Starting on January 1, 2018, you a are going to have to spend a whopping $250,000 a year on the Delta American Express credit card if you want to waive into the airline’s prized Diamond Medallion frequent flyer status.
It’s a major change from the $25,000 of annual spending that is currently required to reach Diamond Medallion.
And the immediate reaction from the Delta AMEX card holders was overwhelmingly negative.
On Twitter, many pledged to end their relationship with the card.
In a statement to Business Insider, a Delta Air Lines spokesman said:
Feedback from Diamond Medallion Members drove Delta’s Diamond MQD Waiver adjustment. The goal is to enable those who fly and spend most with Delta to better enjoy their Diamond Status benefits including Complimentary Upgrades and the Delta Sky Club experience.
The Medallion Qualification Miles, Segments, and Dollars required to reach Diamond Status aren’t changing and the $25,000 MQD Waiver can still be used to achieve all of the best-in-class benefits of Platinum, Gold, and Silver Medallion Status.
To qualify for Delta’s frequent flyer perks, passengers have to achieve one of its four “medallions,” by flying a predetermined number of flights or miles and by spending a certain amount of money with the airline. However, those who possess a Delta AMEX can waive the spending requirement with the airline if they use their credit card enough.
And that’s is the portion of the qualifying process that has changed. With this move, Delta wants its coveted Diamond Medallion status to go to those who achieved it by flying on its planes and spending money with the airline.
Delta emphasized that no other card benefits and medallion qualifying requirements have been affected.
This means Delta AMEX cardholders will effectively be capped at Platinum Medallion Status.
Since status for 2018 is determined by spending and travel in 2017, the new waiver requirement will take effect for those seeking Diamond Medallion status in 2019.
Here’s how people are responding on Twitter.
— Rob Kreiling (@robkreiling) September 26, 2017
This’ll be my final year with Delta and Amex. #deltadisappointment
— Jason O’Connor (@pittcanuck) September 26, 2017
— Jane Park (@TheJanePark) September 26, 2017
— PointsLounge (@PointsLounge) September 26, 2017
— Addison Hoover (@addisonhoover) September 26, 2017
Prolly one of few who benefits from DM Amex waiver raise to $250K from @delta . Routinely lose 1st UG’s to pax who spend far less annually.
— John B. (@montognese) September 26, 2017
— MartyPadgett (@MartyPadgett) September 26, 2017
— Troy (@durbsbythesea76) September 26, 2017