Delta Launches Incredible New Status Match and Challenge Promotion

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Update: October 31, 2020 was the last day to request a status match. If you completed the match, you have until March 31, 2021 to complete the challenge.

Delta just launched what it calls “one of our most generous offers“. And, we definitely agree. For a limited time, Delta SkyMiles members with elite status through another airline can complete a Delta status match. Even better, you'll get one tier higher than the status you have with the other airline. Then, complete a reasonable challenge to keep that elite status through early 2022!

The catch: it may be targeted. Meaning if you haven't received an email from Delta about this promotion, you may not be eligible. But, it's worth a shot applying to see.

Get upgraded to Delta One as a benefit of Delta elite status
One of the perks of Delta Medallion elite status is complimentary seat upgrades.

Delta Status Match Terms

  • This elevated status match challenge is available between October 19, 2020 and October 31, 2020.
  • You must have status with American, United, Southwest, JetBlue, or Alaska Airlines to qualify.
  • Approved status match applicants will receive Delta Medallion status equivalent to one tier higher than the competitor airline status.
  • Matched status is good through March 31, 2021.

If approved for the status match, you can retain your status through January 31, 2022 by completing the following qualifying activity by March 31, 2021:

  • Gold Status — Fly 2 qualifying round trips or 4 one-way flights
  • Platinum Status — Fly 4 qualifying round trips or 8 one-way flights
  • Diamond Status — Fly 6 qualifying round trips or 12 one-way flights

It's worth noting that the challenge isn't all-or-nothing. If you fail to complete the required activity for your granted status but meet the lower tier qualifications, you can receive the lower status through January 31, 2022. For example, if you're granted Delta Platinum status but only manage to fly two qualifying round trips before March 31, 2021, you'll receive complimentary Gold Status through January 21, 2022.

Moreover, fans of Delta Medallion status know that Platinum and Diamond Medallion members also receive Choice benefits. However, under this promotion, you only receive Choice Benefits after completing the qualifying activity (not during the initial match period).

Diamond Medallion members can select a Delta SkyClub membership as a Choice Benefit.

Eligible Elite Statuses

Not only is Delta matching status, it's granting upgraded status. That means that you may receive top-tier status with Delta if you have mid-tier status with an eligible partner airline.

This may leave you wondering which airline status Delta equates with its own. Thankfully, Delta provides a handy graph to clear that up:

Chart of which airline elite status are eligible for the Delta status match

Note that this graph displays the corresponding status after the one-tier upgrade. For example, Delta usually equates AA Platinum with Delta Gold. However, with the one-tier upgrade under the current promotion, AA Platinum members could receive Delta Platinum Medallion status.

The Fine Print of This Delta Status Match

There are a couple of interesting tidbits in the fine print that are worth pointing out.

Targeted(?)

The first thing I noticed is that even though the website for this promotion is publicly accessible, the terms under ‘eligibility' make it seem targeted. Specifically, it states:

Only Members who receive this communication directly from Delta Air Lines are eligible to participate in this offer.

On the one hand, this is a relatively standard wording for Delta status match promotions. However, the fact that Delta would target folks for this promotion is a little interesting. If you're targeted, does that mean Delta knows you have status with another airline (how)? Or are they simply guessing you might? Either way, the ‘targeted' aspect of this promotion means you might not be able to get the match.

In practice, though, it could be worth lobbing an application in even if you weren't targeted. As far as I can tell, the worst that could happen is your application gets denied.

Eligible Status Types

The second interesting bit involves the qualification criteria.

Like regular Medallion status matches, Delta requires proof of qualifying activity for your other elite status. This could include a recent activity statement showing your qualifying flights, purchases, etc. That makes it seem like promotional status or status earned through a challenge would not be adequate. Indeed, Delta includes a clause for this under the heading ‘Qualifying Activity':

Promotional or temporary elite status on other airlines will not be eligible for this promotion.

While that makes it seem pretty black and white, I'm not so sure. Again, if you hold status through another airline promotion or challenge, it may not hurt to apply. Considering Delta (supposedly) reviews every application individually, you may get approved if you've had adequate activity in the time following a successful challenge.

Bottom Line

Delta is giving Medallion members almost two weeks to match their other airline elite status to Delta Medallion with a one-tier boost. Plus, if you complete some very reasonable requirements, you could potentially keep the status until 2022.

This really is an incredible opportunity for anyone with other elite status wanting to try Delta. We've never seen the airline offer any matches to top-tier Diamond Medallion—let alone the ability to keep it after only six round trips! Obviously, the limiting factor is your travel ability. But if you can make it work, this is definitely worth your while.

Keep an eye on your email inboxes to see if you were targeted. Otherwise, if you manage to get a status match without the correspondence, please let us know in the comments.

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Comments

  • Avatar

    I wasn’t targeted and my status with another airline was a promotional temporary one. I tried the status match anyway and was matched to Platinum Medallion from Platinum Pro. I didn’t have to provide qualifying activity. My challenge was a little different, too. I only got 3 months from the day after I received the email to make the match, not 31 Mar 2021,

    To keep your Medallion Status through January 31, 2022, you will need to complete both of the following requirements: Earn 18,750 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) OR Fly 25 Medallion Qualification Segments (MQSs) during the 3 month complimentary period AND Earn $2,250 Medallion Qualification Dollars (MQDs) during the 3 month complimentary period (U.S.-based Members only) OR Qualify for the MQD Waiver* (U.S.-based Members only).

    • Avatar

      I also wasn’t targeted but applied anyway (also from Platinum Pro). I got exactly the same requirements. Very disappointed as I still am trying to make Executive Platinum and I dont want to divert any trips from that. Though now I’ll feel a bit better about taking trips on Delta if American is truly inconvenient. It would have been nice if they had given us at least the same time to achieve the status as those targeted.

  • Avatar

    No email for me 🙁

  • Avatar

    Masks + Airplane HVAC refreshing the air every 6 minutes = studies that COVID is less likely to spread if people take precautions on the plane. That is the more important message that Delta and others need to get out. Before the winter whammy happens.

  • Avatar

    Thanks to the pandemic, I couldn’t qualify. Looking forward to seeing what promos will be offered after a safe, effective, widely available vaccine leads to increased air travel.

  • Avatar

    The only status I have now is either platinum pro promotional status through American (which wouldn’t be eligible), or first-tier Air Canada status received simply from transferring AMEX to Aeroplan. Not sure I’ll be eligible but it’s worth a shot! Delta Diamond Medallion is better than AA Platinum Pro.

  • Avatar

    I think they have picked the best customers according to their estimate for their promotion.

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    Very interesting but do I feel brave enough to fly between now and March and how often …

  • Avatar
    Juan Ignacio says:

    Excellent new!!! Wish any Oneworld airline did the same with ex Latam FFP

  • Avatar
    Pablo Quilis says:

    It’s not a good promotion. Very restrictive. Delta has to add some other Airlines like LATAM I think