Point Me to the Miles

Navigating the Path to Great Travel

Delta Selling Medallion Qualifying Miles (MQMs)

In what can be described as the second most stunning news of the year, only to folks discovering that Washington is a liberal state, Delta is selling MQMs again.

What the heck is an MQM?  If you just asked that question, you may be a normal person, especially compared to mileage-obsessed junkies like myself.

Airlines award frequent flyer miles–yes, but there are really two different types of miles: redeemable miles–those that can be used for award tickets, and my favorite, elite qualifying-those capable of granting elite perks such as fee waivers and upgrades.

If I bugged you with information that is under the Si Robertson category of “duh,” I apologize, I just thought a little more information might not hurt.


Anyway, this promotion is running from now through the rest of the year.  Prices are as follows:

Medallion Qualifying Miles, what Delta calls their elite miles, purchased will count toward a member’s 2012 account balance, for 2013 requalification.  In other words, it can be used to help you re-qualify for status for the coming year.

For more information, I have included the links to the Full Terms & Conditions, as well as Frequently Asked Questions.


The idea of course , is sell a mileage run (flying solely for the miles, usually elite qualifying) to folks short of requalification, sans the travel.

I suppose if you will be too busy between now and the end of the year, this could be a great way to requalify for status on Delta.  But this is not a good deal for all.

The thing to keep in mind with any mileage run, whether or not any additional expenditures are incurred, is to assess the value based on the cost per mile earned.  The more miles purchased, the better the deal, yet the best “mileage run” would be a whopping 10 cents per elite mile.  Even as the viability of mileage runs has declined in recent years, this is a horrible deal.

As I shared in my post on the perks of choosing to buy fares with mileage bonuses, earning additional miles at a rate of 5 cents per mile is very reasonable.

So while I would not encourage anyone to jump on this to end the year with a few more miles, if it would mean the difference in elite level, especially say between Silver and Gold Medallion, this could be a smart move.


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