designate where HI was in the regions, now it's not listed at all, so maybe no UG certs can be used for HI?? Doesn't seem likely.
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Old Jan 27, 22, 11:55 am
  #202  
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Originally Posted by JBJ2435 View Post
Yes, I agree. but they used to at least designate where HI was in the regions, now it's not listed at all, so maybe no UG certs can be used for HI?? Doesn't seem likely.
I was trying to hint that if Hawaii was excluded, I'm pretty sure it would say US 48 and not US 50.
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Old Jan 27, 22, 12:10 pm
  #203  
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by bgriff View Post
I was trying to hint that if Hawaii was excluded, I'm pretty sure it would say US 48 and not US 50.
DUH! lol That totally went over my head, thanks for pointing that out.
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Old Jan 28, 22, 2:16 pm
  #204  
 
Join Date: Nov 2014
Posts: 78
What Platinum Benefit Should I Pick?

I am Platinum Medallion never picked a benefit last year and now this year I get an email reminding me to pick a benefit but I really can't decide which would be beneficial.

My wife and I only fly First Class Domestic and DeltaOne. So I don't really know how any upgrades and such work.
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Old Jan 28, 22, 3:01 pm
  #205  
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
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The Upgrade certificates are definitely the most valuable, far better than the 20k miles. It will allow you to upgrade any domestic flight as well as transcon Delta One flights. You get 4 certificates which can be used per person, one way. They're not available on every single flight, but you'll see when booking if they are available and you can apply them as soon as you book your ticket.
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Old Jan 28, 22, 3:33 pm
  #206  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Programs: DL PM, MR Titanium/LTP, Hilton Diamond
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RUCs still have value because you can use them to pay a Y fare and upgrade for domestic travel. Obviously you need confirmable space but it'll save you some real money and even if it's a short route, it'll be >$200 travel credit or 20000 miles
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Old Jan 28, 22, 3:37 pm
  #207  
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If you're eligible to select both PM and DM choice benefits, note that either tier has a $200 DL gift card as an option, while the RDM choice gives 20,000 at PM and 25,000 at DM. If you're planning to make these selections, be sure to take the RDMs as a DM choice and the gift card or something else as your PM choice.
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Old Jan 29, 22, 1:56 pm
  #208  
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
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Im struggling with my PM and DM choice benefits for 2021 (which I need to select in the next 2 days). Typically I go for GUC and RUC's and be done with it. But I still have 4 of each that were extended to 1/31/23. Maybe you can never have enough upgrade certs. I think he only other reasonable option is the RDM's, but 45k won't get me too far... The decision seems to be will we travel enough personally over the next 12 months to need more than 8 UC (GUC/RUC) which are more valuable then the miles, or will they expire unused. Right now we dont have any personal trips planned that it would make sense to use the certs. So maybe RDMs are the best...
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Old Jan 29, 22, 2:20 pm
  #209  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Programs: DL PM, MR Titanium/LTP, Hilton Diamond
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Originally Posted by jalm1 View Post
Im struggling with my PM and DM choice benefits for 2021 (which I need to select in the next 2 days). Typically I go for GUC and RUC's and be done with it. But I still have 4 of each that were extended to 1/31/23. Maybe you can never have enough upgrade certs. I think he only other reasonable option is the RDM's, but 45k won't get me too far... The decision seems to be will we travel enough personally over the next 12 months to need more than 8 UC (GUC/RUC) which are more valuable then the miles, or will they expire unused. Right now we dont have any personal trips planned that it would make sense to use the certs. So maybe RDMs are the best...
If you have a DL AMEX, the 45k can be used for $450 for PWM in the future so that's your minimum valuation.
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Old Jan 29, 22, 3:47 pm
  #210  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
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Originally Posted by Garavar View Post
I am Platinum Medallion never picked a benefit last year and now this year I get an email reminding me to pick a benefit but I really can't decide which would be beneficial.

My wife and I only fly First Class Domestic and DeltaOne. So I don't really know how any upgrades and such work.
I became Platinum recently for the first time in a few years (thanks, COVID rollover MQM's), and selected the regional upgrade certificates (RUCs). When I last made platinum ~2015/2016 (?) I think I chose the 20K SkyPesos.
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