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Medallion Qualification Dollars (MQDs) are the total spend a Delta SkyMiles member had made on flights marketed by Delta Air Lines minus government taxes and fees in a calendar year. These flights are identified as having a Delta flight number, which begins with the two letter code “DL”. Additionally, the MQD requirement is waived for all non-U.S.-based SkyMiles members.
To achieve elite status with Delta Air Lines, you must achieve a certain number of Medallion Qualification Dollars in a calendar year along with either a number of miles or flight segments. In a nutshell, MQDs are a way for Delta to ensure that Elite members have spent a minimum amount of money with the airline, as well as flying a certain number of miles or segments.
What Counts as Medallion Qualification Dollars
Per Delta, Medallion Qualification Dollars are:
The sum total of the SkyMiles member’s spend on Delta-marketed flights (flight numbers that include the “DL” airline code), inclusive of the base fare and carrier-imposed surcharges, but exclusive of government-imposed taxes and fees. MQDs also include select partner airline flights and select exception fares.
To meet the qualifying requirements the following must apply:
- Flights must include the DL airline code
- Spend includes the base fare and carrier-imposed charges, but excludes government taxes and fees
- Fares not eligible for mileage accrual will not earn Medallion Qualifying Dollars (MQD’s)
- You can earn MQD’s for tickets issued by Delta’s partner airlines
- When earning with Groups 1, 2, 3 partner airlines, you will earn MQDs at a rate of one-fifth of the base miles and class bonus miles of the itinerary
Medallion Qualification Dollars in Action
Medallion Qualifying Dollars are a component in earning elite status with Delta. To earn status you need to meet the following MQD requirement, and Miles or Segments flown:
- Silver Medallion when you spend $3,000 MQDs and earn 30,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) or 30 Medallion Qualification Segments (MQSs)
- Gold Medallion when you spend $6,000 MQDs and earn 50,000 MQMs or 60 MQSs
- Platinum Medallion when you spend $9,000 MQDs and earn 75,000 MQMs or 100 MQSs
- Diamond Medallion when you spend $15,000 MQDs and earn 125,000 MQMs or 140 MQSs
How Can You Avoid The Medallion Qualification Dollar Requirement
If you hold a Delta co-branded credit card from American Express, you are eligible for a waiver of the required MQDs if you spend $25,000 on eligible purchases in a calendar year. This waiver applies to any SkyMiles co-branded credit cards including:
- Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card
- Delta SkyMiles® Gold Business American Express Card
- Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card
- Delta SkyMiles® Platinum Business American Express Card
- Delta SkyMiles® Reserve American Express Card
- Delta SkyMiles® Reserve Business American Express Card
As of January 1, 2018, the Medallion Qualification Dollar (MQD) Waiver for Diamond Medallion Status has increased from $25,000 to $250,000; a 10X increase.
Delta Medallion Benefits
Once you have achieved a Medallion Status there is plenty of benefits Delta offers its members, while Delta has recently overhauled their program and now offers its Elites more Choice Benefits, including enhanced options for Diamond members, and even Elite status with Sixt car hire for Medallion Gold members.
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