Tue. Mar 21st, 2023

Delta Air Lines and American Express are launching the world’s first credit card crafted from a retired Boeing 747-400 from the airline’s own fleet. The Delta SkyMiles Reserve and Reserve Business American Express credit cards, available for new applicants between now and Aug. 3, represent a limited-edition, metal design. The chip-enabled card will certainly turn heads when you use it to pay, but few might believe the history of the metal used to create it.

Twenty-five percent of the card comes from metal taken from aircraft 6307, which flew for Delta and previously Northwest Airlines before retiring as Delta’s last Boeing 747 signaling the end of an era for the airline.

The slick, black metal card is the highest offering from Delta and American Express and comes with exclusive benefits including access to Delta Sky Clubs and American Express Centurion Lounges when flying with Delta plus a higher priority on the upgrade standby list. It also comes with the opportunity to achieve Medallion elite status faster through spending on the card. After spending $30,000 in purchases on the card within a calendar year, SkyMiles members with the card earn an additional 15,000 Medallion Qualification Miles (MQMs) that help them reach elite status faster.

The new Delta credit card taps into the nostalgia and appreciation that so many travelers have when thinking of this plane. Now, cardholders can have part of the iconic aircraft in their wallet.

American Express research showed that a large percentage of travelers love travel history and are looking for ways to reminisce over the glamor days of aviation. This particular aircraft flew 116,548 hours (equal to being aloft for more than 13 years continuously) for 27 years with Delta and Northwest. It carried 4 million passengers to far-flung destinations on 14,100 individual flights around the world. The aircraft flew 68 million miles in its lifetime, which is the equivalent to circling the globe more than 2,700 times.

The plane’s engines are so fast (it’s average speed was 564 miles per hour) that if it were traveling the length of Manhattan, it would only take 90 seconds to cross from end to end. This particular plane also flew several important flights including transporting military members to overseas bases and helping to evacuate people following Hurricane Irma. Delta volunteers also used the plane to bring orphans from abroad to meet their new families in the United States.

New applicants to the card this summer will also gain access via a QR code to digital content that includes “avgeek”-friendly history about the “Queen of the Skies,” as the double-decker plane is called. The Covid-19 pandemic accelerated the retirement of this iconic plane with airlines like British Airways and KLM among others retiring the famous plane. Cardholders can read about the world’s first widebody jet and what made it so special including onboard lounges in all classes and its ability to fly long-haul distances in comfort. Delta’s flight museum in Atlanta also features a restored Boeing 747, Boeing 757 and DC-9 for those that want to get up close and personal with aviation history.

New cardmembers who apply and are approved for this card before Aug. 3 are eligible for some attractive signup bonuses. After spending $5,000 on the Delta SkyMiles Reserve American Express Card within the first three months of card membership, cardholders will receive 100,000 SkyMiles in their account. A similar offer delivers 110,000 bonus SkyMiles after spending $6,000 on the Delta SkyMiles Reserve Business American Express Card.

Delta and American Express have been partners for 64 years and have inked a deal to remain co-brand partners for the next decade. While that long-standing relationship continues, having a piece of aviation history in your pocket is only available for a limited time.

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